Per Gessle’s cookhouse

Per’s latest posts made many fans wonder what Mr. G is cooking again. First you see him posting a video, getting ready to work with Clarence. In a different time zone. Okay, it’s music in the making, not just a random holiday. Then bang, there is a Sunday selfie with Anders Herrlin, Clarence Öfwerman and Per. Anders? Hm hm… Then it comes to your mind that Anders is very much into soundtracks and you remember Per said in an interview quite some time ago that he is working together with Jonas Åkerlund again on a soundtrack for Jonas’ new movie. Jonas is indeed working on a new film. The title is Lords of Chaos and it’s based on a true story. It was announced already in May 2015 that Jonas is directing this movie, but the shooting was a bit delayed for whatever reasons. Now it seems Mr. Åkerlund is very busy with it and the project is in pre-production phase.

Back to Mr. G’s new dice, the storyline on IMDb states: A teenager’s quest to launch Norwegian Black Metal in Oslo in the 1980s results in a very violent outcome.

Black metal… Aha… What does Per have to do with black metal??? Oh my… Then ooops, he posts a picture of Christoffer Lundquist and Clarence Öfwerman hanging out with a cutout Alan Jackson (famous country musician) and he writes ”Chris, Anders & Clare preparing yet another heavy metal arrangement.” Heavy metal… so why Alan Jackson? Just to confuse us… Oh, Alan Jackson has a good-looking country bar in Nashville.

Back to the movie. You check anything related to the ”music by” section of Lords of Chaos, but all you can find related to sounds / music so far is that Mattias Eklund’s name is stated as re-recording mixer / supervising sound editor. Mattias was there to edit sounds for Small Apartments as well. You know, the movie with beautiful soundtrack music by Per Gessle.

So is Per making black metal music together with Anders, Clarence and Chris? Or are they all there in Nashville for country music only? Haha. This guy is certainly not running out of projects. Good for us!

 

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Picture taken from Roxette’s Facebook page

Update on 2nd November 2016: Helena Josefsson joined the gang in Nashville for 3 days & they are recording together with Jessica Sweetman (British singer / songwriter). Jessica says: “Yesterday [1st November] I was recording in the Blackbird Studios in Nashville with Per Gessle from Roxette. I am so happy that I am going to be featured on a song of his that he is releasing next year. Per and his team are such wonderful souls and incredibly talented musicians. I feel blessed I have had this opportunity of collaborating with them on this project.”

Update on 5th November 2016: Drummer Elizabeth Goodfellow joined Per Gessle & Co in Nashville. Elizabeth also worked together with Helena Josefsson and Christoffer Lundquist at AGM a month ago. Elizabeth says: “Just wrapped up tracking drums for Per Gessle! It’s an honor to play for a songwriter I listened to on the radio since before I can remember. So grateful to keep growing and learning. Thank you!”

 

What Per Gessle played with this pick stays with this pick

For obvious reasons, during the past few months there weren’t as many plectrum updates as used to be, but then in July something popped up on a certain Instagram account. Per Gessle posted a picture of a guitar pick saying ”New guitar pick, flipside!”. We all started wondering what the text (What’s been played with this pick stays with this pick) and sealed-lips emoji on the plectrum could refer to and it didn’t last too long to find out it had surely been produced for private gigs.

We had to wait 2 months to see where the pick was used and it turned out it was the only occasion Per played it. It happened at a birthday party at A.b.b.e.y. R.o.a.d. S.t.u.d.i.o.s. Wow! It must have been an awesome feeling to play at such a historical & magical place.

What the pick (1; 2) says is not completely true though. Of course we don’t know the full setlist, but we know the band played The Look and more importantly, they also played Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång). Huh? Who would have thought that Per would EVER play THIS song at THAT place? Yep, it was a Swedish business man’s birthday party after all, but still! It’s just amazing!

Fortunately, Mr. G was generous enough to share the pick with the greatest plec collector among Roxers, Sandra Knospe and this way the PLECtionary could be updated. Woohoo! Check it out!

We asked Sandra how she feels about having this item in her collection:

I remember that Per mentioned in the interview about the guitar picks, that he considers it a mission to help me find Plectrum-Nirvana. And I also remember how shocked (in a positive way) I was when I read this back then. That alone was more than I ever could wish for. Of course I didn’t dare to believe that he actually would make it true. But he really did. More than just once. And I still can’t believe it. I am so happy and grateful that he helps me to keep the collection complete. And it also makes things so much easier. It sometimes is like pulling teeth if you try to swap a missing pick with somebody, esp. such rare ones that have not even been played at public events. So thank you again, Per, for being such a kind person and also for making the hunt much easier. I can’t find the right words to explain good enough how much I appreciate that. But I so do!!!

Huge thanks again for the updates, Sandra and much appreciation to Mr. G for making it possible!

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Photo by Sandra Knospe

 

New vintage, new label for Per Gessle’s Kurt & Lisa

The Wineagency announced that vintage 2012 of The Per Gessle Selection’s successful Kurt & Lisa wine will be available for order at Systembolaget.

Mr. G posted about the samples and testing of this vintage in July and August 2015. Per said it was hard to choose between the last 2 samples, because both were awesome and he said it might be the best Kurt & Lisa so far.

Wine lovers will surely find it out soon and the collectors can be happy too, because the wine is out with a new label, of course. As Mr. G told in the Allt om Vin interview, this new label for each vintage thing was inspired by the American Sine Qua Non winery, which each year has new fun designs and names for each vintage.

If you are in Sweden, you can check it out and order Kurt & Lisa 2012 at Systembolaget.

K_L_2012  kurtochlisa2012

 

First ear candies on Per Gessle’s new record label

While we are waiting for the third single to be released off Roxette’s 10th studio album, Good Karma, Per Gessle is busy with releasing singles on his new record label, Space Station 12.

The first release was Good Harvest’s own interpretation of Joni Mitchell’s Woodstock and the second is Fanny de Aguiar’s debut single, Sinking Deep. If you haven’t listened to the songs yet, you should! Both acts sound quite outstanding.

 

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PG in his SS12 tee. Pics from Roxette’s Facebook page (1,2)

Per about Good Harvest:

The first time I heard Good Harvest, I was completely cracked by how tight they are singing. It’s incredibly brilliantly done, while it hits straight in the heart. This kind of timeless quality is what makes you immediately want to hear the song again.

Good Harvest about the first meeting with Per Gessle:

To meet Gessle is in many ways like meeting a living legend. But he was really nice and it felt very relaxed. He offered coffee, cake and a record deal in his apartment in Stockholm and later that night he came to see us at a gig we had in town. We worked with the same business manager as Gessle last year and from him we have already heard about “Per” in a familiar way. But of course it still feels a little weird when an e-mail from Per Gessle pops up in your inbox …!

Fanny de Aguiar about Per Gessle:

Per is the kind of person who makes music and appreciates personal expression. At least this is the impression I got. I haven’t met him in person many times until now, but we are in contact via e-mail. I often send him over what I’m working on in the studio and then he gives me feedback and shares his ideas and concerns. It’s so simple!

 

Per seems to be proud of the first releases and artists. No surprise he promotes them even on Roxette’s Facebook page (GH1, GH2, FDA1). Well, I think most of the Roxers’ education in music (at least partly) has been provided by PG himself over the years. I don’t only mean Per’s own music (solo or Roxette or GT), but his record collection, the roots and music history. Now we get some more ”education” about today’s music. Today’s music which is different to the mainstream pop world where most of the songs sound the same. And that’s exactly why Space Station 12 will probably be distinctive of any other record label. Releasing something different. As Mr. G says:

My ambition with Space Station 12 is to create an environment with strong roots in the history of pop and rock. I would love it to become a label you as a listener can identify with, just like I did with Atlantic, Stiff and F-Beat Records when I grew up. SS12 will be a home for strong musical personalities, brilliant songwriters and curious producers.

So, good luck to Good Harvest and Fanny de Aguiar, as well as Space Station 12! Looking forward to hear the next artists on this label. In case you are also curious about what’s next, follow SS12 on Facebook.

 

Marie Fredriksson interview from 1984

Another fab interview popped up in Elisabeth Elle Sandberg’s archives. Some weeks ago she shared an interview she did with Per Gessle in 1985 and now it’s Marie’s turn. Elisabeth did an interview with her in 1984, probably on 15th May, just some days before Marie’s 26th birthday. How awesome it is! Thanks a lot again, Elisabeth for sharing such gems with the world!

The interview starts with the intro telling that Marie Fredriksson has recently released her single ”Ännu doftar kärlek”. It is a ballad that Marie has written together with Lasse Lindbom. On the back side there is a song written by Per Gessle, ”Tag detta hjärta”. What happens in the future will depend very much on how the single is received. The upcoming LP is released when it feels timely, possibly in August.

Marie tells Elisabeth that it was planned that the LP would be released this spring. They wanted to wait a bit, so they had time to write some more material. She says she will go to the studio again in June and record 3-4 songs that they have written now. Possibly they release another single in summer and it depends on how it goes with it. She will probably record a video and it will be very exciting.

Marie also talks about the fact that most of the material on the LP she wrote together with Lasse, but there are also some songs that she herself has written both music and lyrics to. Martin Sternhufvud also made a song that will be included on the LP which is damn good and Marie is very proud of. Per wrote a song that is the B-side of the single. Marie also worked together with Björn Holmgren, who is a director in Halmstad. He is very good at writing and has written some children’s plays. On the LP there is a song he wrote the text to and Marie wrote the music.

Miss Fredriksson tells Elisabeth that she is happy that Lasse and she have been able to write so well together. They didn’t know it, just tested it for fun and it worked damn well. Everything is exactly as Marie imagined, but she says they have to see if it sells. You’ve done what you could, you’re only human. But if people don’t want to buy it, you have to do something new. Marie thinks the mmost important is that she is satisfied and she 100% is.

Elisabeth asks Marie if she can make a living on music. Marie says it’s OK. She was on tour with Gyllene Tider and she got paid. She managed to have her apartment in Halmstad. Later in the summer she will tour with Lasse Lindbom Band. She will be there as a guest, just as she was on the Gyllene Tider tour. In autumn, when her LP is released, she will go on tour and will go with Lasse and they will have the same band. Marie says they should not work as Dan Hylander and Py Bäckman, but Lasse does his songs and Marie hers. There will be two performances, so the audience get double value for their money. Then they do the end together. After that she decided to go on a bigger tour. It will be her first thing, which she is in charge of. The musicians will be Pelle Andersson and Pelle Sirén from the X-models. They are not known, but very talented. Probably Janne Bark as well, but it is not decided yet. Even Backa Hans (Eriksson, Elisabeth’s comment) who have played with Lundell and perhaps Göran Fritzson from Gyllene Tider. It’s a great mix that feels very fresh, and there are some new people.

Elisabeth asks about the band Marie played with last summer. Marie says unfortunately she doesn’t play with them now, but it was fun and they are thinking about doing some gigs together this summer, maybe in August. They have some contacts in Kungsbacka and Falkenberg, who would like them to come back. But with them she does only covers, no own songs.

Elisabeth is curious about how it feels to be on tour with Gyllene Tider. Marie says she had a blast and it was really fantastic. It was very fruitful for her. This spring she learned a lot about stage experience and how to talk to the crowd. She performed one song as a guest. They were on tour for 5 weeks and they became like family, so it was sad when the tour ended. And it’s not only the band, because Gyllene Tider you meet every now and then as they also live in Halmstad, but also the crew who take care of everything from sound to lights, they won’t see each other for a long time.

Marie is asked what she thinks about Swedish female rock singers? For example, Py Bäckman and Anne-Lie Rydé. According to Ms Fredriksson, Anne-Lie Rydé is really good. Py Bäckman is a wonderful text and music writer. Her latest LP is very good. She has also written a text for Marie and she is now making music to it. Marie says she saw Anne-Lie Rydé when she was in town last  time. She is very good on stage. But Marie likes Py Bäckman’s depth. Elisabeth asks about Efva Attling and Eva Dahlgren and Marie replies that she liked Eva Dahlgren’s latest LP ”För väntan”. Marie thinks Efva Attling is very professional on stage. Marie says if she goes to a concert or is listening to an album, then she wants to feel something.

Talking about Swedish male singers Marie says Mikael Rickfors is very good. He sings very well and writes good songs. Marie thinks that Mikael Rickfors and Lasse Lindbom are the best male singers in Sweden. She listens closely to the voice and the feeling in it.

Elisabeth asks Marie if she remembers her first gig. She does and it was very interesting. No one has ever asked it so far. Marie’s first performance was horrible. She was 7 years old and was singing for many people. There was her mom and a lot of old ladies. It was kind of a celebration, some sew meeting. “Oh, then little Marie could sing”. She was singing Rönnerdahl. She was standing there in a nice dress. She did not look at the audience, but at the floor all the time while she was singing, so the ladies didn’t hear a damn thing of what she sang. She was so nervous and afterwards she started crying, came home and was completely broken.

After that, Marie was singing in a lot of children and youth choirs while she went to school. She often sang in churches. Then she went to learn music program at a college for two years, where they sang a lot. Then she started singing jazz. Marie will never forget the first time she sang to a thousand people. It was with Strul, which was the support act to Eldkvarn. It was the first time they had a really big audience. Earlier they had crowds of 400-500 people. When they walked up on stage, everyone cheered when they started to play. It’s probably the best memory she has of Strul. Then there was an occasion when they played for 450 people with several other bands at Kattegattskolan. They played last and it went so well they got to do more than one encore. Marie thinks it was in 1977. These are wonderful memories and Marie is grateful.

Marie ends the interview with saying one shouldn’t be giddy with success. You must be able to be with ordinary people, otherwise you can’t write. If she becomes a diva, it won’t work. Then she couldn’t write. You must live the everyday life to get inspiration for new songs. Marie thinks that one person is not worth more than others just because she made an album. She thinks it’s important to think this way. You should be just like you were before.

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