• Sweden's news in English
Accelerated for Ice Music
Dylan guitarist to take Ice Music stage in Sweden
Charlie Sexton (l) and Phoebe Hunt (r) look on as Ice Music co-founder Tim Linhart examines an ice violin. Photo: Luleåfotograferna

Dylan guitarist to take Ice Music stage in Sweden

The Local · 26 Feb 2015, 15:29

Published: 26 Feb 2015 15:29 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Sexton, who has played guitar with Dylan on and off for 15 years, stepped off a plane in chilly Luleå on Monday, along with fellow US artists and songwriters Lindsey Verril, Phoebe Hunt, and Michael Blair, who has worked with artists such as Tom Waits and Elvis Costello.

“The unique ice instruments can be compared to having an uninvited guest to a party,” said Blair.

“They liven things up and keep people on their toes. For this project it’s the ice instruments themselves that we need to meet and get to know their special qualities better.”

Troy Campbell, Lindsey Verril, Charlie Sexton & Phoebe Hunt arrive in Luleå. Photo: Luleåfotograferna

The US musicians were joined by Anders Bo Eriksen of Denmark, along with local Luleå talents Olle Nyman and Rebecka Digervall as part of an ongoing collaboration between Luleå municipality and the city of Austin, Texas, known as the “live music capital of the world”.

Bringing the eclectic and talented group of musicians together to make music in the winter wonderland of Luleå is the first concrete expression of the Luleå-Austin partnership.

Appropriately called City of Songs, the project participants include Luleå’s Ice Music and music incubator BD Pop, along with Austin-based House of Songs, a songwriting collaborative he founded by Austin-native Troy Campbell.

READ MORE: Ice Music taps Texas troubadour for new tunes

The US musicians barely had time to get a handle on the frozen landscape around Luleå before they hunkered down to get acquainted, not only with each other, but most importantly with the one-of-a-kind ice instruments they’ll be playing.

“For us creating the music, the deal is to listen to the special sound of the ice instruments and adjust our music to that. And not the other way round,” Sexton explained.

Despite a storied musical career stretching back to the 1980s that has taken him around the world, Sexton was still taken aback by the majesty of Ice Music concert hall in Luleå’s Gültzauudden Park.

IN PICTURES: Ice Music instruments and last year’s igloo

“I’d only seen a few video clips of an Ice Music concert before entering the ice concert hall for the first time. And I only have one word for it. Magical,” he said.

Singer/songwriter Hunt, an Austin native, marveled at a plastic shield on the ice violin that would protect her breath from melting a hole in the instrument as she played.

“But I’m not going to worry about breaking it if I play as aggressively as I usually do,” she said.

The instrument that turned most heads, however, was an entirely new creation by Ice Music founder Tim Linhart he dubbed the Gravatone: a stringed instrument made largely of ice but which also boasts two tonnes of steel for added weight.

Anders Bo Eriksen inspects the Gravatone. Photo: Luleåfotograferna

Story continues below…

“It’s the strangest instrument I’ve ever seen,” said Eriksen.

And if learning to tune and play ice instruments in temperatures of -5C weren’t enough, this newly-minted musical collective has also taken on the task of writing completely new music specifically tailored for instruments and a stage made of ice.

The new compositions will only be played at the weekend’s two sold-out Ice Music concerts on Friday, February 27th and Saturday, February 28th. But music fans who can’t make it what’s sure to be a once-in-a-lifetime show need not despair: the entire project, including practice sessions and the performance, is being recorded for a documentary-style film that will be released later this year.

This article was produced using The Local's News Accelerator service in cooperation with Luleå municipality. To learn more about News Accelerator, click here.

Related links:

For more news from Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Sweden can extend border controls, EU says
A police officer carrying out a check at Sweden's border with Denmark. Photo: Emil Langvad/TT

EU countries including Sweden should be granted permission to extend temporary border controls by a period of a further three months, the European Commission has decided.

Nobel Prizes
'I'd say he's arrogant but I'd be lying': Swedes on Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan performing in France. Photo: David Vincent/AP

Almost two weeks have passed since Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature and he has yet to acknowledge the win. The Local asked Swedes what they think of the singer's silence.

Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast by thousands
A Swedish migration authority office in Stockholm. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The country has also slashed its prediction for 2017.

Swedish researchers plan new trucks for women drivers
File photo of trucks in Sweden. Photo: Thomas Johansson/TT

Could vehicles adapted for women attract more female truckers to the profession?

These stats show Swedish driving isn't so gender equal
File photo of a Swedish woman driving a car. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

A new survey shows that few Swedish women get behind the wheel when driving with their male partner.

Revealed: Game of Thrones could be coming to Sweden
Game of Thrones cast members at the Emmy Awards in September. Photo: Jordan Strauss/AP

The producers of the hit show have asked for three rounds of location pictures of Swedish island Gotland.

Prime Minister to meet Swedish troops in Iraq
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and his Kurdish counterpart Nechervan Barzani. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Löfven is set to meet Swedish troops in Iraq on Tuesday.

Swedish politicians wage war on winter time
Soon it will look like this on your way home from work in Sweden. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Should Sweden stick with summer time all year round?

'Don't turn the Pope into a global teddy bear'
Sweden's Queen Silvia and Princess Leonore visiting Pope Francis in the Vatican last year. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

It's time to hold the Pope to account and make sure he turns his words about reform into action, argues a minister of the Swedish Church ahead of Pope Francis' visit to Sweden.

Löfven: 'Sweden will double its number of troops in Iraq'
Stefan Löfven and Haider al-Abadi during the visit on Monday. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has promised to double his country's number of troops in Iraq following a meeting with Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi on Monday.

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available