Jan Johansson: Visa från Utanmyra


Visa från Utanmyra


Jan Johansson (piano)


Jazz på Svenska (Heptagon HECD-030)

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Jan Johansson (piano), Georg Riedel (bass).

Recorded: Stockholm, 28th February 1962


Rating: 96/100 (learn more)

The best-selling jazz album of all time in Sweden is neither Kind of Blue nor A Love Supreme, but Jan Johansson’s Jazz på Svenska. It’s an album of Swedish folk tunes adapted to jazz by the visionary pianist to whom space, clarity and meaning was all. Even today, you can put a hotel radio or TV on in Sweden and hear this performance. It’s a classic example of “local” musicians outside the USA asserting their cultural identity within the music in a way that has immediate relevance to their own musical community. Jazz going from global to glocal.

Reviewer: Stuart Nicholson


  • 1 Paul S // Oct 11, 2008 at 06:10 AM
    I moved to the US in 1977 and 30+ years later this album still sends shivers down my back. Like nothing else it captures the Swedish mood. Rooted in folk music and executed with fewer notes than seems possible, this album captures "Swedishness" better than any essay, book, or movie. It is contemplative, haunting, and melancholy in a zen like manner. You either get it or you don't. If you do there is no need for more words. If you don't no amount of words can explain it to you.