When I saw there is a documentary about John Holm, I wanted to watch it right away. Det finns så många vägar – en film om John Holm was recorded between 1980 and 2017. I was interested in it to get to know more about the artist who was a great inspiration to both Marie and Per.
I expected Mr. G to appear in the docu, but never thought Marie would be there talking too. Oh my God! 1:24 into the program and the first artist who is talking about John Holm is Marie Fredriksson. My heart skipped a beat. So amazing to see her! She tells John meant so much to her and to so many people in Sweden. Marie says he was kind of divine. Right after Ms. Effe, Per tells John wrote terribly good songs and he thinks there is no one else in Sweden who wrote so many good songs for one album as John for Sordin.
At 16:20 Per tells in a 1999 SVT archive report that John’s first 2 albums are the best 2 Swedish albums of all time. They meant a lot to Per. Those and Lundell’s early albums made him start writing songs.
At 44:38 you can hear Marie singing backing vocals for John on Verklighetens afton (1988). She says John Holm was an icon for her and she always loved his lyrics. Then meeting him in real life and singing with him was enormously awesome.
At 1:04:42 you can see Per attending his first ever John Holm gig in 2016. And we all know the story didn’t end there. Per and John recorded a duet, Det är vi tillsammans in 2017 for Per’s En vacker dag album.
In the documentary there are other artists, old friends, John’s son, journalists and producers, as well as John Holm himself talking. It’s a docu that is worth watching not only for his fans. A piece of music history about one of Sweden’s biggest artists, his ups and downs, his life, his music.
At the end there is written: In memory of Marie Fredriksson and Arne Arvidsson. So nice, yet so heartbreaking.
Stills are from the documentary. Unfortunately, it can only be watched in Sweden.
Swedish Radio (Kulturnytt P4) tried to reach Per Gessle after yesterday’s great news about his 2 new solo albums. They write that Per is now in Nashville and they interviewed him via e-mail.
Swedish Radio asked Per what made him want to do duets with Lars Winnerbäck, Linnea Henriksson and John Holm. Mr. G says often cooperates with Helena Josefsson when he is making his solo albums. This time she is there again and is doing backing vocals on almost all songs and sings one song in duet with Per. Per says Helena is incredibly talented and always lifts his songs to the sky. Their voices are a perfect match. But when Mr. G started writing last summer, he started thinking about male duet partners. A regular duet can bring a different angle to the text. When a guy and a girl sings it sounds in a certain way, but when 2 guys or 2 girls are singing, it becomes something totally different. Interesting.
Per says he has many things in common with Lars Winnerbäck. Small-town background and quite similar taste in music even if Mr. G is older. Per always liked Lars. They met at Sofiero in Helsingborg when he was on tour last summer and Per asked if he wanted to sing a duet. Thank God he wanted.
Besides Helena Josefsson there were other musicians involved: Christoffer Lundquist, Clarence Öfwerman and Anders Herrlin. They were also there in Nashville to record the songs.
The autumn album will contain duets with Linnea Henriksson and John Holm. Per says John Holm was one of those who made him start writing his own songs when he was fourteen, so it’s a personal highlight in Per’s life to record with John Holm. According to Per, John Holm is still a unique singer and personality.
Regarding Linnea Henriksson Per says he had an uptempo song he thought Linnea could sing the chorus on. But after a few weeks in Nashville, he realized that it did not fit into the project, so he put it on hold. But then he had another song that screamed for Linnea’s blue tones and it became so fine. Per is very happy and proud that Linnea wanted to cooperate.
Per says to his great surprise, he had studio time left when they were done with the 14 Swedish songs. Then he thought he could do duets in English with country-girls too. He had two quite newly written songs that he thought would be great to record in the Nashville environment. He called some friends in Nashville’s music industry and got tips on 2 talented girls, Savannah Church and Jessica S. who suddenly appeared and rounded off this incredibly exciting project.
To Swedish Radio’s question regarding how Per would describe the album he said he have tried to make very beautiful songs, arrangements and productions. Stripped down, but efficient. He went started the project with no limits and rules, he didn’t want to sound a certain way or do anything in a format which is now unfortunately characterizes the entire music industry. He wanted the local musicians to be part of and create the songs’ design. Per let them play on almost all songs to see what happens, then they edited it all afterwards and took away what they thought didn’t fit.
Per’s solo projects in Swedish are always quite text-oriented. So it is this time. Perhaps more than ever.
Each song has its own story, it’s about being young and getting older. To look back but also dare to look ahead. Happiness, but also disappointment. About things don’t always turn out as planned or as expected. I have lost my mother, brother and sister in the last three years and it has certainly put its weight on the lyrics and my life in general. But life goes on.
To Swedish Radio’s question if there will be duets on stage, Per replied who knows. He has the habit from Roxette.
The first album, En vacker natt, will be out on April 28th. The first single “Småstadsprat“, a duet with Lars Winnerbäck, will be released on March 17th.
The second album, En vacker dag, will be released on September 1st.