DECORAH, Iowa —Enjoy Scandinavian Nordic Roots music at Vesterheim Museum and the Hotel Winneshiek in Decorah this fall.
The band Ljom, from Norway, will give a free show in the Hotel Winneshiek Lobby on October 4 from 7:00-9:00 p.m. Ljom performs traditional Norwegian mountain melodies with influences of jazz, rock, classical, contemporary, and world music.
The specific mountain melodies the band performs are from a small mountain town called Snåsa, Norway, where band members Kjersti, Anne Marte, and Sivert grew up. Together with a pianist from Frosta and a guitarist from Sweden, these young musicians have formed Ljom, a unique group with a vast musical background. Some of the members have studied jazz, rock and world music, while others have emerged themselves in classical and contemporary. The mix is new and exciting, with a collective point of focus on the Norwegian traditional mountain melodies, also called Kauk. Everyone in the group composes and arranges the songs. Their first album will be released in June 2014 on the label Kirkelig Kulturverksted.
Ljom represents «... The exciting living tradition of Nordic Roots music," says Martha Griesheimer, who coordinates music events at Vesterheim. «... We are delighted to be working with the Hotel Winneshiek to host Ljom, which uses some modern electric instruments in their interpretation of Norwegian mountain calls and other traditional music," she added.
According to the website of Northside, a Minneapolis-based music label, Nordic Roots is "the most exciting music movement on the planet." Northside says, "Scores of young musicians from Sweden, Finland, Norway, and Samiland are taking the music and instruments of their ancestors and bringing new ideas, arrangements, influences, and instrumentation to an often lost art."
Griesheimer believes that the performance will appeal to a wide audience. “Those already familiar with Nordic Roots music will appreciate the opportunity to hear it live, and if you come out to hear it for the first time, you will find there is a lot to like about this fresh, contemporary folk music out of Scandinavia," she said.
Through 24,000 objects and 12 historic buildings, Vesterheim, the national Norwegian-American museum and heritage center in Decorah, Iowa, shares the most comprehensive collection of Norwegian-American artifacts in the world. This treasure is also a center for folk-art education, offering a wide variety of classes in authentic Norwegian folk art every year. For more information on the museum’s exhibitions, classes, events, membership opportunities, and ways to donate, check Vesterheim’s website at vesterheim.org, call (563) 382-9681, or write to Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum, 502 W. Water St., P.O. Box 379, Decorah, IA, 52101-0379.