2 Aug 2005

P, C & C lay down some harmony (I): the project starts taking shape and some Roxette fans do not want Helena as "the substitute"

Some fans of Roxette got really angry when they read what Swedish tabloid Expressen writes tod a y: "27 year old Helena Josefsson will replace Marie Fredriksson in a new international music project planned by Per Gessle" and "an album will be released this winter or next spring, and a tour is almost certain to follow". Accoding to TDR, nothing of the above has been confirmed and Helena just said to Expressen: “Yes, we’ve been in the studio recording some material, but I don’t want to talk about it at the moment.” Expressen mentions a “deeply involved” source and some Roxette's fans put the blame on Helena: for talking too much and for "replacing Marie" in Roxette.

LJdM wants to give its opinion too: no opinion is needed. It's already known that Per Gessle, Christoffer Lundquist and Clarence Öfwerman are working in the studio since December 2004. And it's not a surprise that Helena Josefss on is involved again after her great work in Mazarin and in two songs of Gyllene Tider's last album. Nobody speaks about a new Roxette without Marie Fredriksson, just some poor Roxette fans that really miss the band and want Per and Marie to come back together; maybe some of them can not understand why Marie released a new solo album in English last year instead a Roxette's one.

GöteborgsPosten (Gothenburg Daily) publishes a more interesting article with info about the forthcoming album. If the project will be a solo album, a new group name or what language will finally make the cut, Per doesn’t want to go into. However, he gladly mentions the wide spread of material they have recorded. “I have recorded so many different kinds of music, a musical testament if you will. Instrumentals, westerns, horny three-chord pieces, some green country, a nine-mi nute bubble gum pop medley, spiced with a falsetto blues. We’ll see where we land. Everything is very spontaneous, fun and exciting,” Per says to GP. Per estimates that they need another 30 studio days. When the album will be released is not yet determined, however, it does seem to be followed by a tour, Gessle seems eager: “Of course it would be great to meet my possible audience again!”.

According to Thomas Evensson, from TDR, "Helena Josefsson sings normally in the band Sandy M ouc he, but is known to the greater mass as the backup singer on Per’s successful album “Mazarin” and tour. The Daily Roxette has received a short statement from Per Gessle regarding Expressen’s article today: “It is not, and has neve r been, an option to replace Marie in what’s been called a ’new Roxette’. She is – of course – irreplaceable!!! I still hope, and believe, that there are great things in Roxette’s future.” Per continues to tell TDR that Helena’s involvement in his new solo album has been on the same level as with “Mazarin”."

On account of Expressen’s strange article today, I will hereby give you some information regarding my current musical project.

I’ve been hyperactive in Christoffer Lundquist’s studio in Skåne off and on since December 2004 and recorded a whole bunch of songs both in Swedish and in English. Some make you dance, some make you smile, some are instrumentals while others have some lyrics in French. It’s very exciting and we have a very good time – eating and drinking well. The musicians I’ve been using are essentially the same as on ’Mazarin’; i.e., Clarence Öfwerman, Christoffer Lundqvist, Jens Jansson and Helena Josefsson. The album is recorded in stereo and is thought to be finished sometime this fall.

Not ever has it been my intention to try to create a ’new Roxette’, and Helena Josefsson is thus NOT IN THE CARDS as my “duo partner”. Helena’s and my voices go together like pancakes and jam. I still hope, and believe that Roxette will continue sometime in the future and I’m also of that opinion that Marie Fredriksson is IRREPLACEABLE!

As soon as I get closer to a finish of the above mentioned project, I promise to reveal both song titles, sleeve ideas and how we tuned our guitars. Until then, all the best from Jolly Halmstad.
Per Gessle

Per Gessle said the right things of course, and pronto. If Helena’s quotations in Expressen weren’t perverted by journalists, then he probably has to admit that her words were indeed susceptible to some renderings; she somehow made it sound as if it’d be more than backup involvement. And so I’d run the risk of saying that she wasn’t exaggerating - I have the feeling that Helena’s contribution on his new album is slightly more solid than it was on Mazarin. Which I find interesting and provoking, far from being out of place. She has that kind of voice and presence that go well with his solo style.

The fact that the TDR-inhabitants suddenly became restless and made their point straightly and airily has however signalized a direction of the “public opinion”; which Gessle needs quite much, I assume. (and if he’d go today to the nearest Ica, he’d sure have red piece of paper to sign)

I wouldn’t unhesitatingly plead for an English solo album though. Too much pressure on him and too many rather incontrollable elements when a Swedish personal album will be thrown out on the international market. It’s a bit scary and a bit exciting and the tension does him good, but well, doing it “his own way” is not really compatible with doing it for the whole world. Gessle is not Cohen, he doesn’t write poetry for being put on music, he writes pop music that fans expect to be “personal” in a different way. Writing personal AND international pop songs involves the strong belief that the world (still) has the same music taste as you have. But fortunatelly/unfortunatelly, this is rather doubtful. So, all in all, I suddenly became emotive.

Adela Toplean
Adela Toplean - A_T_ blog

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