Jazz på Svenska
November 29, 2011 4:00 PM   Subscribe

Swedish dreams: Jan Johansson was an amazing Swedish jazz musician and composer, author of the ground-breaking Jazz på Svenska, where Swedish folk music was combined with jazz improvisation. He inspired other European artists, like Niels Henning Ørsted Pedersen. But for younger Europeans, his most important achievement is the creation of the Pippi song. If you grew up with this, no wonder you like melancholic jazz....

In this tradition, one can find children's TV like this
A key to the Johansson album could be the 30's Scandinavian jazz recordings which echoed the contemporary American depression songs. One of my favorites is Hvorfor er lykken så lunefuld? Why is happiness so fickle? Why is joy so short? And the guy you love, why did he leave?
There is a whole canon of sad songs from the 30's, from all the nordic countries. Translated into a new nordic jazz tradition in the post-war tradition, enhanced by a glamourous group of American exiles, like Ben Webster and Dexter Gordon
posted by mumimor (4 comments total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
Nice links -- there's a whole world of Danish jazz from the 30s and 40s out there I never knew of! The Pedersen/Drew piece is very pretty and quite seamless. The Pippi song, not so much!
posted by binturong at 4:31 PM on November 29, 2011

Jazz på Svenska is the perfect nighttime highway driving album, with or without toddlers needing sleep. Thanks for the extra background.
posted by drowsy at 4:55 PM on November 29, 2011 [2 favorites]

I just heard Stepp, min stepp for the first time a couple of days ago. It's so warmly dark.
posted by ignignokt at 5:48 PM on November 29, 2011 [2 favorites]

I'll have to dig into the FPP links in a bit... but another interesting fusion between Jazz and Swedish folk music has been happening for a while with Benny Andersson (keyboardist and songwriter for ABBA) and his Benny Anderssons Orkester. They blend traditional folk, big band jazz, and ABBA-style pop with an ease and joy that I haven't heard elsewhere. I have all their albums and love them a lot.

I can dig up more examples later, but here's Vår Sista Dans, one of their more popular tunes.
posted by hippybear at 6:23 PM on November 29, 2011

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