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!
In a few days I will be going on tour through three countries together with my friend, artist and songwriter colleague Linus of Hollywood! We call it the Melody and Madness tour 2015 (webpage here and Facebook-page here). It’s going to be an acoustic night of melodic pop where we play songs from our respective solo catalogues but also stuff from our former bands The Merrymakers and Size 14 as well as some carefully and lovingly selected cover songs. One of which is Badfinger’s “Come and Get it” (written by McCartney) that will be included on the very exclusive CD-single that we’ll be selling on the tour. (There will also be an exclusive T-shirt for sale – see photo below). On some of the nights we will have distinguished guests joining us on stage, like Peter Kvint (ex-Melony), Per Sunding (ex-Eggstone), Kurt Baker, and El Inquieto Roque.
Here’s Linus (and his dog Louie) explaining a little bit what it’s all about:
Followed by me explaining a little bit what it’s all about:
The tour schedule looks like this:
Aug 27 – Stockholm, Sweden – Waterfront Sunset (Loch & Quay) – feat. Peter Kvint (Melony) – FREE SHOW! (FB event here).
Aug 28 – Uppsala, Sweden – SOLD OUT living room concert
Aug 29 – Malmö, Sweden – Tambourine Studios – PRIVATE EVENT – email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to attend and we’ll see what we can do!
Just like that. Out of the blue! While you’re all out there lazing on all the sunny afternoons I am delighted to bring you a little surprise from the David Myhr record label head quarters at Lojinx, England. Soundshine is available as of TODAY on vinyl. Yes indeed! A real 33 1⁄3rpm microgroove vinyl record. An LP (Long Play)! Get your copy now by clicking this link: http://ljx.cc/soundshine
Up until now I’ve been watching the whole vinyl revival thing from a distance. I’ve remained a digital guy, fascinated as I am with streaming services like Spotify. Having said that, there’s a particular magic about the old LP format that not even I can resist. It obviously has a lot to do with nostalgia. As a small kid in the late 70’s and early 80’s the LP was the medium on which I discovered music (alongside the cassette). I’ll never forget when my sister-in-law Agneta borrowed me her copies of The Beatles red and blue albums. Or how I went to the local record store and bought my own copy of Paul McCartney’s then brand new Tug of war. Not to mention browsing through my brother Niklas record collection discovering David Bowie, Neil Young, Cat Stevens, and other “hip and happening” artists (as you can see I was retro even as a twelve-year-old).
In a (very) old blog post I wrote about how I miss record stores and now the time has come to admit that I also miss the smell, the sound, and above all the look of the LP format. And finally, the longing after something “real” became so strong that I decided to put some hard-earned money into making a vinyl version of Soundshine in hope there’s at least a few people out there that just like me are looking forward to opening it up in the new format, to enjoy the artwork (now bigger than ever!), read the lyrics, the never-ending thank you list, the credits, and everything on the inner sleeve. (Stuff that seems to be completely forgotten these days but which for us music nerds is half the fun). And then to put down the needle and enjoy listening to something so old-fashioned as a “Side A”, flip it over, and then “Side B”.
The two last songs will differ from the digital version. The backwards mumbo jumbo at the end of “Icy Tracks” is gone and the never-ending outro of “Ride Along” is somewhat shortened. This is due to the physical limitations of the LP format. But funnily enough I think it (if possible?) actually may increase the listening experience.
Included with the album is a digital download in case you (just like me) don’t yet have your vinyl player set up. In other words you can still enjoy the packaging and hang it on the wall alongside your Nickelback, and Michael Bolton album covers (they’re the ones you’re supposed to mention when you’re being ironic, right?).
Newsflash! It seems that Swedish media finally have “discovered” Soundshine! In the new issue of “Studio” (4-2013) which is a music magazine specializing in recording and music production (and that I’m an avid reader of myself) you will find a three hour(!) long “mix video” featuring myself talking about the writing, recording, and production of my song “Never Mine” which as many of you know is the opening track of my solo debut album Soundshine. (Feel free to have a listen on the Spotify player to the right!).
The magazine says (kindly) that Soundshine is a “fantastic solo debut” and that it’s “sprängfyllt med gnistrande poppärlor” which would be something like “filled to the brim with glimmering pop pearls”. Don’t know if that works in English though… Should anyone (except for me) be on the look for nice praise over the album in “real” English you can also check out Hooks and Harmony who named Soundshine the album of the year (followed by interview here).
In the STUDIO interview I talk about how the idea for the verse melody came to me already back in 2006 and how I reworked it over a two year to period until I finally was happy with it and how the song was put on hold while The Merrymakers were still active (or should we say inactive?) as a band but became an obvious choice for me to include on my album once I was a solo artist. By then it was up to no one but me to decide whether my songs were good enough or not – and guess if they were! (Insert laughter here…)
I also discuss at length about the choice of co-producer (and drummer) Andreas Dahlbäck, session musicians Anders Petterson, Rikard Lidhamn and more, and you will see unique video clips from the recording, how the drums were miked etc. Above all the mix video contains a detailed run-through on-screen insight into my Logic (recording software) project. There you will see which instruments are part of the arrangement and how they were recorded and treated from a production perspective.
Also, in the last part of video you get to meet Marcus Black who mixed the whole album where he discusses his approach to mixing in general and to the mix of “Never Mine” in detail (with an on-screen run-through of his Pro Tools project). At the very end we talk a little bit about the mastering at Abbey Road and you will be invited to see the mastering room of senior engineer Steve Rooke who apart from my album has worked with among many, many other artists Paul McCartney and George Harrison. Not to mention the recent re-mastering of The Beatles themselves.
The magazine also features an article about myself and the recording of Soundshine. So if you are in Sweden (or know Swedish) and you are interested in the above I hope you find your way to the magazine store this month. Or if you’re living the modern digital life you can buy it as a pdf here.
UPDATE: As en Easter egg STUDIO magazine is offering the video link for free! Just click the picture below to get access to the three hour video (in eight parts). Remember to click the HD symbol so it becomes grey (not white) in order to get high quality.
A million big humble thanks to chief editor Mats Stålbröst and business manager Andreas Hedberg at STUDIO for showing an interest in my music and sharing it with their readers.
Please let me know what you think about the article in the comment section below or at my Facebook Page.
What “a day in the life”! Recording at ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS!!!
I have always loved the Beatles. And I will surely do ’til the day I die. One of the biggest highlights in my “Beatles career” (update: THIS was bigger!!!!) was to be able to spend a day in legendary Studio 2 at Abbey Road to record an alternate version of my song “Never Mine” which is the opening track of my debut album Soundshine. Check out the video and continue reading below for full background story.
Since my first visit to London back in 1990 I have never missed the opportunity while in town to visit the famous crossing at Abbey Road. But until 2011 I had never been able to actually enter the building. It was in May when I did it for the first time since I (in a strike of megalomania) had chosen this legendary place for the mastering of Soundshine. Read more about this occasion in this blog post.
Little did I know then that the doors would open for me again only six months later, and this time to RECORD in frickin’ Studio 2!!! Yes, THAT studio…!
I wrote then; “today we’re not here to try to change music history but more to study the process of how music history was made from within the actual room were a big part of it was created. I hope to be able to share the result with you sometime in a not too distant future”. That distant future is NOW! Almost fourteen months later…! The reasons for the delay are many. One being that Thomas Juth who took the initiative (which I will be forever grateful for!) is a highly demanded sound engineer in London and therefore hasn’t been able to find the time to work on the mix from this little “hobby project” (although very close to his heart). Thomas is a really sweet (and also cool) guy who has worked with many great names and I mean GREAT(!). Read more about his impressive track record on his own home page.
However, when I was asked to be part of a free download sampler (yes that’s where you’ll find the song I’m talking about here!) released by the music blog Real Gone (who by the way made a really nice review of Soundshine here) I decided it was time to have a proper mix made. The mix is a combination of Thomas Juths ground work and Soundshine engineer Marcus Black’s fine adjustments.
I really wanted to be able to offer a video clip as well but there was no time and no money (as always…). But then Christmas came I and went to Spain with my wife to spend time with her family. And in between tapas, dinners, family life, and a gig at Festival Alta Fidelidad in Madrid, I finally found some time to take my first, stumbling steps as a video editor using Final Cut Pro X. And with the very little rough material I had from my iPhone standing on a tripod (and a couple of other cell phones in the room) I’ve tried to make a little video documenting this very special moment.
It was really a day in paradise for us Beatle geeks and we spent more than half of the precious ten hours staring at Beatles microphones and Beatles compressor and that kind of stuff. The recording became kind of secondary and something we really did “just for fun”. Considering all this I’m really happy with the final result. It’s obvious that we do not hide our love for the Beatles in the way it’s produced and played. And that’s also my reason for not releasing it on Spotify or iTunes or on CD. As much as I love the Beatles, and to play their songs, I don’t want my own stuff to be TOO Beatlesque and end up being categorized next to The Rutles.
To put even more weight into this occasion I decided to write a little piece of lyrics for this world premiere:
It was fourteen months ago today
Thomas Juth invited me to play
To try to recreate the Beatles style
was guaranteed to raise a smile
So may I introduce to you
The song you’ve known for just a year
David Myhr’s “Never Mine” in Abbey Roooooooooooaddd….
Special thanks to Thomas Juth and his brother Fredrik Juth (who played bass and drums) for inviting me to this very special occasion. Thanks also to Michael Bianco, Dyre Gormensen who were part of the recording process. And to Andrew Campbell at Lojinx who co-ordinated the Real Gone release. To Amy Campbell for shooting some nice photos (including the one above) at Abbey Road. And to Henrik Irgens and my wife Paula who also made the day even more pleasant through their sheer presence.
It’s time to say goodbye to the year of 2012 and I want to do it by saying thank you to all you wonderful people who have been involved in one way or another in the events surrounding the release of my solo debut album Soundshine.
To do so I have put together a four minute long slide show that will take you through memorable moments from recording sessions in Stockholm and at Abbey Road in London to gigs in Tokyo, Osaka, Madrid, Burgos, London, Stockholm, and Piteå. But more importantly it shows some of all the great meetings I’ve had with music lovers, music colleagues, fans, friends, family, band mates, record label and music publishing people, and a couple of idols as well.
The soundtrack consists of a medley of all the songs on Soundshine in a “don’t bore us – get to the chorus” fashion. The photos were taken by among others Amy Campbell, Paula and Carol Muñoz Macaya, Kiki Fukuzumi, Jonas Förare, but also by many more… thanks!
So, from the bottom of my heart – thank you to each and everyone who has supported the release of Soundshine (and that includes all of you who didn’t end up in the slide show as well)!
Hope to see you all again in a not too distant future!
Six months before the Japanese release of Soundshine and nine months before the European release I entered the main stage at PDOL (an abbreviation for “Piteå Dansar och Ler”
which is Swedish for “Piteå dances and smiles”). It’s an annual street festival in my former home town Piteåway up north in Sweden which usually gather at least some 25,000 visitors.
For the occasion I used the same backing band as I did on my premiere show in Piteå earlier the same year. Andreas Dahlbäck on drums who also played drums on the album and acted as my sounding board in the recording process which led to me entitling him “co-producer” of the album. Robert van der Zwan (Poplabbet) and Krille Eriksson played guitars, Erik Jonsson (The Fix) played bass, and Joel Sjödin (Mankind) played keyboards. An amazing backing group if you ask me. Furthermore we were joined on two songs by the horn section Horny Minds from local blues heroes Ramblin’ Minds, and last but not least we were honored to have one of the finest Swedish current female pop artists around… Edith Backlund!
I have played at this festival a few times before over the last twenty years, both with the Merrymakers in the 90’s, not to mention our short “revival” in 2007, and also at reunions of my early bands from my youth (Ant-Mansson and 2nd Hand B band). I’ve also played there with the ABBA tribute band Super Trouper in which I play the part of Benny Andersson. However, this was the first time that I entered the main stage of the festival, and what’s more as a solo artist. In that sense it was kind of a big moment for me so I decided to document it properly which included renting a multi-track recorder and hire a film crew.
Time has proved it difficult to come out to meet audiences in other countries with a full backing band. Instead I’ve made solo acoustic gigs – like for instance in Spain in March. It’s true, there are rare exceptions like when I played in Tokyo with local backing musicians or in London on the Lojinx release party where I had a full band. But as the situation is right now it doesn’t look like a proper world tour with a full backing group is happening…
Therefore, I am now very pleased to be able to share this live experience and fond memory with anyone, anywhere, who might be interested. The 47 minute film documents not only the entire show including all the talk between the songs (subtitled in English – only for you!), but also a little bit of life back stage including the nervous artist only seconds before going on stage and the after show hugs while the credits are running to the soundtrack of the re-mix of Looking for a life.
Put on your best headphones, get your beverage, sit back, and enjoy! A splendid time is guaranteed for all! I really hope you like what you see and hear and if you do, please feel free to comment, and of course to share. For those of you who want to have a high quality, hi res experience, I am open for burning DVD’s of the occasion. Don’t hesitate to contact me in order to discuss the practicalities…
And hopefully one day I’ll be able to bring the band, come to YOUR town and play IRL!
If you’re reading this you probably already know I was in a band called The Merrymakers in the 90’s. Our two albums which you can find on Spotify came out in 1995 and 1997. We had our greatest success in Japan and was fortunate to work with our hero Andy Sturmer of Jellyfish. The second half of the 90’s were our “heydays” when we were at least somewhat productive and succesful. By then we were a trio featuring me, Anders Hellgren, and Peter Arffman. But that story I’ve told many times – like in this interview or in many blog posts like this one.
But today I’m going to celebrate the “mark 1” line up of The Merrymakers from the formative years. Back in the days when we were still living in Piteå up in northern Sweden. By then we were a five-piece band with no more than four of us figthing about the spot behind the vocal microphone. Almost like a “super group”…
The reason for becoming nostalgic today is that it’s exactly twenty years ago that our first single (with a proper record deal) was released and heard on national radio P3. We were signed by Ola Håkansson (already legendary from bands like Ola & The Janglers and Secret Service) to his new label Stockholm Records. They later fired us partly since we were lacking a clear profile (very true by then!) and that they had found “a younger group”. How old we were..? Twenty-three! The other group…? The Cardigans!
Here’s a picture of the single cover from 1992 alongside the cover of my new solo album Soundshine. As you can see a lot has happened in 20 years!
Anyway, the song is called “Andrew’s Store” and below you can enjoy (or suffer!?) a few nostalgic video clips from that era. You will note I had more hair, more glasses, worse shirts, and a stronger Piteå accent (only notable for those who speak Swedish). I sing lead on this particular song (I won the fight that time probably because I came up with the melody for the chorus and bridge). No matter how painful and embarrasing it may be for ourselves (and our wives) to watch this I thought it was a good moment to share these clips. It might be fun at least for those who were around at the time. And maybe (but no guarantees, hey!) for those who discovered the song much later after our success in Japan where it was re-released again in 1998 o a compilation together with the rest of the singles and B-sides from the early years.
Enjoy and have a nice weekend!
Coverage by SVT (Swedish television) with clips from the studio and outdoors in Piteå (don’t miss the ending picture with the trumpet players behind Andrew’s Store):
Coverage by local TV (Piteå Kanalen) from the release party at local record store Hit It Records.
Playback in Z-TV (first TV performance ever):
Live (but playback) in Z-TV at Stockholm Records release party at Hamburger Börs:
I remember Paul McCartney once said “I love being in a band. It’s a luxury. I’d rather have a band than a Rolls Royce.” And it’s true that being in a band is a true luxury. Especially a “real” band. It’s hard to beat the feeling of being in a tight group working creatively together towards the same goal with an “us against the world” mentality. I have very fond memories of the periods when the Merrymakers were a tight songwriting team and we inspired and bounced ideas off each other.
But it’s also true that being a solo artist now gives me a freedom that’s hard to beat. Now I am free to ask whoever I feel like at any given moment for a collaboration. I may not get a positive response all the time but sometimes I might get lucky. For instance on my coming album I’ve been fortunate enough to write with pop heroes like Andreas Mattsson (Popsicle) and Peter Morén (Peter Bjorn & John) and on one of the Japanese bonus tracks which was originally written for Puffy I’ve worked together with another Swedish master of pop; Peter Kvint.
When performing live I am now also able to experiment on a case-to-case basis. Many times I will have to accept that there’s only budget for one guy in the band – myself! Just like in Madrid in December and at Club Wonder in Osaka on this promotional tour of Japan. Other times I can try the “Chuck Berry method” – touring on your own and have local bands backing up in order to save travel costs.
I tried this in London last year and now on this promotional tour of Japan it was time again to try a “local” band put together specially for me for the gig at or the Powerpop Academy Party in Tokyo on Jan 10. They are Ryuji Gotoh from ONEPERCENTRES on drums, Osam Watanabe on bass, and Yasu Hashiguchi from hello! on guitar. It was only a week before the rehersal that I got their e-mail address and was able to start to share some sound files on Dropbox containing their respective parts for each song – so of course I was a little worried… Suddenly last weekend I was standing in a rehearsal room in Tokyo and there they were – nailing every drumfill, every lick, and they play with power, confidence, and they… rocked! Have a glimpse yourself into the rehearsals if you want by watching this video (sorry for the distorted sound):
What a relief and what a great feeling! I’m truly impressed with the dedication and professionalism with which these guys have approached my songs. I was (and still am) very humble and grateful. After all I’m not Chuck Berry who invented Rock’n’Roll. I’m just David Myhr with a bunch of new songs. So thanks Ryuji, Osam, and Yasu for a great job with the rehearsals!