Jonas Myrin, a 29-year-old musician from Örebro in central Sweden, has music in his blood.
With his parents owning “the craziest record collection imaginable” and with Myrin taking lessons since the age of seven, it perhaps comes as no surprise that the Swede eventually walked away with an award at the Grammys – or as he puts it – “the Oscars of the music industry”.
“It still hasn’t clicked,” Myrin tells The Local on the phone from Los Angeles.
“I didn’t expect anything. When I was nominated I was completely taken aback – to win it was beyond what I could imagine. It’s a dream come true.”
He took home the prize for penning 10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord), which was awarded Best Contemporary Christian Music Song. The song also won the Grammy for Best Gospel Performance.
The response to the win has been phenomenal, Myrin explains, both from back home and in Los Angeles.
“People are coming up to me, shaking my hand, congratulating me. It’s weird, because I feel like I’m just beginning my career.”
“I thought this was meant to happen when you turn 50,” he says with a laugh.
But the feedback from Sweden has been the most surprising for the 29-year-old.
“People say Swedes aren’t patriotic, but I’ve seen the opposite. There’s been a real buzz, people have been celebrating like it’s their award. It’s awesome.”
Myrin started writing his own songs at age eleven. His parents, who worked as missionaries, always had music playing at home and a piano was never far away.
The Swede credits his parents’ love of musicians such as Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway for his own interest in gospel music.
“I really think music is for everyone, regardless of faith. It’s more of a spiritual thing. This category is an honour, and it’s hugely credible over here,” he explains.
“It’s not often a kid from Sweden wins a Grammy for gospel music. I was even told I was the first non-American to win this award.”
But Myrin’s back catalogue extends beyond just Christian music, as he enjoyed a successful career throughout his twenties, mostly collaborating on songs and videos behind the scenes. He teamed up with artists such as Natasha Bedingfield, Scratch (from The Roots), and Björn Yttling (from Peter, Bjorn and John).
But the singer truly went his own way in 2013 when he released his first solo album, Dreams Plans Everything.
One of the singles from the album, Day of the Battle (featured below), has already garnered over one million views on YouTube.
Fans looking for examples of his work on his home turf needn’t look far either. One of his songs will be performed at Saturday night’s Melodifestivalen in Skellefteå. He co-penned Must Be Love, to be sung by Lucia Piñerasas.
But what next for the soon-to-be 30-year-old Swede who already has a Grammy under his belt?
“We’re getting ready for my second music video. We’re starting the shoot in two weeks out here in LA,” he tells The Local.
“I can’t get into too many details yet, but I can tell you it will be epic. Very epic.”
10,000 Reasons – the Grammy Award winning song
The Local’s Swede of the Week is a person in the news who – for good or ill – has revealed something interesting about the country. Being selected as Swede of the Week is not necessarily an endorsement.