Sunday, November 21, 2010

Odd Nordstoga

Tonight Pam and I went to a concert at Olavshallen, a fancy concert hall downtown. Odd Nordstoga is one of the best known Norwegian folk singers, and the first Norwegian musician I started listening to some years ago. I'd decided back then that a good way to help learn the language is with songs, and Odd is one of the best popular musicians in Norway that actually sing in Norwegian. (Here's my first post about Odd, with a video.) It was disappointing to find that many other popular Norwegian groups sing in English. From a marketing perspective, this makes sense, as the ratio of English to Norwegian speakers world-wide is 150:1.

Odd played a lot of songs from his new album, "November", which has been met with broad critical praise as one of the best albums of the year. He didn't play a couple of my favorite songs, but he did of course play "Kveldssang for deg og meg", otherwise known as "Grisen!" (The pig!), his first big hit, a very catchy folk song that involves a howling pig.

The audience was rather subdued - in America we'd expect to see people shouting and dancing in their seats. Instead there was some swaying and polite applause, and a few moments of foot stomping.

We thoroughly enjoyed the songs, even those we hadn't heard before. The crowd gave him a standing ovation. Superb conference, and now I will buy his new album.

A Norwegian film and a concert this weekend. Good training!

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