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Pensioners to recruit ageing Swedish rockers

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Pensioners to recruit ageing Swedish rockers
11:23 CEST+02:00
The Swedish Pensioners Association (Pensionärernas riksorganisation - PRO) wants to cast off its "stuffy" image at the Sweden Rock festival, in a recruitment bid to set up a rock music subgroup of new members.

"We want to be in tune with the times," local coordinator Ann-Kristin Erlandsson told The Local.

The pensioner admitted that she herself was not a rock chick, instead preferring the Beatles, but that she may dust off an old leather jacket and rip a hole in her stockings to fit in.

Rock heavy-weights such as Kiss and Europe will lead an all-star lineup of bands, including Survivor and Skid Row.

Erlandsson and 30 colleagues, meanwhile, will take turns trying to recruit new members at the four-day festival in Norje, in the southern Swedish county of Blekinge. Erlandsson said that a survey at her organization's national office showed that almost half of the rock festival goers were aged 55 or above.

Sweden Rocks festival organizer Martin Forssman told the TT news agency that the age spread was a bit wider than that, with an average age of 37, but that they were expecting rock enthusiasts in their sixties to also attend the June 5th-8th event.

"But the PRO crew are more than welcome."

Erlandsson remained upbeat about the recruitment drive.

"We have to reach out to people born in the 1940s who are about to retire," she said.

"I'd be delighted if people formed a "PRO Rock" group within our organization," she said, adding that it was time to dust off their stuffy image.

"What you hear is that PRO, all they do is drink coffee and eat biscuits," Erlandsson said, adding that there would neither be coffee nor biscuits at the stand they have been allocated at one of the entrances to the festival area.

"We'll grab them as they go in. I want the end result to be a PRO rock association," she told The Local.

"That's our goal, and you've got to have a goal in life."

Ann Törnkvist

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