Unmistakably Nordic in flavor, Sofia Talvik somehow still conforms to American interpretations of her own original music, a North Sea siren blending sparkle and melancholy, creating a special niche of folk music.
I just did a couple of radio shows in the heart of sunny Mississippi. College station Souther Miss Today invited me to play a few songs and tell their listeners about the tour and Jackson station WLEZ fm had me play a song in the studio too. Here’s some pics and a little video from my performances there. Unfortunately there’s no online archive to listen to, but tune in to the stations anyway to enjoy good music and more.
We missed our gig in Katy, TX because of the tour bus breakdown, but I’m happy to announce that they let us reschedule to March 25th. So if you missed out on the Katy gig Tuesday, you’re welcome to come and see me on Sunday the 25th!
I just arrived in sunny Austin. After heavy rain in Dallas and San Antonio I was wondering if SXSW would rain away this year, but as soon as we drove into Austin, the sky was blue, the sun blaring and people were half naked on the streets. Just like it should be.
If you’ve followed me on Facebook before you know that I enjoy cooking (understatement!) and like to post pictures of whatever food I make. In the RV it’s a little bit more challenging to go on any culinary adventures. I try my best but work space is limited as well as cupboard space and having lived in this thing for about two months I’m not quite stocked up on spices and tools either. We’re also on a budget whereas at home we almost never got around to eating those leftovers.
But as someone said – musicians tend to find each other everywhere, so it seems foodies do too. On this tour so far we’ve been invited for some lovely meals, both in people’s homes and to restaurants – something that we starving artists always appreciate. In Tampa we happened to meet the chef/ owners of the hot new restaurant The Refinery which has been written about in fancy publications such as Condé Nast Traveller. They invited us for dinner, the day after my gig at the great beer bar The Independent, and by chance their neighbor had dropped off a couple of pheasants which they prepared for us.
In Birmingham, AL I visited the radio show Oh Brother and the owner of MIX, a very nice bakery/restaurant in downtown wrote on my facebook wall and invited us for lunch. We had some great gumbo but was most impressed by the gorgeous sour dough breads that they had for sale. Good bread is something that’s very hard to find here in the US I think. I might be spoiled though because back in Sweden the bakery of the Swedish champion in bread baking is just next doors to my apartment.
When lunching at MIX the chef and co-owner Phil Dupont came out to say hi and all of a sudden we were invited to his upscale restaurant Cafe Dupont for dinner. We were totally blown away by the beauty and atmosphere at Cafe Dupont but even more so by the food. My favorite was the tuna starter (I’m a sucker for good tuna and Asian flavors) and Jonas favorite was the veal starter. And don’t get me started on the Cosmo!!!
In New Orleans we’ve been taken out to experience the best of the city by our newfound friend photographer Marc Pagani, who not only showed us the Hi Ho Lounge, made us the strongest drink ever but also took us for a culinary tour at La Petite Grocery on Magazine street. Food and ambience was great and I’d go back anytime if I could.
We ended our last night in NOLA with a visit to Lola’s, an unpretentious little Spanish restaurant in Mid-city which was also very enjoyable. We really had our mind set on the authentic kitchen of Liuzza’s by the track but unfortunately they were closed on Sunday’s. Good thing we already had the catfish po-boys and beignets the days before.
But as enjoyable restaurants are the most satisfying is a really good meal you’ve cooked yourself. I never thought I’d do the Swedish cabbage rolls in the RV (the best kind of comfort food) but that’s what I did the other day. And people who think you have to live off microwave meals and eat off paper plates are either too lazy to use their kitchen or just not creative enough. I even made a quick version of beef teriyaki the other day. Or how about some Vietnamese salad wraps?
If I’d just have some more space and would be able to find fresh yeast I’d be baking too. Actually it’s probably just the lack of yeast that stops me 😉
We’ve been touring for little over a month now and gone from sunny Florida to cold North Carolina. I’ve overcome my fear of driving the RV and since Jonas fixed the cruise control I don’t mind driving at all. But there’s still one thing that scares me. What if the RV falls over. Every time we’re on a sharp curve on a highway exit I dread this. Even though Jonas says there’s no chance of that happening I still feel like it could happen.
After spending a few days in Savannah, GA (what a wonderful city!) I decided we had to buy bikes so we could bike whenever we came to a city like that. So we got one off Craig’s list and one from Walmart. For a few days the bikes were parked inside the RV and were taking up all the space we had. Because even if a bike is only $50 at Walmart, a bike rack for the RV is way more expensive. It doesn’t make sense at all, but we had to get one so we did. Only if we were to mount the bike rack we had to dismount the spare tire. So now instead of bikes we’ve had a hundred year old spare tire in the RV. No it didn’t fit into any of the storage compartments. Someone said we should put it under the bed but it’s old and smelly and had dead frogs and moss on it. So I don’t really think it’s going to be useful if we ever come to need a spare tire in the future.
The day after we got the bike rack and put the bikes on it we stayed in the parking lot behind the bar where I played in Charleston, SC and in the middle of the night I woke up of sounds and the RV rocking (you’d think it’s steady but it’s like a boat really). I looked out through the bedroom window and there was a guy trying to do something to the bikes, probably steal them. That’s not really something you want to wake up to. As soon as he saw my face in the window though he took off, but I couldn’t go back to sleep for hours and then I had nightmares the rest of the night.
Everything got better once we came to Wilmington, NC and stayed a night with our friend Majsan. Wilmington is such a beautiful town. Actually all the towns we’ve been to since Savannah has been pretty great. We’re in in Winston-Salem, NC now and it’s beautiful. We’ve biked around the city which doesn’t have much of a city center but lots of beautiful houses. The gigs have all been great too. Sometimes one would wish for a larger audience, but at least the people who’ve shown up have been there to listen to me and that’s what’s important after all. I was pretty disappointed that SxSW didn’t come through with an official invite this year. I’ve been incited the last three years of which I’ve played two. And every time I’ve had to pay for expensive plane tickets and hotels for me and the band. So when I’m finally here, doing a great tour, having a new CD out January 31st, they don’t invite me. But I still have a few unofficial SxSW shows so if you’re going to be there you can still see me play.