Archive for the ‘Jämtland (County)’ Category

I am 59 years old as of today so one more year to go before the big 60. Not that I care much. It is just a number. It will mean that I am one year closer to retirement though, which will happen (the way I see it now) at 65. We shall see. I consider myself a pretty lucky guy. Born in a country like Sweden in 1961 was a blessing. It was a very safe environment. We had a library closeby when I was a kid and that was a blessing too. I read books when I was 10, not just comics and stuff like that but thick books on history and of all the wonders and the mysteries of this world. In the 1960s I listened to the radio because it was the only outlet, but I was lucky in that my mother bought records that I enjoyed so I used to raid her collection. So much great stuff, Elvis, Tom Jones, The Hollies, Cliff Richard. Then you saw Elvis on TV and he certainly made an impression. Then it was The Monkees, also on TV. The first album I ever owned was an album by The Monkees. Then I got “Jesus Christ Superstar”, and without knowing it at the time (this was probably in 1970) I had now touched on the Deep Purple Family (as singer Ian Gillan sang the part of Jesus on that album). In 1971 I discovered Deep Purple and so at age 10 I dived deep into the wonderful world of rock music and radio was the natural outlet still. And friends in school that had older brothers and sisters whom owned great albums (that is how I stumbled across Purple). It was the age of great discoveries, but Deep Purple would remain the heroes.

On TV, you had a lot of Westerns. I know now that the boss of the two channels that existed back then was a huge fan of the genre, and he made sure that the Swedish people got to see all the classics (still love that stuff to this day), and we also got High Chaparral (which, along with The Addams Family surely added something to my cultural DNA). Once a week you had a detective story on TV that everybody watched. There was a bunch of them over the years that everybody loved – Columbo, McCloud, Baretta, Kojak, Cannon etc etc. The 1970s was awesome. I recall a summer (could have been 1973) when TV aired all the classic horror films and we all watched them. That introduced horror comics. The comic book scene was fantastic. So much to chose from, and so I collected a lot of titles. I used to draw comics myself, just for fun. But this interest gave way to music and in 1978 I created my first publication, a magazine called DEEP PURPLE MAGAZINE. Within a year I started to write for newspapers. In 1981 I got to meet Whitesnake in Stockholm (interviews with David Coverdale and Jon Lord can be found on this blog). That changed things and within a year or two I met a lot of the artists that visited Sweden. By 1986 I started to write for major publications abroad, like METAL HAMMER in Europe and METAL (published by CREEM) in the States.

Did radio, did a lot of things. It is all a bit of a blur now but I recall a lot of it. At 30 I was a bit tired of it all so I slowed down and started another Purple fanzine, this time it was a publication called DEEP PURPLE FOREVER. This went on for 13 years and then I started to publish magazines with a much broader content (basically anything I wanted to include, with one foot in the past and one in the present). This only ended after me having done over 100 magazines a few years ago. I never gave up on music. I never stopped reading magazines and books. I felt that good bands were still coming along although the 1990s had been pretty brutal. There will always be good stuff out there. Always. If you can not find it you are not looking.

That attitude had me check out Babymetal in March 2017 (I mentioned it on this blog that very day) and My God did they surprise the hell out of me. It was like 40+ years of Rock and Metal had to happen before this could even be considered. And a lot of other cultural stuff coming out of Asia as well. Babymetal came out when the time was right and we suddenly had this wonderful weird thing that defied all logic. But it worked and it was beautiful. And they are now pulling in yet another generation into the music that I have loved for 50 years now. It will never go away. Hell, I hope it lasts forever. I need it until the day I leave this earth and I think it will always be there. The classic bands will go away but new music will come along. Just look at all the talent. Look at all the young kids that are playing their instruments on YouTube clips like they have been at it for decades. They will hopefully be in bands some day and of course many of them will. All this stuff is like positive energy to me. I think I share that feeling with a lot of people.

Wow, this turned into a bit of a rant. I guess when you look back on a lot of great things it is only natural to look forward too. I do think that art and culture is good for the soul, for our very wellbeing. I spend some time almost daily with this blog, because it is fun. Maybe some of you are here because you share some of my interests. All I know is that, for the moment this is my outlet. This is my little universe. At 59 and with everything I have seen, I think I should be allowed to rant a bit every now and then. It is like half of me is a grumpy old geezer (I loved that TV show, if you know the one I am talking about), but I still have a lot of positive energy. I try to stay positive on this blog. There is way too much negativity out there as it is.

Of course, one year from now, we either live in a normalized place again, or we are well and truly fucked…

(My top image – had to have one for this rant)

Got to love Japan. They were always big on guitar heroes over there and here we have a couple of knockout covers from the old days. Player #276 (1989) and Viva Rock (Deep Purple Family Special from 1980). Eddie Van Halen shot by Steve Jennings, the Ritchie Blackmore cover is uncredited. Powerful images, they really capture some excitement. 344 and 140 pages. My old friends in 220 Volt are featured in the Player magazine. Had forgot about that.

(My shot of said publications)

I published DEEP PURPLE FOREVER #3 in September 1991 and I will translate a couple of pieces from it in the next couple of weeks (this being the first). I had just spent a decade writing for magazines and newspapers so I had a lot to draw from that I could use in this publication. I enjoyed it all very much and it is good fun to look back on this stuff now. I printed 32 issues of DEEP PURPLE FOREVER. #3 had a great cover shot of Ian Gillan by my friend Michael Johansson. The first story is titled “Toto and Deep Purple”. Enjoy…

TOTO AND DEEP PURPLE

Toto is the musicians and the artists favourite band. When they perform you will see loads of familiar faces in the VIP section. Trust me on this. I have seen it again and again. Having said that though, even guys like these have idols themselves, and this is were Deep Purple comes into the picture.

I have met Toto several times in the last few years, Steve Lukather on six different occations. We have certainly chatted about past influences, music that has mattered. We also have an interesting detail that draws Toto into our sphere of interest even deeper as drummer Jeff Porcaro actually played with Tommy Bolin on his “Teaser” album.

So let us begin there and pretend that you are with me at the Hotel Sheraton in Stockholm a few years ago with the band at a press conference. They will play at the Johanneshov Arena later that night and after the press thing I ask Jeff if he would mind posing with a copy of the UK Deep Purple Appreciation Society magazine Darker Than Blue which sports a nice Tommy Bolin cover. He politely agreed and as I took a couple of snapshots keyboard player David Paich popped by and said “Is that Tommy Bolin?”. It turns out that they have a good deal of love and respect for Tommy. Jeff also mentions that he played on some tracks for “Private Eyes” too, but that it was not used. It is well known that Tommy recorded quite a lot of stuff at this point which Jeff can confirm.

I tried to get confirmation on a story that Iron Maiden (and former Gillan guitarist) Janick Gers had told me back in 1982, that Tommy had been in pretty bad shape during these recordings and that a guy that had been in the studio at the time had told him that he even fell off a chair at one point when he was doing a solo and ended up on the floor unconscious. Jeff was not inclined to answer the question and I could tell that he did not like it. “There are things that is nobody elses business”. Clearly, Jeff is still disturbed over the fate of Tommy and very protective to this day.

(I just want to insert here that I am not proud of that question, I was way out of line and Jeff was right in his response)

Steve Lukather, one of the top guitarists in the world today, recalls his influence of Tommy. “My roots in jazz rock is Jeff Beck and Tommy Bolin. I still remember the first time that I heard “Spectrum”, it was just unbelievable. They all performed so well on that album, Jan Hammer, Cobham… and it was all live, which makes it even more incredible. You can even hear Tommy lose a guitar string in one of the tunes. I was also a big fan of James Gang, both with Joe Walsh and Tommy and I still love to jam songs by them with my friends”.

Steve is also a fan of Deep Purple. “I was a big fan in my teens and I still listen to them. I love these guys. I love Ritchie Blackmore. He has a very distinctive feel. So many guys are copying him now but he is the greatest. I have no idea how he deals with that but in a way it is complimentary although it would be better for these guys if they tried to find their own thing”.

Then our conversation turned to Glenn Hughes. “He used to date my wifes sister a few years ago so I know him well. Have you met him lately? Do you know what he is up to? He sings on the new Whitesnake album? (This chat was had when Whitesnake was about to release “Slip Of The Tongue”). I have heard that David Coverdale is spending a lot of money on Whitesnake now. I heard that Steve Vai got 300,000 dollars to join”.

Another time, when we meet backstage at the Globe Arena after a Toto show I ask him if the rumour that he plays on an upcoming Glenn Hughes solo album is true. Sadly, the answer was that this is not the case. “I have not met Glenn in a while now. I have called him a few times but he has always been out. Had he asked I might have done it, even though I am a bit tired of guesting on other peoples records”.

I can understand where he is coming from here, since the critics have always loved to hate Toto and that they have looked down on them as being nothing but a bunch of studio musicians (how crazy is that?). The truth is that they have certainly played with a lot of people, but only because they have been in demand because they are so good. And how do you say no to friends? Living in Los Angeles, you are in the thick of it. “I did sing a little on the new Van Halen album”, he said in our last conversation. “But we are neighbors and close buddies. Eddie gave me a song for my first solo album and played on that”.

I will end this piece with a few words and thoughts about Toto. The critcs in this country, and pretty much everywhere, have always hated them. My take is that this has occured because they came along when everybody was praising the punk movement. So they had to hate something and Toto became a part of that hatred. This is pathetic beyond belief. We now have a second generation of critics that are just repeating the same old crap. The fact remains that these guys can play, they have it all down and they bloody well know how to rock. This is never going to be accepted though, which is a shame. The critics will just follow the gospel, that Toto are boring session musicians and nothing more. Well I have seen them play Jimi Hendrix stuff and they crushed it. Just over the top superb versions. Steve is a rocker, trust me.

Michael Eriksson DPF 1991 / Trinkelbonker 2020

I want to add that it has been nice to see Steve Lukather support the Deep Purple family in recent years, praising them on camera and playing on a Tommy Bolin tribute album. Kudos Steve.

(My shot of said article in DPF 3 – “Teaser” ad on the right side)

I located an unpublished (on this blog that is) interview I did with Roger Glover of Deep Purple back in 1996 recently. There are more of them (both on this blog and in old magazines) but I will publish this particular chat right here this weekend. I had a hunch that I had not published it here and as I read it in DEEP PURPLE FOREVER #15 (September 1996) today I realized that it is a pretty good one. Deep Purple did 10 gigs in Sweden inside a couple of weeks that summer and I saw three. They got a shitload of press too and many of these articles were reprinted in this magazine. This was the good old days, when it was a lot of fun to have a Deep Purple club going. A short text of this crazy week was published online in English and I thought it was good fun to read it again today in this magazine (certainly brought back a lot of memories), so why not publish it here as a preview of the upcoming interview? The Glenn Hughes interview that is mentioned in this story can be found on this blog (May 12 2015). So, here we go…

A FEW WORDS ABOUT A VERY BUSY WEEK!

I just blew one week in what seemed like five minutes to me. So I must have spent most of it in the Twilight Zone or something! Here is what actually happened.

June 25. Payday. DEEP PURPLE FOREVER #14 arrives from the printers and I manage to mail these with a prayer.

June 26. Eight hour drive to Stockholm for the DPF Deep Purple party at the Bald Eagle pub. We stop and place leaflets from EMI in record stores (concerning “California Jamming” and the club) in a couple of towns on the way. Deep Purple are to play nearby and posters are to be seen everywhere. Then, the party.

June 27. Word reaches us that Steve Morse is going to have a guitar clinic at the Estrad Music Shop at five o´clock. We find the place and is treated with what can only be described as a musicians stand up comedy show! The guy is very funny!! Among many interesting things, Steve tells us that he has a small guitar that he plays while driving his car and while flying an aeroplane! Later at the Deep Purple show it is easy to see that practice makes perfect! Not a great show, but pretty good anyway. Steve is the hero of the day. Roger Glover agrees to meet the club backstage and this in turn evolves into a 20 minute meeting at the hotel later. At midnight the band leaves for Umeå by bus (we are talking ten hours here!).

June 28. Home to base.

June 29. Two hour drive to the town of Timrå. Deep Purple have 6,000 people go completely nuts! This was a highlight in my life as a Deep Purple fan. My sister bring her oldest children along (11 year old girl Cecilia and 14 year old boy Christian) and it is quite a moment for them. Cecilia is right in front of the stage for a while (under heavy protection) and Ian Gillan smiled when he spotted this little girl with the very big eyes as he strolled on to the stage. Possibly the best Deep Purple show I ever saw.

June 30. Lennart from the Glenn Hughes Coast To Coast Internet mailing list head for DPF headquarters to join us for the next trip.

July 1. We travel to Uppsala which is a six hour drive. We arrive just in time for another DPF Deep Purple party at Rackis pub. New Glenn guitarist Joakim Marsh shows up.

July 2. Two concerts to handle, Deep Purple and Glenn Hughes. Glenn talks to us for 90 minutes or so in the afternoon and as always the man is a pleasure to meet. The Deep Purple show is a goodie. Steve Morse tease us with the “Burn” riff in the “Speed King” solo (as often Ritchie did) but when Ian Paice joined him, Steve was already heading for something new. Plenty of jamming going down. I spotted a camera team from TV4 before the show so footage from this show should exist (perhaps the first three songs or something). After Purple we rushed over to the Glenn gig. Asked two women in possibly their mid forties for direction and they were rushing from the Deep Purple show themselves to check Glenn out! On this trip I have come to realize that most of the fans are over 30! Glenn presents a set of oldies. It is very loud indeed! After Purple, a bit too loud, but very enjoyable. “You Fool No One” was pretty good. That one will probably appear on the upcoming Glenn Hughes live album that is to be recorded in Japan later. I am looking forward to that!

July 3. Travel home. No rock music allowed in the car! Lots of mail waiting. So the leaflets seem to have been a good idea.

I would like to thank especially Glenn Hughes, Roger Glover, Jenny Larsson (BMG), Lennart Hedenström and Staffan Eriksson for all the support and goodwill during this busy week! Now I am off working on DPF #15. You have just read a short version of some of the contents of that magazine.

Thanks to Deep Purple for doing the Swedish tour! You are building up a new reputation! We all appreciate your hard work and wish you all the best!

Michael Eriksson 1996 / Trinkelbonker 2020

(My shot of said spread in DPF #15 – letter from Ian Gillan on the page to the right)

Today I will start a brand new series of posts on Trinkelbonker as the time has come to dive deep into the old collection of classic magazines and comics. For years, I collected old stuff and of course this collection includes stuff that I bought as a kid. But the bulk of it has been assembled later in life and I have stuff that goes back to pre-WWII days. When I moved from the city to the countryside a couple of years ago I finally had enough space to have easy access to all this stuff and I did not compromise one bit. This shelf is in my kitchen, which has a retro feel over it that I just love. But there is more, much more. And some of this stuff is just awesome on every level.

I will have some fun with this and this journey starts today.

(My shot of said shelf)

23:00

Posted: June 1, 2020 in Jämtland (County), My photographs, Stugun

Took this snapshot at about 23:00 (20 minutes ago as I write this). In a couple of weeks we will have daylight around the clock in these parts. Holiday kicks in three weeks from now.

Nice.

As I mentioned the Kiss “Destroyer” puzzle a few days ago, I came to think about the cool article I published in the final issue of RETROFUTURE (#8) in March 2015, written by Micke Mojo, Björn Höglund and Chris Laney. It was published alongside a huge interview with the legendary Swedish magazine creator Hans Hatwig (POSTER, OKEJ etc). A man that practically made Kiss in Sweden. I am so glad that I could do things like this in the last few years of this hobby.

I think it will be remembered.

(My shot of first spread of said content in RETROFUTURE #8)

Here is glimpse of the good old days. What you see here is a spread covering the career of Cozy Powell that was in print in my fanzine DEEP PURPLE FOREVER #2 (May 1991). I nicked the biography from a (then) fairly recent official press thing and added three more albums and a shot of Cozy on the right page and a story with a couple of “Down To Earth” era Rainbow snapshots on the left. The headline read “20 years with Cozy Powell”. I had met him briefly back in the “Headless Cross” Black Sabbath days but I never interviewed the man. So in 1991, I thought a piece like this was OK for the Purple magazine. After all, he had played on many Deep Purple Family related albums.

The years went by but in spite of me doing countless Purple related interviews during those years I still never got around to meet the man again. But my friend (photographer) Michael Johansson did and as he was hired to do a session with Cozy together with Yngwie Malmsteen for (the Japanese publication) BURRN! at the Strand Hotel in Stockholm on June 24 1997 he did manage to slip him a copy of the issue mentioned above. Cozy asked Michael why the biography ended in 1991 and found out that it actually had been published at the time. Later on, I did publish a spread from this occation in DEEP PURPLE FOREVER #28 (in February 2001 – as the club celebrated the 10th Anniversary), but as we all know he had passed on by then (in a car accident on April 5 1998). His visit to Sweden for this session, which was for Japanese promotion for the Malmsteen album “Facing The Animal”, was his last in this country and it had been very low key (no concerts or anything). When I published this shot people were quite surprised. You can see the cover shot of BURRN! that resulted from this very session in the layout down to the right.

Good times.

(My shots of these spreads – many thanks to Michael Johansson)

I came across this book yesterday – “Krönikespelet om Gyrdh Bodakarl” (Jengel Förlag, 2013) by author Rune Mats – a theater piece based on the life and times of Gyrdh Bodakarl. This play illustrates what life might have been like for the people that settled in these parts back in the middle age. Without them, there would have been no community here today (Stugun). The book has illustrations by Gulli Johansson and Sara Rehnsbo. Great cover art by Bo Persson (and you can see the mountain where I have my place behind the settlement, which is good fun). I really appreciate that people like Rune keep our history alive.

(My shot of said book)

Today we remember Ronnie James Dio, whom passed away on this day in 2010. I blogged about it back in the day and that ended up in RETROFUTURE #4 (the publication I had going at the time). On his “Strange Highways” album, he sang: “Bury my bones on the moon, if they never should find me it would be too soon”. I asked him about that when I met him back in 2001 (the interview is archived in August 2012 on this blog) and he told me about it. Pretty deep stuff. But he was also a warm and giving person, supporting things like Children Of The Night (which is also talked about in that interview). He suffered blows in his life but he always walked tall. And that is how he should be remembered.

And he will be.

(My shot of RETROFUTURE #4 piece – cover inserted)