20 Dec 2002

Small town, big feelings (I): Best wishes for Marie

We have news about the work of P, C & C team but we want to begin with best wishes for Marie Fredriksson because a lot of things - unfortunately not all of them good - happened tduring the last months in the year 2002, according to Visa Kopu, from The Daily Roxette. These are Visa's words, I could not explain it better.

"We were shocked by the events of September 11th - and by a strange twist of fate, on the exact same date this year, Marie Fredriksson fainted after returning home from jogging. She sustained a contussion and while being treated for that, tests revealed that Marie had a brain tumor. The tumor was later removed successfully, but it still left Marie in pain and she is being treated with chemotherapy. “It’s up and down, she has good days and not so good days. On a scale, she is pretty bad … but she’s a strong and tuff gal so she will be back!” said Per Gessle in an interview with Halmstad’s radio station recently.

Marie’s illness also changed Roxette’s plans for the autumn. They were supposed to participate in a unique tour, performing as the headline act of the “Night of the Proms” concert series. They did not, however, change their plans to release a ballad hit compilation in October, The Ballad Hits.” The ballad album featured two new songs, “A Thing About You” - which was also released as a single - and “Breathe”. In Radio Halland interview, PG concludes: “The only thing that we canceled was the tour. I’m sure [Marie’s illness] in itself won’t affect Roxette’s being or not being. It may affect how we work in the future though".

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The new songs, A thing about you (ATAY) and Breathe, were recorded by Per Gessle and Marie Fredriksson in June 2002 at Polar Studios Stockholm with the following musicians:
  • Per Gessle: vocals and acoustic guitar.
  • Marie Fredriksson: lead vocals (Breathe) and backing vocals (ATAY)
  • Clarence Öfwerman: Producer, mixer and programmer
  • Christoffer Lundquist: acoustic guitar (Breathe), bass (ATAY) and backing vocals
  • Jonas Isaacson: electric guitar
  • MP Persson: Acoustic guitars (ATAY, from T&A Studio)
  • Ronny Lahti: mixer
  • Shooting Star: programmer
  • Milla Andersson: backing vocals (ATAY, from T&A Studio)

During the promotion of the Ballad Hits in Europe, between October and December 2002, Per has talked about Marie and about new projects after the Pop Hits. As Judith Seuma, from TDR, tell us in August, before Marie's illness, Per continues thinking about a Swedish album. He has recently been in the countryside, in the South of Sweden, close to Malmö, where Christoffer Lundquist owns a music studio.

On 29th November, in Brussels, Belgium, Per said: “A Gyllene Tider reunion is definitely possible,he continued.It might be a tour next year, but we’ll see what happens. I’m also going into the studios to record some of my solo-work. I’m gathering a band to do that. Of course”, he smiled, “I don’t have a record deal yet.

In an interview in the Swedish Railway System Review, Per said: “It’s damned fun to work with Marie, she is one of my best friends, like a sister. We have a history together, a song book people like. Now I feel ready for something in Swedish. I have so many songs that knock and want to come out… don’t know if it will be me solo or Gyllene Tider. I’m not inclined to either. I’m not used working in a band anymore though. In Roxette it’s me and Marie that rule all,” he laughs.
By the way, according to Magnus Börjeson, Beagle and Favorita Web, the Norwegian singer Vibeke Saugestad is working at AGM Studio in her second album, Overdrive, that will be released in 2003. The album is produced by Christoffer Lundquist and the musicians are David Birde (Brainpool), Magnus Börjeson (Beagle), Morten Henriksen and Tomas Dahl (Yum Yums). David and Magnus are the songwriters of most of the songs.

Magnus Börjeson's band, Beagle, is on NotLame's Bubblegum tribute album, Right to chews, released on 13th November 2002. Magnus Börjeson has recorded Edison Lighthouse's 1970 hit Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) in the AGM Studio. The bubblegum songs of the late '60s and early '70s were (mostly) commercially produced singles, written by professionals and recorded by attractive young acts for the maximum commercial appeal. Much like the teen pop movements of the late '80s or late '90s, this produced a mountain of dreck, but also like those teen pop movements, there were some moments of greatness. "I've always been a big fan of bubblegum and when I heard that NotLame was putting together a tribute I knew I had to be on it", says Magnus. Also appearing on the track is another bubblegum fan. Ola Främby (ex-The Girls), singer and songwriter from the same town as Magnus, Lund. You can listen to a snippet of the song (and an extra one) in Magnus' web:

IAT is devoted to the promotion of Scandinavian music to an international audience. The countries I cover include Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland. Updates are done from Monday to Friday on a continuous basis throughout the day, with occasional tidbits posted on weekends. If you would like to receive an organized summary of the week's news in your mailbox every Friday, please sign up for the newsletter on the frontpage.

It's a trap

This site is constantly improved upon through the contributions of its readers. If you have a news item to submit, please send it over.

If you came looking for some Admiral Ackbar related garbage, you are obviously in the wrong place.

IAT was founded in 2002 by Avi Roig. Everything on the site is written, coded, conceived and designed by Mr. Roig unless otherwise noted. Avi currently resides in Olympia, Washington - about an hour or so south of Seattle. His brother, Jon Roig, wrote the basic code for the content management system which has since been modified heavily. Nick Forte designed the logo. The login/posting code is based off an old version of the BCO message board system. The store system runs on X-Cart. The streaming audio is handled by Jeroen Wijering's Flash Mp3 Player with a little help from James Heinrich's getID3() script.

Why? Ah yes, the inevitable unanswerable question. The short version: Avi became interested in Scandinavian music through the Göteborg/Swedish metal scene of the early/mid-90s and gradually branched out from there. The site was founded because, at the time, there were no other websites covering Scandinavian music in English.
Avi Roig (It's a trap)It's a trap

5 Dec 2002

Sandy Mouche Autumn and Winter gigs (II): Sandy Autumn in Malmö (II)

Sandy Mouche continue their gigs on the demostage of Malmö. This time in two cafés.

* Element Café & Design, Malmö 2002 · 11 · 30
MALMÖ - Element Café
Situated at Löjtnantsgatan 4, Element is an oriental-inspired café where students often hang out to read, chat or play a game of backgammon.

* Café Panora, Malmö 2002 · 12 · 05
MALMÖ - Café Panora - Sankt Gertrudsgatan 4A
Situated at Sankt Gertrudsgatan 4A, I've read somewhere that Café Panora is a small place where films and live music are shown.

2 Dec 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at AGM Studios (IV): Winokur's Swedish Diary (IV)

Justin Winokur has finished the first recording sessions for his new album at AGM Studios with Christoffer Lundquist. Helena Josefsson has taken part as backing singer. The album could be finished in Spring 2003.

My evening started out quite alright. Christoffer had to spend about 10 hours editing vocals. So, my plan was to go to Malmö, drop off a DVD of some tracks for a friend of Christoffer, visit Eggstone at Tambourine Studios, and then go to Copenhagen for the evening.

Tambourine Studios is not flashy at all from the outside, but studios never are unless they are begging to be broken into. There was no sign, no name placard, no hint at what goes on inside the doors. I rang a bell and a man in his early thirties opened the door. He introduced himself as Maurits from Eggstone. Then I met Patrick from Eggstone and finally Per. They seemed a little shy at first, as the exact relationship between us was unclear. I was in a way a fan, but also a peer. I was a potential studio client and also a humble child in the presence of musical heroes. Per Sunding invited me to the Crunchy Frog Records Christmas party this Saturday in Copenhagen.

2002.12 Justin Winokur and Eggstone at Tambourine, Malmö
From left to right: Patrick Bartosch, Justin Winokur, Maurits Carlsson and Per Sunding

My next goal was to meet David Birde from Brainpool at the Malmö Central Station to give him the key to the broken Volvo. His job was to get it fixed for me early the next morning so I could get to work on time. Per Sunding and Hannah (his girlfriend and business manager for The Cardigans) offered to drive me to the station. Getting a ride in a proper car beats the pants off of taking a taxi, so I obliged. We talked about how with Americans, friends are easy come easy go, but in Sweden you have five friends your whole life. Per said that Brainpool was a perfect example, as was Eggstone. They all met at a young age and have been inseparable ever since.

I guess I should go to Copenhagen and see what happens there. My goal is to have some fun and find a cheap or free place to sleep.

Update (4.12.2002): California. I am home. My body aches and I feel so sick. I feel as if I ate something both poisonous and hallucinagenic at the same time. My body is shaky and my stomach trembles: patterns move in front of my eyes. And, being at work is just horrible. But, I finished eight songs and have rough mixes of four of them with me. The other rough mixes will be done in about four weeks, I think. Then we will figure out what changes need to be made for the final mixes. By that time it will be time for me to go back for another three days to record the last two songs for the record. I can't believe I got so much done in so little time. I don't miss Sweden. But, I didn't miss CA either. I missed some of my friends and loved ones. But, I feel a bit out of place here now.

Justin Winokur

26 Nov 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at AGM Studios (III): Winokur's Swedish Diary (III)

Justin Winokur continues recording his first solo album at AGM Studios with Christoffer Lundquist. Remember that Helena Josefsson will take part as backing singer. He writes about Sweden and the Swedish. Really interesting.

2002.11.20 AGM - by Justin Winokur 3

Some people ask me what Swedes are like. I find that the best description is this: Imagine eight millions of blonde Swedish chefs, hurling lutefisk out the windows of their white Volvos like Nordic madmen as they drive (never faster than the speed limit) in search of pickled herring and Viking treasure. Well, not really. But, they are like that in my imagination.

I went into Sjöbo last night to find a pub so I could see some drunk Swedish teenage girls flirting with guys who were mostly preoccupied with hitting each other in the face, but I had no such luck. The pub was almost empty, except for ten youths in puffy jackets. They all looked so beautifully sculpted, but the way they held themselves made it clear that they were painfully average by Swedish standards.

Strangely, I managed to locate what I imagine to be the only Swedish youth who could not really speak any English even after 15 years of compulsory English in school. The fact that they were surely all dreadful students told a lot about their character and the character of their town. They were self-deprecating, constantly talking about how stupid they were. Many had dropped out of school. There did not seem to be the sparkle of hope in the air.

I chatted with them in my idiotic, broken Swedish and asked why there weren't any drunk people fighting or flirting. They replied in Swinglish that I was a day late. I guess Friday was the hopping night, not Saturday. The bar closed at 1 AM, only an hour after I had arrived. My new acquaintances invited me to walk with them to an afterparty at some apartment, and I was happy to have some company and conversation so I happily obliged.

At the apartment, drunk, awkward early-twenty-somethings drowned their sorrows and chatted about things which I could not hear over the unsociably loud stereo. The music sounded like Iron Maiden only a little more recent. People still listen to music like this? Niklas, the boy whose apartment it was, had a corn snake that he let me hold. I spoke a lot with a Finnish girl named Monika who reminded me that in Swedish the word for Finnish people is the same as the word for pimples. I already knew this, but was delighted that the conversation made such a turn in the right direction. Two identical twin girls sat on the couch. Monika pointed out to me that they were twins, and the twins nodded in agreement. I sympathized with them, "You must be so tired of that story, huh?" Again, they nodded in agreement, only this time a bit more enthusiastically.

One of the guys was so drunk that he started to pull down his trousers and wave his fists as he shouted the lyrics to the deafening music. It was 3 AM and I could not believe that the neighbors were not complaining. The conversations I managed to have in spite of the ear-raping metal music were not surprising, though. The boys worked in blue collar jobs such as machine shops or road repair and they all had nearly identical apartments in rectangular brick buildings. The girls did not work and all had low self esteem. Everyone's parent was an alcoholic.

I left soon because the music was too loud for conversation and I could feel the high-frequency response of my ears melting away. But, I wished that I could have spent days and days with each of them, talking with them, maybe helping to dispel some of the stupid things that they believed, such as the notion that they had no self worth or that they would never amount to anything (just like their teachers tell them). Instead I walked alone through the empty, rainy streets of a sleepy, brick-colored town that seems to barely support itself the sort of town where the population will be the same or maybe a little less in 50 years, but never, ever more. I had to find my white Volvo so I could drive back to my cottage, so I could wake up and record again today.

2002.11.20 AGM - by Justin Winokur 4

Christoffer is editing vocals for Never Go Back Again today, so I spent some time doing fun things. I drove to the grocery store in Sjöbo and bought some food, took apart my FireWire hard drive and put it back together again, and spent considerably more time than I wanted to coercing a piece of smoked salmon out from between my upper right molars. Smoked salmon is quite cheap here, so I try to eat as much of it as I can. The low price of salmon is just one of the benefits of being in Sweden.

Here is a list of the benefits of being in Sweden:
  • 1) Smoked salmon is inexpensive. (About $3 for 200 grams.)
  • 2) Nobody makes fun of me for never shaving. Many young men here appear to go months if not years without shaving.
  • 3) My skin is great here. I have not gotten a single pimple, white head, black head, or anything!
  • 4) They have a fantastic array of soft drinks which kick the ass of our soft drinks. Some of my favorites include smultron berry cider, pear cider, and a lightly spiced soda called julmust.
  • 5) Swedes are better looking in general than Americans. (Not that this comparison is saying much, as Americans tend to be pretty ugly people on a whole.) I usually think that babies are about as beautiful as H.R. Geiger's monster in Aliens, but somehow Swedish babies (and small children) seem to be very cute. They look they are all models for Scandinavian travel posters or postcards.
  • 6) The showers are almost all converted bathtubs with hoses stuck into the faucet part as an afterthought. This means that you must awkwardly crouch in a stupid bathtub and try to shower off with a clumsy hose. Perhaps because bathing is so inconvenient, it is quite accepted to not take a shower nearly as often as one does in the USA. This is possibly the best thing about being here.
  • 7) Socialized health care and nobody is homeless. I recently went three years without health care and am never more than a few weeks away from being homeless. Anyone who thinks that the USA will catch them when they fall has no idea what they are talking about.
  • 8) They have FOURPLY facial tissue. Yes, that's right. Four glorious layers of luxurious paper for snot handling. Best of all, there is a brand here called Lammbi with a picture of a sheep on it. It is so soft and luxurious, it's like smearing a sheep on your face!

Here is a list of why it is better to be in San Francisco, California, USA:
  • 1) Andie and my friends and family are there. This is the most compelling reason of all, and it is the trump card that will always bring me home. I miss my loved ones they make my life more complete.
  • 2) More than 5 hours of sunlight in the winter. Darkness is stupid.
  • 3) No matter how much gas costs, it is always less than the $4 per gallon I pay here.
  • 4) Faster internet connections DSL or cable modems in most houses in the Bay Area!
  • 5) They have better facial tissue, but our toilet paper kicks their toilet paper's ass. Their toilet paper is the color of wheat with the softness and consistency of photocopy paper.
  • 6) Dishwashers. I have never seen a dishwasher in any house or apartment in Sweden. They don't actually wash their dishes by hand, do they?
Ok, I can hear from the sounds in the studio that it is time for me to get back to recording!

Justin Winokur

23 Nov 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at AGM Studios (II): Winokur's Swedish Diary (II)

Justin Winokur has begun the recordings of his first solo album at AGM Studios with Christoffer Lundquist. Read his blog! Helena Josefsson will take part as backing singer.

November 20th was the beginning of day 2 in the studio. Already we had decided upon the key of 6 songs and recorded the basic guitar tracks for No Truth Anymore, Never Go Back Again, Lullaby, and Fly Away. Lullaby was exceedingly difficult to play with a click, so Christoffer Lundquist recorded tambourine and piano tracks that I used as my tempo source instead. This allowed me to play more fluidly and without hesitation. With only a simple click there is too much pressure during the spaces between the beat divisions. Other instruments allow a more natural feel for me.

Recording the acoustic guitar tracks for No Truth Anymore was the most fun, simply because I had so many mics in front of me while Christoffer listened to find the best one. I felt like a dictator during the 1970's, preparing to give an important speech into a cloud of microphones of various shape, size, and vintage.

We ate dinner at a place in Sjöbo, the nearest town to Christoffer's town, Vallarum. With less than 10 houses, Vallarum is barely a village. At the restaurant in Sjöbo I ate something called öggakaga med skinka och lingon. Basically it was a 10 egg soufflé with landing strip sized pieces of bacon on top of it. It came with an earthenware bowl full of lingonberry sauce. At 105 kr ($10.50 USD) it was a stellar value, seeing as it was more than enough food for 3 people. How will I keep my girlish figure if I continue to eat this way?

I had really hoped to update my web site more frequently during this trip, but it is just not possible with our grueling work schedule. I wake up at 12 noon and begin recording at 12:30. We take a few short breaks for food and then finish up about 2 AM each night. I drive my own personal white Volvo the 2 km to my cottage and then crash out immediately. Next day: repeat schedule of previous day.

2002 AGM - by Justin Winokur 2

The house I sleep at is more of a cottage than a house. Actually, I wouldn't really know, since all I do there is fall into bed and sleep. You can also see the Volvo that I get to drive. This car is special because, unlike any modern Volvo in the USA, it has a manual transmission.

The rigorous schedule has payed off. We have completed all the basic tracks for six songs: bass, electric and acoustic guitars, drums, zither, and piano. This evening we finished the background vocal arrangements and recordings for Lullaby. The harmonies sounds so lush: sort of like a megapop collision between the Beach Boys and Brainpool. My brain is too tired to think anymore. Sleeping.
Justin Winokur

19 Nov 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at Tambourine Studios and Gula Studion (III): Magnus Sveningsson, a righteous boy

Helena has been in the studio again. And this time with Magnus Sveningsson.

What do you get when a 'cardigan' (Magnus Sveningsson) records his first album with a 'ray wonder' (Henrik Andersson), a 'stockfinster' (Sebastian "Batti" Borg), two 'brainpool's (Jens Jansson and their producer Michael Ilbert), some "eggstones" (Patrick Barstosch and Per Sunding), some 'mopeds' (Petter Lindgard and his partner Marco Manieri) and a 'mouche' (Helena Josefsson)? A righteous boy.

Magnus Sveningsson was born April 4, 1972 in Falköping, Sweden. Sveningsson is best known as the bassist in the Swedish rock band The Cardigans.

Magnus has been recording a solo project entitled Righteous Boy with Jens Jansson (Brainpool's drummer) and Helena Josefsson (backing vocals). He writes about it in his myspace:
Hi, Why call myself 'Righteous Boy'? Isn't it a strange name for a 29 year old? Actually, I intended to call myself, 'Elephant Man', but the name was already taken, so I decided to use the name from the first track I wrote for this project: 'Righteous Boy/Righteous Girl'. It's a remarkable feeling to have made my own record and to be, at the same time, both beginner and an experienced rocker.

My background history might be well known, but I think I ought to tell it once more to be certain. In December 1998, I took time out from The Cardigans as the thought of touring for half a year or more made the decision for me. You see, at the time, I couldn't raise the energy for the traveling lifestyle during a difficult period. Of course there were many other reasons that contributed to the decision, but I don't think I should go into them here. Instead, you can read the lyrics on the album and come to your own conclusions.

Instead of touring, I began work at the Tambourine Studios here in Malmö. Without their help and support, I wouldn't be sitting here agonizing over the contents of this press release. On the other hand it can be quite a pleasant agony, which actually helps one to concentrate on being creative.

Magnus Sveningsson continues writing about his new project, Righteous boy.
In spite of The Cardigans' successes over the last few years, I felt myself drained of energy and now after a year in Tambourine's care, I realized why: I hadn't written any music at all, since the 'Last Song' on the "Emmerdale" album in 1994. I began to write and record some rough demos in my little bedroom studio during the winter of 99/00, and I found that it was really interesting to sing solo, as I had never done it before.

During the spring and summer, I started to work on improving the songs I had and got the chance to record in the Tambourine studios in the aut
umn. My friend, Sebastian, was extremely keen to help me produce the album, and so things really began to get going. During periods when the studio was free from bookings, we fitted in the recordings of 'I Feel Apart', 'Lone Among Friends' and 'Elephant Man'.

The overriding intention was to work on the project from within my circle of friends, which include many of Malmö's pop-artists. My best pal, Jens Jansson from Brainpool, agreed to play the drums, while I played the other instruments myself, except for a bit of guitar here and there that Sebastian took care of.

With fingers crossed, we waited for gaps in Tambourine's bookings calendar, while I managed to write some new tracks in preparation for recording. Sebastian became involved with another project during the autumn, so I moved the recording sessions to take place in our rehearsal room instead, which doesn't have the same pleasant atmosphere as Tambourine does! Together with Henrik Andersson from Ray Wonder, I recorded the backing tracks
to, among others, 'Love Among Friends', 'No More Love', 'I Made It Hard For You To Love Me'. Despite the fact that we had to work under quite difficult and limiting conditions, Henrik's equipment is more basic than Tambourine's, I managed to pull the project together. I believe that the album benefited from Henrik's creative input, as his musical background differs significantly from Sebastian's and mine. If you like, it might be fun to try and guess which tracks Henrik has contributed most to. We eventually managed to give the album its necessary shape and form, with thanks due to Nathan Larson, who helped me with the programming on, for example, 'Righteous Boy/Righteous Girl' and 'No More Love'. We then invited in an outside observer in the shape of Michael Ilbert, the master mixer from Gothenburg. We needed someone who would really be able come in and clean up our sound files and generally squeeze the best out of the tracks, as it's easy for one to become blind to certain details when you've been looking at something too long - like an Ice Hockey trainer can be... After the summer and autumn, the record was finalized and mixed-down, which felt really strange, perhaps, because I have dared to finally sever the safety line, and that something important and time consuming had come to fruition at last. Most of all, this feels like my rightful comeback, but to something that I never had before. The fact that The Cardigans have kept my place for me until I'm ready again, is wonderful, but I would hardly be an asset for the band if it wasn't for what I have achieved for myself over the last year. None of the other cardigans played on the album, but that is just the way things turned out. Now it is time for the release and there's no going back. All I can do now is close my eyes and hope that it goes well.

The first album of Righteous Boy will be released next Spring 2003. We are waiting for this promising work.

6 Nov 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at AGM Studios (I): Winokur's Swedish Diary (I)

Vallarum, Skäne. The beautiful, peaceful countryside of southern Sweden is the home of the remote rural residential recording studio AGM, owned by Christoffer Lundquist since 1998. AGM is a fully equipped professional studio with accomodation for up to ten people. AGM is primarily an analog studio with a very large and unique collection of musical instruments, synths and amps, two live rooms, two isolation booths and two echo chambers. The digital side consists of a ProTools HD2 system (40 in/48 out). The concept of AGM is that of the classic studios of yesterday when recording studios had a soul, a sound of their own and a strong vibe.


The Aerosol Grey Machine Studio was designed by Christoffer Lundquist's wife and built in an old barn using the classic recording studios of yesterday as a model. The acoustics of the recording spaces are meant to be used and heard on the recordings and they are easily variable so you can quickly get anything from a very live woody sound to a pretty dead yet warm sound.

Justin Winokur, an American artist, is going to record at AGM Studios very soon. Helena Josefsson is said to be the backing singer. We think it is interesting to LJdM readers to read the words of Justin during the recordings. Keep reading his funny blog!

Dear beloved friends and family,

You may or may not know that I am going to Sweden next week. Now, why am I going to Sweden? The point of my trip is definitely not to have a vacation: this is a miserable and dark time of year in Scandinavia. I am going there to work on a projectwhich has been cooking in my conscious for about two years now. I am going to begin recording my first solo album. Sure, I have out some other CDs with Spitkiss, Mortal, and the Blamed. But, this one will be different.

About 12 years ago I noticed something. Even though I played in heavy / rock/ punk/ industrial bands, I always (and almost exclusively) wrote sad love songs on my guitar. Pretty much no matter what I tried to write, just about the only thing that ever came out was a sad love song. And I spent the last many years shelving these songs and trying to write in styles that worked better with whatever band I was focusing on at the time. But one day, about two years ago, it occurred to me that sad love songs were my style, and by attempting to coerce my hands and lips and mind to create otherwise I was suffocating that which I already generated naturally, without effort.

Until that moment I did not realize that those songs I wrote were actually there for a reason. There was some void in this world that they were to fill. This was hard to imagine for me, since I had never heard songs quite like mine before and so I wasn't really able to visualize a place for them in this world. Duh. Of course not. They did not exist yet, so how could I visualize their place in this world? With that realization, my goals and my life's vector changed dramatically.

I started compiling, completing, and recording demo versions of the songs that I had written during the last 12 years. I wanted to make a solo album where I sang and played the songs that meant something to me, the songs which leapt from my heart and lips no matter how hard I tried to contain them. I wanted the songs to be more than demos, though. They needed to come to some sort of fruition beyond that. I wanted them to have the indescribable quality that my favorite albums have in common. I needed to find a producer, a partner to work with who could help me to this goal. But, who? Who would help guide me and keep me from becoming myopic? Who would push me to think outside of my regular patterns? Who would sharpen me when I became dull?

Duh. Why not contact the very people who produced my favorite albums? Why not ask my musical heroes to work with me and help me to mold the songs into something that was more like my dreams than the dreams themselves? It was so simple. I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner. So I did. I called and asked. And the answer was yes. Actually, it was more than just a "Yes, we can work together." It was the biggest honor I could wrap my brain around, really. One of the people who crafts the albums which inspire me to feel alive and live fully and make music was actually telling me, "I like what you do, so you and I are going to make your art together and have some fun." I felt like I could die that day and be happy.

But, I didn't die. Instead I booked my flight to Sweden, where his studio is. Starting November 15th, I will be working with Christoffer Lundquist, the bass player of Brainpool and producer of one of my favorite albums of all times, "Stay Free" by Brainpool. We will spend 17 days in his studio to record 4-5 of the songs which will appear on my solo album. (I would have stayed long enough to do the whole record at once, but my work would not allow it.)

On top of that, he is going to play the songs with me and sing some harmonies with me. Neither of us play drums, though. But, that is not a big deal since he will get the Brainpool drummer (Jens Jansson) to play on the songs. Wow. My musical heroes. Singing and playing with me on my songs. I feel all shivery and giddy just thinking about it. If it sounds like a dream come true, that is because it is. And, I want to thank you for the support and love and friendship you have given me that has carried me to this place along my path, this roller coaster path where dreams can be a reality. I would not be able to do this without the foundation and framework that is built up from the moments I have shared with the extraordinary people this life has blessed me with. Thank you, thank you, thank you.


There is only one part of this equation that I don't have figured out. Money. Not surprisingly, I don't have enough money to pay for the producer and studio fees. I love to help and give but I hate to ask for help and feel like I don't really know how to. I think my pride prevents me. But, this is me swallowing my pride and asking. I need some help. If you can help me out financially in any way at all, whether it be $2 or $20 or $200, now is a time when I could really use it. So much love and thanks,
Justin Winokur

4 Nov 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at Malmö's studios (II): The Ark - Tell me this night is over

The Ark, the Swedish glam rock band from Malmö, has unleashed a new single from their second album, "In Lust We Trust". "Tell me this night is over" features Helena Josefsson (Sandy Mouche) as background singer.

8 Oct 2002

Sandy Mouche Autumn and Winter gigs (I): Sandy Autumn in Malmö (I)

Sandy Mouche was almost complete. They made a music demo in a studio where they met Danyal Taylan, a peasant with ears made to discover pop classics. He fell in love with the tunes and the four members fell in love with him.

The band was now complete although a few changes were made. Danyal took the bass in his hands and held it like it was his own child. Ola did the same thing but with the electric guitar. A natural switch and the circle was closed.
  • Helena Josefsson: Vocals and keyboards
  • Martin Nilsson (aka Martinique Josefsson): Vocals and guitar
  • Ola Blomgren: Guitars
  • Danyal Taylan: Bass
  • Per Blomgren: Drums
Sandy Mouche
"Sandy" - Sandy Mouche

Today Sandy Mouche have played in Malmö.

* Malmöfestivalen 2002 · 10 · 08
Malmöfestivalen, Malmö 2005 · 08 · 20
A culinary festival? A music festival? A culture festival? A folk festival? Lots of people try to categorise the Malmö festival, but who’s right? The answer is… everyone. The truth is that since 1985 the Malmö Festival is all of these things, and a little more besides.

* Inkonst, Malmö 2002 · 10 · 08
MALMÖ - Inkonst
Situated at Bergsgatan 29, in a retrofitted warehouse in central Malmö, Inkonst is a hub for all sorts of culture (club, theater, bar, restaurant, and office)

26 Aug 2002

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at Malmö's studios (I): The Ark - In Lust We Trust

The Ark is a Swedish glam rock band from Malmö formed in 1991 by Ola Salo, Mikael Jepson, and Lasse "Leari" Ljungberg, when Ola Salo and Leari were only fourteen years old. Martin Axén officially joined the band in 1997, and Sylvester Schlegel in 1999. Their first album, We are the Ark, was released in 2000, with five singles: "Let Your Body Decide" (2000), "It Takes a Fool to Remain Sane" (2000), "Echo Chamber" (2000), "Joy Surrender" (2001) and "Let Your Body Decide" (2001). After dedicating most of 2001 to touring and promoting "We are The Ark", the band withdrew to prepare the next assault.

The new album, "In Lust We Trust", unleashed today in Sweden, has been recorded with the producer Peter Kvint in some famous Swedish studios: Polar (Stockholm), Sandovie, Jailhouse (Denmark) and 9-Volt. (Malmö) The backing vocals include Helena Josefsson, Gladys Del Pilar , Paris Gilbert , Pelle Ankarberg and Sara Isaksson.

2002 The Ark - In lust we trust

Helena Josefsson, from Sandy Mouche, sings in 7 out of 11 songs: Beauty Is The Beast; Father Of A Son; Tell Me This Night Is Over; Calleth You, Cometh I; Disease; 2000 Light-Years Of Darkness; The Most Radical Thing To Do.

Calleth You, Cometh I, the first single, was released in February 2002. This week we can listen to the second one, Father Of A Son, about homosexuals' right to have children.

14 Aug 2002

P, C & C wanna be Ramones' boyfriends (X): Something in Swedish with a small band

Roxette has been recording this summer two new songs and the video of one of them: A thing about you.

According to Judith Seuma, from The Daily Roxette, Roxette is coming out soon with two compilation albums (Ballad hits and Pop hits), but Per Gessle has said today in Swedish newspapers that he is thinking of releasing a solo album too. Maybe in Swedish. The article states that Gessle has worked hard this summer. He has worked a lot with MP Persson in the Tits&Ass studio in Halmstad, to write songs and record them.

Some years ago he released a solo album in English, the report continues, but this time he wants to write it in Swedish, and release it in Sweden. According to Gessle's words, something in Swedish with a small band (he does not mention Gyllene Tider) ... and with the style of "I wanna be your boyfriend". It could be a new album with Clarence Öfwerman, Christoffer Lundquist and Jens Jansson. This "little" band could have its Swedish chance.

This new single of Roxette, A thing about you, will be a quite untypical song for Roxette, with acoustic guitars and a cello. I'm actually singing, while usually Marie takes care of the ballads.

I would like to do something in Swedish again, I havent done it for a while. I’m a bit tired of all the German TV shows. There´s something ’cooking’ - something getting ready. I have written for both Swedish and foreign artists. I can´t say anything else now, but I think you will hear them soon.

New songs for a solo project would sound like 'I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend' (my cover version of the classic Ramones' song). The style is so obvious and it would be nice to keep on working with a small band. Some of the songs I have written for Roxette are in that style. Power pop like ’Sleeping in My Car,’ but a bit more ’alive’ or ’pushing.’ However the record company was nagging about a compilation album. We have so many songs and have been aroud for so long that we thought it would be nice to separate the slow from the fast songs. I have written so many songs, and if we had thought about it - organised it a bit - we could have really released a new album instead. I think it’s funny, since in the pop business there are many artists who come and go. It´s proof of a kind of ’substance’ to be able to do such an album and besides be able to divide the two albums. It’s more like knocking on the door to say ’Hello, don’t forget that we’re still here.'
Per Gessle

20 Jul 2002

P, C & C wanna be Ramones' boyfriends (IX): Tres Hombres - 1960s music pictures

According to Roxette Service, Per Gessle, one of the owner of the Tres Hombres Art Gallery at Hotel Tylösand in Halmstad, Sweden, has opened a new exhibition with unique photographs from the 1960s pop world of e.g. the Beatles and Jimi Hendrix, that could reflect the world of his youth dreams at his boys' room at Furet in Halmstad.

Both 1960s photographers Robert Freeman, Gered Mankowitz and their documents from the 1960s pop mythology are being shown at the exhibition, together with works by other leading pop photographers such as Anton Corbijn, Rankin and Astrid Kircherr's 'pre-historic' documentation of the Beatles in Hamburg , Germany.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

These works play an important role in pop history. Simply remove the clothes and they could have been taken nowadays. When I look at this photo of Paul McCartney, I would like to capture the moment, this is how one would like to see Paul McCartney. Most of all I like the Small Face-picture entitled 'Plonk' (named after the bass player Ronnie 'Plonk' who is sitting in the foreground). There are not that many pictures of the Small Faces, although they've been one of the most important bands in London during this period - regarding both music and style.
Per Gessle

28 Jun 2002

The beginning of Sandy Mouche's live sound (II): Sandy June - Stockholm and Malmö

After their May debut gig in a tent in the Lundakarnevalen, Sandy Mouche have played in two important clubs of Stockholm and Malmö. It is their first appearance on the demostage and the beginning of the Sandy Mouche's live sound.

  • Helena Josefsson: Vocals and keyboards
  • Martin Nilsson (aka Martinique Josefsson): Vocals and guitar
  • Ola Blomgren: Bass
  • Per Blomgren: Drums

* Nalen, Stockholm 2002 · 06 · 19
STOCKHOLM - Nalen Restaurang STOCKHOLM - Nalen

Nalen is an unique historical building (1888) in Stockholm that preserves all its original charm from its golden years (mid1930s to the late 1960s), but at the same time ideal for modern shows. According to a travel guide: "
A series of stages, some glitzy and some low-key, make up Nalen, a longstanding, much-loved venue housed in a renovated 19th-century building in Östermalm. It hosts everything from dinner dances to up-and-coming local bands and touring hip hop stars."

* Shindra, Malmö 2002 · 06 · 27
MALMÖ Shindra (Klubb) - Gustaf Adolf Torg

Shindra is a nice night club in Gustav Adolfs Torg, Malmö. Another new band from Malmö, Emerald, has played there this month. With a open stage, it becomes a good place to play small acoustic gigs after a good dinner (Royal India Restaurang, with chef Sanad Chowdhury). Two bands per night.

14 Jun 2002

P, C & C wanna be Ramones' boyfriends (VIII): Stupid world premiere

According to The Daily Roxette, Jonas Åkerlund’s feature film “Spun” premiered at the CineVegas Film Festival in Las Vegas, U.S., last weekend with a Roxette song in the soundtrack.

The movie included “Stupid,” as indicated in the end credits: Written by Gessle, performed by Roxette. However, it was not featured in a prominent position. “Stupid” was playing in the background during one of the scenes while the characters were driving, but you can hardly hear the music due to dialogue.

There will be much comparision by movie critics between this movie and “Trainspotting,” because of similar themes and subject matter. The film had a very grainy look, similar to the “Salvation” video that was shot by Jonas on Super 8 film. There are cameo appearances from porn stars, the lead singer of Judas Priest, and the lead singer of “Smashing Pumpkins.”

“Spun” is expected to be released in movie theatres this fall. Jonas is a good friend of Per and Marie.


The song "Stupid" was originally recorded by Per Gessle with Clarence Öfwerman, Chris Lundquist, Jens Jansson and MP Persson to the album The world according to Gessle (1997).

It seems there is no good opportunity to this great song, not even in a film.

By the way, it is said that since the last days of May 2002, Per Gessle has been recording some new songs in Swedish with MP Persson and Milla Andersson in the Tits&Ass studio in Halmstad.

The short film continues winning many international prizes in 2002.

Music for One Apartment
and Six Drummers

(2001; 9 min 31 s)

  • Produced by: Kostr Film, SVT and Film i Skäne
  • Directors: Ola Simonsson, Johannes Stjärne Nilsson
  • Music: Ola Simonsson
  • Music productor: Magnus Börjeson

  • Aspen Shortfest 2002: Ellen Award to the Most Original Film
  • Bratislava Art Film Festival 2002: Silver Key
  • Sequence Short Film Festival Toulouse 2002: European Prize

23 May 2002

P, C & C wanna be Ramones' boyfriends (VII): I wanna be your boyfriend, the single

Per Gessle’s recording of “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” for the Ramones tribute album will be released as a commercial single in Scandinavia on May 27 and to the rest of Europe on June 10.

The single by Per Gessle is outtaken from the compilation The song Ramones The same. It will be also released as a 7' and as a 12' in 1,000 copies.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The vinyl 7” and the CD-single will include Per’s version of “Sheena Is A Punkrocker” and the 12” vinyl will have yet another track; Per’s version of “Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment”.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I wanna be your boyfriend was recorded by Per with Clarence Öfwerman, Christoffer Lundquist, Jens Jansson and MP Persson. The other covers were recorded by Per and MP after the success of the first single.

It is the first officially-released single of the team P, C & C.

22 May 2002

P, C & C wanna be Ramones' boyfriends (VI): Spun stupid

SPUN, directed by the Swedish Jonas Åkerlund, is a film about the life of some methamphetamin addicts. Starring Jason Schwartzman, John Leguizamo, Mena Suvari, Patrick Fugit, Peter Stormare, Brittany Murphy and Mickey Rourke.

The world premiere of Spun will take place on June 8th at the Palms Hotel and Casino during the CineVegas International Film Festival.

Jonas Åkerlund has also directed some Roxette videos. Per and Marie, who are both good friends with Jonas, will not be attending the premiere.

In the soundtrack features the song Stupid. Stupid was originally recorded by Per Gessle, Clarence Öfwerman, Christoffer Lundquist and Jens Jansson in 1996 and it was included in The world according to Gessle (1997)

This time, in the credits it is said that it is a Roxette song. In fact, in November 2001 the song was mixed again at Polar Studios, Stockholm, Sweden by "Shooting Star" in order to include Marie Fredriksson's vocals.

The Roxette version of “Stupid” is not expected to be released as a single ... again (it could have been the second single of TWATG in 1997).

10 May 2002

The beginning of Sandy Mouche's live sound (I): Lundakarnevalen, 2002

We will play on a tent at the Lund carnival - Lundkarnevalen. This big event is held every 4th year in the town of Lund. Be there, it´s really cool.

* Lundakarnevalen, Lund 2002 · 05 · 10

LUND - Sigrid Street

Once upon a time on a beach in a kingdom far away from the northern cold a name was created. The name was Sandy Mouche.

What the creators didn't know at the time was that Sandy Mouche was so much more than only a name. It became a person. A person who lives in every member of the band Sandy Mouche. She gives them comfort and advice when life seems pointless and grey. Together they are an unbreakable team with a mission: To help people learn how to love themselves. It is only then you truly can be happy.

With sand still between their toes Helena, Per and Martinique returned from paradise to complete the task. They needed someone who could master the art of playing the bass and together with drummerboy Per form a solid ground for the band to stand on. Per turned to his older brother Ola, a blond prince with a history of excellent string handling. He accepted the offer and the bass was handed to him.

The band was almost complete and a messege had to be made. A message that could give the people a taste of what they were about to experience from now on and many years to come.
  • Helena Josefsson: Vocals and keyboards
  • Martin Nilsson (a.k.a. Martinique Josefsson): Vocals and guitar
  • Ola Blomgren: Bass
  • Per Blomgren: Drums
If you're lucky enough to cross paths with the band the legend speaks of a rush of joy far beyond this world straight to your heart, right Sandy?

Sandy Mouche
"Sandy" - Sandy Mouche

24 Apr 2002

P, C & C wanna be Ramones' boyfriends (V): Night of the Proms

According to NOTP Official Website, Roxette will be the headline act this fall for “Night of the Proms,” an event that began as a student party and has evolved into a series of concerts performed in three countries: Belgium, Holland and Germany. Each year 3 international rock/pop acts, a classical and a local act per country are presented. The length of a show is approximately 3 hours including an interval. During this year's edition of the big event, which mixes classical music with pop and is therewith a time-ride through 200 years of popular music, Marie Fredriksson and Per Gessle take up the gage to perform a selection of their many pop hits to the accompaniment of the symphonic orchestra Il Novecento and the choir Fine Fleur.

The band broke through in the late eighties with numerous hits in the top of the charts. Among them were worldwide hits like “The Look”, “Dressed for Success,” “Listen To Your Heart,” “It Must Have Been Love,” “Joyride,” “How Do You Do!,” “Sleeping In My Car,” “Run To You,” “Crash! Boom! Bang!,” and “Wish I Could Fly.” Sixteen years later the band can show impressive sales figures (more than 40 million albums and 15 million singles sold) and look back on some very successfull world tours. Their seductive mix of pop tunes full of irony and obvious “power ballads” today still sound as fresh and catchy as in those days, when their songs first started to get airplay.”

Marie Fredriksson and Per Gessle will make their 'Night Of The Proms 2002'-playlist from the songs Joyride, Wish I could fly, Crash! Boom! Bang!, It must have been love, The Look and Dressed for success.

All the songs are composed by Gessle (some with MP Persson). It is the second time Per is involved in something related with Classical music. Don't forget the "View from the bridge" project with Clarence Öfwerman and Christoffer Lundquist. Per could be helped again by Clarence and Chris.

Christoffer Lundquist's band, Brainpool, keep on working in their rock opera since the first months of 2000. It's not finished yet. It seems David Birde, Jens Jansson and David Birde, the members of Brainpool, have no official plans of any kind of release this year.

Once we were left alone, our creativity suddenly flourished. But it also led us down some strange paths that we probably wouldn’t have followed if we’d still been tied up with our record company and all their expectations of continuous releases and of us selling a certain number of records. With that sort of pressure the process would’ve been different. As it is, I haven’t had a clue what the hell we’re doing for the last few years!

As a band, we’ve laid low for a while. People haven’t heard from us apart from our close friends, who’ve known about us writing a rock opera. Occasionally people have asked us, “how is your rock opera coming along” and laughed condescendingly. And our answer has always been: “well, we’re struggling along!”. There are so many dedicated people out there, struggling with things they believe in, without anything ever coming of it! Does that mean it’s a failure? I don’t think so, I think it’s just as admirable as actually succeeding, against all odds. Because the author scan never make sure that their work’s a success. It’s always up to the public to decide on that. As an artist, you just do your bit and hope for the best!
David Birde (Junk Musik)
David Birde - Junk Musik