Peter Boström: “I was very enthusiastic to try my best to get people to hear this gem”

We had the chance to interview Peter “Bassflow” Boström, known in the Rox community mostly for his remixes of “Speak To Me” and “The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye”. Picture by Sverigesradio

Roxetteblog: Could you tell us how you got into music? What were/are your inspirations, idols?

Peter Boström: I was playing the violin as a kid. Not by choice, but I learnt the basics of melodies and patterns really fast. As a teen, growing up in Stockholm, you had to listen to either hard rock or synth to be somewhat accepted 😉

I always liked experimental stuff so I chose to be a loyal synth-fan. Besides, I didn’t really have the hair to listen to rock, haha!

My big idols were, and still are, Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk, Nitzer Ebb, Jean Michel Jarre.

RXB: what is your favourite instrument / music effect?

Peter: My favorite instrument must be my old and damaged Korg Poly6. It is always out of tune but it sounds just wonderful. Dirty and noisy. Just what the doctor ordered in this digital era.

RXB: Where does your nickname “Bassflow” come from?

Peter: Bassflow is actually the name of my company. In 1992, I was sharing studio with a team called Time Bomb, a swedish Hip hop collective. Bassflow sounded phat and cool in regards of hip hop. I didn’t use the name until 2006 when I did a remake of 7milakliv by Martin Stenmarck and was asked what name I wanted to use as a remixer for the cover.

RXB: You have worked with many Swedish artists, how did you get to work with them?

I started my company in 1992, at the age of 21. From there it took a lot of effort and struggling to come to the point where I am today. Half way, that is. Back then I was writing and producing people I got to know, people who weren’t artist, but at least they could sing better than me.

In the end of the glorious 90’s, I got to know some pretty successful producers and got involved in various album project.

One thing led to another, and here I am!

RXB: You have done remakes/remixes of two Roxette songs, how did that happen?

Peter: I was contacted by Johan Olsson at EMI in Sweden. He and Per had heard some songs of mine and asked me if I would like to do a radio mix of “Speak to me”. Of course, I didn’t hesitate.

But how can you ever make a new version of a perfectly good song by Roxette without being questioned? Or question yourself? That was the hard part.

How do I walk on this holy ground without leaving ugly footprints? It’s a question of respect, but I think I am pretty ok at that, keeping the artists integrity somehow intact.

We have actually only communicated through the A&R at the record company. Per and Marie have been on tour quite a lot, so it was the most convenient way. I have met Per on a couple of occasions in the past, and he is a real gentleman.

RXB: “The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye” has always been one of those Roxette tracks that should have deserved better treatment, it’s a favourite for many fans and considered underrated. What did you have in mind when you did the remake? Did Per give you any directions?

Peter: After “Speak to me” I was contacted once again by EMI. Johan said that Per really wanted me to give this song a go. He said it was one of Per’s personal favorites. I must admit I had never heard the song before, so I was very enthusiastic to try my best to get people to hear this gem.

And by people I don’t mean the true Roxette fans. They have heard it a thousand times before. It is such a great song. But since the original version is almost 5 minutes long, I knew it would be hard to shorten it to a length that is accepted by the radio.

I didn’t really get any directions. I think Per had enough belief in me to do what I did with “Speak to me”. To re-think the production without damaging the song. You can never make something that is better than the original. You can just make it as good as possible in a different way.

RXB: And last but not least, what do you do when you are not working with music?

Peter: I spend all other time with my family, -my (soon to be) wife Evelina and my twin kids, Bastian and Milo. Well… except when there’s a Chelsea game on TV 🙂

RXB: Thanks for your time! We love the work you did with “Speak To Me” and “Sweet Hello”.

Picture by Sverigesradio.