German edition of Marie’s biography out next week

As already announced back in May, Marie’s biography is about to be released in German in Germany, Austria and Switzerland by Edel Germany. The final release date has now been set to November 21st  (the book can already be found in some stores in Germany though).

Picture taken from the German edition

The biography “Listen to my heart: Meine Liebe zum Leben” has been translated by Ulrike Brauns and is 256 pages long. You can preview the first pages of the book (in German) here. A digital version is also available.

Fans can look forward to the biography as it was in Swedish plus a new chapter written in summer 2016 after Roxette decided to stop touring (Kirsten posted a translation of the chapter on our FB page) as well as new/different pictures that were not included in the Swedish version.

You can (pre)order the book on the following stores (many more available) or just walk down to the next book store and get it there on Monday.

Amazon.de
Thalia.at
Bücher.de
Buch.ch
Thalia.de

More music from Space Station 12

The third artist to release music on  Space Station 12 is Alex Shield, who has released two singles so far: Staying Alive and New York City Ways.

The text of the New York City Ways has been co-written with Sofie Bonde and Per Gessle, as he himself mentioned on a post on FB.

If you like both songs, you have something to look forward to, as Per also informed that Alex’ album will be out “soon”.

Why Don’t You Bring Me Flowers – snippet #2

5054197420924_ROX_WHY_WT.indd We just received another snippet from the upcoming Roxette single Why Don’t You Bring Me Flowers – enjoy!

The single will be out this Friday November 4th.

You can listen to the other snippet on TDR.

Thanks to Warner Music Sweden and Dimberg Management

 

Marie’s biography to be released in German

41vXDGg27yL._SY400_You may remember the poll that we set up earlier this year to ask you to which languages Marie’s biography should be translated into.

Great news! Now we found out that the biography will be released in German on November 14th, 2016 by Edel Germany with the title ‘Listen to my heart.: Meine Liebe zum Leben’ (My love for life).

The book can already be pre-ordered on Amazon and any other German online book store. 

Let’s hope it will be available in other languages soon!

Thank you!

roxette_in_drammen_02Roxette just announced that the upcoming summer tour has been cancelled.

Roxetteblog wants to send Marie Fredriksson a huge THANK YOU for all the great shows and many great tour memories.

If you feel up to joining us: We created a page where you can leave your messages for Marie.

The first ones will be delivered to Marie next week.

/ Roxette Blog Team (Kirsten, Patrícia, Sascha, Tomasz and Judith)

It just happens – a review

Roxette just released a new siIt Just Happensngle, “It Just Happens”, and we felt we had to write some words about the song. The release was very much anticipated by fans all over. To celebrate the release many fans decided to change their profile picture to a butterfly, sweet, isn’t it? Another surprise of the day: It Just Happens was #1 on iTunes Argentina today! All very exciting, it all just puts a big smile on your face.

And now let’s get to the single:

Judith: Some people say it happened with some Roxette songs in the past, that they had to listen to them a few times to really appreciate them and kinda fall in love with them. It happened to me this time around.

It wasn’t until I listened to the song totally focused, meaning with my high-quality ear phones, and concentrated on all the details and the lyrics that it went boom! It was the part with “It just happens / you don’t know what’s going on / if it’s new or if it’s been there since long / if it’s right or wrong / you fall in love” that gave me goose bumps and brought me back to some very special events in my life. For example, when I fell in love with my big love, or even back to the time when I listened to “The Look” for the first time in 1989. It just happens.

I hadn’t thought about the fact that sometimes it takes a few listenings to appreciate a song. I then started to think and realised it wasn’t the first time that I needed a few listenings to realise the depth and awesomeness of a song. I remembered it was the same with “Sleeping In My Car”. It was quite a different sound to Joyride or Tourism and I had to listen to it a few times till it captured me. Or “A Thing About You” to mention another example. And then I just realised this is one of the things that fascinates me about Roxette. Even though they stay true to their Roxette sound, there is always some new component in their music. And there is always the attention to perfection and those (what I call) playful sounds and details here and there that you only hear when you mindfully listen to the song a few times. And it is always the combination of music, lyrics, voices and those playful details that makes it magical.

Have you noticed that in choruses Per usually slightly changes the lyrics? (“Don’t underestimate, your heart is never late vs your heart can never wait) Or the way they pronounce/sing certain words? (the first “it just happens”, “just yesterday”) Or those little hidden sounds or clappings or drum beats that just happen once but that you know perfectly when they are in the song and are anticipating them? (one keyboard sound after the second “don’t undererstimate” in the chorus is not there in the first chorus, it sounds only again after “your heart can never wait”)…This is Roxette!! And Marie’s voice is amazing on this one!

Of course, the song reminds me of many other songs, and the more I listen to it, the more connections I find to other songs. That is the essence of Roxette. Typical Roxette with a touch of new.

A great appetiser for the upcoming album “Good Karma” on June 3rd!

Kirsten: Before I had heard the song for the first time, a friend already had sent me a message via WhatsApp telling me what she thinks about it – and I think it’s a bad way to be introduced to a song/film/album whatever by another one’s opinion. Especially when it isn’t the best.

I must add that I am really trying hard not to expect anything anymore Roxette-wise. The Travelling album has its gems, same goes for Charm School, but they aren’t my favourite Roxette albums. On the other hand I want Per and Marie of course to do and record what they want, what they feel up to – it’s what I am curious about. How do they sound, what do they want to tell me?

Another not so good thing was that I had read on The Daily Roxette that Per rated the song as a “power ballad” which was sung by Marie. So, when I listened to “It just happens” for the first time, I was of course disappointed twice, because his words had made expect me something – which I really tried to prevent hard. 1.) This isn’t a power ballad (to me), 2.) It is not sung by Marie. When I hear power ballad and “sung by Marie” I have songs like LTYH, IMHBL or SMT in my head – immediately. I can’t help it; it’s what I grew up with.

So, my first listening didn’t make me feel like 12 again. It was an “ok” song with “ok” lyrics. But nothing that blew my mind.

When I posted my opinion on my Facebook page, some other fans and I started to discuss the song very intensely (that’s what I love about this fandom, btw) and came to a funny conclusion. Somehow, “It just happens” sounded like a Coldplay song to us, “Paradise”, in this case. But since “Paradise” totally reminded me of “Wish I could fly” all I could write was: “Roxette sound like Coldplay who sound like Roxette” which basically means that Roxette sounds like Roxette. That’s the way it should be, right?

And the comparison to WICF isn’t the worst. But after three listenings, I thought that it sounds more like LTYH. So, when Marie starts to sing “It just happens… you fall in love” you could also easily sing “Listen to your heart… when he’s calling for you”.

Don’t get me wrong – I don’t mind artists stealing from themselves. Every singer/songwriter does it often. I don’t care. I just noticed it. And in the end I want them to sound like themselves, this only works when they stay true to themselves.

About the song: I love the sound, it is powerful, it is full, I love the instruments, the arrangements, it sounds very modern and updated. Thanks for finally turning away from the 60’s George Harrison sound. I loved it for the time being, but we really had enough of it!

What confused me from the very first time I heard it was the structure. I couldn’t get my head around it and I still don’t. It seems that the highlight of the song isn’t at the end, but in the first third. There is no build-up. Have I ever heard something like this before? I don’t know. The middle 8 isn’t the introduction to a great outro with even more instruments or another strong chorus. It actually gets quieter towards the end and this surprises me every time I hear it.

I like the lyrics and we all know why they are kept “easy”. I love both vocals, even though I had not expected Per to sing at all. I would have loved it even more if we had gotten a bit more from Marie in the verses (but that’s just me, because I think that both voices fit together like paper and glue, fire and wood.. you get the idea..).

I don’t know anything about the music business or the reception of a new song, but I always find that it’s hard to sell a song that doesn’t work from the first second at the first listening on. Something must set free in the listeners’ brain or soul.. if it doesn’t happen, they will never buy the song. I don’t know about “It just happens”. Maybe it’s a classical radio song that needs a lot of airplay to climb the charts. “She’s got nothing on (but the radio)” did it and this was a song I really only loved when I heard it live for the first time. Man, live this was a killer!

And I really would love to hear “It just happens” live, too. Just because Roxette are one of the best live bands at the moment. They simply rock and some of this rock couldn’t hurt their songs either.

So, long text… all in all I think it’s a good song with a catchy melody. For me, the last single that really flashed me was “Wish I could fly” and “It just happens” doesn’t change it. (But I didn’t expect that anyway. Just keep on singing together, Per and Marie!).

Roxette’s new single “It Just Happens” out tomorrow; album out on June 3

April 8th is a special date for Roxette, as on that day back in 1989 Roxette reached #1 on the Billboard with The Look, their first number 1 in USA and the song that meant their brIt Just Happenseakthrough.

Twenty-seven (yes, 27!) years later, Roxette has decided to release their new single “It Just Happens” on this date. This is the first single off “Good Karma”, Roxette’s 10th album that will be released on June 3rd. The album will also be released on vinyl!

In the press release sent out today, Per explains “we wanted to mix the classic Roxette sound with a modern and somehow unpredictable production to create an interesting sound where one can both recognise us and experience something new”. The song “was one of the first songs written for the album and quickly became one of the key songs” and was therefore chosen as the first single.

Promotion for the song has just started, do not miss the butterfly on all social media! This is going to be a great 30th anniversary year!

Expressen (rating 3/5, “the production has style and fantasy”) and Aftonbladet (rating 3/5, stating the song is “surprisingly good” and “who would have thought Roxette do have so strong and melancholic melodies in 2016?”) also already reviewed the single.

 

The track list of the album is as follows:Good Karma

01. Why Don’tcha?
02. It Just Happens
03. Good Karma
04. This One
05. You Make It Sound So Simple
06. From a Distance
07. Some Other Summer
08. Why Don’t You Bring Me Flowers?
09. You Can’t Do This to Me Anymore
10. 20 bpm

11. April Clouds

Poll! Marie’s biography in other languages?

MF_signing_session_Sthlm_NK
Picture by Patrícia Peres

karlekentill_inb_lowMarie’s biography “Kärleken till livet” was released in Sweden in October 2015. There was huge interest for the book in Sweden, as the fans who travelled to Stockholm for the signing session in December could appreciate. Long queues to get to meet Marie and get the book signed by Marie herself and the co-author Helena von Zweigbergk.

We also know that many of you don’t speak Swedish and are longing to read Marie’s biography. The book should really be available in as many languages as possible and reach as many people as possible. For its strength, the story of a fight for life, for inspiration.

We heard some bits of information last year about the book being translated into other languages like English. Now we have been informed that a literary agent is working to sell translation rights in order to make Marie’s biography book available in other languages and your input regarding the language you would like to read the book in is very much appreciated!

Please answer this question until end of this week:

In which language would you prefer to read Marie's book?

We will forward the results to the literary agent and Marie’s management by early next week.

 

 

 

Thank you for the music and inspiration, David Bowie

This is a very personal blog post to thank David Bowie for the music and for the inspiration.

bowieAs you probably now, David Bowie passed away on January 10th. It was a sad day for music world and everybody was very shocked. As for me, I had been listening to “Blackstar“, his new album which had been released on January 8th, the whole weekend. I had been looking forward to it since the first single was out in November (and some teasers the year before). And finally on “release Friday” there it was. It felt fresh, new, jazzy, I loved the drums!, the voice, the lyrics were mysterious again but felt defying, intriguing, strong. Sad too. I found the videos to Blackstar and Lazarus very mysterious and at times disturbing and sad. But I just thought it was his way to shock and be artistic in his way.

Monday morning I woke up humming one of the tunes, Lazarus. And then I just read the post on Facebook about him passing away. I was like what? No, NO, he just released an album. Can’t be. Like many others, I checked Twitter, news, comments of fans, the majority not believing it and thought the FB account had been hacked, that it was a hoax and bad joke. Minutes later his son Duncan confirmed it on Twitter. And all the pieces from his album fell into place, suddenly.

And since then I have been in a strange state. Shocked, thoughtful, sad, in disbelief, kind of lost, grieving. And I have spent hours trying to find out why. Probably there is no clear answer, just some thoughts that I had to put down in writing in a way to say thank you. For the influence, music, inspiration, artistry, love for music, innovation, daring to be different…

I actually got into Bowie’s music “for real” back in 2012 when he released “Where are we now?” from the then upcoming album “The Next Day”. I don’t remember how I read/heard about the release of the album, somebody (Per?) must have posted it on FB, or maybe I just saw it on Spotify. I was fascinated by the single, what a strong song, what lyrics, the voice, how the instruments fit together. Magic. So I then started to listen to his other albums. Sure, I knew many of the songs, but most of it was new to me. It was then that a new world opened up for me.

Bowie had always been in my life in a way or another. On one hand, I remember he was on TV, the Freddy Mercury tribute, but I guess I didn’t understand him back then, maybe was too young or thought he was weird, because I really didn’t listen to his music besides the known singles. But at the same time, I felt fascination, respect because he dared to be like that.

On the other hand, he was present mainly because I got to hear about him through my (music) heroes (Marie, Eva D, Per) and other artists that have impacted/inspired me (Nirvana/Kurt Cobain, Melissa Etheridge, Europe, to mention some). My favourite artists mentioned him here and there, whenever they talked about their youth, their roots.  They count him as a big influence when they grew up, when they started to make music. I remember comments from Per and Eva the most. I cannot repeat the exact words, but it felt like for both he seemed to be a (the?) reference person for daring to be how they were back in the 70ies, 80ies. Seemed to be the one who helped them accept to be different, themselves. Just how they have helped me. This is how I see it at least (see at the bottom for a collection of references/tributes to David Bowie by Per and other artists).

When you listen to his music you understand why, or at least you can try. If now his music sounds (still) daring and even innovative, imagine how it must have sounded back in the 70ies and 80ies. And what it must have been to hold albums like Space Oddity, Aladdin Sane or Hunky Dory in your hands, play them. Not to talk about his outfits and looks. Pure innovation and reinvention. And as his last album showed us, until the end. I would dare to say that he has experiemented with all styles of music one can think of and more. So with time I realised that David Bowie had inspired as many artists as The Beatles have. In general, if you listen to Bowie’s discography, one cannot help but find similar sounds, references, inspiration in the music done by other artists.

And I also realised some years ago that indirectly he is an important part of my life, too. And in this state of mind one  starts to think… without Bowie, what would they have developed into? Would they be who they are now? Would they have done the music they have done? And would they have touched me so deeply with their music as they have?

Drawing by Helen Green

His death was so sudden. He had released an album just a few days before.  It turned out, only his closest ones knew about his fight against cancer, so for many people it was a shock. And when one thinks of it, for the public, for the fans, he left the same way he had been surprising and shocking with his music. And he was ahead of us, again. One last time. To quote his producer Tony Visconti:

He always did what he wanted to do. And he wanted to do it his way and he wanted to do it the best way. His death was no different from his life — a work of art. He made Blackstar for us, his parting gift. I knew for a year this was the way it would be. I wasn’t, however, prepared for it. He was an extraordinary man, full of love and life. He will always be with us. For now, it is appropriate to cry.

There are a few (must-read) articles talking about his last creations (the album Blackstar, two videos and the musical Lazarus). He lived for music through and through. And this is one of the things about music and artists that touches me the most.

Of course, my thoughts go to his family and friends. But also to my favourite artist. I wonder how they must be feeling. And I cannot avoid thinking of how I felt back in 2002 when Marie was diagnosed with cancer or Melissa Etheridge some years later – luckily they are still with us!! – Or when some very dear friend/family member has left. It’s just a void you cannot explain and – at least for me – regardless how much time passes by, it doesn’t go away, it just becomes bearable.

Thank you for the music and the inspiration and also the influence on my favourite artists.

David Bowie inspired…

Here is just a collection of references to David Bowie by some of my favourite bands / artists (that have and keep inspiring me) that have touched me through the years and this last week.

Patrícia has posted on RXB references to David Bowie by Per, who has also been posting videos and interviews these past days:

bowie2bowie7

Of course, Gyllene Tider’s song “Åh Ziggy Stardust (var blev du av?) from 1980 – in fact I hear a bit of Bowie/Ziggy on the Gyllene Tider album.

Joey Tempest from Europe also mentioned some months ago in an interview that David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” inpired him to write “The Final Countdown”.

One of the performances that I remember very well from back in the 90ies was Nirvana‘s “The Man Who Sold The World”. I used to listen to Nirvana a lot back then and I loved the Unplugged from December 93, one of my favourite performances was their cover of Bowie’s song. Kurt’s death was probably the first of my idols leaving us, I remember that void very well, also because it was the time Crash! Boom! Bang! was released and helped me through it (and other issues) and kept my mind busy with other things.

Bruce Springsteen, Madonna and Melissa Etheridge (listen to her words before she plays!) have covered David Bowie songs this week:

Recently Efva Attling also launched earrings inspired by Bowie, the Ziggy earrings.

eabowie

It has also been very touching to see fans gathering in various cities to celebrate him and pay tribute to him. Not to mention that my wall has been full of David Bowie articles, videos, pictures, for the past week. Belgian astronomers have registered a constellation dedicated to him (you can add your comments here). His album Blackstar has entered #1 in many charts across the globe, including Billboard and UK. Also many of his albums have entered at different # in various charts (for example, 19 of his albums entered the UK charts) too and have been partly the most streamed these days. Just shows the impact of this iconic musician/singer/songwriter/ARTist/actor etc.

 

Thank you, 2015! Welcome 2016!

2015

Another year, another retrospective!

2015 was once again a year full of releases, concerts, travelling, meetings, happy faces… everything a fan could wish for.

In January we got a sneak peek of the newly built and designed stage that would be premiered a few weeks later. February brought Roxette to New Zealand (finally!) and Australia. Back in February we heard that the new Roxette album would be out in autumn 2015. Well, we already know that the release of the album has been postponed a few times and it seems 2016 will be the year! When? Let’s hope we will get some news in a few weeks. In February, some more dates were announced for summer 2015 too.

In March the big news were that a biography about Marie would be released in autumn. And also that a 25th Anniversary version of “It Must Have Been Love” would be released. The PLECtionary was updated with the latest plecs from the 2015 Australia tour.

In April we got to know who would make our waiting time before a concert shorter and fun: Eskobar! I was personally very happy that Eskobar were chosen as supporting act for Roxette’s European leg of the tour. I have liked this band since early 2000 and it was about time to see them live! It turned out to be a great decision. Roxette fans loved the 3 guys, we hear some have started a fanclub….

The tour in Europe kicked off on May 10th in Milan and took the band to 20 countries (including Faroe Islands!) with a total of 36 concerts between May and August (including a cancelled one in Mainz) plus 2 corporate concerts, one in September in Poland and one in November in Stockholm. The cover of Marie’s book was revealed and we published an interview with Pelle and Eskobar.

Also we found out that Roxette Diaries – a documentary of Roxette done by Jonas Åkerlund with old recordings from late 80ies and early 90ies – would be released soon. The premiere took place in Göteborg in August and later on, it was revealed that the documentary will be released on DVD in March 2016.

In June Roxette visited Dublin, Trondheim, Ostrava, Sofia, Warsaw, and started the “mini-Germany” tour (in total 8 shows, plus one that was cancelled) in Cologne. Also this month the “The Look” remake was announced.

The (digital) new version of the super hit was released on 17th of July, right on time when Roxette was about to bring the tour to Sweden. The remake was recorded as part of Kappahl’s campaign and remixed by Addeboy vs Cliff. A video of the making of the song was also released. A 7″ vinyl was released later in August.

In August the tour ended in Drammen, Norway, with a very special concert with many fans from around the world. But we would not have time to get bored, since the dates for South Africa were announced. The PLECtionary was updated once again. As we mentioned before, Roxette Diaries movie was premiered on August 14th in Göteborg.

In September the promotion of Marie’s biographyKärleken till livet” started. The co-author Helena von Zweigbergk, visited the Göteborg book fair to talk about the book and give some signing sessions. An interview with Marie and articles about Marie and the book could be found on the major Swedish newspapers/magazines around the time the book was released (October 10th). Roxette played in a corporate concert in Warsaw, which despite the difficulties to get a ticket, some fans managed to attend. Also “Some Other Summer” by Sebastien Drums was released. This song is actually composed by Per, and the single released by Sebastien Drums is even sung by Per (and a few backing vocals by Marie). According to Per, the “original version” of “Some Other Summer” will be included in Roxette’s upcoming album.

More 2016 tour dates were announced in November. To our surprise… for Europe! Everybody was expecting South/North America, and maybe a handfull of shows in Europe. But so far we already counted 11 concerts, and rumours have it that there are more to come! According to the information available so far, the first concert we know of will be on June 3rd in Switzerland. The last one on the list is on September 11th, in Moscow. Tickets for all the shows are already on sale, so hurry up! Roxette gave the last concert of the year at Tele2 Arena in Stockholm, a corporate concert for Tele2 (telecommunications operator) customers and other invited guests.

Marie gave a signing session in Stockholm on December 5th. On the same day, an interview with her and Helena was broadcast on TV4 Nyhetsmorgon. Many fans travelled to Stockholm for the chance to say hi to Marie and get the book  signed personally by her.

As I am finishing writing this article one thing (Aretha Franklin’s performance yesterday at Kennedy Center Honors, if you are interested) brought me to another (Aretha’s influence on Marie, which made me think of I Never Loved a Man) and I ended up listening to Roxette’s MTV Unplugged from 1993. Yes, recorded almost 23 years ago!

If one would ask me what would make the 30th anniversary of Roxette in 2016 very special my answer would be, loud and clear: an (or more) unplugged show.

Of course, looking very much forward to Roxette’s tour in Europe, something that came very much unexpected. And one can only feel thankful. That is the world I would choose for all what is happening. I am thankful it IS happening and I can experience it. With a small break in between in 2013, we have been able to see Roxette live almost every year since 2009.

What will happen in 2016? Here is a schedule of what we know so far:

  • January / February: Roxette to tour in South Africa
  • March: Roxette Diaries released on DVD.
  • June (?) – September (?): Tour in Europe is planned
  • Roxette turns 30!
  • Somewhen in 2016: a new album should be out soon. Per mentioned some days ago on FB that it’s almost done! (and Christoffer is very busy mixing!)

A big thanks once again to all of you reading us, sharing our articles (thanks Per!), joining our discussions on FB, for the hints, sharing your experiences in articles on our website.. thanks for your support! And from me big thanks to the RXB team, it wouldn’t be possible without you! We’ve had some issues this year with the servers (especially because the site doesn’t stop growing) so I’ve been kinda busy trying to solve that and some other tech-stuff in the background, so I feel so lucky to count on such a great team, thank you Patrícia, Kirsten, Tomasz and Sascha for the articles, brainstorming, ideas, laughs, meetings, experiences etc etc.

Happy new 2016 to you all!

Interview with Marie on TV4

2015-12-05 10.38.18

An interview with Marie and Helena von Zweigbergk was broadcasted on TV4 Nyhetsmorgon today.

Marie and Helena were interviewed by Jesper Börjesson earlier this week. Both Jesper and MF FB page shared teaser pictures from the interview.

In the interview Marie and Helena explained about the process of writing the book, and that she hopes the book helps people who are going through a hard time / cancer. Because there is hope and it’s possible to make it. She also explains that she is thankful she survived and that deep inside she knew she would.

Marie also explains about her childhood and the  funeral of her sister as one of the strongest memories from her childhood.

She also thanks her fans for the prayer chain and the list of names which reached her at one of the worst moments in her sickness. It is very important for her and she wanted it to be in the book as a way to thank her fans.

The touching lovely interview can be seen here.

Marie to sign her book in Stockholm in December

ktl_3dMarie Fredriksson released her biography “Kärleken till livet” in October. And good news! You will have the chance to get your copy of the book signed by her and co-author Helena von Zweigbergk in person.

The signing session will be on December 5th at 13:00 at NK in Stockholm.

Don’t forget to check Marie’s Facebook page from time to time!

mf_nk

 

 

Additional items signed by Marie on Music Against Cancer auction

marie_musikmotcancer
Picture by Joachim Nywall

The organisers of Musik Mot Cancer visited Marie and Micke last Sunday and received three additional items for the auction that will take place on November 8th in Trollhättan.

In addition to the CDs and guitar we mentioned in our previous article, the three items have been added to the auction website too, all signed by Marie:

* one lithography of one of Marie’s paintings
* After the Change book
* Ett bord i solen book

The team that visited Marie and Micke told them that there has been a huge interest from around the world for the items. Marie was extremely happy to hear that and she asked to thank us all for the support.

Remember you can bid on the items online already now or during the live auction on November 8th. It is surely a good cause to donate money to.

Music Against Cancer auction with Roxette related items again

mmc-uk-blackMusik Mot Cancer (Music Against Cancer) has organised an auction to raise money for Barncancerfonden Väst (Childhood cancer foundation west) and the children’s department of the hospital in Norra Älvsborg this year again. The non-profit organisation has collected items signed by celebrities once again that will be auctioned in an event that will take place on November 8th, 2015 in Trollhättan starting at 16:00 CET (details here).

If you cannot attend the event, you can also bid online live during the event. For that you would need to register beforehand here.  And you can already place your bids via the online auction page.

The following Per and Marie items are being auctioned. More items may be added soon:

Check out Musik Mot Cancer’s website and Facebook page for the details! We wish Musik Mot Cancern lots of bids and that they are able to raise lots of money for this cause!

NOTE: The guitar signed by Marie is the same as last year’s, as the winner of the auction in 2014 did not pay the bill!

Review: Kärleken till livet – Marie Fredriksson’s biography

karlekentill_inb_lowJust as short note before you go on reading. I tried to write this review without too many details – but there may still be some spoilers. So if you want to experience the feeling of getting the book and reading it yourself… stop reading here (and come back when you’ve read it). 

I got “Kärleken till livet” on Sunday, directly from the book fair (thank you Paula!), and couldn’t wait to start reading it. But I would still have to wait for some hours… travelling and getting home first! The first thing I did when I got it in my hands was to look at the pictures, the design, the outside. And comment the first impressions with dear friends. The book looks very classy and nice. Once you open the book you see pictures of leather jackets, what? you may wonder. Well, Marie loves her leather jackets, she has a huge collection, and part of it has a special place in the book.

Then I looked at the pictures in the book. There are three sections with pictures in it, with short comments about them. Some are funny, nice, some are shocking, painful.

A special one for me, that I spotted inmediately, was the one of Marie and Efva Attling. Marie mentions Efva in the book a couple of times, like that they have the tradition to meet for a Christmas lunch, which they have kept for 30 years.  It made me remember the 4-hour long interview/talk I had with Efva back in 2002. She explained many things about Marie and their friendship and also that they could talk for hours non-stop…

You also see Marie when she was small, her parents, siblings, Roxette, Micke, her children and pictures of the worst times of her illness. Another special picture is the list of names of the prayer chain that Marie Davis from Australia organised back when Marie got sick. Many fans added their name to the prayer chain and the list of names was sent to Marie, who put it in a frame and mentions that it means a lot to her. In the book she mentions that she keeps other presents she has received from fans and that fans are very important to her.

I started to read the book at the CPH airport but soon I realised I needed to be alone to read it, so I decided I would start in the evening when I get home. Be aware, the book is a page turner, so make sure you have the time to go on reading, or you don’t mind going to work very tired the next day. I read the book on Sunday evening, Monday morning, Monday evening and finished Tuesday morning. I couldn’t put it down, even though some parts were hard to take. But there are many nice touching ones too. Don’t forget to have some tissues around…

The book is written by Helena von Zweigbergk, who I think has done a great job write down Marie’s words. Helena explained last weekend on the book fair in Gothenburg about the process. She would meet Marie, go back home and write down what they had been talking about and get back to Marie, read the text to Marie and get her feedback. Sometimes Marie would remember new things, or want things written differently or changed.

And it feels at times as if you would be sitting in Marie’s kitchen having a coffee with her and talking about life, memories, anecdotes. Sometimes you laugh, sometimes you cry, you are shocked, you feel love, it’s a roller coaster of feelings. There are many parts where I could relate to and probably you will too, either because we have lived part of her stories “from the other side”, our side, or because it’s about things in life one has experienced or has had to deal with in a way or another. From meeting the big love to family matters to feeling good or bad about oneself.

The book is not written in chronological order but starts with Marie telling about September 11, 2002, the day Marie fell on the floor and had to be taken urgently to the hospital. Probably many of you will remember that day. For me it’s one of those days I will never forget. I had just moved to Austria and I didn’t have a job, I remember checking some online newspapers and the article on Expressen and Aftonbladet about Marie. We were all shocked. I remember the emails on the mailing list, the comments on TDR, emails and chats with friends, quickly set up a get-well wishes page (more than 1000 messages were later printed out and sent to her). That day we just knew that Marie had had an injury. Some days later we got the fatal news about the tumour. And the rest we know. Or we thought we knew. We have heard from Per, the book about Roxette, Marie herself in articles and interviews about those years, but the book gives some more insight about all those years, the treatment and long-term side effects of the operations and treatment. It is touching to read (tissues!). But in a way it is optimistic, with a feeling of hope, never give up. Marie wants to share her experience and with that help other people in same or similar situations. But also wants us to know that she is feeling fine now and is enjoying life and every day.

Helena has followed Marie on tour a couple of times, both her solo tour that started in Helsingborg on February 19, 2014 and Roxette’s 30th Anniversary tour. Helena writes about her impressions of seeing Marie on stage, giving it all and being the queen of the whole place. There are also comments from Per, Dea, Christoffer and other band members about Marie. And, of course, also from Marie Dimberg, Marie’s manager and friend. One thing that touches me is that even though I don’t know Marie, my impression of pure feeling, big heart, strength, energy, fighting spirit, that charisma that one gets from her smiles, her looks, her words, gestures is also mentioned and described by those talking about Marie in the book. It’s something that I noticed before when interviewing Chris or Dea, for example, or talking with friends. Now after reading the book, we have talked again about this and we felt the same. For me this only has one explanation, and it’s that Marie is just who she is, herself. And that she is a very special person.

Marie also remembers her childhood, growing up in a family that had to count every cent, how she loved to sing already as a kid (she was singing all the time and she still does), that she could not keep still for a second, her love to music. She also mentions that she has always had a special connection with nature and animals, she loves flowers, her tree in the garden, birds.  She goes on telling about moving to Halmstad, Strul, MaMas Barn, then to Stockholm, starting her solo career and Roxette. Like I said, there is no real order in the book, so stories are nicely brought to the reader connecting things Marie tells of the present and remembering the past.

Roxette is very special to Marie. She is very proud of what she and Per have achieved, and it was also Roxette that helped her back. As Helena mentions, “Dangerous” was the first song Marie hummed after the 3rd operation and suffering aphasia. We have also heard many times before, and Marie says this in the book too. Touring and being back with Roxette is the best therapy she could get. Marie also mentions her special relation with Per and the many great things they have done together.

There are also some interesting bits of information in the book. Like the fact that Marie and her family have a cat, Sessan. I didn’t know that and being a cat person myself (got two of them!) it just brought a big smile on my face. Helena was also at Marie’s home when Per, Christoffer and Clarence went to Marie’s to record two new songs for Roxette’s upcoming album, “Some Other Summer” and “It just happens”. An up-tempo and a ballad. And the book comes with a list of songs that mean a lot to Marie and her comments about these songs. The playlist can be found on Spotify!

And, of course, Micke, her husband, and her children have a huge place in the book. Micke and Marie tell about how they met in Australia and that they had engaged just a couple of days after having met. Marie also thanks Micke a couple of times for having been by her side all this time. For the good and the bad. She also mentions the small things in life that make her happy.

And actually these are the parts that touched me the most of all. These parts and how Marie – through a book (!) and her words, transported to us by Helena – spreads this energy and strength that to me, makes her so special. The success story, the keeping stubborn and fighting to do what she loves, sing and enjoy life. There are sad, shocking parts in the book, but always with this feeling of hope. It’s all about her love, love to/from her family, friends, music, love to live. Kärleken till livet.

I know I need to read it once again, or twice. There are many things to take in and reflect about one’s life too. It’s a very special and powerful book that I hope will be picked up with publishers outside of Sweden and be translated to at least the major languages. It’s not just a book about a pop star and the life on tour, but about life, about falling down and standing up again, the important things in life.

Aaand the book left me wanting for more! I want to read more of the anecdotes, stories, insight about life.  So maybe what Marie said on the VI interview about writing another book wouldn’t be such a bad idea! 🙂

The book is available in hardcover (ISBN 9164204639) and audio book (ISBN 9164222787).

You can order the book here:

Adlibris (delivers only to Sweden)
CDON (Sweden only)
Ginza.se (delivers abroad)
Bokus.se (delivers abroad)