The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website

Baker's Dozen

Monumental Simplicity: Anna Von Hausswolff's Favourite Albums
John Freeman , December 8th, 2015 09:51

The Swedish musician talks to John Freeman about the 13 records that "opened doors" and helped create the blueprint for the mighty organ drone of her new album, The Miraculous, before she plays two UK shows


Bo Hansson - Sagan om ringen
This is the 'original' soundtrack to The Lord Of The Rings, released in 1970. I must start by saying that Bo Hansson might be one the most important people for me on this list. He has inspired me hugely when it comes to playing melodies on the organ, especially on Ceremony, and his influence is still here on The Miraculous. He is present in practically everything I do, because I play every day, even if I don't use my voice as often as it takes so much energy. I have to find the perfect moment and that doesn't happen that often. Bo Hansson inspired me to make really interesting melodies on the organ, melodies that are simple but have the same emotional depth that the voice has. He inspired me to sing through my fingers rather than through my vocal cords.

Bo Hansson was a Swedish musician and he made instrumental Hammond organ-driven music under his own name. He also had a duo called Hansson And Karlsson, which was a more uptempo and 'rockish' version of his solo music. He has another album, Magician's Hat, that I wanted to put on this list - maybe it is as good as Sagan om ringen - but I thought it would be boring to have two Bo Hansson albums. On Sagan om ringen, the melodies are a little bit more direct and more accessible.

I read The Lord Of The Rings and am a big fan of the book. If I had heard this soundtrack before reading the book, I would probably be inspired to read the book and it fits the book very well - it has a warm, fantastic feeling that feels perfect for a hobbit's land.

There was a documentary on Swedish television about Bo Hansson. He was a genius and the documentary was really beautiful. It turns out that he was a guy who struggled a great deal to make his music. It surprised me as his music is so playful and it seemed as if it would be easy for him to make. It seemed as if he was playing directly from his heart. After I saw the documentary, I felt very sad because even though he was so respected and adored by thousands of musicians - he played with Jimi Hendrix, for example - he seemed a very lonely person. It made me like him even more.

If you love our features, news and reviews, please support what we do with a one-off or regular donation. Year-on-year, our corporate advertising is down by around 90% - a figure that threatens to sink The Quietus. Hit this link to find out more and keep on Black Sky Thinking.