June 24, 2024


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Nice blue day at Blue in Oslo: Photos, Video

It was an entertaining and enjoyable evening at Blue 4 March when the blues environment was gathered for mingling and presenting some of the major events for the blues-interested audience throughout the year. A quite numerous Monday audience came along with festival presentations, recording of the podcast and also a small concert in the evening. In the picture: Festival colleagues Jostein Forsberg and Kjell Inge Brovoll were among the musicians. 

Blue Monday began with live recording of a podcast led by Eric Malling and Amund Maarud. There are already several of these available online with the two pair horses behind the microphone. New this time is that the recording can not only be streamed, but it will also be broadcast on DAB on Ordlige Radio, a channel that has the main focus on presenting and promoting Norwegian music. It became a very entertaining session with the two very eloquent program leaders, who during a short hour received visits from several guests. The audience got to meet the newly appointed festival coordinator at Notodden Blues Festival, Mari Beate Sannes, the musician Jan Tore Lauritsen (picture below), and not least the fast-paced guitar talent from Trøndelag, Tora Dahle Aagård.

After the very entertaining podcast, time was set for some festival presentations. By festival leader Kjell Inge Brovoll we heard a little about how Blues in Hell thinks about the future. He was talking about what he termed a “new time”, where he believes the niche festivals will not survive if one does not think new and also a little broader when it comes to genre. He also told about good projects that are underway for younger musicians and audiences, and the importance of the established organizers in the festivals inviting and prepared to pass the baton to younger forces.

Trivelig blåmandag på Blå i Oslo

Many were excited to hear the latest news from the blues town of Notodden, which we know had financial difficulties after last year’s festival. Festival leader Jostein Forsberg could tell about an incredibly difficult autumn where he and his employees had to deal with a hard pressure from criticism both locally and nationally for the poor financial result. Paradoxically, this happened after a festival that from the inner blues circle was termed one of the very best musical and programmed. Jostein could say that from the first day they were determined to be humble in criticism, invite to cooperation and be responsive to suggestions for change. Endinger is also made in front of this year’s festival. Jostein could tell that, on request from the public, it has been opened for sale of individual tickets again, several of the small clubs in the city are in the program again, Hovigs Hangar is reduced in size, ticket prices are reduced and there is also the fee to stay at the camping in festival weekend. Jostein finally drew some of the highlights of this summer’s festival program.

Kurt Slevigen with band on stage at Blue.

The audience at Blue also got the latest news about the autumn’s big event in London and the concert at Royal Albert Hall of initiator and Blue Mood chief Eric Malling. Amund Maarud, who will be the chaplain for the concert, told a little about what ideas he had for the content. He could promise that the show that will be presented in London on November 10 will be unique and not something you have heard before.

The evening at Blå was concluded by an improvised concert with eg. several of the musicians will be on stage at Royal Albert Hall. It started with a couple of acoustic songs from Trudy & Dave before we heard Kurt Slevigen, Amund Maarud, Tora Dahle Aagård, JT Lauritsen, Jostein Forsberg, Kjell Inge Brovoll, Guy Collins and Ronny Aagren, all backed by Rune Endal and Martin Windstad.

Nearly midnight while the concert recording of Blue Mood Labelmates from Notodden in 2017 went on big screen, people began to pull out on Monday night. On the way out we got with us that Blue was already booked for Blue Monday in March 2020. There was great agreement among all who were present that this was something that gave added pleasure.

Below: Tora Dahle Aagård.

Ronny Aagren with Martin Windstad, Rune Endal and Amund Maarud. (Photos: Trond Johnsen).

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