Scandinavian folk duo My Bubba, together with longtime friend Elsa Håkansson, recently got back from the deep woods of Sweden where they recorded some of their favorite folk songs - or Visor, as they call them over there. Some of the songs are traditionals while others are written by poets and folk singers in the 19th century, but all are songs that My Bubba grew up with and draw much inspiration from in their musical work - and have now decided to document in their own arrangements.
‘We wanted to make a record that feels like when we sing these songs together in our home, just for our own pleasure. That’s how these songs are meant to be sung; intimately and with ease, and seasoned by the friendships that are the reason they are sung at all.’
Originally the idea was a pet project - to make an album for the unborn grandchildren - but the project turned into a bigger and more ambitious one as they started recording. These songs have a power that stays alive decade after decade, and that is closely linked to the Scandinavian minimalistic and melancholy ‘soul’. So the songs came to find new life through the personal resurrections and quickly evolved from the initial ‘humble documentation of their youth’. My Bubba has experienced more and more interest in their musical roots as they have toured the world, and were very happy to see the record become something more, something they wanted to share with other people’s grandchildren, as well... They found new inspiration in the music of their heritage as they got deeper and deeper into the songs they chose to record, many of them favorites since childhood. After traveling for most of the last years, making this record is a way of coming home again, finding new love for and inspiration from there, and has turned into a piece of art that enables them to share their culturally rich backgrounds in a very fulfilling way (Bubba is Icelandic but lived much of her childhood in Sweden, and My is Swedish, but spent teenage years in California).
Together, My Larsdotter and Bubba Tomasdottir have toured with Damien Rice, co-written music with Matthew E. White and released 3 full length albums since their 2010 debut; How it’s done in Italy, Goes Abroader (produced by Noah Georgeson) and Big Bad Good (Shahzad Ismaily). They are based and tour mostly in the US, where they among other highlights had great success at Jack White’s Third Man Records during Americana Fest in Nashville last fall (selected as one of the top 10 performances and the “breakout act” of the festival by AXS). They have also played festivals like Pickathon and CMJ recently, and are frequent guests of NPR, KEXP and other major public radio stations.
My Bubba & Elsa sjunger Visor // Swedish Songs will be their 4th release, following 2016’s distinctly intimate ‘Big Bad Good’, which already expressed themes of heritage, family and belonging, through their own adventurous perspective (and was nominated for Album of the Year at Icelandic Music Awards 2017). With these recordings they continue their intimate and honest, soft and soulful musicianship, as always as playful as it is powerful.