Roxette – Good Karma

Roxette released their long-awaited first single off the 10th studio album on 8th April. It Just Happens is one of the 11 songs on the album and as Per says, it’s one of his favourite tracks on Good Karma. It was written in May 2014 and it was one of the first songs they recorded for the album. They chose it as a first single, because it’s great to have a little bit of Marie, a little bit of Per, a little bit of you and a little bit of everyone in it. Marie and Per promotes their new single together in THIS video.

The album is out on 3rd June in 3 formats: digital, CD and LP. You can have a look at the items on Bengans, Ginza, CDON, Amazon, etc. and you can pre-order it on iTunes as well. Being a worldwide release, you will probably find at least the CD in a record shop / petrol station near you. A limited edition coloured vinyl popped up only at Bengans so far. We don’t know much about how many copies are planned to be released from it and if it has any other limited edition feature (e.g. a bonus track) besides being coloured. Well, Per mentioned some time ago that they had 20 songs for the album and recorded 14 properly. Now there are 11 tracks on the album, so what’s with those 3 other properly recorded songs? They might turn up as bonus tracks somewhere and we hope to hear the demos, too.

In a recent interview Per says good karma is a positive thing and sums up Roxette’s special history. They had all the success, then came all the disaster when Marie got ill in 2002, then they did their 2009 comeback against all odds. He states:

We want to make a positive statement with this album. There is a certain positiveness around the whole album.

The 10th album will be the shortest Roxette record with its 38 minutes, but each and every song has an exciting title and I think It Just Happens was a great teaser track for the whole thing. Marie says:

I look forward to the release of our album ”Good Karma” in June – for me it’s our best album ever!

 Good Karma tracklist (incl. length)

  1. Why Dontcha? 2:45
  2. It Just Happens 3:46
  3. Good Karma 3:19
  4. This One 3:11
  5. You Make It Sound So Simple 3:42
  6. From A Distance 3:30
  7. Some Other Summer 3:08
  8. Why Don’t You Bring Me Flowers? 3:32
  9. You Can’t Do This To Me Anymore 3:50
  10. 20 bpm 3:48
  11. April Clouds 3:29

Warner Music did a great job with the promotion of the single, now let’s hope they keep up the good thing and promote the album at least as enthusiastically. What else? Oh yes. Let’s hope the radios start playing It Just Happens worldwide at last.

It’s a torture to wait until 3rd June! Until then, some interviews will surely see the light of day, as Per posted about some phoners he did today. Looking very much forward to hear / read them all!

Good_Karma_F_n_B

 

Thanx for the back cover with corrected aspect ratio, Roxette Cafe!

 

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

Roxette Diaries – a review!

roxette_diaries
Photo: Nico Radoi

Today was the day – time to watch the Roxette diaries. Yes, the film is out for a while now, but I didn’t bother to watch it any earlier since I had ordered the wrong version without English subtitles and I really didn’t want to watch it without them. Waking up today I decided to give it a try. My Swedish is not the best, but I learned enough from Per, Marie and Kent that I can at least read it very good. So I switched on the Swedish subtitles and the fun began.

It took me two and a half minutes to get into tour mood again. There are two simple reasons for me: There’s a very special energy between Per and Marie in the beginning and it lasts until 1993, I think. It feels very special to watch both of them interact. You can feel in every scene how much fun they had in the 80’s and in the early 90’s. They just did what they know best: music. And they had fun together, all of them. And this is maybe what most fans search or long for the most: They want to be sure that their favourite band is nothing but a big family, having fun together, on and off stage, create great music and conquer the world. Yes – this movie transports this feeling very well. At least the first hour. The whole band is just easygoing, lighthearted, happy, untroubled. My heart leapt watching this! And I remembered how much I love them – and we have a silver wedding this year. It’s been 25 years of unconditional love of my part this year. Can this be called the love of my life then?

The second reason why I suddenly can’t wait for June to roll on: I suddenly remembered that they still have an awful lot to give. They are not finished yet. Seven years have been stolen off them. Seven years of nothingness and yet seven years time to heal a strained friendship. I need to see more of this healed relationship between them. It has never been nicer to watch them on stage together.

And what I implied here I honestly mean: While in the beginning Marie and Per seem to be a unit, they certainly are no longer from 1993 on. Of course, this can be due to the cutting of the film, but did anyone else notice that Marie is almost not to be seen in the last 30 minutes of the film?

There’s one scene at the end where someone asks (is it Per?): “Where is Marie?” right before a performance. Yes, folks, I wondered the same. Where was she? And someone else in the film replies: “Ingen aning.” No idea. I had no clue either.

What we all knew to be true suddenly becomes real – yes, their friendship turned from friendship to business somewhen between 1992 and 1993. There’s no way to deny it. There’s no more fun around. And this is the shocking part of the diaries: Interviews, travelling, TV shows, promotion, concerts – there’s a 90 minute development of wearout to witness. It almost broke my heart to watch this. Smiles got less, fun got less, friendship almost not detectable.

But thinking about the recent years they gave to us, I can only say: We are the luckiest fans in the world. I don’t know how they did it, maybe it’s just the happiness, the gratefulness to have survived this bad illness Marie had, but they certainly overcame their problems and enjoy their time together again. And it’s something different now, when Marie isn’t doing interviews or doing all the other promo crap stuff that comes with being a pop star. We all do understand it and maybe we even understand it more when we know now what it did to them in the early 90’s.

Yet, this is a brilliant movie and my only criticism would be that there were too many concert parts at the end. I would have loved to see more of the Tourism and Crash!Boom!Bang! recordings. Maybe we get to see the rest of it soon. Per’s “soon” would suffice here, though. And I would also love to see the 2009-2016 footage. You know why – just to get me in the tour mood again and again and make me fall in love with them again and again. Nothing and nobody compares to Marie and Per.

The strongest Roxette lead single

Just like we did the poll with the studio album covers, some days ago we asked you to tell us which you think was Roxette’s strongest ever lead single off their studio albums. After checking all the comments under our post and on Roxette’s Facebook page, I counted the votes / mentions and voilà, here is the result. Is anyone surprised that Joyride is the absolute winner? I guess not!

27th February 1991 is an important date in Roxette’s history. Their strongest ever lead single was released that day. Per remembered its 25th anniversary on Facebook the other day:

25 YEARS AGO TODAY! This little baby was released as a single. Fab! /P.

The hit is so strong it became Roxette’s 4th US No. 1 and Joyride, the song itself and the video to it made a tremendous amount of people join the joyride and fall in neverending love with Roxette. I’m also one of those Roxers. As we know, there are many to thank for this hit. Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Åsa, the 1991 Rox gang, the engineers, the studios, etc., but most of all, Per 8th-wonder-songwriter Gessle and of course Marie. Aaah… 25 years! Time flies when you’re having fun!

Judging by the comments, I would say the rest of the lead singles are rather personal favourites. Most Roxers agree that Joyride is the strongest from several points of view, but some fans prefer another single because they became a Roxer thanks to another one or they have nicer memories related to another certain lead single.

Sleeping In My Car is a strong 2nd and How Do You Do! has a safe 3rd place. Dressed For Success is at No. 4, but right after it comes Wish I Could Fly. Neverending Love and She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio) got almost the same amount of votes and The Centre Of The Heart is not far behind them. It’s Possible is a catchy song, but it ended up at the last place as a lead single.

 

Roxette_lead_singles_strongest

 

The 10th studio album lead single, It Just Happens is released on 8th April.

 

Roxette – It Just Happens

I think the first time we could hear about the song It Just Happens was when Marie’s biography was published. It turns out that the song was recorded in September 2014 at Marie’s studio, Vinden. There was Marie, Per, Clarence and Christoffer to record it. In the book you can read it’s a typical Roxette ballad, like It Must Have Been Love, Vulnerable or Spending My Time.

This is what Per said about the song in October 2015:

Yes, I can now confirm that this is true. One of the brand new songs is called IT JUST HAPPENS. And it’s big and bold and done with love. It’s ready for mix, mastering and eventual human digestion. Stay tuned, folks. /P.

Mr. G confirmed in an interview done by Swedish Radio that the single would be out in April and a video is in the making.

It Just HappensThen came 1st April and the cover of the single popped up. Ojojoj. Most of us thought it was an April fools day joke. I mean the layout of the cover. What the hell is that butterfly with sun-go-down wings and guitar ass doing on the cover? It looks like a cheap and weak Photoshop attempt. Then more and more links appeared to the single and that the release date is 8th April. Oh well… it’s not the first time we don’t like the cover of a Roxette album and seeing this, I’m afraid it’s not the last time either. More important is how the song sounds. You know me, I’m usually one with the most positive approach towards Roxette and their stuff, no matter what they do, but this cover put my expectations and excitement at a lower level. So I hoped for an awesome song at least, if the cover is not the funkiest anyway.

Why to wait until the official release date? These days, in the world of digital music consumption new stuff is released digitally first and maybe even sooner than the official date. It has just happened now. The song is already available on Deezer [The link didn’t work for a while, since Deezer was too early to make it public. /PP] and on Roxette’s Soundcloud page. Oh yeah. The cover of the single is really THAT one. Gosh… I try to get over it, I promise.

The song, I thought it would be more of a sung-by-Marie type of typical Roxette ballad, so the first surprise came when I heard Per start to sing.  To me it’s a little bit of Vulnerable, yes, but more Cooper! A Thing About You and Speak To Me also came to my mind while listening to it. It Must Have Been Love? No, the song is definitely not of that caliber, I would say. But I don’t mind. I find the song attractive and powerful, sounds like classical Roxette, but fresh! I love Marie’s high tones and how Marie’s and Per’s voices blend. By the way, is it me or Per really sounds a bit like David Bowie here? The song is on repeat since at least an hour, so counting with its 3:46 length, I listened to it at least 15 times already. And hey, I can already sing along by heart! OK. Me likes the song and I almost forgot about the cover. 😉 Hopefully, there will be a physical release as well.

 

It Just Happens

It’s a cabaret, taking over on a quiet lazy backseat day
And it’s so beautiful
Like the sunshine on your balcony
Just yesterday

Don’t underestimate
Your heart is never late
And love will always find a way

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
You fall in love

You don’t have a say
Just let it slide and close your eyes and watch the passion play
Don’t underestimate
Your heart can never wait
And love will always find a way

You’ll fall in love
It just happens
You’ll fall in love
It just happens

Don’t underestimate
Your heart can never wait
Love will always find a way

It just happens and you don’t know what’s going on

©Per Gessle

 

IJH makes me curious about the rest of the songs on the upcoming album. Hearing how It Just Happens starts, it is for sure not the intro song. Will it be an uptempo hit then? Most probably. We have to wait until 3rd June to find out. That is the release date of the new album. Oh and don’t forget, a video is coming, too! Hopefully, without any butterflies.

 

Roxers’ favourite Roxette studio album covers

Some days ago we asked you to list your Top3 favourite Roxette studio album covers. We got a lot of comments and after the collage had been shared both on Roxette’s official Facebook page and Instagram account, there were even more votes. It seemed to be obvious which covers would end up at the Top3 positions, but I was curious about the exact results. It’s of course not a representative sample, but who else could judge Roxette’s album covers better than Roxers?

After checking all the comments, I counted the votes / mentions and found out the Top2 were indeed quite obvious. Most people voted for Joyride and Look Sharp!. I would say the difference between the number of votes is so tiny, the 2 covers are equally strong. The third position is occupied by Crash! Boom! Bang!, but Tourism was very close to become the third as well. The difference is quite small here, too. The 5th best cover according to Roxers is that of Room Service.

The remaining 4 covers are well behind any of those in the Top5. No surprise poor Travelling (which was released 4 years ago today, by the way) is at the end of the list. I remember how excited we all were about the new album in 2011 and 2012 and when the cover was shared on Facebook, tons of us first thought it was a joke and that it couldn’t be the final design. Not that it wasn’t funny to see BoJo on the sleeve, but… ehm… Then we decided, OK if the content is awesome, we don’t really care about the cover. The songs turned out to be fab, so the sin made with the album cover was forgiven, so to say.

We like busy covers only if there is a real concept behind them (see Tourism) and we love professional, artistic photos of Marie and Per on the sleeve. We are not into weird Photoshop attempts (see Travelling) and busy covers with seemingly no concept behind them (see Charm School). Don’t get us wrong, we love seeing such non-pro pics, but it works much better on social media sites or in books than on album covers.

These days when music is consumed rather digitally, it might be even more important to have a great cover to catch the attention of those who still go and buy CDs at record shops. Come to think of it, even for digital use it is important to have a good-looking sleeve. At least I prefer seeing a clear, eye-catching cover pic on Spotify and similar sites when I listen to music either on computer or on my smartphone.

So anyone in charge of the upcoming album cover design, please make an attractive one! Now you can see which directions Roxers prefer. 😉

 

Roxette_studio_album_covers

 

Video to the new Roxette single

As you could read in our article this morning, Per starts a radio podcast on 24th March. A great chance to practice your Swedish by listening to 2 nerds chatting about music.

Today Per visited Swedish Radio P4 Halland and talked about the podcast. In the short interview he also mentioned that he is busy with other things as well. Besides that he started his own record label Space Station 12, there are also a lot of things happening around Roxette. The new album is out in summer, the single is out in April and he confirmed there will be a video to the single which they are shooting next week. Too cool!

Another interesting thing Mr. G mentioned is that they are playing 18 shows in Europe this summer. We know about 14 dates so far, so there are at least 4 more to come. Sounds promising!

Listen to Per HERE!

PG_P4_Halland_02  PG_P4_Halland_01

 

Roxette Diaries at the Berlinale

As we posted about it some days ago, LevelK, a sales company handling international sales and distribution and managing the distribution rights for quality films and TV productions worldwide started to deal with the Roxette Diaries. They bring the documentary as part of their Berlin International Film Festival line-up.

They describe the docu as:

The extraordinary pop documentary ROXETTE DIARIES that through self shot video material presents an intimate portrait and an unique insight into the world of one of the 80’s and 90’s biggest pop bands.

Roxette Diaries is in clear focus. Roxette appears on the cover of LevelK’s festival magazine (click HERE to download) in which you can find 2 pages about the docu, including Rox pics from the past.

Nice promo for this long-awaited film, which is set to be released on 7th March. Now it’s out really soon.

 

rox_diaries_levelk_1_rs  rox_diaries_levelk_2_rs

Thanx for finding the magazine, Roxette Cafe.

 

Marie Fredriksson signing session at NK in Stockholm

When the news about yesterday’s signing session came out, most of us were really surprised. No one thought there would be such an event, taking into consideration how Marie talks about it also in her book what difficulties she has with writing after her illness. Many were worried about her, thinking that a signing session would be too tiring for her and it probably was in a way, but you could see she really enjoyed it. She was smiling during the whole session and anyone talked to her while she was signing, no matter whether in Swedish or in English, she had some nice words to everyone.

MF_signing_session_Sthlm_NK
Photo by Patrícia Peres

The session was to start at 1 pm. Some hardcore fans started queueing quite early, even before 10 am to be the first ones in the line. By 12 there was already a very long queue. Helena von Zweigbergk arrived at 12:45 and Marie a bit before 13:00. Marie came with Micke and he helped her to get down the stairs that led to the little podium. She walked so fine down the stairs. We shouted woohoo when she arrived and she was happy to hear it and see so many people there.

On the podium there was a small table with flowers in a vase on it, 2 chairs and a Xmas tree next to the table. First Marie was sitting on the left to let Helena sign the books first, but after a little accident of a fan knocking over the vase they changed places. It was just a little water coming out of the vase and it wasn’t a real issue. Marie took it easy, just smiled and even helped to wipe it off.

It was awesome to see her in such a great mood. She was happy to see everyone, but when she saw the real familiar faces to her, she was smiling even brighter. Fans came from all around the world. Besides Sweden of course, there were fans from Germany, Czech Republic, Russia, Spain, Norway, Austria, Hungary, Poland, the Netherlands, the UK and 2 people came even from Australia. Wow! Some couldn’t reach Stockholm yesterday because of storms. Ferries and trains didn’t come or didn’t arrive in time to the Swedish capital, so some who wanted to, unfortunately couldn’t attend the session. Some fans brought only 1 book, others brought 7-8 to have them signed for those fans who couldn’t attend the session.

Marie got tons of presents and flowers. Mainly white and red roses. She loved it! She couldn’t grab all the flowers of course, but Marie Dimberg was there to help her and she took all the flowers and gifts. Helena also got some flowers and she was glad about it, too.

Those who still didn’t have Marie’s biography, Kärleken till livet could buy it at NK. A shop assistant was bringing the books around, along the queue. The security team of NK was very nice and their system worked well and smoothly. They let fans go to the podium 1 by 1 to the signing stage and it was Ms. Dimberg who told them when they could let someone inside the cordoned off area. Sometimes even Marie told the security guy: “Nästa!” (“Next!”)

As it was stated on the event’s Facebook page by the organizers, we could take pictures of Marie, but not with Marie. Everyone understood it and was behaving well. Many were taking photos, so actually, even if one of course couldn’t sit or stand next to Marie, they could have pictures with her while she was signing their books, smiling at them, etc.

Those who wanted to have their names written in the book besides Marie’s autograph and Helena’s signature, got it written by Helena. Marie was so cute when grabbing the books to sign. If the book wasn’t open at the page where she wanted to sign it, she insisted on turning the pages. Haha.

Micke wasn’t there waiting until the end of the session, but Marie’s daughter, Josefin stayed there to wait for Marie. After the session ended at 2 pm, after everyone got their books signed, we applauded Marie and when she got off the stairs of the podium and she showed she was happy she could make it coming down the stairs we shouted woohoo and applauded her again. Watch THIS short set of videos. She’s just awesome! She really is.

You know Marie is no fan of Facebook at all. She made it clear several times, mentioned it in her book and also in the TV4 interview one could watch in the morning. So if a post comes from her – of course it’s not she writing the post itself, but D&D Management typing her words – it’s much appreciated. She wanted to express her happiness, so she thanked everyone for coming. A picture of approximately one third of the flowers was posted both on her Facebook page and on Roxette’s page with these words:

“Tack alla som kom till dagens signering – från när och fjärran! Och tusen tack för alla vackra blommor och presenter – mycket glad!” / “Thanks to everybody who came to the book signing today – from near and far. And a thousand thanks for all the beautiful flowers and gifts – very happy!” Marie Fredriksson

It was a wonderful one hour with Marie and we were all so happy about seeing her enjoying it too. Her smiles are priceless!

 

Photos:

bayart.se
Instagram: 1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; 13; 14; 15;

 

 

Marie Fredriksson NK signing session – Important details!

As you already know, there will be an exclusive signing session with Marie Fredriksson and Helena von Zweigbergk at NK in Stockholm on 5th December. The session is 1-hour-long, it starts at 1 pm.

Organizers of the event informed on the official Facebook event page about the following:

This is an event organized by NK book store.

People with books purchased elsewhere will have to wait until the end of the session and Marie will possibly have time to accommodate these signings as well. However, there is no guarantee for this. Photos can be taken of Marie but not with Marie.

We are all very happy that Marie has agreed to do this session and we’ll want to make this as smooth and pleasant as possible for everybody.

Please respect the rules and be patient while queueing. Good luck, everyone! Enjoy meeting Marie & give much love to her!

If you don’t have the chance to travel to Stockholm and you couldn’t order a signed copy from Adlibris, Bokus is offering 100 copies of Marie’s biography, Kärleken till livet signed. They deliver abroad as well.

MF_signing_session

Even better positions on the charts for Marie Fredriksson’s biography

Marie’s biography, Kärleken till livet reached even better positions on the charts during last week vs. a week ago. The story told by Marie herself, the promo the book gets via reviews and Helena von Zweigbergk’s media appearances, as well as her enthusiastic talking about the book at book shops and at the book fair in Gothenburg make many people buy the biography both in Sweden and in the rest of the world.

Actual positions:

Ginza book audio book

No. 2 among all books!!! (No. 1 last week.)
The audio book is No. 7 on the list of best selling books. (No. 8 last week.)

Adlibris book e-book audio book

No. 5 among all books! (No. 7 last week.)
Here you could order a limited number of signed copies if you live in Sweden or ordered the book to a Swedish address where you could pick it up. The book is nicely signed by Marie and Helena.

CDON book audio book

No. 10 among newly published books (No. 16 last week.)
No. 9 in non-fiction category (No. 12 last week.)

Bokus book e-book audio book

No. 5 among biographies!!! (No. 20 last week.)

Bokon e-book

No. 29 among all e-books (No. 31 last week.)
(You can also read a short part of the book here.)

Congrats to Marie and Helena!

MF_HvZ_photo_by_Mattias_Edwall
Helena von Zweigbergk & Marie Fredriksson Photo by Mattias Edwall

Marie Fredriksson’s biography entered the charts

ktl_3dKärleken till livet, Marie’s biography was published on 7th October. At least this is the date most sites promoted and this is the date till which we could see the countdown on Marie’s Facebook page. However, the publishing company, Piratförlaget still has 14th October on their website. It seems that most shops and webshops already got the book and shipped them to those who ordered it even from abroad. If you ordered it, but haven’t found it in your mailbox yet, keep calm, it will surely reach you one of these days.

The book entered several charts and it’s not even a week ago since it’s out. The positions show high interest in Ms. Fredriksson’s biography. Not only in Sweden, but also around the world. Look at Ginza! Imagine the sales figures if the book is translated into English and other languages! 😉

 

Ginza book audio book

No. 1 among all books!!!
The audio book is No. 8 on the list of best selling books, however, here it’s released on 16th October.

Adlibris book e-book audio book

No. 7 among all books!
Here you could order a limited number of signed copies if you live in Sweden or ordered the book to a Swedish address where you could pick it up. The book is nicely signed by Marie and Helena.

CDON book audio book

No. 16 among newly published books
No. 12 in non-fiction category

Bokus book e-book audio book

No. 20 among biographies

Bokon e-book

No. 31 among all e-books
(You can also read a short part of the book here.)

 

Congrats to Marie and Helena for reaching such nice positions on the charts! Looking forward to next week’s results!

Marie Fredriksson’s biography on Swedish TV

As we posted about it yesterday, journalist Tara Moshizi talked about Marie’s book in SVT’s morning program yesterday. Today it was Helena von Zweigbergk’s turn. She was invited to the same morning show on SVT, Gomorron Sverige and the reporter did a nice interview with her about the book. HERE you can watch it, but unfortunately, only if you live in Sweden. The important part starts at 1:23:13 and lasts until 1:35:09. 12 minutes about Marie on one of Sweden’s biggest TV channels sounds good, right?

At the beginning of the part about Ms. Fredriksson, the program leaders show the book itself, then there are some footage from Marie’s early live performances, Roxette’s Joyride video and Marie’s Skavlan TV show (2013) live performance.

Then the reporter starts talking to Helena. She tells about the title ”Kärleken till livet” that it was Marie’s idea. She was thinking about it for quite a long time, then one day when she was on tour with Roxette in Australia, she just came up with it and was very happy about it. To both Marie and Helena it felt like being the perfect title for the biography.

Helena also talks about how she was first hesitating about writing the book, but when she talked to Marie she realized how much Marie wants to tell the story about her life, without faffing around. While they were working together on the book, they became friends. They had a hard time writing the book, but also much fun.

The program leader asks about how popular Marie is internationally and Helena tells Roxette is incredibly huge and Marie gets so much love from the fans and she is really a loved artist.

Helena talks then mostly about what’s in the book and how they were writing it together. A little about how Marie grew up, her family, how Marie met Per and their work together, how Marie and Micke met and how happy Marie was about it, etc.

She says Marie is a strong and weak person at the same time, but when she is sitting on stage, she is sitting there like a queen and all the fans are just cheering her on.

It was a very nice interview and hearing more and more how Helena is talking about Marie and the book itself, it definitely seems that she was the best person to choose to cooperate on this long-awaited biography.

Here are some stills from the morning show. The older pics are probably taken from the book.

mf-001  mf-002

mf-003  mf-004

mf-005  mf-006

mf-007  mf-008

mf-009  mf-010

mf-011  mf-012

Thanx for the hint regarding the interview, Anja Hoppe!

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)