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Album Review

Influenced by a wide variety of music, Lena Willemark has not been afraid to take chances — and the Swedish folk-pop singer takes her share on Windogur. This introspective effort, recorded in Stockholm in 1999, underscores Willemark's eclectic, unpredictable nature and showcases how many different styles of music have affected her. Swedish folk is her foundation, but Willemark is no purist and liberally incorporates elements of pop and post-bop jazz. In fact, two of the musicians she employs on Windogur — pianist Bobo Stenson and bassist Palle Danielsson — are Swedish jazz musicians who command a lot of respect in European jazz circles. There are also traces of East European and Middle Eastern music on some of the material. As experimental and risk-taking as Willemark is, Windogur never sounds forced or unnatural — all of the selections sound very organic, and Willemark has no problem bringing them to life.


Born: 1960 in Sweden

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

With warm vocals and an innovative approach to the fiddle, Lena Willemark has risen to the upper echelon of the Swedish music scene. Her solo recordings and collaborations with multi-instrumentalist Ale Möller and bands Frifot and Nordan Project have helped to bring the traditional music of her homeland up to contemporary standards. While she's been praised her for her "fine sensitivity and strength," The Planet noted that her "extraordinary, powerful voice can snap a listener's neck hairs to attention."...
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Windogur, Lena Willemark
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