Björk has done more on TV than talk about her TV. In 1997 she did interviews with minimalist musicians, including Arvo Pärt, Alasdair Malloy and Mika Vainio.
When Björk says “I think sometimes the role of a person who makes music is to take these everyday noises that are ugly and make them beautiful. And by this they are doing magic.” it reminds me of Björk’s own industrial noise music in Lars von Trier’s Dancer in the Dark.
definitely-high-flying-deactiva asked: Hi! I just wanted to say that I like your blog a lot. I've never been to Iceland, but I've always been fascinating by your country. And I have a question: what music shops would you recommend to visit in Reykjavík? You know, the small ones, full of old LPs. Do you have something like that? Thank you! :) Irene
I don’t frequent them much, but Smekkleysa (Bad Taste) is a classic. Smekkleysa is both a record label and a store on Laugavegur, downtown Reykjavík. They were founded around the Sugarcubes and have stayed involved with Björk ever since as well as taking part in the early days of Sigur Rós.
There are some more stores, which are newer and come and go. However you will all find them in the same area of downtown Reykjavík.
If you are into Icelandic music, as an alarming number of people are, check out this paper on Icelandic music by Trefjar. One additional reason I would like to suggest for the success of Icelandic music is the size of the country. It is not that difficult to become famous in Iceland. With a population of 318.000, most people are famous. Producing music for that population is not going to make you rich, but it might give you the egoboost needed to tackle the world.
Okay, here’s my 9 page paper on Iceland music history and its role in present day Iceland, along with contemporary Icelandic music.
Some of you fellow Iceland nerds might want to read it.
If you make it all the way to the end…I’m sorry.
(obviously it’s not double spaced and shit like it was originally cause tumblr can’t do that)
Anonymous asked: how would you say Bjork and Sigur Ros influenced the culture in Iceland?
I don’t think they have influenced the Icelandic culture very much. As I see it they are more the offspring of the Icelandic culture. Neither Björk nor Sigur Rós produce mainstream music, so they can’t be considered the most popular musicians locally. However Björk is a very respected person in Iceland and both the success of Sigur Rós and Björk contributes to most people’s national pride.
The greatest influence they have caused is opening a door to international fame. Eying the possibility of success outside Iceland is a great inspiration for young talents. The association of Björk and Sigur Rós with Iceland also aspiring talents a greater chance of getting noticed. Sigur Rós might still be a garage band if Björk had not paved the way. I’m quite sure that Björk’s success at least speeded up Sigur Rós’ success.
Another band that often is forgotten is Mezzoforte. Mezzoforte predates Björk and was perhaps the first band to become internationally recognized. Just as Björk and Sigur Rós they focused on an alternative music style, funk fusion jazz, and became a great success within their own niche. Their greatest hit was Garden Party in the early 80’s and they are still touring.