I am a solo musician. My Bachelor work examined techniques of playing chords and riffs with my bow to accompany my singing, so that I could be self-sufficient on stage. I have always liked practicing and improvising on the nyckelharpa and discovering small details and things in my playing that I create space for, and show to my audience. It has always been my goal to be present and to have the courage to open up my soul on stage. I think the reason why I didn't dare start a band is that I get so distracted with everything that the other musicians are doing.
But I have always loved to travel, and because I am quite brave – sometimes even too much so – suddenly one day I decided to either move to London and learn about the singing traditions in the UK, or study in the Nordic Master of Folk Music program. I felt that I was lacking a lot of knowledge about ensemble playing and arranging, and that it would be so nice to be able to expand my music to something bigger than just myself and my solo playing. I also wanted to learn more about my voice and about rhythm and the different ways of arranging rhythmic structures. I also wanted to know more about the differences and similarities in Nordic folk music. And to create a bigger network.
I don't know whether I was prepared for it or not. But from day one I was the happiest person in the world. My classmates were fantastically good musicians and nice people who shared a lot of the visions I had. KMH (my home school) was great at accommodating my wishes and needs from the start. We had the best teachers in all of the schools and met fantastic people everywhere. And the best thing was that I could do both – I could be a solo musician and do my own thing – and create a successful band (Rim) and try out a lot of ideas at the same time! Rim just did a big tour throughout the whole Scandinavia, Finland, Estonia and Latvia during the late summer of 2015, and people have been so happy everywhere and it has been a really good experience. We started to work as a professional band after our first year in NoFo. It feels great to already be a freelancer with a lot of work right after graduating. My solo project is now developing and I have more time after graduating to work it into a bigger project.
After two years of constantly moving and having my belongings spread across the world, it feels very good to have a home finally! And some space for reflecting upon what I want to do now – next. But I'm amazed that nowadays I am so sure of what is necessary or what is not, what I really need, what is important. And how easy it is to have a good life without the things that I thought I needed. It has also become so easy to travel. I have some serious allergies and it has always been very stressful to travel in countries where I don't understand the language. Now I have a lot of tricks to make it work and I am much more safe and secure now when I travel. I also know exactly what I need in my suitcase and can pack it very fast.
I feel like an ambassador for Nordic folk music, and I feel that I can see things a bit from above. I (of course) don't know every detail, but I know where to look for more whenever I wish to. And I have a huge network of people I can cooperate with. The term ’folk music’ has become to mean so much more for me, with so many variations and expressions. I feel so free!