On Friday, there were two terrorist attacks in Oslo, Norway. An artist I know from Norway, Morten Rand-Hendriksen, told me about a huge thing going on in Norway right now around a particular song called "Mitt Lille Land" (my little country). It's a song originally by a man named Ole Paus that the young artist Maria Mena has covered. After the attacks she put her version online and encouraged everyone to upload their own versions of the same song.
Here is Maria Mena's version of "Mitt Lille Land":
The song was performed at the Rose March in Oslo yesterday (Monday, July 25, 2011) by a different artist, not Maria Mena.
When I was putting this together, I got a short language lesson in Norwegian from Morten Rand-Hendriksen, who told me that "Norwegian is tricky because you have equal weight on every syllable unless you ask a question." My pronunciation is questionable, to say the least, but he was so nice to attempt to teach me.
I also brought in music from a Norwegian songwriter and guitarist named Thomas Dybdahl. He was the guitarist for the Norwegian band Quadrophonics, but released his first solo EP back in 2000, so he's been doing the solo thing for a number of years. He's been somewhat unknown outside of Norway, but he's a busy guy. Thomas is compared to Nick Cave and Jeff Buckley, just to give you an idea of what he kind of sounds like. He's opened for fellow Norwegian musician Sondre Lerche, performed on Morcheeba's 2008 album Dive Deep, and won a very prestigious music prize in Norway, called Spellemannprisen, which is the Norwegian equivalent of the Junos or Grammys (again, thank you Morten).
Thomas Dybdahl has just released a new compilation album; it's his North American debut, called Songs, and from it, here's "Cecilia":
If like that Thomas Dybdahl song and want check out one of his shows, tonight's your night: he's here tonight at The Media Club (my favourite place at which to hear/see shows like this). Doors open at 8, and the show starts at 9:30.
Thanks again to Morten Rand-Hendriksen for trying to teach me how to pronounce words in Norwegian.