I have played in a lot in bands, and eventually became tired of sitting quietly to one side while the boys in the band decided the arrangements. Therefore, I decided to start a band where I was the boss and did everything myself instead of being dependent on others to create music.
I got some of my favourite musicians to join me, from Västanå Teater, Världens Band, Sallyswag, Sver, and Premo & Gustavsson. I taught them dance tunes after Austenå and wrote some more in the same style. The result has become the band GKN 5, and the album Bestastovo.
Salve Austenå, b. 1927, is one of the oldest living source of traditions we have today in Norway. He channels the Tovdal tradition as very few others can. A number of the dance tunes have a relationship with the musical heritage in the neighbouring valley of Setesdal on the one hand, and Telemark on the other.
Salve Austenå has been my teacher since I started playing the Hardanger fiddle in 2001, when I was 7 years old. Since then, I have had countless music lessons with him, and acquired or taught myself dance tunes that very few others know.
This project originated from a desire to share the tunes I’ve learned from Salve Austenå and others, at the same time I also wanted to explore the possibilities of interaction where you retain as much as possible of the solo nature of playing the Hardanger fiddle.