Per Gessle’s Roxette – London, UK – 15th October 2018 – #5

Per & Co. played the 5th gig on tour in London last night. How cool is that to play at a venue, Eventim Apollo (earlier Hammersmith Apllo, even earlier Hammersmith Odeon) that was an important place in one of Per’s biggest idols, David Bowie’s life. On the facade of the building, above the entrance there was written in huge red letters: PER GESSLE’S ROXETTE and there was a tour poster on one of the entrance monitors as well.

It was a seated show, so people didn’t have to rush inside. The doors opened at 7 pm, the support act started at 7.30 pm. Support act was Lee MacDougall again. He was added last minute, on 12th October. Great chance for him to play his first London show in 5 years. The audience liked his music a lot and his anecdotes were fun too. He said the first Roxette record he got in 1993. His sister is a big Roxette fan. His parents would buy them gifts to give them to each other at Christmas. His parents gave him the Joyride album to give it to his sister, but after he put the cassette on and it blew him away, he just couldn’t give it away. He created a plate writing Roxette (spelt wrong) and Joyride on it with glitters and all colorful stuff instead. When he gave it to her sister she was really excited because she thought she knew what’s inside, but then she was plain disappointed, she started to cry. Haha. A story to remember in a fan’s life.

After Lee left the stage, the technicians were setting up for Per and his band. The setlist stayed the same as on the past 2 shows.

Setlist:

1. The Look
2. Milk And Toast And Honey
3. Crash! Boom! Bang!
4. Dressed For Success
5. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
6. Spending My Time
7. I’m Glad You Called
8. Small Town Talk
9. I Have A Party In My Head
10. It Must Have Been Love
11. Opportunity Nox
12. The Big L.
13. Fading Like A Flower
14. Doesn’t Make Sense
Band presentation
15. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 16)
16. Dangerous

Encore
17. Queen Of Rain
18. Joyride

Encore 2
19. Listen To Your Heart
20. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye

It was the second seated show on tour. I wouldn’t have been too sure about the London crowd standing up, hearing they are more reserved, closer to Swedes in behavious when it comes to standing up at shows, but actually everyone were up on their feet already from the beginning, when the gang played The Look. So it seems, seated shows are indeed among the best ones and you can use the seats for your jackets and bags, but you won’t use them to sit.

After The Look Per mentioned this is a classic venue, used to be called Hammersmith Odeon and this is the place where David Bowie killed Ziggy Stardust in 1973. He said let’s hope nobody dies here tonight.

When Per said he’s been writing songs for more than 40 years, the audience cheered him. There are tons of Per Gessle, THE SONGWRITER fans in the UK. Speaking English as their mother tongue they just love how differently Mr. G expresses himself in their language.

PG asked the audience if they knew the lyrics to the songs, please sing along. And they did so. People stayed standing also during the ballads and partied to all uptempo songs.

Doesn’t Make Sense ended with Christoffer’s madness in London too, but he was on a high during the whole concert anyway. Actually, the whole band were in top shape. The crowd cheered Helena a lot, they liked her performance very much. The intro to HDYD worked great. DFS was huge too, probably there was an even bigger party than for OppNox here. IMHBL was of course a song Per couldn’t give a miss and even if there were 72 songs on his mind for the first time during the rehearsals, but the list was reduced, IMHBL had to stay. The loud sing-along was guaranteed.

One thing I expected – I’m quite sure I wasn’t alone with it – didn’t happen. Actually, I wished to hear Small Town Talk as a duet with the original artists, I mean Per and Nick Lowe. And since Nick is English, I thought it was possible to see him on stage in London. Well, he didn’t appear there. I saw he had a show in Canada on October 11th, so maybe that’s why he wasn’t there. Still not at home. Fingers crossed we can hear this duet one day live. STT sung by Per and Christoffer worked extremely well in London anyway.

Before both encores after the gang went off stage, the crowd was clapping heavily and were happy to have the ladies and gents back on stage again and then again.

Some thought it was a guilty pleasure gig for them, some went for nostalgia, some to see the talented songwriter on stage. One thing is sure: all of them had much fun in the audience. PG and the band had a blast too.

Mr. G after the show:

LONDON. Oh yeah, such a treat to play the old Hammersmith Odeon. Remember reading about it all the time when I was a kid getting my Melody Maker every Wednesday. And boy, did we have a blast. Super crowd and band in top shape. We’re only five gigs old but are almost grown by now!!! Thanks everyone for showing up and singing along. London, you never disappoint!!! Lots of love from P&Co.

All pics in the article are taken by Niall Corcoran. Thanx for sharing!

 

Per Gessle’s Roxette – Brussels, Belgium – 12th October 2018 – #4

Without a day off after the magnificent Hamburg show, Per & Co. performed in Brussels on Friday. They all flew to the Belgian capital and since the connection between Hamburg and Brussels is not the greatest, some of us fans also travelled by the same plane. I must say it was a bit bizarre, listening to the Small Town Talk album on Spotify while sharing the flight with THE artist and his musicians. We all behaved, so we didn’t jump on either Per or anyone else from the band. Not on BoJo either. Haha. We all landed safe and sound and headed to our accommodations.

The doors were to open at 7 pm at the venue, but it was a standing show, so we got there a bit earlier to queue. When we entered we realized that the front row was right in front of the stage, without any fence. The stage was so low you could touch Per’s monitor. I liked it a lot that the balconies were hidden by huge black curtains with lights on them. This way the whole area looked like being covered with stars. Nice view from the stage it must have been. One not too important, but I think interesting detail is that it was the first time I saw much more guys in the crowd than girls. Why in Belgium, no clue.

This time there was no support act. The gig was to start at 20:30 and end at 22:30. The gang started playing at appr. 20:40. The setlist? Stayed the very same as it was in Hamburg the day before.

Setlist:

1. The Look
2. Milk And Toast And Honey
3. Crash! Boom! Bang!
4. Dressed For Success
5. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
6. Spending My Time
7. I’m Glad You Called
8. Small Town Talk
9. I Have A Party In My Head
10. It Must Have Been Love
11. Opportunity Nox
12. The Big L.
13. Fading Like A Flower
14. Doesn’t Make Sense
Band presentation
15. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 16)
16. Dangerous

Encore
17. Queen Of Rain
18. Joyride

Encore 2
19. Listen To Your Heart
20. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye

The Look turned out to be a great starter in Belgium too. It can never go wrong! After the song Per talked to the crowd and said he played there 29 years ago ”when you weren’t even born”. ”Or were you here?”, he asked. Some in the audience shouted yes and Per said ”we should go on a cruise together”. He tried to remember anything from that evening, but he couldn’t and Clarence, who was there back then too, he couldn’t remember it either.

Between MATAH and CBB Mr. G told about 1993 when the Roxette team went to Italy. ”Scary thought. Not Italy, the Roxette team”, he said.

With DFS, the gang speeded the tempo up and Per said we’re still young. Oh yes, they are and we are too! It got confirmed during SGNO as well. The intro to it increased the excitement and we partied on. I was standing on the left side of the stage again and Chris and Ola, as well as Per were so close to us when they came to the front to play their guitars. Once Mr. G kicked in the air with his left leg and it felt like there was 1 cm between his leg and my camera. The cam survived. Haha. After the song Per said it’s fantastic he is here, ”thanx to you guys”.

Before playing SMT, a guy shouted ”we love you”. Per smiled, but he still finds it a bit difficult to take compliments. That’s what I saw on his face this time too. He said this is a great day and he had another great day back in May 1990. Mr. G mentioned Åsa in Brussels, that he wrote Joyride thanks to his wife who left a note on the piano saying ”hello, you fool, I love you, bla-bla-bla”. The crowd laughed. Then he took a break he said and took some Swedish icecream, some coffee and then he wrote SMT. Helena got her well-deserved applause after she sang the song.

After IGYC, Per said ”dank u wel” I think (it means ”thank you”) and in reply to that someone shouted ”tack så mycket”. Per was happy both about his own and the shouting guy’s ”thank you”-s. Then Per talked about his Nashville experience before he started playing STT, which of course sounded wonderful at Ancienne Belgique. We definitely need it on a live CD, don’t we? 😉

The intro to IHAPIMH just almost contained na na nana na, but the audience was clapping loudly and enjoyed the song so much.

Before IMHBL Per mentioned that when they started rehearsing for the tour he had appr. 72 songs that he wanted everyone to learn in the band. Magnus said and they did. There was one song that he didn’t really feel like playing, but then he heard it was Magnus’s fave track of all time. Magnus said he had to pay Per to play this song and he stills pay Mr. G every gig. It became a nice sing-along.

Do I have to mention that OppNox and TBL put everyone on fire? On and off stage. I love this part! You could see in the video Åsa recorded from the back how the crowd enjoyed themselves during TBL.

Getting back to the ’90s, before FLAF Per asked Magnus about his girlfriends in the ’90s. Magnus said he didn’t have any. Per said then tell us about his boyfriends. Magnus said he didn’t have any friends at all.

Before DMS Per wanted to say something about the Party Crasher album, but then he said he shouldn’t. Magnus said we’d really love to know and then Per said Magnus blogged about it on www.puke.com. The crowd laughed out loud. The song by the way sounded awesome again and Chris became the definite hero of the night. Poor guy was rocking on his guitar so much that even something got broken on it and it flew over the audience and Christoffer’s hand was also bleeding like hell. Jakob, Christoffer’s technician tried to wipe the blood off with a towel, but it didn’t help much. The guys tried to find some plasters and were trying hard to stop the hand bleeding. Per asked, ”did that make sense?” Haha. Mr. G started introducing the band. Started with Chris who was still bleeding, then moved on to Ola, then Andreas. That was funny, because PG said he called 5 drummers, but 4 couldn’t make it, so that’s how Andreas ended up in the band. Haha. Then Mr. G introduced Clarence, who produced almost every existing Roxette song, even the hits and the B-sides. Then Magnus, Malin-My and Helena were introduced too. And then Per turned to the audience and said: ”And a wonderful crowd, thank you!” In the meantime, Chris got his plasters. Per asked him if he can continue and Chris said the show must go on. The crowd applauded him and shouted woohoo.

During HDYD we had a blast again, the intro teaser worked fine. Then came Dangerous and off they went. The audience didn’t stop clapping or shouting, not even for a second, however, it took a bit longer time now for the band to come back on stage to play the first encore, QOR and Joyride.

The crowd didn’t keep quiet while waiting for the 2nd encore either. They were really loud. And so the gang came up on stage again. Per said the next song he wrote for a friend of his in the ’80s, when there was a bit of a conflict in his friend’s life. LTYH it was, of course. Then the closing song TSHTSG. And it plays in my head again until the next show.

There was a Belgian couple who I met for the first time. We talked a bit before the show and they said it’s the only concert they plan to see on this tour. They have kids and have to work and the logistics are not so easy. After the show we talked again and they loved it so much they started thinking about how to organize things to be able to attend at least one more gig. Oh yeah!

Per after the show:

BRUSSELS: YEEHAA. Back again at the Ancienne Belgique. Haven’t played here for 29 years. Had a blast, dear you! Hot and cozy. Wonderful crowd. Great band. Happy!!!!

See you all in London. Plan A: Got to get some band aid for Chris’s hand…….. Plan B: Call MP! Cheers, P.

All pics in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

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Front View Magazine
Proximus
by WIM

 

Per Gessle’s Roxette – Hamburg, Germany – 11th October 2018 – #3

Hamburg, Germany, the best show so far on tour! And that was a seated gig! If all seated gigs are like this, I’m very much into them. Once the tour was announced and we could see there were several seated concerts, we thought OK, the setlist would probably be too slow, full of ballads, so the seats might be because of that. Then we saw the setlist at the first show and realized there is a great flow in the mix of ballads and uptempo or midtempo songs. So when we reached the first seated concert in the schedule, we got curious how it would work out. Should we stand up? Should we stay seated? What is the rule at the venue? Are we allowed to stand up anyway? If we stand up, when should we? First world problems, I know…

The show in Hamburg was held at a concert hall, a beautiful building. The soundcheck started at appr. 5 pm again and those who met Per in town before he left for the soundcheck got lucky, because Mr. G was in a very nice mood, stopping to sign stuff and fans could also take pictures with him.

Since it was a seated gig and we had our fixed spots, no one was really queueing in front of the venue. Once we arrived we could take it easy, enter the building, check out the merchandise, grab some drinks, chat with other fans. That’s a big advantage of seated events.

This time the support act was again Lee MacDougall. Great guy, really. He was much fun on stage in Hamburg too and he even changed 2 songs in his short setlist. Well, this is how people can get to know his music. He mentioned that in Leipzig he said he is the biggest Roxette fan in the UK, but after the show a guy from the UK, called Huw stepped to him and said that actually HE is the biggest fan in the UK, so Lee corrected himself in Hamburg and said that since Huw is here, he can only tell he is the biggest fan in England.

Already during the support act it was a bit strange to be sitting. I was sitting in the front row and the stage was a bit too high for looking up there without having problems with your neck after. So the thought of standing up got stronger and stronger each second. Haha. Another thing that made me think we should stand up was that hey… the setlist starts with The Look, c’mon! How could you stay seated during The Look?! I mean even the royal family showed it long ago that it just doesn’t work. 😉

Even if Per said after Leipzig that they ”got a few more things to check out in Hamburg” regarding the setlist, there was only a slight change. Listen To Your Heart got moved to the 2nd encore, but otherwise the running order stayed the same. 20 songs. After talking to some of the band members later, it seems to stay like this, since 22 songs both Per and them all found too long. Oh well… ask a fan anytime, we wouldn’t have enough of a 30-song-long setlist either. Let’s hope that at least it stays 20 until the end of the tour and it doesn’t get even less, as it happened during last year’s tour.

Setlist:

1. The Look
2. Milk And Toast And Honey
3. Crash! Boom! Bang!
4. Dressed For Success
5. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
6. Spending My Time
7. I’m Glad You Called
8. Small Town Talk
9. I Have A Party In My Head
10. It Must Have Been Love
11. Opportunity Nox
12. The Big L.
13. Fading Like A Flower
14. Doesn’t Make Sense
Band presentation
15. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 16)
16. Dangerous

Encore
17. Queen Of Rain
18. Joyride

Encore 2
19. Listen To Your Heart
20. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye

So, back to the first world problems of standing up, when the gang hit the stage a bit after 9 pm and started playing The Look, appr. 5 seconds passed and the whole concert hall was standing. Woohoo! That defined the mood of the crowd and I think it guaranteed the success of the complete show. Also, it probably gave even more energy to the band. 150% energy on and off stage, I can tell. And the level dropped to 120% during the ballads. Haha. Most of the crowd stayed standing during the whole gig, but also those who ”sat down” were sitting on the upper edge of their seats and only during the ballads and talks in between the songs. Once an uptempo song came, everyone got on their feet again. Great vibes! It was fantastic being part of that crowd!

After The Look, Per talked to the audience while drinking his ginger tea and said he didn’t play in Hamburg since 2015 and asked who was there. Tons of people shouted in the crowds they were there. Nice.

He moved on digging in that deep box of Roxette songs and they played 2 ballads, Milk And Toast And Honey and Crash! Boom! Bang!. Both of them sounded great and the audience liked them a lot. After the ballads, Per tried to throw his acoustic pick to the crowd, but it got probably stuck to his hand so it landed on stage very close to himself. It happens. We were laughing and while Micke N-S brought Per his guitar he plays during speed-up song Dressed For Success, he was kidding him showing how he throws a plectrum. DFS was loved, as well as She’s Got Nothing On! Constant party mood in the crowd and madness on stage! Even 1 drumstick of Andreas flew to the edge of the stage at the end of the song. Per said he is getting too old for this. Someone in the crowd shouted we too. Haha. Per heard it and said you too are definitely getting old.

In the talking before Spending My Time Per mentioned he wrote 2 songs in one afternoon. The first one was Joyride, then he had some tea and biscuits and then he wrote the next one. The crowd sounded very happy to hear SMT and Helena got applauded loudly.

2 more ballads came, I’m Glad You Called and Small Town Talk with Chris in the 2nd verse again. Pure magic!

Showing how fab the crowd was, when the band started the intro to I Have A Party In My Head, the audience started singing Opus’s ”Live Is Life”, not just the Na Na Nana Na part, but the complete chorus. Per laughed and pointed at the audience while looking at the band, then talked into the mic saying this sounds great by the way, however, this coming song is from the Son of A Plumber album. He was glad that the crowd recognized that one.

It Must Have Been Love was next, Magnus’s favourite track (including The Beatles, The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Frank Zappa and even Milli Vanilli). Per said he tried to avoid to play it, but Magnus said he has to play it, he kills Mr. G otherwise. Per said he knows and it’s scary. Good they played it. The audience burst out into a loud sing-along.

Then came the party section again, with Opportunity Nox and The Big L. and these 2 songs rocked big time in Hamburg too. Per said ”getting ready for the weekend, right”. The ”bringing me down to my knees” part of TBL was funny, because since we had a bigger space in the front between the stage and the front row without fence or anything else, we could really get down to our knees. Almost. Haha. This time I was on the left side of the stage and loved how Ola and Malin-My came to the front to rock their instruments during TBL.

Before Fading Like A Flower, Per and Magnus talked about the ’90s again. Magnus said he doesn’t just remember the ’90s, he IS the ’90s. Wherever the ’90s went, he was there before. Haha. How Helena sang the song in Hamburg sounded a bit different vs. the first 2 gigs. I would say her version got more powerful from getting the energy from the wonderful vibe of the gig. Fantastic!

Doesn’t Make Sense was a blast again. I love the whole song. Beautiful lyrics, great PG vocals, how he sings ”nose” is still killing me and the ending where Chris and Andreas go crazy is one of the greatest parts of each show.

In the band presentation Per mentioned he is extremely lucky to have this band with him. Magnus he found in a flea market, he said. Haha.

How Do You Do! and Dangerous were very much welcomed by the audience to have some more party. HDYD had the teaser intro this time and the crowd started singing the song before Per started it. No one could believe the gang went off stage after these 2 songs. The audience didn’t stop clapping and shouting, waiting for them to come back on stage.

Then the band members appeared one after another and Per came back as well to play Queen Of Rain and Joyride in the first encore. Since the audience was whistling, Andreas tried to whistle using his hands too, but wearing gloves, it just couldn’t happen. It was funny though. I love how Per and Chris interact during the intro to Joyride. After these two songs the gang went off stage again, but the audience went crazy to have them back. And so they came to sing 2 more tracks in the 2nd encore.

This time Listen To Your Heart was moved to the 2nd encore, but the closing song remained The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye. Helena was very happy to receive the love of the crowd after LTYH. Loud applause she got. And TSHTSG, well… keeps on playing in my head… again and again. Tütütütürütü. Awesome version!

Per closed the show with saying ”hope to see you again very soon”. Let’s see what happens, but with such a band and such an audience anything can happen! 😉

Sven Lindström was there in the crowd too. He liked the show and said he will probably see another one Sweden.

Åsa wasn’t there at the gig. It would have been great if someone filmed this concert for a DVD actually. Hard to top, but there are more gigs to come, so let’s see!

Per’s post after the show:

Hamburg tonite. Oh yeah! Thanx everyone for showing up and singing along. Wonderful feedback on every song, love that! Extra special thanks for the Party In My Head-intro (yaknowwhatImean…theunmentionablesong….). Have to come back to Hamburg again and again, it’s addictive!!!!! I’ve had two great days here, checking out Anton C’s fab exhibition and just enjoying myself in the sunshine. Brussels tomorrow. Rise and shine everyone! Lots of love from P.

All pics in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

More photos & TV reports:

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Per Gessle’s Roxette – Leipzig, Germany – 9th October 2018 – #2

Last night PG & Co. performed in Leipzig, Per coming back to town for the first time since 2011, when Roxette played there. The gang arrived to the venue at appr. 5 pm for a short soundcheck where they mainly rehearsed The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye, but we could also hear SGNO. So we knew these 2 songs have a safe place on the setlist last night again. But what’s with the rest? We were curious.

This time the support act was Lee MacDougall, the guy who would have been the support to Roxette in 2016, when the tour got cancelled. Good he had the chance this time. He is a great musician with a nice voice, so we enjoyed him performing. His sense of humor is fun too, so it was a great 30 minutes, him being on stage. He got introduced to Roxette when he was appr. 8 years old, via Baywatch, Pamela Anderson. There he heard The Look in a commercial and got hooked. He says he is the biggest Roxette fan in England. We will see him several times on tour, since he is the support in Hamburg, Vienna, Zurich, Berlin and Cologne as well. Just a funny moment: Lee goes unplugged on one of his songs and while he walked around the stage with his guitar, he stepped on PG’s already sticked-on-the-floor setlist and stayed there for a while. Haha. Thank God the songs to be played were still visible after.

Per and the band hit the stage at 9 pm. Different running order of PG’s shirts meant different running order on the setlist too. Slightly different though. They skipped The Finest Prize for reasons I can’t understand and also Silver Blue. Silver Blue’s spot got occupied by Doesn’t Make Sense and the encores were changed a bit too.

Setlist:

1. The Look
2. Milk And Toast And Honey
3. Crash! Boom! Bang!
4. Dressed For Success
5. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
6. Spending My Time
7. I’m Glad You Called
8. Small Town Talk
9. I Have A Party In My Head
10. It Must Have Been Love
11. Opportunity Nox
12. The Big L.
13. Fading Like A Flower
14. Doesn’t Make Sense
Band presentation
15. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 16)
16. Dangerous

Encore
17. Queen Of Rain
18. Joyride
19. Listen To Your Heart

Encore 2
20. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye

This time there were some technical hiccups, which somehow made us feel the gang got a bit distracted. Even some word changes in the lyrics happened by Helena. All this caused a bit lower energy level on stage in Leipzig than in Prague, but the audience’s loudness and sing-alongs made Per & Co. very happy and they got confirmation again that what they are doing is just fab.

I love how the band members interact with each other on stage, changing their places, kidding each other, singing towards each other, etc. They are so good together!

I was happy The Look stayed first on the setlist, because it really gets you into the Roxette party mood right from the beginning and it can define the whole show. I think I didn’t mention it in my Prague review, but there is a little pause in The Look, which adds to the excitement.

Per talked to the crowd after they finished the song that he was there in Leipzig 7 years ago and it’s fantastic to be back. He also told they would do a big dive into the box of Roxette songs. He also sneaked in a couple of solo songs just for good measure.

Before Crash! Boom! Bang! Per told they went to record the album in Capri, where the world’s most expensive pizzas and the cheapest wine are sold. They took full advantage of that. The song sounded wonderful and the crowd appreciated it with a loud applause.

During She’s Got Nothing On, Helena and Malin-My came to the front and animated the audience, it was cool. They were full of energy, and also Chris was going wild on his guitar and involved Ola in the madness too. A real party song this one is.

Before Spending My Time Per mentioned he wrote 2 songs on one crazy afternoon in the spring of 1990. One of them was Joyride. The audience shouted woohoo and Per said not bad actually. Helena got a huge applause for performing the song.

This time during I’m Glad You Called there seemed to be less acting. But it’s always a bit strange to see Per without his guitar. He sometimes doesn’t know what to do with his hands while singing without holding any instruments. It’s fun though when he is demonstrating the lyrics. And while Per and Helena walked away from each other for the non-singing part, we could enjoy the music Malin-My, Chris and Ola played for us. This song was a success too. Per commented after the song, it’s music for old people. Haha.

Small Town Talk was a highlight in Leipzig too. Wonderful to hear it live and Chris joining Per in the duet is just amazing. Can’t get enough of it!

During the intro to I Have A Party In My Head the audience burst out into loud clapping. It sounded awesome! Really a great crowd it was! Per said he is always so surprised that people recognize tracks from Son of A Plumber, because he doesn’t. The audience burst out laughing.

Mr. G told the crowd he tried to avoid playing the next song, but it’s actually Magnus’s favourite, so he couldn’t skip it. Magnus said he would be very disappointed and he would hit Per if he didn’t play it. Yep, it was It Must Have Been Love’s turn. The crowd loved it!

It was lovely that the setlist remained the same at this point, when Opportunity Nox and The Big L. followed IMHBL. Party time guaranteed!

Before Fading Like A Flower they, I mean Magnus and Per were again joking about the ’90s, talking about their favourite bands from that decade. Besides Roxette, Milli Vanilli popped up, as well as Beagle and Brainpool.

Doesn’t Make Sense was very welcomed by the audience, they were clapping a lot during the whole song and it seems it wasn’t working only in Prague that Chris and Andreas went wild on this song towards the end, but in Leipzig as well. It rocked big time!

During the band presentation Per started with their own little guitar God, Chris (sweating plus drinking after DMS), Ola who plays everything with strings on, even shoes, Andreas the drummer, Clarence got a long long applause, being the producer of Roxette songs, Magnus the stand up comedy guy, the most talented Malin-My and last but not least, Helena Josefsson on vocals.

The crowd didn’t stop clapping and shouting when the band went off stage and it took some more time for the gang to come back. They certainly enjoyed the audience’s reaction. It was so loud and wonderful! The first encore now started again with Queen Of Rain, but as Doesn’t Make Sense was moved, Joyride and Listen To Your Heart came to the first encore. Joyride started with a tiny little intro, where Chris was standing in front of PG with his guitar and they were kidding each other. It was much fun! After the song PG said ”well, we can play all night…”. Oh well, you know, Per, you really could! We wouldn’t mind! 😉

After LTYH, the crowd was loud again, wanting the whole gang back on stage and so they came and played the last song. The 2nd encore now contained The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye only. When Per and the band came back, someone in the audience shouted ”gott nytt år” (= happy new year) , so Per repeated it in the mic. Then someone else shouted ”tack” (= thank you). A real Swedish lesson. Haha. TSHTSG, what can I say? It’s absolutely awesome how this song sounds now live. I could listen to it 24/7. Actually, this one is playing on one’s head for a long time either after the show during the whole night or the day after. Top earworm!

Åsa wasn’t there this time, so we’ll see how many videos were shot, if any at all. We could already see a backstage video Per shared. Let’s hope we can see more of such vids.

As you read Per’s comment on the gig, it makes you curious what changes they plan in the setlist in Hamburg. Fingers crossed the number of songs gets back to 22 at least and won’t be decreased by even more songs.

Per after the show:

Leipzig = Wow!!!! Haven’t been in this city since 2011 and hey, do I love to play here! Great crowd as always.

We tried a different running order tonight to get the perfect flow. Got a few more things to check out in Hamburg. That’s the way it should be, every gig should be different. That’s why we play everything 100% live. No tricks.

Thanks everyone for showing up and making that typical Roxette noise!!! Love it! See y’all soon again. Cheers, P.

All pics in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

More photos & TV reports:
regioactive.de
radioSAW.de
Brisant report (starts at appr. 27:40)

 

Whatever works – but does it work? My take on Per Gessle’s Roxette tour

Per Gessle has started his European tour last Sunday, October 7th in Prague, Czech Republic in front of nearly 1,000 people. It’s the first time since 2009, where he hits the bumpy roads of Europe again and is going to visit 20 cities in the coming weeks.

This time he is no longer the man from Roxette as 9 years ago, the project is labelled “Per Gessle’s Roxette”. He admitted in our exclusive RoxetteBlog interview back in April that it’s a great name: “since it’s exactly what it is. This is my personal version of Roxette. I play Roxette-songs I’ve written, music that still is such a big slice of my life. In the perfect world Marie would have been by my side to sing and perform, but that won’t happen anymore. I have to live with that. You do too. The options I have are to perform the songs without her or not perform them at all. I chose the obvious one.

When I was compiling the potential setlist predictions back in June, I was thinking this is going to be something similar to the Party Crasher tour. Back then – meaning 2009 – we still didn’t know exactly what good and bad future would bring, but we were happy to get these very personal interpretations of Roxette’s vast catalogue from Gessle. This year I truly felt coming back to Roxette music with a mix of Nashville vibes and 2017 band (big hand to new additions to the band: Andreas, Ola and Malin My) would be a fantastic way to introduce these songs in a new & exciting way. Per already tested the ground during 2017 Scandinavian concerts – several Roxette tracks were played and got ovations from the crowd generating even more unforgettable sing-a-longs.

How the setlist looks like in the end? There are some surprises, which always is a surprising thing at the Per Gessle concert, wink-wink. We actually got a track that was never performed live before though recorded 28 years ago. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye was performed by Per on the lead and Malin My & Helena doing the chorus. Gessle has always been highlighting this as a forgotten gem among other pearls from the early 90s. For understandable reasons. It also a nice way to end up the concert, instead of a worn-out Church of your heart closer. Hope it stays in the setlist as long as possible.

You might have been expecting to hear more tracks from English solo albums as it’s a solo concert after all. Well, no, not really. There was nothing off The World According To Gessle, which left many unhappy about that decision. Still, I Want You To Know could’ve found its way as a modern country version. I have a party in my head and Doesn’t make sense re-appeared in the set, which already was kind of unexpected as the latter one was never a single and I have not predicted Son of a plumber would find its way among all those Roxette tracks. There were 2 songs off Small Town Talk, though the second single, Being With You, was left out for the reasons one could only wonder. It reminds me the time when Party Crasher’s Silly really was omitted due to “being impossible to perform live”. It must have been a different thing with an accoustic song this time. Small Town Talk is my absolute highlight of the evening in which Per Gessle pairs with the band’s own Christoffer Lundquist for an amazing duet. We need more of Chris’ singing at the concert! The Finest Prize is as powerful as it was last year with Helena Josefsson taking over the second verse, so scrapping the song in Leipzig is definitely a miss.

Was the Roxette part of the setlist unexpected? Well, im Westen nichts Neues (all quite on the western front). There was The Look to start with which is a wise move as it brings everyone in this very party mood that stays throughout the concert. Then Joyride for the end with 3 lonely fan-brang balloons flying over the audience. Did they change anything in the arrangements? Very little if you ask me, but I might be deaf as well. Adding pedal steal or violin here and there is a little bit too little to say it’s been a major change.

Per Gessle performed 10 songs on his own, where e.g. “Milk and toast and honey”, “It must have been love” or “I’m glad you called” were 50:50 duets with one-of-a-kind Helena Josefsson. She is one of the most talented persons Per has worked with anyway. She was switching constantly places – from being in the back next to Malin My to the front position between Per and Magnus. And she owned both positions superbly.

What I have really mixed feeling about is actually leaving some of the most prominent tracks like “Spending my time”, “Queen of rain” or “Listen to your heart” to Helena herself. She’s a very talented singer – if I haven’t highlighted that already enough  – and I absolutely adore her in many songs during the concert (“I’m glad you called” acting-game for instance), but some of Roxette arrangements weren’t particularly friendly to her voice. I feel like “Fading like a flower” in a slower arrangements doesn’t do the justice to this somewhat wonderful power ballad. If you expect Per would do all songs himself, that’s not the case this time. He is really presenting new versions of Roxette songs now; this is how he now imagines the Roxette world where Marie cannot longer perform. Does it mean female voice is essential for those songs to survive? Would Per’s interpretation be worse than Helena’s versions? How would it sound if they had replaced this with a duet? There are so many questions and so little time. You need to hear this yourself to be able to judge.

In a certain way I feel like calling this a Per Gessle concert is misleading and I do not mean anything negative here (there’s too much of that childish shit over social media now). It just doesn’t really do the justice for the concert itself. For my part it was Per Gessle AND Helena Josefsson concert with Roxette songs in the focus. Helena plays the vital role to Per’s 2018 concert as the starting riff to The Look. I really miss his versions we’ve all known from 2009 as I preferred a male narrative, it gave a totally new dimension to the lyrics and the accoustic arrangements back then were to die for. If I was to compare “Listen to your heart” anno domini 2009 to 2018, I would definitely go for the Party crasher version. But hey, it seems like – for the reasons I can only guess – this is not what works for Per any longer.

Is there a space for a change? Limited. From the Leipzig gig it seems like the band plays 2 songs less – “Silver blue” and “The Finest Prize” were kicked off the field. We might hear “Sleeping in my car” or something already performed in the past like “7twenty7”, but obviously it’s always tricky to predict the future.

This new concert is definitely not something everyone can approve. Though I have a lot of mixed feelings about the arrangements and songs picked up to perform, the audience reaction was rather positive, which makes me think this can have a future as a long-going set of different performances in clubs all over the world.  Whatever works and it seems actually to work, no matter if you like it or not.

If you feel like reading more about the Prague concert, here’s the Patricia take on it.

(c) Tomasz Wysocki

Per Gessle’s Roxette – Prague, Czech Republic – 7th October 2018 – #1

Another year, another tour! The Per Gessle’s Roxette tour premiered last night in Prague, Czech Republic. Being it the first show, Mr. G & Co. did a longer soundcheck. They started at appr. 4 pm and it lasted for about 1.5 hours. We could hear the gang playing Spending My Time, Listen To Your Heart, The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye, Fading Like A Flower, Opportunity Nox and The Big L. and since the doors were closed, we sometimes could just hear noises we couldn’t recognize. Haha. It was a nice teaser for the gig anyway.

The gates opened a bit after 6 pm. The first thing we could check was the merchandise. I already shared some pictures on our Facebook page, so you could see there are T-shirts mostly, also ones that include the dates. The correct dates and places this time, woohoo! There is a gym bag which is new, Small Town Talk CD and the rest we know from past tours (RoXXXette power bank, PG’s tour photo book from last year, Roxette’s 30 Biggest Hits CD, The RoxBox CD, PG cards from the tour last year).

The security guys told us 900-1000 tickets were sold as far as they knew. It was a cozy place and it was very hot inside. There was a support act, Robin Mood and before and after him we could of course listen to Per’s mix tape, which didn’t change much vs. the last one. Great songs to get into the mood. When the setting up for PG & Co started, I could have a glimpse of the setlist while the technicians put it to each band member’s spot. Running through it I was happy with all the songs and even the length of the setlist, however, I missed 2 songs badly: Vulnerable and Name You Beautiful. I hope they pop up later on this tour.

The show started at appr. 21:00. The setlist was as follows:

1. The Look
2. Milk And Toast And Honey
3. The Finest Prize
4. Crash! Boom! Bang!
5. Dressed For Success
6. She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio)
7. Spending My Time
8. I’m Glad You Called
9. Small Town Talk
10. I Have A Party In My Head
11. It Must Have Been Love
12. Opportunity Nox
13. The Big L.
14. Fading Like A Flower
15. Silver Blue
Band presentation
16. How Do You Do! (in a medley with No. 17)
17. Dangerous

Encore
18. Queen Of Rain
19. Doesn’t Make Sense

Encore 2
20. Joyride
21. Listen To Your Heart
22. The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye

 

The Look: After seeing the opening song, I was quite surprised. It’s not the obvious choice of starting the shows with, but it’s definitely a great direction. Start with a huge uptempo hit and grab the audience already at the very beginning. It worked totally fine! I decided to go live on our Facebook page with the tour opening, but I couldn’t keep my camera steady after a while, I got too much into the mood, so stopped filming in the middle of the song. I realized it only after the live stuff started that Facebook changed some settings, so landscape doesn’t work for live videos. Sorry for that. Haha.

After the first song, Per talked a bit to the audience, mentioning it was the opening gig on their European tour and that he likes Prague, because it’s a beautiful city. He also recognized some familiar faces. He also mentioned he’s been writing songs for more than 40 years, which is crazy. He said most of the songs he wrote for Roxette and during the night they dig very deep into the Roxette box of songs, but he also sneaked in a couple of his solo songs.

Milk And Toast And Honey: One song Per mentioned during the interviews lately, that it’s among his choices, because he loves it and they never played it live before (which is not true, we all know, but well… time flies). It sounded great in this arrangement and it was nice to hear Per singing in it. He said after the song that it felt good.

The Finest Prize: Last year we could hear the Swedish version of this song live, Första pris and somehow it felt obvious they would include the English version on the setlist. Love it, no matter in which language, and it sounds fab live!

Crash! Boom! Bang!: After TFP Per talked to the audience again and told about their journey to Capri in 1993 to record CBB. He said there were very expensive pizzas and a very drunk producer, haha, he said he is just kidding, it was the drummer. Per started singing it, then Helena sang the other half of the song. Sounded beautiful! Only one person shouted ”Marie!” during the song, but that was the only one occasion during the whole show.

Dressed For Success: Speeding up a bit, Per asked to tighten our shoelaces. And we needed it! Great party song and the clapping coreography still works.

She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio): To go on in party mood, PG’s left leg stomping at its best and swaying his hips during the whole song. This song is still great both on the radio and live! After playing it, Per asked the crowd if we were having a good time and we shouted yeees! He said he trusts us. Haha.

Spending My Time: Before they started performing it, Per said it’s a very special song for him, he wrote it on the same day as Joyride. It turned out to be one of the songs Helena was singing alone. Which was a bit strange, we expected it being divided half-half between Per and her. It’s also a very special song to fans, a real Marie-song, so probably this could have been the hardest part of the show for Marie hardcores, but the arrangement was so different vs. how Marie sings the song that it makes no sense to compare. It became a totally different song and Helena sang it beautifully. She got a huge applause from the audience and she was so happy about it. Once you would think the song was over, but they went on playing it after some seconds of pause. By the way, Helena is standing in the back with Malin-My and is singing into a mic on a stand, but when she sings in the front, she holds the mic in her hands.

I’m Glad You Called: This was probably the most hilarious part that we could eye-witness during the show. Everyone has to see it live! Per acting! Haha. Singing a duet with Helena, without the guitar in his hand, standing there (and walking away!) like a schoolboy. So lovely! For this song, Magnus, Clarence and Andreas went off stage and only Malin-My, Ola and Christoffer stayed there to play behind Per and Helena.

Small Town Talk: Per told the audience he went to Nashville to record his latest solo albums and now they would play the title track of the English album. Malin-My started with her wonderful violin-playing. So beautiful! Then PG went on with the first verse and I thought it would be Helena singing the rest, BUT: a huge surprise in this one! The part sung by Nick Lowe on the album is sung by Chris live. It was amazing! He has such a beautiful voice and together with Per this song sounded fabulous! We were all very happy that Christoffer got THIS moment during the concert (instead of playing a local song again 😉 ). The crowd loved it to the full and he got a huge applause, he got distracted, he said after the show when we congratulated him.

I Have A Party In My Head: LOL! Another hilarious moment! When the intro started to play, it sounded like Opus’s ”Live Is Life”, so Per sang: Na Na Nana Na. It was so cool! The crowd just laughed out loud. 🙂 Then came the flutes, the flutes! Of course, on this song. One could guess it during the rehearsals when Per posted a picture of Helena and Malin-My. Sounded great!

It Must Have Been Love: Per introduced the song as one he wrote during the soundcheck earlier yesterday. Haha. I would say it was in the very same arrangement as during Per’s tour last year and the crowd loved to sing-along.

Opportunity Nox: If you ask me, THE best part of the gig started here for 2 songs. We wished so much to hear OppNox live again and we got it! And it’s still rocking! Wonderful party song!

The Big L.: Party on! Malin-My came to the front next to Chris and rocked her violin.The whole song was superb, we were jumping so much!

Fading Like A Flower: Per said let’s stick to the ’90s a bit. The ’90s were great. He asked Magnus what he thinks and Magnus said he hardly remembers, he was very young. Per asked him about the girls, Magnus said they were great. Then Per joked and asked about the boys, haha, Magnus asked if there is something else Per wants to know. Then the song started. This was the only song that didn’t really work for me in this arrangement and it was another song sung only by Helena. She sang beautifully and all, but this song is living in its rocky version. Hard to beat.

Silver Blue: Per and Helena were singing it half-half. Sounded beautiful.

Band presentation: Per said he wants to introduce his amazing band whom he bribed to join him. Magnus said it wasn’t cheap. Haha. This time the introduction started with Christoffer, then came Ola, then Andreas (straight out of prison, haha). Then Per said that’s it. He was kidding and turned to the other side to introduce Clarence (the Mozart of Hammarby), then Magnus, then Malin-My (on violin and flutes and platform soles, haha) and ”last but not least, Helena Josefsson on lead guitar”. Haha. Per got used to introducing Chris as the last but not least, that he just added the lead guitar automatically. Helena’s reaction was she played air guitar. Haha. Per said it’s getting late for him. 🙂

How Do You Do!: One of those 3-chord songs again. The crowd went crazy and started clapping so hard. It was great to hear it live again!

Dangerous: How it was a medley during the Roxette tour, it was arranged the same way this time again, right after HDYD. After this song, the gang went off the stage. The crowd was shouting Gessle, Gessle and clapping and whistling too. It didn’t take much time until the band and Per came back on stage.

Queen Of Rain: The first song of the first encore, another song from the ’90s. Per said he wrote it for the Joyride album, but it didn’t make it, because they had too many ballads. They kept it for later and it became a single. The crowd was happy to hear it. Another song that was sung by Helena.

Doesn’t Make Sense: What a fab song this still is! It was wonderful to hear it live again! Chris went absolutely wild on this one, together with Andreas. The gang went off the stage again to come back for the 2nd encore 2 minutes later.

Joyride: Per came up on stage and he said they had a wonderful evening and hoped we did too. The first song of the 2nd encore was Joyride. There can’t be a show without it. And Per turning around and around and around with his guitar during this one is still a must. Haha.

Listen To Your Heart: It was in the same arrangement as last year, Helena singing it. She got a huge applause in the end.

The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye: Great closing song, awesome to hear it live! Nicely arranged version that gives the song another life. Loved it!

 

Regarding the stage set, on the background Per’s drawings were proyected and sometimes videos and also the Per Gessle’s Roxette tour background during the band presentation. So a bit of a mix, but I have to see another concert or even more 😉 to be able to pay more attention to the background as well.

The stage clothes are very nice and I like how they all fit each other. Now everyone is in the same style of clothes. I can’t identify with the platform boots of Malin-My and Helena though. Haha. And hey, there is no nail polish for Mr. G!

Åsa was there and filmed a lot, so the vids will surely pop up on Mr. G’s sites soon. One thing I can tell, the videos don’t give it all back. You can only judge how a concert is when you are there. I know many fans were skeptic about the whole thing and it’s mainly hard for Marie supporters to deal with this, but with all my love towards Marie, I have to say this concept worked. No one wanted to replace Marie, no one wanted to act or sing like Marie. The songs got another life, different arrangement, different style. And all sounded great. Even Per and the band were quite nervous in the beginning, you could see it, but with each song they got the confirmation that what they are doing is good and they enjoyed it to the full. So give it a chance and attend a show to be able to judge yourself. You can still get your tickets HERE.

 

Per about the premiere show:

THANX ALL YOU WONDERFUL PEOPLE WHO SHOWED UP AT THE PRAGUE SHOW. OPENING NITE = NERVOUS ARTIST + MUSICIANS. IS THE SHOW TOO LONG? TOO BORING? TOO MANY BALLADS? TOO MANY SINGALONGS?

YOU MADE US FEEL THAT WE HAVE A GREAT CONCEPT AND CONCERT IN THE CAN FOR EVERYONE TO ENJOY OVER THE NEXT SIX WEEKS OR SO. THANK YOU FOR YOUR FEEDBACK AND FOR BEING THERE!

WE CERTAINLY HAD A BLAST . EXTRA SPECIAL THANX FROM ME TO MY OUTSTANDING BAND WHO MAKES MY MUSIC SOUND INTELLIGENT AND SPECIAL AND PROBABLY BETTER THAN IT ACTUALLY IS.

SEE Y’ALL IN LEIPZIG!

P.

All pics in the article are taken by Patrícia Peres.

More photos:
Musicserver.cz
iDNES.cz
ireport.cz

Videos:
Dressed For Success

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Borgå, Finland – 26th August 2017 – #21

When the tour started 2 months ago, I knew that time would fly fast, but I wasn’t prepared for it to be flying THIS fast. The last ”En vacker kväll” concert was a festival show in Finland, at Popkalaset in Borgå. When we bought our tickets, we already saw there were priority tickets and the rest and there was a weird seating plan on the website, but we thought it might be a mistake how the crowd area was shown. It wasn’t. The thing is, the organizers separated the priority area from the standard area in a strange way. If you had a priority ticket, you could stand on the right side, if you had a standard ticket, you could stand on the left side. Huh? And since the separation they solved with 2 lines of fences, they even erased 2 nice front row spots. Haha. Whatever.

At this festival, Per Gessle was the headliner again, he was to start at 22:00 and there were 7 acts before him. One of them was Good Harvest, playing after 16:30. Another band was One Desire, they also performed at the festival in Vasa. During their performance there were fireworks and fire flames on stage and it looked quite cool. Would be fun to see such things – or at least confetti cannon – on some future PG tour. Just saying. By the way, good that we had some fire, because it was freezing cold and during One Desire’s gig we had a heavy rain shower too.

Right before Per, Egotrippi, a Finnish pop band was the last act. It seems that Mr. G likes what they are doing, as he posted one of their songs, Matkustaja on Roxette’s Facebook page the day after the concert, stating that it’s an amazing song. Egotrippi of course saw the post and they felt honoured, even wrote a nice comment under the post.

After Egotrippi, we saw the dark grey clouds coming and while the stage was being prepared for ”Per Fucking Gessle” (to quote the presenters, LOL), a heavy shower started hitting us again. Thank God it lasted only until the 2nd or 3rd song in the set and then was no more rain during the night.

We missed Åsa in Vasa, but she joined  the gang again in Borgå and filmed a lot. She enjoyed the show as much as we did. At least this is how I saw it. The crowd was cool. Loud sing-along people, putting their hands in the air quite often. And this was the first time on tour when during Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång) the crowd was dancing together. 2 to the left, 2 to the right. Even Åsa joined the choreography, dancing on the left side of the stage. It was lovely!

We got the same setlist as it was in Vasa, including 19 songs. So great that it didn’t get shortened. The only difference vs. Vasa was that Good Harvest joined Per on stage for Honung och guld, just like in Uppsala and Eskilstuna.

During the band presentation each band member got a huge applause and shouting from the crowd, but the biggest applause went for Magnus, who had his 50th birthday after concert day. The band and crowd sang the Swedish birthday song, ”Ja, må han leva!” to him. It was awesome! HERE you can watch my video recording of it.

Per and the band were in great mood. They had much fun on stage. You could feel they knew that was the last time they played together, so they enjoyed every second of it to the full. Hopefully, it was a last play-together just for a while though.

I wanted to mention some highlight songs, but actually, probably because for me it also felt different being the last show, I could mention all songs as highlight during the evening, for this or that reason. It was a fab closing gig, that’s for sure.

 

At the end of the concert, before performing Småstadsprat, Per talked to the audience, saying this was their last show on tour and he wanted to thank the band, their families, Live Nation and everyone who helped them, as well as all the people who came to the concerts. He said: ”We love you!” and sent kisses to the crowd. Tears in our eyes…

After Småstadsprat, Per applauded the crowd and the front rows. They took a bow, waved goodbye to us and off they went. It’s always so emotional when a tour ends and we don’t know when we see each other again.

The band and crew celebrated the end of the tour and Magnus’s birthday after the concert.

Per after the final show in a post shared on HIS Facebook page:

TOUR FINALE BORGÅ. Thanx everyone for coming to these 21 fab gigs. Some of the best months in my life! Had so much fun. Love this tour. Love this band. Love these crowds. Love these songs. See you soon again! /P.

In another post shared on Roxette’s Facebook page:

Tour finale in Borgå, Finland last night. Awesome. Thanx everyone for showing up and singing along during the last seven weeks and givin’ us an endless amount of good vibes. Priceless! Love to y’all. See you soon again! /P.

Mr. G also shared a lovely tour finale picture of the gang, including Åsa. Pure love!

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. Min plats
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Honung och guld (together with Good Harvest)
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 Säkkijärven polkka 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. Småstadsprat

Videos:

It Must Have Been Love
Ljudet av ett annat hjärta: 1; 2;
Band presentation
The Look
Tycker om när du tar på mej
Sommartider

Articles, pictures:

Uusimaa.fi
Svenska.yle.fi
Photo Minna Hatinen
Janne Ekman

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Vasa, Finland – 25th August 2017 – #20

Show No. 20. 20??? Ojojoj, the second to last gig on this fantastic Per Gessle tour. The concert in Vasa, Finland happened at a festival. First this festival was planned to be held at another venue, but due to the high interest, in June it was moved to a bigger open-air stadium.

When we arrived at the venue late afternoon, there weren’t too many people, so the first 2 acts didn’t get a big crowd. There were 5 acts before Per and Per being the headliner was to start only at 22:00.

During the 3rd act, One Desire, it started raining, but fortunately, it lasted only for some minutes. However, it was freezing cold. Felt like winter and I’m not joking. These summers in the North are fabulous for all who are coming from warmer countries. But also tough for those who live in Sweden or even Finland.

BoJo and the technician guys started preparing everything before the last act before Per. Andreas came checking the drums of the last act (The Heartbeat Band) before PG. He was even filming them during their performance and singing along to their songs.

To set up the stage, the crew needed some more time and Per and the band could start the show at appr. 22:20. I felt sorry for them, because they of course had their stage clothes on and all those clothes were rather made for summer. But they were all on a high, so I guess the adrenalin inside heated them well. They were all smiles during the whole show. We loved it!

The crowd that became far much bigger (appr. 3500 people) for PG than for the acts before him, they also thought it’s better to move not to feel the cold. So they were active. Mostly with singing along, shouting, whistling and clapping though, but waving and jumping during the uptempo songs were also happening.

 

It was again Kung av sand when the rain started falling, but we didn’t get our ponchos out, just kept our fingers crossed it would go away very soon.

Between the songs Per talked to crowd in Swedish. Vasa is a bilingual city and Swedish is the first language of one third of its population. So it made totally sense. Other acts also talked to the crowd in Swedish.

Malin-My was translating the lyrics of Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång) into gestures towards us showing she was also sad that the tour was coming to an end.

During the band presentation everyone got a huge ovation. When Per and Magnus had their stand-up comedy talk, Magnus mentioned that Finland is an independent country since 100 years this year and for this reason he thought they could talk a bit about Finland’s history. Per said ojojoj, Kimi Räikkönen. Haha. Not much he knows about Finland’s history it seems. Magnus asked PG who his favourite Finnish historical person was from the three he mentioned. The first 2 names didn’t ring a bell for Mr. G, but the third, Tumppi Haaranen did. He was a tour manager on the Roxette tour. So he chose him as his fave Finnish historical person.

Chris played Säkkijärven polkka as the inro to The Look (not the first he played this in Finland) and the crowd went crazy for that. They were clapping so loudly. The Look was a highlight again. Chris stayed psychedelic during the whole song and there was a part during his and Per’s guitar duel when Chris was ”walking” on his knees ”attacking” PG. It was hilarious!

Andreas went so wild with the Sommartider intro that at the end of it he threw both sticks into the crowd just after the last tact. The song turned out to be awesome – as usual.

Per offered Småstadsprat as a night snack and with that the concert ended. It started raining again during the closing song and it was raining cats and dogs after the gig.

19 songs! We didn’t expect such a ”long” festival setlist, so we were absolutely positively surprised and loved the fact that Per could finally decide for a longer set on a festival where HE is the headliner and no one else is playing after him, so he didn’t need to keep a short time of playing. Much appreciated!

At the very end, there were fireworks organized by the promoter. Sadly, it was behind the stage, so we didn’t see much of it.

Per after the show:

VAASA, Finland. Oh yea! Truly amazing crowd considering the pretty chilly evening. Loved that my solo stuff went down so well. Thanks everyone for singing along and showing us a good time. Promise to come back. Love it here! Kiitos & tack så mycket. /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. Min plats
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Honung och guld
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 Säkkijärven polkka 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. Småstadsprat

Videos:

Juni, juli, augusti
It Must Have Been Love: 1; 2;
Gå & fiska!
Sommartider: 1; 2;

Articles, pictures:

Pohjalainen: 1; 2;
Vasabladet: 1; 2;
Hagstrommedia.pic.fi
Österbottenstidning
Samuli Keskitalo Photography
Forth Photography

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Eskilstuna, Sweden – 19th August 2017 – #19

Unbelievable, but the last show on tour in Sweden is already history. The 19th gig on 19th August in Eskilstuna was a blast despite the not too kind weather. We got a heavy shower for half an hour at 18:30. The crew had to cover the instruments and wipe off the water later. Strandels were lucky and by the time they came up on stage, it had stopped raining. It was still too cold though. Good Harvest were not that lucky. It got so windy  that even the backdrop had to be held by crew members to keep it at one place, not that it hits the girls while they perform. Just at the time they came up on stage after 20:00, we got a heavy shower again. The girls and their guitars got soaking wet, but at half of their performance they said they saw the sun already and the rain would stop falling. And in some seconds it indeed stopped raining.

So when it was PG’s turn, there was no more rain. Per mentioned in his first talk that this is the last show on tour (well at least in Sweden) and the audience was loud and cheering. When Per was talking about looking for a song which he hadn’t played live before now he said he found 470 such songs and he thought to play them all at the show. The crowd gave him a loud woohoo and applause. Oh, how we would have loved it… if he played all those songs! But of course, it was ”just” the usual intro to Honung och guld. And this time Mr. G asked Good Harvest again to join him on stage for the song. After it ended they hugged each other and the girls went off the stage. HERE you can watch my video recording of it (Per’s talk and the song).

There were mosquitoes not only in Borgholm, but in Eskilstuna too. At least Per told the audience he had swallowed some and had to drink before he started the band presentation. In Borgholm it was Per’s nameday, in Eskilstuna it was Magnus’s nameday. Magnus asked Per if he knew what day it was, Per said it was Saturday. Then Magnus said no, it’s Magnus nameday and he thought to ask for a little tribute for himself. He said he would say something what the crowd should repeat after him. He would be happy if we did so. The text was: ”Happy nameday, Magnus! Among all who are standing on the stage now we love YOU the most!” He was really happy about it and thanked the crowd for being so kind. Everyone laughed. Per only said: ”What a fantastic personality!” Haha. HERE you can watch my video recording of the whole band presentation.

 

Playing for the last time in Sweden, the band was really tight. I wouldn’t say they were the same energetic as in Uppsala, but certainly you could feel the show was a special one for everyone. The Look was a highlight for sure. And Ljudet av ett annat hjärta and Sommartider. After Sommartider the crowd didn’t want to stop clapping and shouting. Per thanked the audience for coming and being so amazing. He used the occasion to thank Good Harvest and Strandels for being a great support for him during the whole tour in Sweden, they did a fantastic job. Then he went on with Småstadsprat to close the concert.

When the show ended, Per pointed at the band to made the audience applaud for them, then they took a bow. Before they went off the stage, Andreas threw a drumskin to the crowd. I met the guy who caught it and could take a pic of it. See the photo what Andreas drew on it. Haha. While Per was walking off the stage, he pointed at the fans in the front rows, thanks for coming. It was lovely!

Aw… the last show in Sweden. Impossible that this tour is really coming to an end. It’s always so hard to accept it. OK, 2 more shows in Finland. It would have been nice to end the tour in Sweden though.

Anders Roos was there at this show as well and Åsa also shot a lot of videos. There was a guy on the right side of the stage who filmed the whole show with a big camera. Let’s see what we get to see from it! 😉

Per after the show, thanking for Eskilstuna and also for the whole tour (so far):

BYE BYE SWEDEN. Oj, det gick fort. “En vacker kväll”-turne’n (för Sveriges del) är över. Fantastisk final vid slottet i Eskilstuna igår. En av de allra bästa giggen if u ask me, avslappnat och gungigt. Helena, Malin-My och bandet satt ihop precis så där bra som man gör när man spelat ihop ett tag. T o m “The Look” lät extra tung!!!! Och “Småstadsprat” har verkligen träffat folk mitt i hjärtat, jag har märkt det undan för undan under turne’ns gång. Man blir stolt. Good Harvest lät som en dröm i “Honung och guld” för andra kvällen i rad. Thank you, ladies! Och vilken mäktig och stor publik som kom. Lyssnande, spejande men sugen på hyss hela tiden. En grym final.

Vill passa på att tacka alla underbara människor som kommit till konserterna under sommaren. Alla åldrar har synts till. Alla med olika och personliga relationer till mina låtar. Vi har filmat här och där så det kommer att bli ett härligt minne framåt jul + Anders Roos har plåtat alldeles för mycket så det dyker säkert upp en vass fotobok så småningom. Funderar också på att göra en live LP-platta. De här bandet låter så speciellt och den här turne’n är helt unik, det vore kul att föreviga. Vi har spelat in alla konserter så det finns många golden moments att välja på. Christoffer, har du tid?

An extra special thank you to all our international adorable friends who stood by our side (front row) at so many shows. You mean so much more to us than you can imagine. Lots of love from all of us!

Två gigs i Finland kvar, sen är det new balls. Ha en härlig vecka. Snart kommer hösten. /P.

So adorable! I love that he never forgets about the fans and this extra special thank you to all the international fans (FRIENDS!) is so heart-warming. It means so much to all who came from the different corners of the world. So, we can’t wait to have the concert film, the photo book and if Chris has enough time, a live LP! Fingers crossed!

 

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. Min plats
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Honung och guld (together with Good Harvest)
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. Småstadsprat

Videos:

På promenad genom stan
Juni, juli, augusti
People came of all ages indeed, kids enjoying Juni, juli, augusti
Det hjärta som brinner
It Must Have Been Love: 1; 2;
Honung och guld
Kung av sand: 1; 2;
Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång)
Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång: 1; 2;
Ljudet av ett annat hjärta: 1; 2; 3;
Spegelboll: 1; 2;
Gå & fiska!: 1; 2;
Band presentation including Christoffer’s intro to The Look
The Look: 1; 2;
Tycker om när du tar på mej: 1; 2;
Joyride: 1; 2;
Sommartider: 1; 2; 3; 4; 5;

Articles, pictures:

Ekuriren.se

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Uppsala, Sweden – 18th August 2017 – #18

After a few days off, getting closer to the end of the tour, Per Gessle and his band performed in Uppsala. It started as a rainy day, but fortunately, from afternoon it was all good and it stayed fine during the concert too.

Before the support acts came up on stage, we saw Mr. G leaving the backstage area with BoJo. First we thought they just walk around in the botanic garden, discussing stuff, but later when we saw other band members and support acts leaving to the same way, we realized the bathroom area was at a different place than the wardrobes, so they all had to walk a bit. And seeing PG walking back to the backstage area with a toothbrush in his hand, accompanied by BoJo was priceless. Lovely!

We also saw Niklas Strömstedt being there at the gig again. (He saw Per in Stockholm too.) Then while Strandels were performing, Micke Syd appeared on the side and came to the front row. We could sense there was another surprise in the making. Also, at 19:34 on Facebook Micke Syd shared a pic on which he and Per appear in PG’s wardrobe backstage.

Per was again like a Duracell bunny on stage, bouncing around, stomping full of energy and the band were also on a high. Everyone! Ola was jumping more than ever, Andreas went psychedelic on the drums, Chris went wild all the time, Malin-My rocked the violin, Helena was jumping around a lot and singing like an angel on the ballads, Clarence kicked ass behind the keyboards and Magnus was bouncing over more to the left side of the stage, having party with Ola and Chris. The whole show was very energetic, everyone was in top top top shape. Not only on stage, but also off stage. The crowd (8542 people) was loud and partying hard and jumping the most during Ljudet av ett annat hjärta, but also joined a bit the waving choreography for På promenad genom stan and was singing along loudly to almost all of the songs. Småstadsprat was a loud sing-along at the end of the show. I would say at least 70% of the audience let their voice heard.

The first surprise came with Honung och guld when Per told the audience he thought he would ask a little help from Good Harvest, so they joined Per on stage. The girls already rehearsed the song in Linköping and it sounded beautiful in Uppsala. HERE you can watch my video recording of it.

During Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång, while Åsa was filming Per, Mr. G was looking straight into the cam and was dancing a bit. Hopefully, it will make it into the GessleHomeVids collection on YouTube. It was quite cool!

During The Look, Per lost his voice a bit and let the crowd sing one line or so. It was fun and he was smiling at it.

 

For the second surprise, namely MICKE SYD, we had to wait until the 2nd encore, which since Linköping comes too fast after the gang goes off stage after the first encore. They don’t let the audience wait more than a minute, Andreas comes back and starts his psychedelic intro to Sommartider. This time Per invited Micke Syd on stage and Micke came up with his tambourine. The crowd was cheering him and he shaped a heart with his hands. Lovely! He was bouncing around the stage, singing in the mics of Chris and Magnus and getting close to Andreas as well. He definitely had an adrenalin rush, it was visible. We loved it! Haha. When it was the crowd sing-along part, first Per went to the left side, Micke Syd to the right, then vice versa and they animated the audience from both sides. After they finished the song, they hugged each other and Micke Syd went off the stage. The tambourine fell out of his hand and he was too cool kicking it away. HERE you can watch my video recording of the whole song. The first and last time I recorded Sommartider in its complete, that’s for sure. Next time I rather jump along! Haha.

This gig was also photographed by Anders Roos. Let’s hope we see tons of action pictures from this show, because it was full of such moments.

Per after the concert:

UPPSALA HEJ HEJ. Grymt gig igår i den sagolika Botaniska Trädgården. Mycket folk, drygt 8500, och underbar stämning för att uttrycka det milt. Vi är ett välsignat band som får all den här responsen och kärleken från publiken varje kväll. Inget att ta för givet. Jag hoppas att vi ger åtminstone en bråkdel tillbaka. Och herregud, visst var Good Harvest magnifika i Honung & guld och plipp-plupp så dök Micke Syd upp! Och var hör han hemma om inte med en gaffatejpad tamburin pumpandes åttondelar i Sommartider. En vacker kväll. /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. Min plats
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Honung och guld (together with Good Harvest)
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 (together with Micke Syd)
19. Småstadsprat

Videos:

Juni, juli, augusti
Honung och guld
Spegelboll
Joyride
Sommartider: 1; 2;

Articles, pictures:

Uppsala Nya Tidning
24uppsala.se
Uppsala Nyheter

 

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 – En vacker kväll in Arvika, Sweden – 3rd August 2017 – #15

After their Malmö gig, Per and the band travelled by the tour bus to Arvika for a festival show. We were lucky in Malmö, because on concert day it wasn’t raining, only a tiny bit during the night, but on 3rd August whole Sweden seemed to be treated badly by the weather gods. It was raining cats & dogs in the South and the North as well.

Pic by Anders Andersson

Arvika is appr. 600 km from Malmö, so only 2 hardcore fans decided to drive and attend the concert there. By the time they arrived, there were still only a handful of people waiting at the entrance to be let in.

At this festival the support acts, first Strandels then Good Harvest performed on the same stage as PG. During their performances people were rather standing in the back, under roofs and tents, but before Per & Co got on stage, the area in front got full despite the heavy rain.

It usually turns out that rainy gigs are much fun. That was the case in Arvika, too. Mr. G and the band were in top shape, smiling and jumping around all the time, no matter if it was their 3rd showday in a row and that the stage was a bit slippery because of the rain. They were full of energy. The crowd made noise and were singing along loudly to almost every song. To the uptempo songs they were even partying.

PG after the show:

GIG #15. ARVIKA HAMNFEST. Lång bussresa från Malmö via Halmstad till Arvika genom regn regn och ännu mera regn och det fortsatte att ösa ner hela kvällen. Men vad gjorde det? Grymt gig inför ett härligt galet Värmland som kunde varenda textrad!!! Glashalt på scen men alla överlevde. Tack alla 8000 som dök upp och trotsade de tunga molnen och tack BoJo för det stora paraplyet. Bandet är verkligen i toppform. Nu blir det paus i spelandet en vecka sen väntar Halmstad. Badabam! Love, P.

Pic by Riccardo Löffler

Thanx a lot for your cooperation, Andreas Kämpf & Riccardo Löffler!

Setlist

Pic by Andreas Dahlbäck. Småstadsprat

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. (Hon vill ha) Puls
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Kung av sand
9. Här kommer alla känslorna (på en och samma gång) / Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång
10. Ljudet av ett annat hjärta
11. Spegelboll
12. Gå & fiska!
Band presentation
13. The Look (with Värmlandsvisa as intro)

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

Encore 2:
17. Sommartider
18. Småstadsprat

Videos:

På promenad genom stan
It Must Have Been Love
Ljudet av ett annat hjärta: 1; 2;
Tycker om när du tar på mej: 1; 2;
Joyride: 1; 2;
Sommartider & Småstadsprat
Sommartider: 1; 2;

Articles, pictures:

Värmlands Folkblad: 1; 2;
Arvika Nyheter: 1; 2;

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Malmö, Sweden – 2nd August 2017 – #14

Some fans who were there in Borgholm sat into their cars right after the show and drove to Malmö, some others stayed in Borgholm for the night and travelled to the next tour stop only the next day. For the 14th show, the queue was not as long as in Borgholm, but still a lot of hardcores showed up, due to Malmö being an easily accessible city for most.

The security team was the least prepared at Mölleplatsen. They literally started the preparations only 10 minutes before the gates opened. This means the supervisor showed the controlling people how the ticket looks and where they should stand. Also the dustbins got to the gates only 5 minutes before we all could enter and the scanners were given out to the controllers only 1 minute before 6 pm. No surprise the whole insläpp was a mess in the end. People who were queueing all day got let in after those people who arrived only half an hour before the gates opened and when you were queueing in the ”wrong” line inside, because that was for the guestlist (which wasn’t marked anywhere at all) they sent you back to the end of another queue. The most incompetent security team in Sweden ever. Not only at the entrance, also inside the venue. Whatever. This should be our biggest problem in life. 😉

                           

When we were already inside, I looked around and checked the merch stand. I was surprised, because I saw a tee with the tour dates on it and I remembered there was none. I went to the stand and asked the girl who worked there if it was new. She said she got them only that day. And that’s the only T-shirt with the dates on. A pity that it’s out only now, almost at the end of the tour. Next time it’s useful to print the dates on ALL tour tees already at the beginning. Real tour tees always have the dates on. But still, better late than never.

Strandels and Good Harvest were the support acts and they get more and more cheering from the audience day by day. And they like it. The more we hear their songs, the more we like them. Andreas Dahlbäck was very busy during GH’s performance. He filmed them with his phone from the left side of the stage and later he went to the other side with 2 of his drumskins and was writing something on them. So we were sure he would again throw them to the crowd at the end of the show. And he did. We would love to see what’s written on those drumskins, so in case you are the one who caught them, just send us a message with a pic on Facebook.

What was very lovely to see in Malmö is that some hardcore fans, not only from Sweden, brought their kids to the gig to show them what it’s all about. Now that there is no age limit, it was a great chance to bring the whole family together and enjoy the concert this way. Kids were also in the front and they even caught guitar picks from Per. Haha. They got enthusiastic. I’m sure it wasn’t their last PG concert.

The setlist was the very same as in Borgholm. We expected more songs or a bit of a change at least. Tittar på dej när du dansar maybe? Haha, I know I know… Well, PG and the band were in top shape. The crowd could have been more active. They were singing along, but not more than that – I mean from row 3-4 or so. They rocked out the most to Ljudet av ett annat hjärta. What is strange that in other places Spegelboll keeps up the jumping and dancing party mood of the audience, but not in Malmö. OK, the front row rocked to Spegelboll as well. Of course. We love those 3 party songs, Ljudet av ett annat hjärta, Spegelboll and Gå & fiska! coming after one another.

During Det hjärta som brinner Mr. G was rocking so hard that his mic turned down, but both technicians, Peter Fredriksson and Micke N-S were rushing to it from the 2 sides of the stage and set it back to normal. It was funny to see.

It Must Have Been Love sounded beautiful in both Per’s and Helena’s performance. Mr. G even posted a video of it on Roxette’s Facebook page:

Malmö last nite: Truly amazing version of IT MUST HAVE BEEN LOVE. You should have been there! Helena, Malin-My and this group of ppl knock me out every night!!! Probably the best band I’ve ever played with. Lots of love from P.

Besides some very nice comments, there were some related to Helena is not Marie and that Marie can’t be replaced, etc. That is not the case. Can’t be said enough times ”Roxette is Marie and Per”. This is what Per thinks too, so no need to worry about anything. And really no need to be rude with a most lovely person.

Sadly, probably because of reading those comments, Helena felt she had to justify herself and shared the video too:

Here is a clip from the other day ! The Malmö audience was wonderful, thank you. When I sing the song I think about Marie. Who sang the song before me. But now her health stops her from doing it. When I was 9 I got my first album of her and she has been a great inspiration to me, as a solo artist and a fantastic composer. “Sjunde vågen” is my favourite song of hers. And “Sparvöga”. I wish she could have sung this song of Per many more times. Now Per wanted to perform it and he asked me to help him out. Per is an incredible composer, constantly transforming. He’s a real artist to me. The least I can do is put all my prescence into the song, and sing it my own way. That is what Marie would have done.

So lovely words! What Helena does with IMHBL and how she makes it her own is exceptional. It makes no sense to compare one singer to another, Marie to Helena and vice versa. Marie is Marie and Helena is Helena. Helena is a unique Artist with a voice of an angel. The ovation she gets each night (not only after IMHBL, but several other songs – Första pris, Tycker om…, Varmt igen) is a great confirmation of what she is doing is just adorable and perfect. And she is not only an amazing artist, but also a wonderful person!

Per couldn’t help himself, he posted the song again some hours later:

Have to post this one again. So proud to be playing with these guys and dolls! /P.

You must love how he is handling such situations.

During Kung av sand it started raining, but fortunately, only for 2-3 songs. Åsa was there in Malmö, filmed a lot (watch the vids on YouTube, GessleHome Vids!) and when the rain came she also went backstage to get a poncho for herself and came back to the front to take vids of the party songs.

   

When Per presented the band with the dating site story and he mentioned Helena is from Skåne, the county where Malmö is situated as well, the crowd was cheering her even louder. Then he introduced Malin-My and said she is also almost from Skåne, she is from Holmsund. Up North. Magnus is the other band member from Skåne. Actually, from Malmö. So he also got a louder cheering. Per said without Magnus there is no breakfast. Mister Magnus said he knows Clarence can say something in real Malmö style. And he asked the audience to be silent and Clarence said something that sounded very strange and probably only the Swedes or at least those from Skåne could get what it meant. Then Per introduced Ola, almost from Skåne as well, from Luleå and then Mr. G presented the guy in black gloves, Andreas. After all this, Chris went on with his psychedelic När vi två blir en intro to The Look. Not only the intro, but the ending of The Look was psychedlic again and the way Helena is acting with the crowd during the song since some concerts ago, she just rulez!

Sommartider got a similar drum intro as in Borgholm. It was fantastic in Malmö too, Andreas went totally wild on this. Adrenaline on top!

Per after the show:

MALMÖ Wow! Vilken vacker kväll!! Grym och stor publik, taggat band, bara lite regn (rätt snyggt i Kung av sand!) och good vibes överallt. Tack för att ni kom förbi och sjöng och delade minnen med oss!!! 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. Min plats
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Honung och guld
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. Småstadsprat

Videos:

På promenad genom stan
På promenad genom stan & Juni, juli, augusti
Vilket håll du än går
Honung och guld
The Look: 1; 2;
Tycker om när du tar på mej
Sommartider

Articles, pictures:

Sydsvenskan
Skånska Dagbladet
Pppress.se
Trelleborgs Allehanda (for subscribers only)
Annika Nilsson: 1; 2;

 

Per Gessle – En vacker kväll in Borgholm, Sweden – 1st August 2017 – #13

Borgholm… 28 years and some days after the historical Listen To Your Heart video (and more) was filmed inside the ruins, we could be part of a magical event at the same place on 1st August.

The queueing started already the day before show day, some spent the night there in tents. More fans arrived in the morning and during the day on Tuesday. We knew that this would be the gig that attracts the most hardcore fans from around the world and so it was. People came from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Pakistan, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the Netherlands, the UK, Uruguay. At least these are the countries of which I know about.

The security team was very cooperative and so there was no issue at the entrance. It went very smoothly and everyone could get to the spot he / she deserved to see the concert from, being it seats in the back or front row or the sides of the standing area.

The concert was held at the very same place as in the LTYH video. A real dream come true for all fans, except for the fact that it wasn’t a Roxette concert, but a Per Gessle show. But even that is so emotional. It was really an undescribable feeling to be there.

Before the gig started, during the support acts’ performance, Åsa, Chris, Clarence, Helena and their families as well as Magnus’ family went up to the side windows of the castle and we waved to them, they waved back. Andreas also went up and probably took pictures from there. Later Victoria (Sweden’s crown princess) and her husband, Daniel also appeared in the window and enjoyed the show from there. Victoria rulez! HERE you can watch her dancing to Mr. G’s melodies.

When Per first talked to the audience before Juni, juli, augusti, he mentioned that Roxette shot their video to Listen To Your Heart there and that the American crew thought the ruins were built just for the video. The crowd was laughing.

Min plats got back to the setlist on a new place and it sounded wonderful after Första pris. But this way there was no Tittar på dej när du dansar. We love seeing Malin-My playing not only the violin, but also the mandolin, so it would be great to have the song back on the setlist. Just saying. Anyway, Per thanked the crowd for the applause after Min plats. He said he is happy we liked it because that’s one of his favourite songs. Before Per started playing It Must Have Been Love, he had to drink a bit and when he got back to the mic he said he swallowed a mosquito. Haha. The sing-along to IMHBL turned out to be wonderful. After the song, Per said it was the night’s Dean Martin moment.

Regarding the sing-alongs, I think also the acoustics of the place helped a lot to make them sound beautiful, because during a lot of songs I heard a loud sing-along, but when I looked back, I couldn’t see too many mouthes moving. Anyway, the crowd was best at clapping that’s for sure. Or better said there were several active groups in the audience, the first 3 rows, of course and then in the middle a bigger group and on the sides some more. Those who were sitting in the back didn’t get up from their seats. Not even during Sommartider…. Hej hej… Yeah, we know, it’s mostly the Swedes and they are not the ones who like to stand up, no matter what. But at least they were clapping hard.

We had nice weather almost all day, but the rain couldn’t wait anymore, so it started falling during Spegelboll and from then on. We quickly put on our ponchos and didn’t pay too much attention to the rain. When you are at such a magical place, you just don’t care. Anything can happen.

Åsa was of course filming a lot again (check out the videos on YouTube, GessleHomeVids) and how she was looking at her husband, admiring him, aaah, so sweet! She was singing along, dancing a bit and you can see in her eyes that she is still so much in love with Mr. G. And that goes vice versa. What a fab couple they are!

The best band presentation so far was in Borgholm. All band members got a huge applause and cheering and as it was Per’s nameday, Magnus made the crowd sing and cheer Per too. Per was throwing kisses and said he became speechless he even forgot where to continue the band presentation. HERE you can watch it all. Just awesome!

 

After the brand presentation Chris played the intro to The Look and it was a bit disappointing that he didn’t play Listen To Your Heart, but När vi två blir en again. We were so expecting LTYH at this place. Anyways, the intro turned out to be psychedelic just like at any other show. Chris rox!

The drum intro to Sommartider was fantastic again. Andreas is doing a fab job and knows how to get the crowd into party mood.

The concert ended with Småstadsprat. Or at least from the band’s side. After they took a bow, before they went off stage, the front part of the crowd started singing Listen To Your Heart.

It was a concert to remember! A pity that Anders Roos wasn’t there, because he would have taken fantastic pictures of Mr. G and the band inside this most awesome venue.

Per after the show:

BORGHOLM, ÖLAND! Oh yea, classic ground. This is the castle where we recorded the Listen To Your Heart-video (and Dangerous!) back in 89. Still magnificent and a joy to visit. And boy, did we have a fab time. Wonderful crowd + a splendid band on the loose = lots of unexpected silliness around every corner. Love that. Thanx everyone for showing up. One to remember! /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. Min plats
7. It Must Have Been Love
8. Honung och guld
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. Småstadsprat

Videos:

Min plats
It Must Have Been Love
Gå & fiska!
The Look

Articles, pictures:

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