David Myhr - Soundshine

Release party today for Lucky Day at Bar Brooklyn, Debaser Hornstulls Strand, Stockholm

Posted: May 8th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: post | Comments

Release party today for Lucky Day at Bar Brooklyn, Debaser Hornstulls Strand, Stockholm. Se Facebook event here!

 


“The Perfect Place” – the fourth track from Lucky Day released!

Posted: April 6th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: post | Tags: , , , , , | Comments

And so it’s time to present for the fourth track from my album Lucky Day! It’s also the second single that goes out to radio here in Sweden.

The song is called “The Perfect Place” and was actually the first track that was recorded, before the whole project became an American adventure. This was before the co-writing trip and before the decision that Andreas Dahlbäck and I would go over to Nashville to record with Brad Jones.

 

You can also find it on your favorite streaming/download service, for instance on Spotify, in this ever-growing Lucky Day playlist:

The recording took place at Durango Recording with Andreas Dahlbäck as producer. It was Andreas’ idea to take two of my different melodic ideas that both had descending bass lines, and putting them together into one song. I only had to try to find a “magic chord” to put in between them to make it work. I am very thankful to Andreas for suggesting this! No wonder I keep coming back to working with him!

Here’s a nice group picture from the recording of the basic tracks:

(David Myhr, Andreas Dahlbäck, Joel Löf, Olov Domeij, Elias Ortiz, Alicia Carlestam, Andrei Amartinesei)

Hanna Ekström beautifully performing our string arrangement on “The Perfect Place”.

Now, don’t forget to pre-order Lucky Day here! It’s the only way to get hold of the limited edition of the Lucky Day T-shirt!). Please note that the CD version has four bonus tracks (including “Spellbound”!!!)  that you won’t be able to get anywhere else!

 


“Wait Until The Moment” – the third track from Lucky Day released!

Posted: March 19th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: post | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments



And then they were three! While we’re all(?) awaiting the release of my second solo album Lucky Day, by now there are three “instant grat” tracks available for download for those who pre-order the album, no matter if you order a physical copy on CD or vinyl (and T-shirt?) at Lojinx, or if you’ve pre-order the album through iTunes. The first one was “Jealous Sun” (which by the way has been added to Swedish Radio P4’s playlist!!!), the second one “Room To Grow”, and now “Wait Until The Moment”. It will be followed by more surprises along the way!

While awaiting your vinyl or CD you can also enjoy the instant grat tracks on this growing Lucky Day playlist on Spotify:

I’m also very proud that it has been added by Spotify themselves to this playlist with current (mainly Swedish) releases.

In the future you will be able to see and hear the full story about how “Wait Until The Moment” came about, but for now all I can say is that I wrote it together with producer Brad Jones who took my stomping uptempo piano based melodic idea and turned it into something that, to me, sounded very beautiful in its laid back, bossa nova-ish vibe. It went from power pop to… well what is it? Is it Yacht Rock? You decide for yourself!

The song features one of my favourite lyric lines on the (coming) album; ”Break my heart a little and I’ll do the same for you” which was a little ”couplet” that Brad had lying around for years that he finally found use for.

Let me also be a bit nostalgic and take you back to my co-writing trip in 2015 when we put the song together. This is a clip from the control room at Alex The Great Recording in Nashville, just after Brad had constructed a percussive loop from his own sample library, trying it out with the Spanish guitar that he later added to the recording:

And, here’s a clip from my late night vocal overdub session. Brad had instructed me so well on how he wanted me to sing it, so I thought I’d have a go at it right away. It turned out 18 months later that Brad was very happy with the result of that night’s vocal takes, so we decided not to re-record it:

 

Lastly, please feel free to enjoy a live version of the song, from Andreas Dahlbäck’s Durango Recording, where I had the incredible opportunity to put both my dear co-producers in the same room, together with brilliant young Theo Stocks on pedal steel, a former student at The School of Music at Luleå University of Technology, where I work, who happened to be in Nashville with his class-mates only a couple of weeks after the album recording in 2016. I got the idea to ask Brad to have him play some pedal steel on a couple of tracks on the record. He did a fantastic job both at the recording and in this live clip. Please enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 


“Room To Grow” – the second track released from Lucky Day

Posted: February 23rd, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: post | Comments

The second track from my upcoming album Lucky Day that can be pre-ordered here is out! It’s written together with Bill DeMain and is called “Room To Grow”. (Read all about the first track “Jealous Sun” in my last blog post).

The picture below shows me and Bill DeMain at his house involved in a songwriting session. Bill was the fifth ”stop” on my co-writing tour through L.A., Nashville and New York in February 2015. He had been warmly recommended for me to try to approach by Andrew Campbell, the head of my record label Lojinx, as well as by producer Brad Jones. And boy were they right! The session turned out to be very fruitful and now, only one thousand one hundred and seven days later, I am extremely excited to finally be able to share the result with you all in the form of the song ”Room To Grow”.

It was the first time ever that Bill and I met and, as is common in co-writes, the session started with some small talk. We talked a little bit about the phenomenon of co-writing itself and various approaches to it. I said that I’m sometimes a little bit stressed by the idea that one is supposed to come up with something on the spot while being watched by the other. Bill understood my point and said that for first time co-writes he always think that it’s a good idea to start with slight snippets that are a little bit developed. He added “–Knowing that you were coming this week, I came up with something that… uhm… I like the music germ and the title too. The words are a little bit sketchy…”. He then played his idea for a song called “Room to grow” in a short, condensed version consisting of one verse. Or, more correctly, an “A-part” (of an AABA song). I fell in love with what I heard and told him it was really beautiful.

(Listen to “Room To Grow” on the Lucky Day playlist on Spotify or get your own download by pre-ordering Lucky Day on iTunes or from Lojinx (where you’ll also get the CD/vinyl etc).)
(Or enjoy a stripped down live acoustic  version in the video below):

 

I noted that the chords were somewhat “jazzy” but still without sounding too complicated. Bill agreed and said he liked that they are “kind of bossa-nova chords but with the eighth-note rhythm making it simpler”. I spent some time to go through the bunch of extended chords using alternative bass notes, joking that I shouldn’t have skipped classes when they were teaching these kind of chords. I was a little bit out of my comfort zone.

Being in “music city”, with an experienced songwriter I’d never met, I felt I would be really rewarding if I could contribute something great to the song. The only thing I could figure the song was missing was a fitting bridge melody. After forty-five minutes of confused trial-and-error, by improvising melodies singing them out loud accompanying myself with different chords on the guitar, I suddenly hit a melody line that sort of just ”came” to me. But it certainly wasn’t my first intent. As Benny Andersson told me (and a few others), “you have to get rid of all the rubbish”.  For the first time it felt really great. Bill commented after only a few notes “-That’s nice! I like that!”. It kind of sounded obvious and had both energy and movement to it. However, at first the idea was almost lost becuase I wasn’t able to reproduce it. Luckily I had a voice memo recording so I could go back and listen to what I did.

After that little “moment” we spent a couple of hours on writing lyrics where Bill naturally took the lead, being both a native speaker, as well as a very talented lyricist, but also the one who intitally brough the title and the concept to the table. When presenting the song he had said:

”–I often found when I get involved with people, my tendency is just to overthink everything. So within, like the first two or three days I’ve decided ‘this can never work’ instead of just giving it a chance, you know. And it doesn’t even have to apply to love. It’s anything. Like sometimes, even when you’re writing a song, you go ‘nahh, that’s no good’. I like that idea of just ‘you never know what’s going to happen with it’ so…  just give it a chance you know!”

And after a total of three hours, including a very nice chat over lunch about Jeff Lynne (who Bill of course had interviewed!), George Martin (including him showing me this hilarious sketch), and a few other usual suspects, we said goodbye and both felt something good had come out of the session.

I could hardly believe it was for me to record this beautiful song. I kind of felt a responsibility to make it justice. So I brought it  back home to Sweden to fiddle around with ideas for arrangements. Just before it was time for the album recording with Brad Jones and Andreas Dahlbäck in Nashville I made a simple Wurlitzer based pre-production with a McCartney inspired octave jumping bass line, that they, together with Nashville session guitar player Pat Buchanan, then helped me to bring to the next level with their suggestions and beautiful playing. Also, Bill helped out on acoustic guitar and some additional backing vocals. Here’ a picture from when he stopped by for the recording at Brad Jones’ Alex The Great Recording:

Once back in Sweden again, I approached my friend and colleague Mikael Bäckman, one of the best harmonica players around, who added a really sweet and tasty harmonica solo with a slight Stevie Wonderesque feel. How great! I started to feel I couldn’t get enough of beuatiful stuff so I also contacted Anna Manell who came by my studio. We wrote a little string arrangement together that she performed beuatifully on the violin. When I presented the final result to Bill he wrote me back saying  “Wow, David, this is quite the delectable pop bon-bon! I love all the background vocals and strings you added. Splendid!”. It was naturally quite a relief to hear that from Bill since I wouldn’t have wanted to make him disappointed, given that he had offered me that wonderful music germ and title in the first place.

Anna Manell at David Myhr’s Monogram Recordings playing violin on “Room To Grow”.

A photo of Mikael Bäckman by Eskil Olsen, taken from harpatwork.com

Bill later commented:

When David and I wrote “Room To Grow,” we’d never met. Blind date co-writes can be very hit or miss. But I think this one was a hit. We both come from similar pop places – loving The Beatles, ELO, Abba, Wings, Nilsson – so it was enjoyable to find common vocabulary to put the song together. And the arrangement took it to another level. I’m happy to have contributed to such a cool record.”

I’m very proud and happy to have gotten to know Bill DeMain. He’s such an amazing gusy. Not only is he an extremely experienced and enormously talented songwriter, member as he is of intenatioinally acclaimed duo Swan Dive, and with a brilliant solo album out now called Transatlantic Romantic (on Spotify here). But he is also he’s a writer who’s contributed to magazines like Mojo and Classic Rock etc. And a writer of four books (including Sgt. Pepper at Fifty: The Mood, the Look, the Sound, the Legacy). And on top of all this, he does Nashville’s coolest walking tour which Andreas Dahlbäck had the great pleasure to experience, where he takes you through decades of musical history, from classic country and western to R & B to rock ‘n’ roll. A true one-of-a-kind tour experience.


“Transatlantic Romantic” by bill DeMain. Such a beautiful album filled with incredibly well-crafted songs!

“Room To Grow” is the second track made public from my upcoming album Lucky Day. Those of you who pre-ordered it on iTunes can now download it and it’s also added to the Lucky Day playlist on Spotify. The album is of course also available on heavyweight vinyl  with a beautiful artwork, and on a CD with full booklet, that also will contain four beautiful bonus tracks that I’m very proud about (including ”Spellbound” – “the song that E.L.O. never made”). All this (including a limited edition T-shirt) can be found on Lojinx here.

 

Here’s me and co-producer, drummer, Andreas Quincy Dahlbäck, enjoying Nashville’s coolest walking tour, hosted by Bill De Main

“Jealous Sun” – first single from new album Lucky Day. (Pre-order available now!).

Posted: February 2nd, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: post | Comments

…aaaaaaand finally… here it is!!! The first single from my upcoming album!!! “Jealous Sun”!

For those who have been following me it has been a long wait. I went on this exciting co-writing trip back in 2015 and the recording of the basic tracks for the album took place in Nashville in September 2016. So it’s been three years of video blogging and posting about it on my Facebook Page and posting photos on my Instagram. But as the saying goes, good things happen to those who have waited, and today’s the day!! (For those who haven’t been following me before, it obviously hasn’t been a long wait. But today’s the day for you as well! Please feel most welcome!)

 

The song, which is the lead track of the upcoming album is called “Jealous Sun” and is a song I wrote together with the fantastic songwriter and artist, Bleu! I had had the melody lying around for years. Actually already since before my recording session in Abbey Road. Then producer Brad Jones to my surprise suggested deleting the verse, and instead let the pre-chorus should be my verse! Brad sure knows what he’s doing. Turned out great! But it wasn’t until Bleu visited me in my writing cabin on Södermalm in Stockholm that the song got its lyrics. A beautiful lyric if you ask me! With reference to the myth of Icarus and all. What else can you ask for?

 

Speaking of the album… it’s going to be called Lucky Day and will be out in May! I’m not even going to begin now to talk about how incredibly proud and happy I am about it. But I can say that much. That I’m incredible proud and happy about it!

The great thing is that you can pre-order it now on LP, CD or digital at this page from my really cool record label Lojinx:

 http://ljx.cc/DavidMyhr-LuckyDay

…where you can even get your own Lucky Day T-shirt!

If you do pre-order you will get an intstant grat download of this first single, “Jealous Sun” (that also goes for iTunes and Amazon by the way!)

Now, please feel free to enjoy the song in the form of a lyric video by the great Todd Stanton at Todd Productions Inc..

Or download or stream from your favourite service:

https://lnk.to/JealousSun

Stay tuned for an exciting spring ahead with lots of new music!

 

 

 


Into the great wide open – mourning concert for Tom Petty with The Virtues at Debaser Strand

Posted: December 11th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: post | Comments

A little over two months ago, on October 2, Tom Petty left this world. Only a couple of hours after the news I wrote like this in this post on Facebook:

I can’t believe it!!! This brought me to tears. Tom Petty is no longer with us! My greatest American rock’n’roll hero! American rock at its best, but with a magic pop feel with its roots in British 60’s pop. And that voice. And those songs… For thirty years, he has been a constant companion in the soundtrack to my life and one of my true great musical inspirations. I just love him and his music so much. But not just me. Everybody loved Tom! Almost all of my musician friends do. His Traveling Wilburys friends Jeff LynneGeorge HarrisonRoy Orbison, and Bob Dylan surely did. Del Shannon and Johnny Cash, and countless more did. I mean who else than Tom Petty had half  The Beatles backing him up in a rock video (see the very end of this post)?
Speaking of his relation to The Beatles (and particulary his very close relation to George Harrison), I remember he once said:
“-I still think the Beatles [made] the best music ever, and I’m sure I’ll go to my grave thinking the same thing”.
I was hoping though that day would be another twenty or more years away. After The Beatles, together with Jellyfish, for me Tom Petty & Heartbreakers was my biggest musical inspiration. So glad I got to see him live in Sweden in -93 and -12, and with my wife Paula at The Hollwyood Bowl in -06 (when he also invited up Jeff Lynne on stage). Thank you for everything, Tom!!! Rest in peace. “You belong among the wildflowers. You belong somwhere you feel free”. 
Twenty-three days later I was invited to be one of the guest singers at a concert arranged by Debaser (Stockholm’s leading rock club) where my friends in the great band The Virtues (their Facebook-page here) were to play and where we’d all get the chance to mourn Tom Petty together. They made an absolutely fantastic performance which is supposed to have been filmed and recorded. So fingers crossed it will materilize some day in the future. Until then I am only able to share a couple of clips of when I jumped up on stage.
First, one of my all time favorite pop songs in the world ever. “American Girl”:

 It was also a great honour to sing George Harrison‘s part together with Peter Jacobsson Morén on the classic “Handle With Care”. It dawned upon me that nowadays I’m as old as Bob Dylan was when the song was released. No wonder I love “dad-rock”! Although it’s true I’ve loved it since my teens…

I like to think Tom Petty is now together somewhere with George and Roy, cracking jokes, and playing the ukulele.
Here’s a throwback to happier times when I welcomed Tom Petty to Stockholm back in 2012 by singing his song Wildflowers.
And lastly – a nostalgic throwback to the MTV years… Tom and Mike Campbell with Jeff Lynne and… half the Beatles!!!

Rest in peace, Tom. You will be missed.

The day I met Benny Andersson

Posted: December 8th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: post | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments

Alright folks… breaking news… I met Benny!!!

Please let me begin by apologising for the radio silence here on my news blog since the release of my ELO flavoured film song “Spellbound” which by the way turned into my career-peak (so far!) on Swedish radio. I can assure you that exciting things are in the pipeline for 2018 given that I have now finished the recordings of my second solo album (more about the recordings here). It’s about time considering my solo debut album Soundshine came out in 2012. Please register to the news-letter here on the side to stay updated! (Very few e-mails per year, I promise!).

What now causes me to break the silence (except for the fact that I’ve recently mostly been posting updates on my Facebook artist page) is the fact that I finally got to meet my life-long hero Benny Andersson of ABBA fame! It happened exactly a week ago, on Dec 1, 2017, at the12th Art of Record Production Conference, hosted by the Royal College of Music, Stockholm, Sweden.

 

 

A little over three years ago I experienced the handshake of my life. (Feel free to read my 4000 words long post about the day I met Paul McCartney). Even though it’s obviously impossible to beat, there are still a few hands I would really like to shake before I (or they) die. Now that both Tom Petty and David Bowie very sadly are out of the question (see my Petty tribute here, my Bowie tribute here) I can only wish for Jeff Lynne (read about my near-Jeff experience here). But also, of course, my Swedish heroes from the world phenomenon that is ABBA!

Whenever a Swede goes abroad we talk (proudly) of IKEA and of course ABBA. After all, they are indisputable true legends of music history in the BIG league. Loved by (almost) everybody! They sold over (unbelievable!) 400 million records worldwide and were the beginning of the Swedish music export phenomenon. As for me personally, not only did I grow up with ABBA, but they have always been present in my life one way or another. I remember hearing Waterloo on the radio as a child in the 70’s. I loved the piano outro of Chiquitita already before I became obsessed by the Beatles.  With the help of Andy Sturmer of Jellyfish as a producer, when I was in the Merrymakers, we borrowed inspiration from ABBA’s “Money Money Money” for the intro of “April’s Fool”. And through the years in the music business the ABBA stories have always been around. But most of all, ABBA has been a part of my professional life as a musician for the last 16 years. As a sideline I’m a Benny impersonator in the Swedish tribute (eight-piece) band Super Trouper which has offered hundreds of shows in Sweden and the Nordic countries. See below for a picture with me (and the other three “ABBAs”) in my wig and my platform shoes.

But years ago, I have also at a few occasions been a “Benny” stand-in in the internationally successful production ABBA The Music (later divided into The Show and The Visitors) playing together with members of the original ABBA band like Janne Schaffer, Lasse Wellander, Uffe Andersson, and Roger Palm. In this context I have toured the US (including shows at the legendary Hollywood Bowl in front of 16,000 people), Spain (World Expo in Zaragoza 2008), Cyprus, Holland, Belgium etc.

So the thought of meeting Benny has always been somewhat of a fantasy of mine. It hasn’t seem completely unlikely that it could happen one day considering we live in the same city and he’s out and about, I visit his studio every now and then, and that I know quite a few people who work with, or has worked with, him.

The first time I spotted Benny and his wife was at Malmö airport as a kid back in 1979. But I’ve also more or less bumped into him at a restaurant in Stockholm, at the Swedish Grammy awards, outside of his studio (where I’ve brought students through the years, see below). I’ve visited one of his summer houses at a party hosted by Tommy Körberg and so on. I also saw Björn and Benny salute an enormous crowd in Hyde Park in 2009. But again,  I have never got the chance to exchange a few words and shake his hand until a week ago!

It  happened on the day I was about to present a paper (“Observing melody in solo songwriting”) at the ARP conference (mentioned above) talking about methodologies from my on-going research project in the melody writing process. Benny was invited as a secret guest for a “celebrity interview”. Word got out (thanks to my assistant supervisor, friend and academic role-model Joe Bennett!) that “Benny is in the building” and I searched my way to the lobby of the Royal College of Music in Stockholm where the conference was taking place. It turned out Benny had come an hour too early and was told to come back in a while. So I thought I’d better stick around. And suddenly, the God of melodies himself walks into the building!

I recently had the honour of exchanging a couple of e-mails with Benny from my position as a senior lecturer at The School of Music at Luleå University of Technology (LTU) (see my staff profile here). LTU awarded Benny an honorary doctorate in 2012, Philosophical Faculty. So I could refer to that as my “ice breaker”, presenting myself briefly, and greeted him with a hand shake. Selfie-obsessed as I am, obviously it would be great to have a picture of this moment as well, so I asked him if he was okay with me taking a photo. He said it was no problem and jokingly asked “Shall I comb my hair?”. I answered that we looked great and took the picture. See my Facebook post here and Instagram post here.

A little later I put myself in the centre of the first row (where else?) when the “celebrity interview” took place. The interview was conducted by music researcher and former artist in his own right Göran Folkestad (who I got to know personally over a piano later in the evening singing “Oh Darling!” together after a couple of beers).
After so many years of reading about it, like for instance in this fine interview from Dagens Nyheter, or seeing it on TV (for instance in the talk show Skavlan not long ago), finally I was about to hear about melody making from Benny Andersson himself. An incredible opportunity that I feel very blessed to have experienced with my own eyes!
In the interview Benny talked about how it all began for him. How music came into his life since his father and grandfather were playing the accordion (with him playing along). His grandfather never complained about Benny’s playing and partly thanks to that eventually he got really good at it.  He also talked about how his wise mother got a piano for him and his sister back in 1956. He said: “–Once that piano came into the house. I started playing. Tried to… And since that first day I’ve been sitting at the piano, I could say, nearly every day. For 60 years. Because I like it. You know… It’s like… I have a connection… or maybe music has the connection with me.”
Folkestad started to ask very interesting questions about his compositional process. Considering my own interest in the subject, and how many times I’ve talked in my songwriting classes about Benny’s work methods (sit by the piano and work, work, work, until the ideas show up), it was almost unreal that he now not only sat there in front of me talking about just that. But also offered a demonstration on the piano!
He was saying: “–Because when I play something that I don’t ’know what it is, like in the composing process, it’s like… mostly rubbish. I can’t explain why that is. I can give you an example of how it is, but…”
Fokestad (and the audience): “–Yeah, please do!”
Benny: “–Yeah, well… Shall I?”
And since you made your way all down here in this blog post I am now very happy to be able to offer you to see exactly what I saw! Enjoy!

Filmed from the first row by myself. His highly fascinated disciple. It was kind of silly really. On the very day I’m supposed to talk about the process of melody writing Benny shows up! Talk about a humbling experience. He summed up the process in nine words: “–You have to get rid of all the rubbish!”.
And who do you think asked the first question from the audience once the interview was over? Good guess!
David Myhr: ”–OK, can I go? First row… sorry for taking the spot… First of all I want to thank you for coming and I can testify that I think you’re wrong saying you’re not an artist* because I’ve been a Benny impersonator for twenty years as a sideline and there’s a lot of head-shaking going on.”
Benny: ”–Yeah, yeah, but that was in the 60’s! I was an artist then!”**
DM: ”–But my question is, being a Beatles fan, I always read about what John did, what Paul did. They both spoke about it in separate interviews. And I’m very curious about , having read your interview in Dagens Nyheter, that you always when you compose melodies, there are never lyrics included in the process. So,  I was wondering – how did you work together in general? And if there’s a specific example it would be fantastic.”
Benny: ”–Well, do you mean during the days with ABBA?”
David: ”–Yeah, exactly”
Benny:
”–We were sitting together. I was hammering along on the piano and Björn on the guitar. And we kept on doing that until something came up. You know.  And sometimes there would be a lyric line like ”Money Money Money ” because it sits with (humming the main theme). That we tried to get rid of that actually! He wrote like three lyrics. And I said no, it’s not good. Money money… But the thing… there was a song called ”Money’, and there was a song called ‘Money Money’.  So we had to call it ‘Money Money Money’.
Yeah but we worked tightly together. Then at the time. Then that changed a bit. It actually started with ’Chess’ I think.
Since then I’ve been doing the music on my own. He always writes the lyrics. If he wants to. I always ask him first. Yeah…”
David: ”–Thank you!”
*) he actually suggested during the interview he’s just a songwriter/arranger/producer and together with ABBA live a ”backing musician” and not an ”artist”
**) In the 60’s Benny was in the biggest group of Scandinavia: Hep Stars! (see Benny behind the organ here)
In the pictures below you see me with Benny’s sound engineer and “right hand” since back in the 80’s, the sound engineer wizard Bernard Löhr (who by the way we once hired to mix The Merrymakers “Spinning My Mind Away”). He made a very interesting keynote speech the same morning. You will also find a couple of pictures from Benny’s studio Rixmixningsverket , a studio which house engineer Linn Fijal has been kind enough to show me and my students from The School of Music at Luleå University of Technology a number of times. In the small picture we see how the grand piano was miked during the recording of Benny’s new (beautiful!) album Piano.
It’s a worn-out cliché to say it. But what else is there to say, so here I go: Thank you for the music, Benny!
p.s. Feel free to check out my simple and very stripped-down version of one of ABBA’s many genius melodies: “Happy New Year” 

 

 

 


 


“Spellbound” challenger (“utmanare”) on Svensktoppen!

Posted: December 24th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: post | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments
My last couple of posts have been about my latest single “Spellbound” (release post here, gala premiere report here, official video premiere here). But now on Christmas Eve there’s even more to report!
If there’s one chart that’s classic in Sweden it’s ”Svensktoppen” (“The top of Sweden”). As Swedish Radio P4 puts it (in my own improvable translation): “This is where you’ll hear the Swedish songwriter’s music, international as well as national hits in any language. The chart is voted by a statistically chosen jury and is one of the most important benchmarks of Swedish music”.
In any case, the list has existed since 1962. And through the years all big Swedish artists have appeared, all the way from Lasse Lönndahl (who by the way once heard me entertaining at an after-ski in Björkliden up in the Swedish mountains),  Lill-Babs, and Sven-Bertil Taube via ABBA and Per Gessle (of Roxette fame) and recently Laleh, First Aid Kit, and Robyn.
Tomorrow Sunday, yes on Christmas Day(!), the ELO influenced song I wrote together with Jimmy Lagnefors for the movie Flykten till Framtiden after the brief from the director Ulf Malmros will be one of three ”challengers” (”utmanare” in Swedish). Not being quite a house-hold name in Sweden (yet!?) it will obvioulsy be difficult for me to “kick out” national legends like Benny Andersson (of ABBA fame!) and his orchestra ,  Magnus Uggla and new international star Zara Larsson. Things are not made easier by the fact that the two other challengers Nisse Hellberg and Cajsa-Stina Åkerström both are well-known names with great new songs (Cajsa-Stina’s song is produced by my friend and highly respected colleague Peter Kvint who I’ve talked about here and here).
Funny anecdote: My good friend, Andreas Dahlbäck, who plays drums on ”Spellbound” (and who also played drums on my debut album Soundshine), actually plays on both ”Spellbound” and both the other challengers’ songs. For the last few years I’ve always talked about him as one of the key people in the Swedish recording business, and this certainly proves my point.
Who knows what the verdict from the jury, consisting of 500 people supposedly representative for the Swedish people as a whole, will be. But in any case – no matter what happens after Sunday – I will definitely remember this as a ”mile stone” in my career. Or is it rather just a ”stepping stone”…? Time will tell!
My heartfelt thanks to Ulf Malmros for making a great movie that partly takes place in 1973 and therefore had the good taste of requesting an ELO song, to my close friend, Jimmy Lagnefors who invited me in on the opportunity to write the song (something I talk more about in this Hooks & Harmony interview and in this radio inteveiw with Hawaii radio show Time Machine).
I hope you all are enjoying your Christmas celebrations!!! Probably the perfect time (yeah, right…!?) to enjoy the official video for “Spellbound”:

Happy Xmas – War if Over!!! Let us have a Wonderful Christmastime!
From Wikipedia: Svensktoppen (Swedish: [²svɛnskˌtɔpːɛn]) is a weekly record chart airing at Sveriges Radio. Until January 2003, the songs had to be in the Swedish language. Svensktoppen has aired since 1962, except for the years 1982-1985. The last years before the January 2003 change, the programme was strongly dominated by dansband music.

The official video for “Spellbound”

Posted: November 20th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: post | Tags: , , , , , | Comments

If you have read this previous post and this previous post you know a lot about my new single “Spellbound” which is a song I’ve written together with Jimmy Lagnefors that is featured in the Swedish feature film Flykten till Framtiden. Now it’s time to enjoy the official video!

It was made by a talented team consisting of Hans Montelius, Nikita Rönning Ledström, and Erik Sandström. The shooting took place on the famous street Sundsgatan in my former home town, Piteå, in the north of Sweden. I spent a few drunken weekends in my youth going back on forth on the sidewalks of Sundsgatan while watching the “raggare” driving back on forth on the street with their American cars, playing loud music. It was they way we knew party life before we were old enough to be let in to the local pubs and discos. Little did I know then that I was going to be cruising back and forth in a ’73 Volvo thirty years later miming to my latest single release. Some scenes were also shot in front of a green screen at the TV-studio of The School of Music in Piteå where I also teach.

It’s out on YouTube here:

And on Facebook here:

I look very much forward to your reactions on both platforms. Thumbs up or down? “Like” or “Angry face”? Share it to the world and help spread the word or keep it to yourself?  All up to you of course!

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Gala premiere for Flykten till Framtiden (My Future Love) where my new single “Spellbound” is featured.

Posted: November 9th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: post | Tags: , , , , , | Comments
Today The New Yorker wrote in this column: “The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism.”
In my state of a a slight hangover, and with the above worrying news from the USA this morning, I right now prefer to take a little break from the telly and instead look back on yesterday when all our troubles seemed so far away. The thing is I was fortunate enough to be invited to the gala premiere of Flykten Till Framtiden (My Future Love).
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There I got the chance the hang with my good friend Jimmy Lagnefors, film music composer, and responsible for the movie’s (great!) soundtrack (available here through my own label Monogram Recordings!).
It was together with Jimmy I wrote my new (highly ELO/Jeff Lynne flavoured) single ”Spellbound” (see my previous blog post) which is featured heavily in the movie and plays when the credits roll. Also present was my new friend, the talented musician/artist Pontus Snibb who co-wrote no less than six songs with Jimmy on the soundtrack. Below you’ll find pictures of the three of us directly after walking out from the cinema, and also at the reception afterwards.
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At the reception I also got the opportunity to congratulate directors Ulf Malmros (huge ELO/Jeff Lynne fan himself!) & Jaana Formin, and producer Jan Blomgren, to a fantastic movie (it was really good – go see it!), as well as meet & greet with main actors Henrik Dorsin, Elias Palin, and Victoria Dyrstad who all spoke very kindly about my little contribution to the movie in the form of a song. I also had a good laugh together with side role actor Henrik Kursula and his girlfriend Jenny. Henrik does a fantastic character in the movie and does it amazingly well!!! Very funny guy! All in all, a very fun evening!
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I would like to take the chance express my deep gratitude to Jimmy Lagnefors for inviting me in for the second time to help him out with movie songs. The first time was when we wrote ”Vänta inte på mig” (which became my first single in Swedish, see blog post here) and ”Superman” for the film Micke & Veronica a couple of years ago. Also, to his sweet girlfriend, my friend Tia Tuhkunen who always makes me feel welcome at their home and who is very supportive of our music. Tia also made yesterday’s event flow smoothly also after the free drinks were over (including making sure the new ones were paid!). Here’s a picture of the company at Nada Bar where the party continued.
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In a couple of days the movie will have the official premiere for the public but not only that. The OFFICIAL VIDEO for “Spellbound” is going to be released as well!!! Stay tuned!!!
On an end note, about the situation in the U.S.A. I would like to quote the first two lines from “Spellbound”:  “We’re at the end of time. It’s either fall or climb…”. Please let me suggest the latter! Peace and love everyone!
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