Alexander Rybak – “What I Long For” one of the most populare songs in The Hit

Author: Kristine Hellem Aanstad
Photo: VG, Mattis Sandblad


Alexander Rybak The Hit
Alexander Rybak is the one who has been played the most on Spotify among the artists that was voted off. While Maria Haukaas Mittet is the one who has the best ranking on Itunes- on place 76

No hit´s from The Hit

This is clear when you go through the sales figures and streaming figures for the seven songs that has been voted to tonight`s final.NRK`s big launch The Hit started in September. A show where you were supposed to find a song with a big hit potental, but so far no hit has come out of the show.

The ones voted off are more popular 

In each of the seven programs of The Hit two songwriters with accompanying artists has competed against each other, and one has gone further¨. Since none of the songs that has been in the program is on the VG list and only Trine Rein, one of the finalists is on the Itunes list, you can see from the figures on Spotify that in several of the cases the songs that was voted off are more popular than the finalist songs.

Maria Arredondo and the song “Antenna” has been streamed over 11000 times, while her opponent Busk only has 3400.

It`s the same with Alexander With and “You” which has been streamed over 11000 times compared to Bøksle`s 7713- and Alexander Rybak`s What I long for with which has been played over 13000 times compared to Rein`s 4327 and the song Salvation is almost as popular on the streaming service as Hoel`s song.

Far from being a hit 

After the first program VG`s reviewer Stein Østbø gave it a five on the dice and wrote “NRK can surely be satisfied with the rates but I`m convinced that they also would like that such a concept actually created a hit- it`s what the whole program is about. Apart from D`Sound the streaming figures for the finalist songs are sensationally low and far from being hits, says Østbø and continues.

I think the reason why none of the songs have become popular are split. First it`s about the quality of the songs itself, which isn`t good enough, secondly the artists going to the final hasn`t succeeded in changing the raw material into something immediate and something with a hit potential that they can have a life outside the concept of the program. Perhaps the guy who picked the songs, the legendary producer Steve Lillywhite, don`t have the necessary fingerspitz gefühl for what will be popular on the Norwegian market.

We create feelgood TV 

The project manager Stig Karlsen thinks that the goal of the program was to create TV Entertainment with a purpose.

We think that in The Hit concept it should be songs that are catchy and easy for most people to like. We give unknown songswriters a possibilty to get attention. We emphasise them, match them with well known Norwegian artists and the songwriters get to show off their song to over half a million viewers on prime time and on Nitimen (radio programme).

But isn`t it a point that there should be a hit or more from The Hit?

We don`t relate to the commercial aspect. We are concerned with making feelgood TV. Getting a well known artist to perform an unknown song is a boost to those who write the songs, says Karlsen.

What do you think of the fact that the songs haven`t had higher sales figures or been streamed more than this?

There are many mechanisms that play a part and decides wheter a song becomes a hit or not. It`s also about how you define a hit, today people consume music totally different and through different channels like streaming services and YouTube. I think that the song that will be chosen as winner on Friday will have a life outside the program.

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