June 14, 2024


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Interview with Nils Landgren: That remains my secret: Video

Jazz interview with jazz trombonist and composer Nils Landgren. An interview by email in writing.

JazzBluesNews.Space: – First let’s start with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music?

Nils Landgren: – I grew up in a very small Steeltown, Degerfors in the moddlw of nowhere in Sweden. My father was aeelder and hobby cornetplayer and both my brothers played drums in the local marching band. So I started to play the drums too, at the age of six.

JBN.S: – What got you interested in picking up the trombone? What teacher or teachers helped you progress to the level of playing you have today? What made you choose the trombone?

NL: – It chose me, I just couldnt resist trying it as my father hade brought one home to repair. I fell in love right away.

JBN.S: – How did your sound evolve over time? What did you do to find and develop your sound?

NL: – I was aiming for a classical career so that was my sound ideal to start with. After I started to improvise, my ideal changed a bit but I still have great use of what I learned during my studies.

JBN.S: – What practice routine or exercise have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical ability especially pertaining to rhythm?

NL: – I have a routine which is a mix of some of my big influences,Emory Remington and Carmine Caruso.

JBN.S: – Which harmonies and harmonic patterns do you prefer now? You’re playing is very sensitive, deft, it’s smooth, and I’d say you drift more toward harmony than dissonance. There is some dissonance there, but you use it judiciously. Is that a conscious decision or again, is it just an output of what goes in?

NL: – I guess its what I want to express is what is coming out of my horn. But yes, I go for harmony.

JBN.S: – How to prevent disparate influences from coloring what you’re doing?

NL: – I go with the flow, simple as that.

JBN.S: – What do you love most about your new album 2019: <Landgren · Wollny · Danielsson · Haffner – 4 Wheel Drive>, how it was formed and what you are working on today.

NL: – I love the way we made it happen and the way we recorded the album and finally the way we perform the music on stage.

It is a true blessing to get the chance to make music together with these wonderful musicians and human beings!

Every concert feel totally new and fresh and the joy of performing spills over to the audience.

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JBN.S: – What’s the balance in music between intellect and soul?

NL: – Thats up to each and every individual to answer. I play with my heart.

JBN.S: – There’s a two-way relationship between audience and artist; you’re okay with giving the people what they want?

NL: – As long as its what I want, sure.

JBN.S: – Please any memories from gigs, jams, open acts and studio sessions which you’d like to share with us?

NL: – My concerts at Jazz Baltica with Pat Metheny, Esbjörn Svensson, Michael Brecker and Wolfgang Haffner comes to mind as very special. The first album I recorded for ACT with Bernard Purdie, Airto Moreira, Randy and Michael Brecker among the guests also left a mark. I would say that every concert and every recording session has something special, something to cherish and keep close to your heart.

JBN.S: – How can we get young people interested in jazz when most of the standard tunes are half a century old?

NL: – Among other things by playing music not so old. We should not forget that the so called standard repertoir  consists mostly of popsongs from different decades. In that sense I follow a long tradition by chosing popsongs from our time as part of my repertoir.

JBN.S: – John Coltrane said that music was his spirit. How do you understand the spirit and the meaning of life?

NL: – Music is my spirit as well and I am doing my best to communicate this to my audiences around the world.

JBN.S: – If you could change one thing in the musical world and it would become a reality, what would that be?

NL: – That remains my secret.

JBN.S: – Who do you find yourself listening to these days?

NL: – I listen to baroque music and jazz and pop, folk and country and everything that comes my way. I just saw a clip with Metallica and Lady Gaga on youtube. Brilliant!

JBN.S: – What is the message you choose to bring through your music?

NL: – Love and understanding for each other. Music is the strongest medium that ever existed.

JBN.S: – Let’s take a trip with a time machine, so where and why would you really wanna go?

NL: – I want to be right where I am now.

JBN.S: – I have been asking you so far, now may I have a question from yourself…

NL: – No, sorry. Nothing comes to mind.

JBN.S: – Thank you for answers. 🙂

JBN.S: – So putting that all together, how are you able to harness that now?

NL: – I am not sure I understand what you mean by that. But I am happy because I get to plat with my friends in FourWheelDrive in an hour. Love it!

Interview by Simon Sargsyan

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