30 July 2014: Radio Lundgren
Jan was guest of the day during Monday 28 July’s P4 Extra programme on the fourth channel of Sveriges Radio (which is broadly the Swedish equivalent of Radio 4 in the UK, or NPR in the US). You can listen to it here on SR4’s website. The interview begins at around 28:30 into the show, and features a relaxed Jan chatting amiably about things like JLT’s Flowers Of Sendai album, his early career, YSJF and tennis. The slot also includes a broadcast of Man in the fog (taken from the eponymous CD) – which, let’s face it, is always a pleasure to hear again.
29 July 2014: All By Myself available at Ystad
Jan has emailed FoJL to tell us that CDs of his new solo album, All By Myself, arrived in Sweden last Friday. So, if you’re attending YSJF 2014 and want to pick up a copy hot from the presses (or however they make CDs these days), there should be plenty to go around. Jan adds: “I have to say that this is probably at the top of all the recordings I’ve made as a pianist. It’s an album of standards, but still… For once, I think I’m satisfied with my playing. The sound is great and there are excellent liner notes written by Doug Ramsey and Mark Gardner.”
29 July 2014: Play it again, Mattias
News reaches us that Can you please?, the Mattias Svensson composition from I Love Jan Lundgren Trio, has so far been streamed on Spotify no fewer than 150,000 times. That’s an incredibly big number for a jazz tune from an album that was released only last November. It means that between 2,000 and 3,000 people are listening to the track every day.
29 July 2014: Breaking records?
It looks like the 2014 Ystad Sweden Jazz Festival (YSJF) may be about to break its previous records for advanced ticket sales and press attendance. Jan says that over 5,000 tickets have already been sold for the Festival, which is far in excess of the figure for YSJF 2012 (you remember – the one where Quincy Jones headlined). And more than 100 journalists are attending, including Josef Woodard from DownBeat, and Doug Ramsey, who’s been assigned to cover YSJF by the Wall Street Journal.
Jan tells us that he was recording – yet again! – for two days in early July down in Copenhagen. It’s a Jan Lundgren-Harry Allen Quartet album of Johnny Mandel songs, with a line-up that includes Swedish bassist Hans Backenroth (right) and Danish drummer Kristian Leth. The recording, for Denmark-based Stunt Records, was made at STC Studios (formerly Sun Studio) and engineered by Andreas Hviid. The album’s release is scheduled for November, and Jan says there should be an accompanying tour as well.
22 July 2014: Holiday romance
The week 29 edition (14-20 July) of Swedish magazine allas carried a column by comedienne Anna-Lena Brundin in which she talks enthusiastically about jazz and about how, during a holiday in Italy in June this year, she attended a performance at Imola by Jan with Massimo Greco, the Italian trumpet player. Was it love at first sight? Probably not, because we’ve since discovered that Jan and Anna-Lena have previously used the same piano tuner…
21 July 2014: New Jan Lundgren solo album!
You wait over 20 years for a solo Jan Lundgren studio album, and then you suddenly get two within 18 months… Keen readers of JLN will know that Jan spent part of January this year in Los Angeles. FoJL can now reveal what he was doing there: recording a solo album of standards, titled All By Myself. It should be released – on the Fresh Sound label – just in time for the 2014 Ystad Sweden Jazz Festival. How fantastically exciting is that?! We don’t have any artwork yet, so we’ve included a nice picture of downtown LA instead.
21 July 2014: Second time around
Jan has been working on a new project called Swedish Folklore NOW!, which has its first-ever performance on 3 August at the 2014 Ystad Sweden Jazz Festival. The project brings the Jan Lundgren Trio together with veteran Swedish arranger Bengt-Arne Wallin and the Bohuslän Big Band (pictured), and includes reworked versions of classic pieces like Kullerullvisan and Gärdebylåten. It’s an opportunity not to be missed. But don’t worry if you can’t make it to Ystad, because there’s a second chance to catch it all a week later on 11 August at Skansen in Stockholm.
1 July 2014: Gone, but not forgotten
Tomorrow it will be exactly one year since the great Bengt Hallberg died. It reminds FoJL that there are two marvellous films of Bengt playing with (and talking about) Jan. The first is a short teaser video produced by Volenza to promote the Back To Back album. The second is a much longer excerpt, starting at around 30:00 into the film, from their concert at the 2012 Ystad Sweden Jazz Festival. It’s part of a documentary made by the Swedish public service broadcaster SVT (which closes with an additional performance by Jan with Richard Galliano and Paolo Fresu). Do have a look at these videos if you’ve never seen them: nothing quite beats the magic of watching Bengt and Jan doing their thing, back to back on stage.
24 June 2014: We’ll always have Paris
Tidningen Kulturen – which roughly translates as ‘The Culture Newspaper’ – interviewed Jan (in Swedish) the day after the French release concert for Flowers Of Sendai in Paris on 16 June. The interview spans a range of subjects, from Jan’s boyhood discovery of jazz to improvising on stage. And if that’s not enough, there’s also a photo of Monsieur Lundgren contemplating the Parisien traffic from his hotel balcony.
18 June 2014: Les fleurs de Sendai – en direct sur votre iPod!
Last night’s live JLT broadcast from Paris on the France Musique radio show, Un mardi idéal, is now available as a podcast. To get hold of it, go to the programme’s web page. Jan and the boys kick off their slot at around 15:30 minutes into the show with a decidedly upbeat Man in the fog, followed by Transcendence. Jan then chats eclectically (in English) about traditional Swedish songs, playing tennis and the Ystad Sweden Jazz Festival. He returns at 56:00 with a solo Lush life. Magnifique.
12 June 2014: The jive master speaks
JLT bassist Mattias Svensson – the ‘M’ in Jive master M on I Love Jan Lundgren Trio (in case you hadn’t guessed already) – has given an interview to Hallå Landskrona, a news website (in Swedish) for Mattias’ hometown of Landskrona down on the southeast coast of Sweden. It’s not often we get to hear from Mattias directly, so it’s nice to have found this article. And if you’re still wondering why he’s dubbed the ‘jive master’, you’ll have to wait for the third edition of JLN to find out…