The year was 1984 and I was a music teacher at Hartvig Nissens Skole, one of the two high schools in Oslo to offer a full music line. Besides teaching music history, harmony, music theory, and conducting the school choir, we had a class choir in my class, plus some of the girls formed a harmony octet. Norwegian TV made a feature for the program Musikknytt, and here is the result.
In 1979 Chipahua was formed with members coming from the Institute of Musicology at the University in Oslo, together with some of the best singers and jazz rock musicians in Norway. They played around at clubs, and soon became the house band at legendary Oslo club, Club 7. During the years they had some personnel changes, but the nucleus of the band is still the same as in 1979.
The second night of Blues in Hell had John Mayall as the headliner. They also had a CD release concert by Reidar Larsen and a surprisingly good concert with Tor Einar Bekken, Richard Gjems and Noora Noor in the acoustic tent. Swedish Knockout Greg & The Injectors followed up with a stylish and powerful concert before, like on Friday night, Davina & The Vagabonds closed the night in the acoustic tent, and The Travellin Brothers did the same on the main stage. (Picture above: Travellin Brothers)
Every year when August is fading away, I have one more festival to look forward to, The Blues in Hell Festival. It is the perfect way to end the festival season, with great blues bands and artists and in the good company of a big part of the Norwegian blues family. Blues in Hell is a intimate festival with high quality artists playing in two tents, the Magic Mirror and an acoustic tent. The first night is over, and here are the artists I saw Friday night in Hell. (Picture above: The Etta James Experience)
Vidar Busk has played blues professionally for almost two thirds of his life since he was sixteen years old. It has been a roller coaster with ups and downs during these thirty years. Musically he has always been sharp, and he has moved in and out of styles, from rockabilly and jump blues through New Orleans style music to soul, but the blues has always been there. These days he is back with his old band, His True Believers, and yesterday night they played at Rockefeller in Oslo.
Seigmen was one of Norway’s best rock bands in the 90’s with their unique style and CD and live successes all over the country. In 1999, ten years after they started, they broke up. Then they reunited in 2005, and have been coming back with irregular frequency the last ten years. Last night they held their last gig in Oslo on their Enola tour, closing it in Bergen tonight.
Last week, on the day before the Pstereo festival, The Black Sorrows played in Trondheim. There aren’t many Australian bands that play regularly in Norway, the last one I saw was Tame Impala, and then AC/DC played here this summer. The Black Sorrows are maybe not as ell known as these two, but their super hit, The Chosen Ones, is better known than the band itself. (Picture above: Joe Camilleri)
The Pstereo festival is one of my favorite festivals, held in Trondheim in the second half of August, usually the week after the Øya festival. Both festival have some commonalities in that they have both eclectic bookings. At Pstereo this means that you have pop, electronica, Americana, metal and hip hop on the same stage. Here are photos of the artists at Pstereo 2015. (Picture above: Yelawolf)
The Oya festival has a tradition where a popular Norwegian artist opens early on the last day. This year, deLillos was the opener, and another Norwegian artist, Susanne Sundfør, was the headliner on the main stage. Between them many other artists performed, and the closing artist in the tent was Thåström. The last day of the Oya festival 2015 was a perfect way to close a perfect festival. (Photo above: Thåström)
Friday at Oya 2015 was a day with many Norwegian artists and bands, plus one very positive international surprise. The headliner this day was Beck, while Lars Vaular from Bergen was the closing artist in the tent. Before that we had folk, Americana, a performance, Ida Jenshus and many more. (Picture above: Samuel Herring from Future Islands)