Here's the playlist for this week's radio show Sirius XMU, a special post-SXSW extra-mellow episode:
01. TALK 1
02. Dead Letters Spell Out Dead Words - Lost & losing
03. Raison d'Étre - Withstand the fire
04. The Bear Quartet - Carry your weight
05. TALK 2
06. Rasmus Kellerman - Five years from now
07. Jóhann Jóhannsson - Theme
08. Håkon Kornstad - Oslo
09. TALK 3
10. Patrik Andersson & Vegar Vårdal - Gråtaren
11. Folkvang - Myrmark
12. Hello Saferide - Arjeplog
13. David Åhlén - Great is thy faithfulness
14. TALK 4
15. Tsukimono - Gloomy Sunday
16. Hearts No Static - Happy holidays
17. Ted Gärdestad - Come give me love
18. TALK 5
Reminder: my show airs every week on Sundays and Mondays at 11pm ET on Sirius XMU. That's channel 26 on Sirius, 43 on XM and 831 for DirecTV subscribers.
"In the large deserted woods on both sides of the Swedish-Norwegian border, Finnish people settled down in the 15th- and 16th century. These areas are now called "Finnskogen", the Finnish woods. The settlers came from difficult times in Finland, and burned down forest to cultivate rye in the ashes. In these vast forests it was hard to tell if you were in Sweden or Norway. Culture does not know borders either, and the music is a common Swedish- Norwegian tradition.
So reads the intro text on "Finnskogen brinner", the collaboration between Swedish fiddle artist Patrik Andersson and his Norwegian counterpart Vegar Vårdal. I am by no means attuned to the many regional differences in Scandinavian folk tradition, so I can't begin to explain how the music of Finnskogen, but these gentlemen play beautifully together. Some of the more minimal folk records I've been listening to as part of my "Listen to Norway" exploration (this is #5) can get grating, especially with the uncertain harmonies of the Hardanger Fiddle, but this one never falters. Two players and their instruments, maybe a little foot-tapping; that's all you need. "Dette var sagt at når Halteguten, Ola Porkkala, spilte denne valsen kunne ikke folk la vaere å gråte."
My apologies for not keeping up with weekly posts in this series, but my dayjob workload has been astounding. Rest assured, there will be lots more music (folk and otherwise) posted in weeks to come.
Patrik Andersson & Vegar Vårdal - Gråtaren