In a bid to harness the existing diplomatic relationship between two nations, a Norwegian band, Svermere is in the country to institute a cultural bond that will foster a musical exchange between artists from the two countries.
The band apart from holding two concerts is expected to host a two-day workshop in collaboration with Music crossroads Malawi Chapter, before teaming up with participants to the workshop for musical performances.
The workshop will run from July 4-5 in Lilongwe with the two concerts set for the evenings of Thursday 5 July at Zeni-Zeni, Area 23 in Lilongwe-Free of charge-and Friday 6 July at Zanzi, Area 4 at K 1,000 per person.
According to one of the band members Eirik Hoff Walmsness, some of the local artists Svermere is expected to work with include the 2011 Southern Africa Music Crossroads winners, Konkalazi band, which has just returned from its month long European tour.
“Together with Mathews Mfune in Music Crossroads, we got this idea of hosting a workshop with my band coming down from Norway. Everything is now set, the workshop will showcase a musical exchange, while exposing the musical collaboration with the participants. That is exactly our aim; to create an exchange between Malawian and Norwegian musicians,” explained Hoff Walmsness.
Hoff Walmsness believes the interaction between the artists will create a better understanding of Malawian and Norwegian cultures through music.
“Svermere is just as keen on learning from Malawian musicians, as we are to share our own tradition. We believe we can, and this will be a very unique opportunity. The two shows will demonstrate a musical fusion never exposed to the Malawi audience, and we can’t wait. We are thankful for the collaboration with Music Crossroads,” said Hoff Walmsness, who plays drum.
Svermere plays traditional Norwegian folk music, drawing inspiration from jazz, rock and ‘world music’. The band has performed at several festivals in Norway and released two albums “Sylfest Mork” (2010) and Fjellblomen (2011). It is currently working on its next release, scheduled for 2013.
And this is not first time the group has worked with musicians from Africa, as in 2010 it collaborated with artists in Windhoek, Namibia.
Svermere’s music, Hoff Walmsness said, is based on the traditional melodies from the various regions of Norway. This is not yet written, but has travelled from father to son in generations, by “aural” tradition.
“Our aim is to “preserve” these melodies by putting them in a new context, with modern instruments and new grooves, creating a new ‘fresh take’ on folk music, while still keeping true to the roots and tradition,” he added.
Svermere band members include Aslak Brimi (violin), Svein Tore Werstad (saxophone), Torbjørn Netland (guitar) and Eirik Husum who plays bass guitar as well as the drummer, Eirik Hoff Walmsness himselfFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :