Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Linköping, Sweden – 12th August 2017 – #17

After Mr. G’s hometown show, the band and the master himself, as well as Lars Winnerbäck were ready to take a ride to Lasse’s hometown for the next gig. The whole gang was ready, just the tour bus wasn’t. It broke down before they could leave Hotel Tylösand, but fortunately, a replacement bus arrived very fast and took the team to Linköping.

It was incredibly cold in Linköping, but Swedes didn’t really mind. Many of them still arrived with their picnic baskets and chairs and started having a picnic already outside the venue.

This time the support act order was Good Harvest first and then Strandels played. I prefer it like this. Good Harvest play rather ballads, while Strandels can warm up the crowd with their uptempo songs and in that cold cold town we really needed it.

Per & Co entered the stage some minutes after 9 pm and you could hear the crowd was very hungry to see and hear them. They were already loud before the gang showed up. The band started the concert with På promenad genom stan and the first let’s say 10 rows of the crowd, besides a lovely sha-la-la-la sing-along, were even following the choreography Helena tries with every audience, just waving with one arm up in the air.

The band was even more on fire than in Halmstad. It could be because there was now no stress with the recording cameras all around. At least Per told us this when we met him the day after the show. He said they were more relaxed in Linköping.

When Lars Winnerbäck joined the band on stage for Småstadsprat, the crowd went real wild. They were so happy to see their local hero. The crowd was singing along and cheered Lasse after they ended the song. Per and Lars hugged each other and Per let the crowd show their happiness for a longer time. Then he started talking, but the crowd went on with ”Lasse! Lasse! Lasse!”, so Per stopped talking and told the crowd yeah, come on, more of this. It was much fun! Lars thanked the crowd and then PG could go on with his presentation of the next song, which was again Honung och guld. Per said he tried to find songs he hadn’t played live before and he found appr. 450. The crowd laughed and Per said he thought he would play them all tonight. The crowd was cheering him for that. This time I was standing closer to Lasse and I could see him miming even to that part of the song which Per was singing. The whole song sounded wonderful in Linköping as well and after they finished it, Mr. G and Lasse hugged each other again, the crowd was shouting and clapping and Per asked for more applause for Lasse. Then he went off stage. This section I recorded again, HERE you can watch it! 😉

   

After Kung av sand (loud sing-along to this during the whole song) and Här kommer alla känslorna it was time to dance and jump a bit to the next 3 songs, the usual crowd pleasers. During Gå & fiska! it started raining a bit, but it was still OK not to use the ponchos and it stayed like that. Mr. G was bouncing around so energetically that after this section ended, before the band presentation, he had to catch some air. He said he is not 55 anymore. Haha. During his stand-up comedy part, Mister Magnus came up with the idea to share Per’s profile on that dating site where he found the band members. He said Per is called Oscar E. there and his profile pic is with a dog, a black collie. Magnus asked us to look for Oscar E. on Tinder. Haha. For Andreas and his black gloves Per showed thumbs up with both hands twice, it was funny. Then Chris went on with his psychedelic intro to The Look and when he finished the intro part, he asked the crowd (with his hand) to cheer more. It doesn’t happen too often that he asks for something like this, but it worked well, the crowd got even louder.

The crowd wanted the band back on stage before the encore. Some shouted they wanted to hear Billy, some other shouted Sommartider. The first encore was 1 song less vs. Halmstad. In Linköping they didn’t play (Hon vill ha) Puls. Varmt igen and Tycker om när du tar på mej both sounded beautiful. Always so unbelievable how clearly Helena can sing out all those high notes.

For the second encore the crowd didn’t have to wait too much. Maybe only 1 minute passed after the whole band went off stage after the first encore and Andreas came back to go ahead with his amazing drum intro to Sommartider. The crowd loved it and at the end of the intro Andreas was kidding and showed his exhausted face for fun. Then Per and the rest of the band came up on stage and Per asked the crowd if they were ready. Yeah! He said he couldn’t hear it, so he asked again and the crowd replied even louder. They were so ready for Sommartider!

The last song was Min plats, just like in Halmstad. But still it wasn’t the same, since in Linköping Lasse joined PG for this song too. It was a real surprise also for all those who were there in Halmstad. We didn’t expect Lars to come back on stage. It was cool he came back again, but one could sense they didn’t rehearse this song too many times or not at all, because Lasse was late with joining in the song. Per was already looking at him that he should join in. And another thing is that this song is definitely not written for Lasse’s voice. Sounded a bit strange from him. Anyway, it was great to see him again at end of the gig and he stayed there for the bow and went off stage together with all the others.

It was a fantastic evening! On my list it was the 3rd best show (after Göteborg and Östersund), but it’s in the Top5 also for those who saw PG & Co in Töreboda and Fredrikstad.

Just to keep track of it, I mention that Anders Roos was there at this show too and took tons of pics. Åsa was there too and she filmed a lot, now also in the front row.

Per after the show:

LINKÖPING YEEHAA!
Wow, vi hade hur kul som helst. Ett synnerligen avslappnat band och en fullständigt underbar publik. Vi är lyckligt lottade som får känna den här kärleken vid varje spelning! Och när Lasse W dök upp så föll alla bitarna verkligen på plats. En av sommarens bästa gig if u ask us! Tack alla som kom och skrålade en stund! Syns igen! /P.

All photos in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

Setlist

1. På promenad genom stan
2. Vilket håll du än går
3. Juni, juli, augusti
4. Det hjärta som brinner
5. Segla på ett moln / Första pris
6. It Must Have Been Love
7. Småstadsprat (duet with Lars Winnerbäck)
8. Honung och guld (duet with Lars Winnerbäck)
9. Kung av sand
10. Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång) / Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång
11. Ljudet av ett annat hjärta
12. Spegelboll
13. Gå & fiska!
Band presentation
14. The Look (with När vi två blir en as intro)

Encore:
15. Varmt igen (with Queen of Rain as intro)
16. Tycker om när du tar på mej
17. Joyride

Encore 2:
18. Sommartider
19. Min plats (duet with Lars Winnerbäck)

Videos:

På promenad genom stan & Vilket håll du än går
Småstadsprat & Honung och guld
Småstadsprat
Honung och guld
Kung av sand
Gå & fiska!
Varmt igen
Tycker om när du tar på mej
Joyride

Articles, pictures:

Corren.se

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Halmstad, Sweden – 11th August 2017 – #16

Per Gessle’s tour finally reached the point when he performed in his hometown, Halmstad. We had been looking very much forward to this show, because concerts in home ground are always so special. This time it was even more special when we got to know that SVT was to record the whole concert. They prepared all cameras at different points of the venue, Simstadion Brottet and we could also see that there were huge screens on the 2 sides of the stage.

Fans came from several countries again: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Finland, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden, Ukraine, USA.

During the day, Lars Winnerbäck turned up in town, so we could sense there was a surprise guest appearance planned for the night. It became 100% sure when we heard Per and Lars rehearsing Småstadsprat and Honung och guld at the soundcheck in the afternoon (from 16:15). We were curious how they would rearrange the setlist if at all, now that Lars joined them for these 2 songs. These 2 songs they rehearsed for appr. 15 minutes and then came Min plats and a little Puls. Woohoo, so we were happy that the setlist might be longer, since Puls got back on it.

Helena arrived at 16:50 and she went in to the venue at the main entrance, so she was walking next to the whole bunch of fans waiting for being let in. We all applauded and cheered her loudly and she was happy about it. Such a lovely lady!

Mats MP Persson arrived to the venue at around 17:45. He was on the guestlist of course and came all the way by bike to enjoy the show. Many fans spotted him and jumped on him to take pictures together. He seemed to be a bit uncomfortable with it, but was posing for the pics anyway. Nice guy.

The SVT cameras for the show weren’t enough, Anders Roos was also there to take thousands of photos of this hometown show and of course, Åsa was also there filming a lot. This time she just couldn’t come to the front row, because the TV guys were moving there with the cameras too, so they would have bumped into each other. This way she was filming from the sides of the stage (and maybe from somewhere else in the crowd too? We will see when the vids are up on GessleHomeVids, YouTube).

First it was time for the performance of the support acts, Strandles and Good Harvest. Strandels put the crowd in a bit of a party mood, then Good Harvest calmed us down a bit. In between the support acts and before PG’s show we could enjoy the view of the huge crowd (11000 people!) on the side screens. The cameraman was very funny. He spotted some people and left the camera shooting them until they realized they were on the screen. The crowd was laughing at the reaction of those up on the screens. It added a lot to the mood of the audience. There should be such screens and cameramen at all venues.

Per’s concert kicked off some minutes after 21:00. To hear På promenad genom stan in Halmstad is a real pleasure, here it made even more sense to start the show with this song. It Must Have Been Love was a success and Helena got cheered loudly. Right after IMHBL came Småstadsprat, so there was the first change in the setlist. For the part which is sung by Lars Winnerbäck on the album, Lasse came up on stage and he was singing it. He got a loud applause from the crowd when he appeared. The song sounded beautiful. No other version sounds as wonderful as the one with the original duet, Per and Lars. What a delight! The crowd cheered the duo loudly during the song too and when they finished it as well and Mr. G told the audience it wasn’t bad. Per and Lasse hugged each other after the song ended. Then Per was talking about the rehearsals and that he tried to find songs which he didn’t play live before and he found there were 470 of such songs. He decided for a song off Gyllene Tider’s 1982 album, Puls. He said he knows Lars likes this song too and so they decided to sing it together. So they went on with Honung och guld. Lasse’s favourite album from GT is Puls and HOG is his favourite song off it. It sounded great in this duet version. After they ended the song, Per and Lasse hugged each other again and Lars went off stage. Per told the crowd it’s hard to top now. I have recorded the whole Lars Winnerbäck guest appearance in Halmstad (not the best quality video because of the smoke and lights, but still you might enjoy it). 😉 Watch it HERE!

 

Ljudet av ett annat hjärta and Gå & fiska! were the songs that made the crowd party the most. I actually expected a more active crowd in Halmstad, but they seemed to be a bit lazy during most of the songs. Of course, the first 5 rows and some smaller groups in the middle and in the back were more in jumping and dancing mood, but the rest of the crowd mostly was clapping and singing along.

After the party session there came the band presentation and Magnus there told the crowd a secret, that after the show there is an after party at Per’s place. He even mentioned a fake address and told the crowd to tell the guards they are with Magnus, so they can join the party. Haha. Mister Magnus also mentioned that Andreas had just turned 50 (which is still unbelievable, as he doesn’t look more than 40 – even Per was kidding him with it), so it’s time to celebrate. When it was Christoffer’s turn to play the intro to The Look and he was rocking to the right side of the stage, Magnus gave bunny ears to him. It looked funny!

Varmt igen and Tycker om när du tar på mej turned out to be wonderful this time too. Helena was singing her heart out and the audience appreciated it. In the first encore there was a change too, they put (Hon vill ha) Puls before Joyride. It was cool to hear Puls again. During Joyride some balloons were let into the air by front row fans.

For the second encore, Andreas went real wild on the Sommartider drum intro. This caught the audience too. Was cool to watch it on the big screens too!

The ending was new too. The closing song was Min plats. Before they started playing it, the crowd shouted ”Gessle! Gessle! Gessle!”. Per smiled, but other than that he didn’t really react on it, just talked a bit and started with the song.

At the very end, after the bow, before going off stage, Per tried to throw picks from the mic stand to the crowd, but most of them landed on the stage still, so he gave up. Not the first time. Haha.

The whole band was very energetic and gave their very best for this show. Also the guest appearance of Lars was very cool and from what we saw on the screens, the recordings will be fab. Looking very much forward to seeing it on TV and maybe it’s a good idea to release it on DVD just before Xmas. Hint, hint!

After the show many fans went to Hotel Tylösand. Not for an after party, rather to say thank you to the band for the show. When we arrived, we bumped into Jonas Åkerlund in the lobby. Then a fan from Norway approached to us. He found it fun that we are a younger generation and a fan of Per. Even if we became a fan of PG only 6-8 years after him. He is a fan since 1983 and so he missed the older songs of Per, the first 2 solo albums. Well, maybe next time, on a future tour we hear some songs off those albums too. Or maybe not. Haha.

Andreas, Malin-My, Chris, Clarence and Magnus arrived to the hotel and we thanked them for the gig and chatted with them for a while. They were all very nice and also kindly posed for pictures. Helena and Ola got to the hotel already before any fans arrived and Per decided to enter the hotel from a back entrance, so we couldn’t meet them. But still it was a very nice time with all the band members we could meet.

Lars Winnerbäck also spent the night at Hotel Tylösand and while we had a further nice night at Leif’s Lounge, we saw him having a chat with his friends there.

All in all, it was a cool evening and night in Halmstad, with PG and the band on fire, with a nice surprise guest on stage and some great crowd reactions. Now please, hurry up and share the recordings with us asap, SVT! And we want it on DVD too!

Per after the show:

Oj! Oj! Vilket fantastiskt gig det blev i Halmstad! Perfekt kväll, hur mycket folk som helst (11000? 12000?), grymt band och dessutom Linköpings stolthet Lasse Winnerbäck på besök. Tack alla som var med och sjöng och dansade och gjorde detta till en superb kväll att minnas väldigt länge. Love! /P.
PS. Vi filmade allt, kommer att bli en härlig rulle!

All photos in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

Setlist

1. På promenad genom stan
2. Vilket håll du än går
3. Juni, juli, augusti
4. Det hjärta som brinner
5. Segla på ett moln / Första pris
6. It Must Have Been Love
7. Småstadsprat (duet with Lars Winnerbäck)
8. Honung och guld (duet with Lars Winnerbäck)
9. Kung av sand
10. Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång) / Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång
11. Ljudet av ett annat hjärta
12. Spegelboll
13. Gå & fiska!
Band presentation
14. The Look (with När vi två blir en as intro)

Encore:
15. Varmt igen (with Queen of Rain as intro)
16. Tycker om när du tar på mej
17. (Hon vill ha) Puls
18. Joyride

Encore 2:
19. Sommartider
20. Min plats

Videos:
Juni, juli, augusti
Första pris
It Must Have Been Love: 1; 2;
Småstadsprat & Honung och guld (complete surprise guest appearance)
Småstadsprat: 1; 2; 3;
Honung och guld: 1; 2;
Ljudet av ett annat hjärta & Spegelboll
Varmt igen: 1; 2;
Sommartider: 1; 2;
Min plats

Articles, pictures:
Hallandsposten: 1; 2; 3;
P4 Halland
SVT: PG interview before the concert

 

Per Gessle: “I often cry” – Aftonbladet interview

Aftonbladet published an interview with Per Gessle on 25th April. he interview was done by Jan-Olov Andersson. The title already grabs your attention and you get curious about what Mr. G has to tell.

Jan-Olov states that even if Per has sold 80 million albums so far, he is not tired of it all. When they meet to talk about the new album, the love towards his wife, his role as a father and missing those who have passed away, both artists and those in his family, Per reveals what makes him extra fond of meeting his fans.

According to Jan-Olov, ”En vacker natt” is one of the best albums Per has ever made. Per says he wanted to write lyrics-based music, with his voice and acoustic guitars. It wouldn’t be pop, but thoughtfully beautiful music. Sentimental, but not tearful. It was quite easy to write and he also noticed that it became much more private than what he wrote earlier. Country sentimentality didn’t come until Per came to Nashville and met the musicians, especially Dan Dugmore and Stuart Duncan, who play pedal steel and violin. Then Mr. G felt shit, they don’t need strings, guitar loops or piano. It was something that was created in the moment.

Even if ”Småstadsprat”, the duet with Lars Winnerbäck is played extensively on the radio, Per wasn’t sure how the audience’s reception would be. He means there is no ”radio bomb” on the album and some might think the music is too slow and the violin is too whiny.

Per says that’s amazingly fascinating about his job is that one can never predict what will happen. It might not be an album for everyone, in times of Spotify, when some only listen to 24 seconds of a song. This is from another tradition. It has probably taken 58 years of Per’s life to come to a point where he dares to do it.

Jan-Olov asks Per how he will combine this country melancholy with all his previous hits. Mr. G says his original idea was to select songs from his entire songwriter career. Roxette, solo and Gyllene Tider songs. He feels that with the band he goes on tour, including a pedal steel and a violin player, he has the opportunity to change even the other songs a little bit. But he hasn’t decided yet how exactly.

Regarding Roxette, Per says the last touring years they did on Marie’s terms. That they had to cancel the tour he understands and respects Marie to 100000%. He says it felt nice that Marie herself made the decision, she could decide if it was on or off. Per says Marie and he talk sometimes, not every day. They had dinner together a few weeks ago. She is fine that she doesn’t have the stress and pressure now. That was crucial. Having 10000 people in the audience waiting…, she now feels damn good that she doesn’t have to deliver this way.

After Roxette was over, Per was thinking about what to do. Jan-Olov thought Per had hundreds of songs ready on stock, but Mr. G says the only ones he has is a few left-overs from earlier recordings. Otherwise, he doesn’t write until he knows he would make a record.

Per says he always has the antennas out. It might be something a taxi driver says, something he heard on TV or saw at the cinema. If he goes to a clothing store in London and hears a groove he likes, he records it on his iPhone. Jan-Olov asks Per what he is doing with all of these things. Mr. G says he has an idea archive. Titles, verses, words he thinks can be exciting, which can open doors. Often when he is in a writing phase, if he fails in the second verse, he can go to the archive and see if he finds something that fits.

Per talks about the fact that he uses symbols in the lyrics. If we look at his Swedish texts, there is a lot of sea and summer. He never tries to show the way, say how things are, he rather tries to let people form their own view. Then he has to use symbols. Like tussilago in ”Småstadsprat”. That means everything goes on, you get a new chance.

Per tells Jan-Olov that when people say they sing his songs on weddings or birthdays and say it’s about them, about their boyfriend or about their siblings, that they have interpreted it that way, it’s the coolest thing for a songwriter. He says then he knows he has succeeded. Mr. G says many of the lyrics that meant a lot to him, by Paul Simon, Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan, he feels like they are about him. He mentions that it was Mauro Scocco who once said it doesn’t happen often that you go and look at a sculpture and start crying. But the identification, it’s so amazingly awesome with music.

To Jan-Olov’s question if he cries often Per replies he is a weepy type when it comes to movies, in the most ridiculous context. He thinks it’s super sentimental when, for example, you portray injustice in a movie. He cries a lot more often than Åsa. She thinks it’s great fun. Per says men are raised to try to hide it.

The guys are talking about several rock icons who have passed away lately. Jan-Olov asks Per if any of them touched him extra much. Per says David Bowie and Leonard Cohen. Bowie was a shock, the day after his birthday, they were on vacation. Cohen was old, Per tried to see him as often as he could in recent years. His feeling influenced his record quite much. Girl choruses that give an angelic sense. So sometimes he uses Helena Josefsson’s voice, already since ”Mazarin”.

Jan-Olov asks Per about Sven-Erik Magnusson from Sven-Ingvars, who has died recently. Per says he wrote some songs to them. He can’t say he knew Sven-Erik very well, but he always felt young. Sven-Ingvars was a fantastic band. Their ‘60s hits can’t be copied. Listen to ”Börja om från början”. Highest elite! But when Per was young, they didn’t like the band had a ridiculous name and the guys had short hair. Back then everyone wanted to look like The Beatles on the ”Rubber Soul” cover.

Per Gessle was still living at home when Gyllene Tider became Sweden’s most popular band. His brother Bengt, who was 7 years older than Per and his sister Gunilla, who was 14 years older than him, had moved from home. Per’s father Kurt, who ran his own company as a plumber, passed away when Per was 19 years old. So when he suddenly became famous throughout Sweden, it was he and his mother who were affected. Jan-Olov asks if Per’s mother understood the strange journey Per has done. Mr. G says yes and no. He lived home for quite a while and it was so terribly hysterical around Gyllene Tider. Everyone who rang the door, the huge amount of mails, things stolen from number plates on the car to the laundry on dry. But the Roxette stuff, his mom thought it was amazing and she was always reminded of success by the people in her vicinity, but she understood just enough. She was barely outside Sweden, she was in France once. When Per showed pictures and videos she said worried: Ojojoj, I hope you take care of yourselves. Bengt passed away in spring 2014, Per’s mother Elisabeth 3.5 years ago and his sister last autumn, in cancer. Per says he hasn’t had any depression, but when your relatives die, you find other values important. Losing them certainly affected him and probably his new album too. Old photos of Gunilla and Elisabeth now are on the 2 new albums’ covers.

Per says that a lot of lyrics he has written now required a whole life to mature. He says a few years ago sometimes he drove past the house where he grew up. Now he doesn’t do it anymore, they have changed so much so you hardly recognize it. It’s strange that you want to do it, but it’s also human. When time passes you become restless, you want to belong to something. You imagine how it was, but it looks quite different. It’s like in Per Myrberg’s song ”34:an”.

Now his family is his wife Åsa, they have been together since Per was 25, and his son Gabriel, 19. To the question why Gabriel came so late Per replies his life was much about his career and Åsa was so involved in it. Organized the travelling and such. They prioritized their job. Marie set the trend when she became pregnant. She had two children, so we also took the opportunity. Roxette took four years of child break.

Jan-Olov asks Per how he is as a father. Per says he shouldn’t ask him, but he thinks he has a great relationship with Gabriel. His upbringing is quite special. There has been a lot of travelling, sometimes he had a teacher on the tours. Per thinks Gabbe has become a very easy going, normal guy. He has surely got it from his parents. Per says they are quite common people, even if it doesn’t seem so in the media.

Jan-Olov asks Per how he and Åsa have managed to keep their love alive for so long. According to Per, it’s probably just because they are pretty alike but still different. They fit well together. Per can’t see his life without Åsa. They have never had any heavy schisms, even if sometimes they think different. To the question about what, hereplies small things. Shoes choice or something like that… (laughs).

In the video which is inlcuded in the article, Per is asked about the similarity between him and Lars Winnerbäck. The reporter says if he listens to Per’s first solo album from 1983, it sounds like anything from Lars. Per couldn’t really get what he meant. He says he hasn’t listened to it since long and asks the reporter if he likes the album. The guy says yes, absolutely. Per says Lars is a fantastic songwriter and artist and Per is very happy and proud that he is on his new album now. He is a wonderful person. That he is also a small town guy, it fits well for ”Småstadsprat”.

 

Gomorron Sverige interview with Per Gessle

Per was one of the guests on today’s Gomorron Sverige on SVT. As he mentioned on his Instagram account: ”Early morning TV show. Really early. Really.” Haha. Poor guy, having some long and busy PR days this week.

If you are in Sweden, you can watch the show on SVT Play, if not, then you can watch it on YouTube (thanks to Gaby for recording it).

In 10 years, this is the first material Per releases in Swedish. To the question why Nashville, he replies he wanted to change the milieu a bit, not to record again in Skåne. He was thinking about recording in England or France, but suddenly Nashville popped up. Per thinks the combination of Halmstad and Nashville is perfect. He says he likes classic country, Neil Young, for example.

The host on the show says Per’s music is not really country, but Mr. G says there are country elements, for example, on Mazarin. Now he worked together with local musicians and all the instruments they used add the Nashville sound to the album, but at the same time he wanted the lyrics and his voice to be in focus.

Regarding the duet with Lars Winnerbäck, the hostess asks Per if it is a bit like looking for something new after Marie. Per says he just wanted to do something different. He likes to test different things all the time.

The host asks Per if this project is more about looking back than looking into the future. Per says in a way it is. He tried to write the lyrics from the point of view who he is today, even he writes about the same topics as usual, love, disappointment, longing, dreaming. The host asks if it is easier to write in his mother tongue, Swedish than in English. Per says it is.

They talk about the album cover of ”En vacker natt”. Per tells it’s his sister on the cover. She passed away last autumn. Her son found a box full of photos from 1965-66 and Per chose to put this picture of Gunilla on the cover. The pic was taken in Halmstad.

The hostess asks Per if losing his father, mother, brother and sister had any affect on his music. Per says of course it had in a way. Everyone who loses someone close is affected by the loss.

They are talking about the fact that a second album is out in autumn. Per says they worked fast and there was so much material, he decided to release 2 albums instead of one damn long album.

The hostess says the album looks like an old LP. Per says that was the idea behind the design. The cover also helps to create the milieu of the songs. And it will be released also on LP. The hostess asks why Mr. G thought it should be released on vinyl as well. He says mainly in Sweden, Spotify is huge in streaming music, but it’s a bit anonymous. There are no album covers, but pop or rock culture doesn’t exist without album covers. Nowadays Per still buys LPs and he is looking at the sleeves while listening to the songs on Spotify. He likes to have the lyrics in front of him when he is actively listening to music.

The hostess asks what Halmstad means to Per. He replies he has been travelling a lot around the world, but he always gets back to Halmstad. He likes Halmstad and he likes small town life. He of course likes Stockholm too, but he is more of a small town guy. Lars Winnerbäck is also a small town guy, Marie Fredriksson is also a small town girl.

The host asks about that one English song, ”Far Too Close” (duet with Savannah Church) on the album and they play a short snippet from it. Per says this is a homage to Nashville to have an English song as the last track on the album, a duet by a local country singer.

Per says the musicians in Nashville of course knew the songs ”Listen To Your Heart” or ”It Must Have Been Love”, but they thought Per’s music was strange. Per was happy about it and thought their cooperation would be exciting.

About how he wrote the songs Per says he always writes either on acoustic guitar or on piano. The host asks how long they rehearsed together with the musicians in Nashville. Per says they didn’t rehearse at all. He played the demos to them and explained some things, but then it was more like jamming. There were like 3-4 takes for a track, then they just put the whole song together. The pedal steel and the violin are very characteristic.

Per says his summer tour has its premiere in Helsingborg, but he couldn’t remember the exact date. Haha. First he said 7th July, then smiled and said or maybe rather 6th July. Yes, it’s the 6th. He won’t have Nashville musicians in the band, but Swedish guys and girls. They will play songs from Per’s whole career.

Still is from the TV show

 

Per Gessle – Småstadsprat video

Per Gessle’s first single off his upcoming album was released on 17th March. A duet with Lars Winnerbäck. We already knew it on 7th April that a video will also be released to Småstadsprat, as Per Gessle posted about it on his Facebook page:

Yepp. Småstadsprat-video klar. Grymt cool. Kommer strax. /P.

Translation: Voila. Småstadsprat-video clip signed, sealed and delivered. Very nice indeed. Out before you know it. /P.

We all hoped to see Per himself in the video, but we were also kind of sure there would be more tussilagos in it than PG. The video was published on 21st April. It’s a cartoon created by Emil Gustafsson Ryderup. Even if it doesn’t contain any PG images, it turned out to be beautiful. Beautiful but so sad at the same time. It fits the lyrics and the melody perfectly.

As Emil told Göteborgs-Posten, first he said no to doing a video for ”an artist”, because he was too busy. Then it turned out it would have been a video for a Per Gessle song and he got anxious. He says:

He is one of the Swedish music geniuses, one of the absolute greatest and that’s when anxiety kicked in that I missed it. Gessle has definitely been in the frontline of our country’s music history. He has always been around in a certain way and I have to admit that sometimes in the dark times of my life I have listened to “It Must Have Been Love”.

Thanks to Emil’s employers, he could get 3 weeks off for making the video. It was an intensive period for him, to interpret the lyrics into his drawings. He says it’s a story of love that doesn’t disappear, about those who leave a small town and those who do not. He had a style in mind inspired by the ‘50s and ‘60s and UPA animation studio. A bit of “Mr. Magoo” style, but still with Emil’s character in it.

At the beginning, Emil sent some still images and a synopsis to the record company and he got green light to go on with it. Emil says it was more like he gathered the ingredients for a cake and hoped it would turn out right in the end. For example, he made the backgrounds last. All involved were satisfied with the result and the video is now out in public. Emil tells Göteborgs-Posten that he is quite pleased and that Per Gessle said yes to Emil Gustafsson Ryderup is fun and feels great. He is very happy that he managed to do this in the end.

Congrats and well done, Emil! The video can be watched on Per’s YouTube channel, HERE.

Per Gessle – Småstadsprat promo single

Per Gessle’s first single off his upcoming album was released on 17th March. As you could see it in Mr. G’s video showing his brand new album, En vacker natt (out on 28th April), he also showed a physical Småstadsprat single which is for promotional use only, distributed to radio stations in Sweden. It’s a bit sad, mainly for collectors, that we are living in a ”digital single release only” world.

On the promo single’s back cover we can see who created the magical sounds on this track.

  • Per Gessle: acoustic guitar and vocals
  • Lars Winnerbäck: vocals
  • Clarence Öfwerman: piano
  • Christoffer Lundquist: acoustic guitar, contrabass, percussion and keyboards
  • Dan Dugmore: pedal steel guitar
  • Stuart Duncan: violin
  • Helena Josefsson: backing vocals

Lyrics and music by Per Gessle.

Produced by Christoffer Lundquist and Per Gessle.

Recorded in Blackbird Studios in Nashville, Tennessee.

Additional recordings were done at Tits & Ass, Halmstad (Technician: M.P Persson) and Shortlist, Stockholm (Technician: Anders Herrlin).

The single is released under Space Station 12, Per’s record label that has just celebrated its 1 year anniversary this week. All guests are now lucky owners of a Småstadsprat promo single.

Per wrote Småstadsprat on 5-6 May 2016 in Halmstad. This is what he says about the song:

I wrote Småstadsprat in Halmstad in the beginning of May last year when the sun started to shine seriously. It became one of the signature songs of how I wanted my new album to sound. I wanted Helena Josefsson on the choruses and then I met Lasse Winnerbäck at Sofiero in Helsingborg in July and asked him if he wanted to sing a bit too. He liked the song and joined in. The lyrics is about being young and in love and confused and disappointed at the same time. Everyday life in small towns.

 

Småstadsprat

Jag trodde inte att det var sant
Att du kommit tillbaks med samma namn
Det var bara småstadsprat

Jag trodde aldrig på allt ståhej
Att det första du gjorde var att fråga om mej
Det var bara småstadsprat

Ny tussilago
Vid den väg du går
Ny tussilago
Kommer varje vår

Om du hör att jag blivit svår
Att jag har funderat på hur du mår
Det är bara småstadsprat

Om du hör att jag slutat le
Att jag har förändrats och hamnat bredvid
Det är bara småstadsprat

Ny tussilago
Vid den väg jag går
Ny tussilago
Kommer varje vår

Lyrics + Music: Per Gessle

© Jimmy Fun Music

 

Listen to the song on your favourite digital platform! Or if you are more into the live version, now you can choose from 2 beautiful live performances. The one you could hear on Skavlan and the other from the SS12 anniversary party.

Enjoy!

 

Per Gessle interview and single performance on Skavlan

As you already know, Per Gessle appeared on Skavlan talk show tonight. From the video teasers (selfie; desert island) we saw on SVT’s website during the day we could be absolutely sure that the show was going to be much fun. The recording took place on 15th March and 2 hours before showtime Per shared a rehearsal video from his 14th March get together with the band and Lars Winnerbäck on his YouTube channel (GessleHomeVids), which we hope he will keep alive for a longer time and share even more content in the future.

The first 2 guests in Skavlan were Annika Falkengren (actual President and Group Chief Executive of the Swedish bank, SEB) and Jo Nesbø (Norwegian writer, musician). Mr. G was the third guest, his part starts at around 25:40. Before he entered the studio, some old concert and TV show footage was shown from Per’s early and later career (Gyllene Tider, Roxette, solo) and after he sat down, Fredrik Skavlan, host of the show was chatting with all 3 people, asking interesting questions.

Since Annika is one of the guests, Fredrik asks Per what type of bank client Mr. G is. He says he is a weak banker. Then Fredrik goes on asking who Per was before he became a musician. Per says he can’t remember, it was so long ago, but he thinks he was a shy and lonely guy. Music became his life quite early. Already at the age of 6-7-8 he was listening to The Kinks and then The Beatles.

Fredrik asks Per what his father thought about him choosing music. Per says his father died in 1978, but he wasn’t fond of his musical efforts. He heard one song on the show Bandet går and thought Per was singing like shouting badly. Fredrik asks Per if he would have chosen this career if his father wouldn’t have died, but Per doesn’t know the answer. He says his mother always supported him. His dad died the same day a big article about Gyllene Tider appeared in Expressen.

They talk about Per being called a mom’s boy and that she and Per’s brother and sister died during the past 3 years. Fredrik asks Per what his mother would say was the peak in Per’s career. Per tells she lived with her mother for a long time and she witnessed all the weird things during the golden age of Gyllene Tider, like getting 3000 postcards or fans stealing the drying clothes from their garden. Then it was different with Roxette, it was more of a global thing. But he tells his mum was very proud of him.

Fredrik says people talk about Per as the boss. Per says he is more of a control freak. Fredrik asks if it has always been easy to work together in Roxette. Per replies ”piece of cake” and laughs. He says they started from nowhere and it was a fantastic journey with Marie. But of course, there were conflicts. Per always wanted to work and when they finished something he wanted to work again, but Marie didn’t think the same way. And probably Per’s control freakness also caused some conflicts. Fredrik asks if Marie has ever told it to Per and Per replies he read that in Marie’s book and laughs.

Fredrik Skavlan asks Per if he is a pedant. Per says he is. If Fredrik goes to his home he would for sure think a pedant lives there. All records are sorted on the shelves in alphabetic order, for example. He was like that already as a kid. He tells his friends think it’s fun to push some books in on the shelf when they visit him. Here Jo Nesbø says all guys put the records in alphabetical order but asks Per if he also puts the records in chronological order for one band. Per says no, he doesn’t do that. Jo says then everyone can calm down. Haha.

Fredrik says both Lars Winnerbäck and Per Gessle are introvert guys. He is wondering who talks most. Per laughs and says they sit silent. Then Fredrik asks Mr. G what small town talks (småstadsprat) Per knows about himself. He says he loves Halmstad and he really feels that Halmstad is proud of him. He says it’s always fun to fuel the car. Then Fredrik asks if he drives the cars Per has in his collection. It’s like having a horse inside the house. Per says of course he drives them. Mr. G talks about how it is to drive his Ferrari to the ICA (Swedish supermarket) to buy strawberries. He says he thought a Ferrari is a girl magnet, but it’s not at all. Everytime he leaves the shop, coming back to where he parked the car there are like 30 guys filming his Ferrari.

Per also talks about that since he was 20 he got used to the fact that people recognize him. He can’t leave his apartment without bumping into people who want to take a selfie with him. Actually, if nobody asks for a selfie, he gets very depressed. Then Fredrik comes close to PG and they pose for a selfie.

Fredrik asks Per what kind of car Annika’s husband should buy when they move to Switzerland and Mr. G suggest a 2-seated with no roof. Here Annika tells Per once she was sitting behind Per on a plane and Mr. G was reading a car magazine. His wife and son were sitting on the other side. She asks if it happens often. Per is kidding he is surprised Annika saw them travelling on the same class.

Then comes a little game. Fredrik asks his guests which 3 albums they would bring to a desert island where they would spend a long long time. Jo Nesbø asks Per who he prefers, John Lennon or Paul McCartney and Per chooses John Lennon. Jo and Per can agree on taking The Beatles’ Revolver album. Annika couldn’t really get first what revolver they are talking about, then out of the blue she suggests why not taking Julio Iglesias with them. LOL. Per’s facial expression is priceless. WTF? Haha. Then Annika goes on with Demis Roussos and Per can’t keep it to himself, he says he hopes it’s a big island. Haha. One must love his sense of humor. Per says the 3 albums he would take are Revolver, The Ramones’ first album and Joni Mitchell’s Ladies of the Canyon. Jo agrees on The Ramones’ as well, but he would take Rocket to Russia from them.

With this the PG talking part is over (at appr. 40 minutes in), but a fourth guest is coming, Susan Faludi, an American Pulitzer winner author and feminist. It’s worth watching this part, too, because Per stays there in the studio and is listening to Susan’s stories, paying a lot of attention.

Then at appr. 53:20, at the end of the show Per performs his new song, ”Småstadsprat”, a duet with Lars Winnerbäck. Lars is of course there as well. In the band you can see Clarence Öfwerman, Christoffer Lundquist, Helena Josefsson and some new faces, Ola Gustafsson, Malin-My Nilsson and Martin Höper. How they perform Småstadsprat live is pure awesomeness! Just magical! H.e.a.v.e.n.l.y.!

What a wonderful and interesting show it was! We would love to have more of this, wouldn’t we?

Still is from the TV show

 

Listen to Per Gessle’s new song, Småstadsprat!

Even if the release date of Per’s first single off the new album, En vacker natt is set to 17th March, Swedish Radio P4 already played the song today. In the radio program, Eftermiddag i P4 Dalarna Med Emma och Martin the hosts talked about Mr. G’s new albums and then aired Småstadsprat, a duet with Lars Winnerbäck. The talking about Per starts at 51:40, the song starts at 52:25! The total length of the song is 3:39, on the radio you can hear a bit more than 3 min, so there might be some surprise sounds still on Friday. Aaaaaaaw! The song makes me even more curious about the complete album!

Don’t forget to watch Skavlan on SVT on Friday at 21:00 CET! There will be an interview with Per and he will also perform Småstadsprat together with Lars Winnerbäck. What a treat!

Per Gessle & Lars Winnerbäck – pic from PG’s Instagram

 

Per Gessle to appear on SVT Skavlan

Per will be one of the guests of this Friday’s TV  talk show Skavlan, which will be broadcast on SVT and NRK at 21:00 CET.

According to SVT, Per will be interviewed and will also perform  ‘Småstadsprat’ – the first single off ‘En vacker natt’ which is out this Friday – with Lars Winnerbäck. The show will be recorded tomorrow.

The show will also be streamed on SVTplay. Usually, Skavlan can be seen everywhere (no geo block).

Per Gessle about the new albums and duets – interview by Swedish Radio P4

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.

Photo by Anton Corbijn