Linden- what's in a name?
Already in 2017 I started preparing for the release of my first solo album by applying to different funds to gather enough money to record, produce and print my CD. In September I spent three days in studio, recording my favourite songs from Gjøvik and Vestoppland. I recorded 21 songs, 17 of them ended up on the album. The songs I've picked are all special to me in different ways. Some of the songs are very personal to me, like the songs taught to me by my parents. Other songs have melodies I find beautiful or they have funny lyrics. It was hard to choose which songs to include on this album, but I wanted the listener to be a part of my journey in discovering this music. That's why you will hear lullabies, ballades, psalms, dance tunes, short songs and long songs, all in one album.
Last Autumn I visited a park on a farmstead in Toten, called Stenberg. In the park there is a gazebo made out of linden trees. In the middle of the gazebo, there is a table and a couple of benches where you can sit and enjoy the view over lake Mjøsa and contemplate life. Picture taken by Kari Bakken.
The first traditional song I learned from my home town, that wasn't a children's song or lullaby, was "Langt nordanfor Trondhjem". "Langt nordanfor Trondhjem" is a ballade with a sort of happy ending, a rarity in Norwegian ballads. The song is about a person longing to be with his loved one, imagining that he is back home with her. This song has been my favourite ever since the first time I heard it, so it was natural to include this song on my debut album. The start of the song is; "Langt nordanfor Trondhjem der stander en lind, den lyser vel femtende mile omkring", which roughly translated means: Far north of Trondhjem there stands a linden tree, it shines about fifteen miles.
The linden tree also appears in two other songs on this album; "Straffangens erindring" and "O Gud, gje det blese", therefore I thought it would be fitting to name my album after this tree.
The CD "Linden" is released on 22 February, and can already be pre-ordered here: https://www.platekompaniet.no/cd/linden/
The entire album will be available on digital platforms gradually during March.
Hope you'll like it!
Kirsti Bakken Kristiansen
Singer, Vocal Teacher, Speech Language Therapist.