Sofia Talvik is a Swedish musician and singer/songwriter. Her music often blends elements of folk and pop; she also uses a lot of acoustic instruments in her songs, including violins, cellos, trombones, and acoustic guitar.
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A few years ago I left Sweden, bought an old camper/RV in Florida and started touring in the USA. I just released a new album titled "Big Sky Country." Many of the songs from the album were inspired by the U.S tour that took me through 37 states in 16 months. That's a lot of life lived, road seen, venues played and people met, so I decided to share what I witnessed with my fans via this album and video for the title track. I filmed a lot of the tour, making little YouTube video diaries, and the music video for "Big Sky Country" is put together of clips from the different episodes. It was fun to make because it gave me a chance to re-live the tour a little. It was really a once in a life time experience to drive around the U.S in an old RV for so long.
Video - Big Sky Country:
Download (HiFi) / Signed Vinyl / Signed CD
EDIT: Good morning. I will be available throughout the day to take questions.
Which was your favorite state to visit?
Hard to say. I think on the tour my favorite state was Idaho, because the nature is so stunning. But I love Florida too. Most of my U.S friends live there so I consider it my "home state" :)
What are your 5 desert island discs?
discs? Are you still living in the 90's? ;) hmmmmmm that's so hard. I think Jason Isbell: Southeastern, Neko Case: Fox confessor brings the flood, Bat for Lashes: Two suns, The Doors: Strange Days, hmmm now I have to think of the rest
Any creepy/funny/etc stories from the road youd share with us?
We got a stalker after our show in Columbus, OH. He followed us all the way to Minneapolis. At first he seemed like a normal guy, but he just got weirder and weirder. At one show he turned up in a town car with a private driver, but he looked disheveled, unshaved and in dirty clothes.. finally we thought we had lost him, but then he got in touch a month or so later and we discovered he had put up a website where he posed as my manager. That was kinda creepy.
If you could perform with any musician or singer, living or dead, who would you choose?
What is the one question you would least / most want to asked here?!
Any questions that are about what my songs are about. Mostly when I write songs I grab inspiration from so many different things, so it's really hard to say a "one thing" that a song is about. Also I don't want to spoil it for the listeners. I prefer when other people tell me what my songs are about :D
Haha - Desert Island Discs is a long running radio show here in the UK where celebrities discuss their favourite albums and why.
haha ok! I thought it was like, what 5 albums would you bring to a desert island. :D
What were your best and worst experiences?
In music? My best experiences are usually the shows you think are going to suck and then end up being really nice.
My worst experiences is when you come to a venue and it's totally the wrong venue for your kind of music. Or when you have to wait until the venue closes to get paid, and all you want is to go home and get some sleep... ;)
On the tour my best experience was meeting people, and seeing new places. The worst experience was probably when one of our back tires on the RV blew up in the middle of nowhere and smashed our underneath storage compartments... yikes!
A lot of musicians say it is tough to make a living on the road. Do you have any stories or insights on how to make it work?
It's just hard work. We were working every day in our "Coffice" as we called it. In other words we were at Starbucks every day working away on our computers, securing new shows and doing promotion for the upcoming shows. I think a lot of bands think touring is just about playing music, and sometimes it's long drives in between the cities you're playing. We always tried to book shows that were not too far apart so we would have time to both drive, and make promotion. Promotion is crucial! I also think it helps a lot to have an RV. You save a lot on hotel an food costs, and you can rest whenever you need to, which means you'll be in better shape performing at night!
Im sorry if this is a 'stupid' question but any advice for a young singer/songwriter on how to get contacts or noticed or even a chance to really work as a singer? Been a closet singer/songwriter for a long time could you give advice on where to head?
My advice is, don't try to get "contacts". Make your own career, do your own thing. Being "discovered" doesn't happen anymore, if it ever did. I think you should just ask yourself, "what do I want to do?" and then just go ahead and do that. If it's playing live, start looking into where you can play locally, if you need musicians - advertise or ask at forums for your town on facebook or craigslist. If it's recording you want to do, get a decent sound card, mic and some cables and start recording on your computer. You don't need that much these days, and you will learn by doing. There are so many great forums and DIY blogs to follow, like indieonthemove.com (which aslo a great way to find gigs) and CDbaby who have a great DIY blog with lots of guest writers. You don't need some guy to "make you into something" you can do all of this by yourself. Don't be afraid!
And it's no stupid question. No questions are stupid. The stupid thing is not to ask ;)
Wow thats unsettling.. i wonder whats on his mind hiring a driver and showng up on your shows and pretending to be your manager. Either sad or super creepy!
I know. I think he was just a very confused guy. I think he really liked my music and wanted to help, but it just got really weird.
Thank you so much for answering! I think the biggest steppingstone for me is my fear of failure but you never know if you never try, right. If i ever become something ill remember to thank you! :'D
I'm afraid of failure every day. It's something you never get over completely I think. Unless you're Jay-Z ;) Don't let it hold you back!
what did you find much cheaper in the US than in sweden and vice versa?
At the time everything was a lot cheaper in the USA because the Swedish krona was stronger than the dollar. But gas prices are always cheaper in the USA than in Sweden. Oh, and beer and wine too ;)
how about music gear?
hmm, no I don't think that was so much cheaper. I usually buy from Thomann here in Europe and they're pretty cheap. Sorta like Musiciansfriend in the U.S.
Thoughts on the return of Twin Peaks? I got into your music by Googeling "the owl are not what they seem" some time ago, so the series is my one on one connection to your songs.
I'm really looking forward to the return of Twin Peaks. I hope they got a really good budget so that they can make it as beautiful as the first two seasons. I'm wondering about Audrey Horne though, because I saw she was one of the cast, but she got blown up in the last episode. I wonder how they will "save" her from that. :)
I have two questions for you
1. Have you been anywhere outside Sweden and the US?
2. Are there any states you haven't been to that you would like to visit?
Yes, I actually live in Germany now, and even before I moved here I had been to most of the European countries. I've had concerts in Denmark, UK, Ireland, France, The Netherlands, Germany, Luxembourg and Greenland in Europe, but I've visited many more without playing. I've also traveled a lot around Asia.
I haven't been to Montana so I would really like to go there some day.
I am big fan of your music, any chance of visiting india!?
Thank you Duracell-Bunny! I would love to get a chance to visit India. I have never been there. At the moment though I don't have any tour plans for India. Let me know if you have any recommendations on where to play :)