Per Gessle and Anders Herrlin about Gyllene Tider on P4 Extra

P4 Extra on Swedish Radio had Per Gessle and Anders Herrlin as their guests on 31st May. Program leader Titti Schultz asked the guys about Gyllene Tider. You can listen to it HERE!

Titti welcomes 2/5 of Gyllene Tider and says they are back again. Per says that’s pretty accurate to say so, being back AGAIN. It’s 4 years since the last time. Titti says there are so many immortal songs of theirs, e.g. she can’t even say Juni, juli, augusti to anyone anymore without a melodic loop coming up with it. The same thing goes for Gå & fiska!, however, she doesn’t say that very often, but so do others. She says the guys have sort of penetrated our consciousnesses in a way. She is curious if that was well thought out. Anders says it’s a long-term plan to penetrate Swedish DNA. They already had that when they started. Per says that’s a seventies idea.

Titti wants to know what happened after the 2019 farewell tour. Anders says they regretted it. Per says the pandemic happened. It was Micke Syd who thought they should quit in 2019 with the flag on top and Per thought that was a pretty good idea. But then the pandemic came and then they all started to think differently. They started to appreciate other things, such as old friends and hangouts. The idea just popped up to maybe record some new songs and maybe maybe maybe go on tour sometime when it’s possible again. So it’s not a planned comeback, it just happened.

Titti is curious what the guys do together when they don’t make music and are not touring, but hang out together. Maybe BBQing together? Anders says it’s top secret. Haha. He says they are BBQing and drinking. Per says they don’t hang out very much in private. It mostly happens when they are recording and if you are going on a tour in a few months, it’s actually quite nice to start that journey with getting together for a few weeks and record some new music and eat lunch and BBQ together. It’s good to have that social activity. Titti asks if they go fishing together. That never happened, the guys say. It’s not their cup of tea.

Titti picked a song from GT that she thinks is among the best the guys have done. It’s Flickan i en Cole Porter-sång. She asks if it will be on the setlist in summer. Per confirms they will play it, so Titti promises to come to a concert then. It’s such a good song, Titti thinks and she asks the guys to admit  it themselves that they are incredibly happy with this song. Anders says it’s a fantastic song. Per laughs. Titti says she isn’t sure if Anders is ironic now. Anders says he is mostly serious. He thinks this song turned out great.

Gyllene Tider becomes a feature film. Titti asks the guys to tell more about it. Per says it won’t be a documentary. It’s not about Gyllene Tider’s 40 years, but about 5 teenage boys who come from a small town and against all odds start a band and end up in big Stockholm and break through and become one of Sweden’s biggest bands in the early ’80s. So it’s a feel-good movie.

Titti asks Per if he knows who will play him. PG knows it, but can’t tell more about it yet. Anders says that later today he is going to meet the guy who plays him. Anders will talk about his life. Titti says it feels like Anders is looking forward to it. Anders confirms it. Titti says Anders should tell the guy that he was named Sweden’s most handsome guy in 1981 in Veckorevyn. Titti says Anders is probably not completely happy with that himself, but it’s fun.

Titti asks if it really feels like the band could make it against all odds, if it was such an uphill battle. Per says the fact that they became so successful was really a tall order. They had actually done only 6 gigs in front of an audience before they became No. 1 with Flickorna på TV2. So they didn’t know anything and in that way it’s incredibly rare to happen.

Anders says he quit his regular job when they got a gig. They were quite ambitious. Titti is thinking what Anders’ parents could have said then, but realizes that Anders is an electrician anyway, so he always has something to fall back on. Titti asks Per if he has a real job. PG says he doesn’t have any. He worked at Fammarps Mushroom Cultivation and weighed mushrooms. He was there with another guy and there were 350 girls, so it was a great job. He remembers that while waiting for the mushrooms, he was sitting in a small truck they had and wrote songs. Among others, he wrote (Dansar inte lika bra som) Sjömän, back then. Titti says she had no idea about this.

Titti mentions that recently she heard Per wrote the official song for the Table Tennis EC in Malmö. The Craziest Thing is coming this autumn. Anders writes music for various series, Titti shares. Per says Anders is very good and handsome. Titti laughs and says he even has a paper about it. Anders says he is dealing with film music and GT music. He doesn’t do much else.

Titti asks Anders if he writes the music for the GT feature film. Anders says no, it would be too close and it gets too goofy, so they let someone else do it.

After Titti asks Anders what he is dreaming about, Anders shares that last night he dreamed that he found a huge amount of money in the forest in a large suitcase and it was euro notes. Titti asks if Per Gessle was written on the suitcase. Haha. Anders says he was so damn afraid to take it. He looked around all the time, not that he was being chased by someone. Titti laughs and says she thought about a dream music project or TV series, so a dream in that context. Haha. Anders says he dreams of just continuing with what he is doing, to make fun projects all the time. He works together with his wife and it seems to be a successful concept. They have been together for 23 years and work and have a child together. It works very well.

Here they listen to a new GT song, Chans. Titti asks the guys if they want to say something about it. Per says it’s a song that sums up pretty much how they sound right now.

Titti says the fun thing is, what the listeners can’t hear now is that she gets practically involved in planning the tour. During the song being played the guys were discussing how to perform the songs live and stuff like that. It’s fun for Titti who is tone deaf (she says it about herself).

Titti mentions that it wasn’t obvious at the beginning who was going to play the bass in the band. She asks if they decided it with playing rock paper scissors. Andrs says it’s just that Micke Syd had a bass in his lap and so he got it. Anders was so damn bad at drums, so they changed. Titti asks whether Micke could play the drums at all or he was a talent. He was damn good and he still is, Anders says.

Titti shares that Per became the frontman, because no one else was interested. PG says it was because nobody else wanted to sing. He likes to sing and stand in the front and that impression you get there. PG remembers when he was 7 or 8 years old, he forced his friends to play and act like a band and he mimed to I’m A Believer by The Monkees. Titti asks what his friends really wanted to do. Per says they probably wanted to play hockey games.

Titti asks PG if he had any other strong interest besides music. These days she knows it’s cars, but if there was anything else back then. Per says when he thinks back on his life, there was a lot of pop music, so he spent all his time sitting with his headphones on and listening to Herman’s Hermits singles, The Kinks and stuff like that.

Titti is curious how Anders and Per found each other. It was actually via MP. Per says that first they had another bassist in Gyllene Tider, but that didn’t go too well and so PG left the band on New Year’s Eve. It was dramatic. Instead of the bassist being fired, Per quit. He was going to start a new band with Anders and then MP also wanted to join this new band and then Micke too, so in the end only the old bass player stayed in the old band. Titti says so he could say he is the only original member of Gyllene Tider. Per laughs and says there is some truth in it, actually.

Titti wants to know when the guys realized that their success is for real. Maybe when they started having fans and people started stealing stuff from their parents’ garden? Anders says it was after they appeared on Måndagsbörsen on TV and they played Flickorna på TV2. Then it all exploded. They were on tour and when they played in Rottneros there were so many people, thousands of them. Then the guys realized that wow, there was something going on here.

Regarding stuff being stolen from their surroundings, Anders says people stole underpants from their garden. But those were his father’s. Haha. Everything that was loose disappeared, Per says. E.g. number plate on the car, antennas and stuff like that. PG remembers when he turned 21 he still lived at home with his mother. Then 3 large sacks of mail arrived. 2800 birthday cards. Titti asks if Per read them all. PG says he even replied to them all. Haha. And it still happens these days, Titti guesses.

Here they start talking about the new album, Hux Flux and that they go on tour this summer. It’s a little huxflux for them, because they decided they would finish in 2019, but all of a sudden they changed their minds. Per wrote a song called Hux Flux and thought that this is not a bad title for this whole project.

Titti asks the guys if they have any plans for how long they will be up and running this time before they call it quits. Per says they shouldn’t put themselves in such a situation again. Titti says she is already looking forward to the next comeback.

Titti asks what the guys are looking the most forward to in summer. Anders says to play in front of people, because it’s so much fun. Per says touring is actually pretty tough, except for the hours you play for people. That’s why you do it. The rest is waiting and changing hotel rooms and changing cities all the time. You get tired of it quite quickly.

Titti says there will be a sixth member on tour, Uno. PG says, yes, Uno Svenningsson is the support act on this tour. He is a lovely guy and very talented. He is going to be a great opener both for the band and for the audience.

Titti thanks the guys for joining her on the show and lets Anders go and meet his younger self in film form. The guys thank Titti for the invitation.

Photo from P4 Extra’s story by Helen Ling