a-ha Fan Weekend 2014

Terry Slater, Harald Wiik, Magne and Tini Flaat Mykland on stage at Samfunnsalen, Oslo

Terry Slater, Harald Wiik, Magne and Tini Flaat Mykland on stage at Samfunnsalen, Oslo
(Picture by Jakob)

Fans from all over the world once again gathered in Oslo on October 24-25 for the a-ha Fan Weekend 2014, which included Morten’s last two concerts of the Brother tour at Sentrum Scene, an a-ha convention with a Q&A session and a fan party.

Many were looking particularly forward to hearing former a-ha manager Terry Slater, who provided interesting stories from his long career and shared his thoughts on the music business then and now.

Current a-ha/Morten Harket manager Harald Wiik talked about the upcoming release plans in connection with the 30th anniversary of Hunting High and Low in 2015:

“The plan is – don’t hold it against me if not everything happens – but as of now there are plans for a 5-disc set of Hunting High And Low, with lots of new material. Plus heavy vinyls of all the first five albums. Also a box set of the vinyls called The Warner Years, for the first five albums. And then Deluxe Editions of Stay On These Roads, East Of The Sun and Memorial Beach. And some other things that I can’t tell you about now. But save your money!”

Morten at Sentrum Scene, October 24th

Morten at Sentrum Scene, October 24th
(Picture by Jakob)

Magne came to Oslo straight from the opening of the new concert house in Fosnavåg, where he did two performances with Apparatjik on October 23 and 24. He brought along two early copies of the long-awaited Apparatjik World book, of which Terry Slater was given one copy, while the other was donated as a prize in the Red Cross charity raffle held during the fan party:

“It should be out before Christmas at some point. I was hoping to have enough copies to bring tonight, but the printers couldn’t make it in time.”

While on stage at the a-ha convention, Magne also talked candidly about how he wasn’t satisfied with how the Beatles movie turned out:

“I wanted to make a much more radical score than what ended up [in the movie]. There was a struggle, a fight between me and the director, who came in a little bit late in the process, to make him understand what I was trying to do. So to my mind, the last version that I heard was a compromise where they had used my music in a way that I wasn’t a hundred percent satisfied with. I won’t be able to give you a percentage, as I haven’t seen the finished one. (…) The album is different, because I made the album afterwards, a bit more like I wanted the movie to sound.”

Magne previously talked about his problems with the Beatles film project in a radio interview on NRK P13 last month.

Morten visiting the fan party (Picture by Jakob)

Morten visiting the fan party
(Picture by Jakob)

At the fan party in the evening, Morten showed up on stage to meet the fans. One fan asked him about his plans for next year:

“I’m being asked if I have plans – big plans – for next year, which I believe I have. And those plans might include you guys. (…) It will be an interesting year, next year”, Morten said.

“We should have a lot of fun with numbers over the next year. Keep on guessing!”, Harald Wiik told the fans earlier on Saturday – referring to the numbers recently posted on a-ha.com’s Facebook page; 44 and 365, which have led to fan speculations about a possible a-ha reunion in 2015.

Check out more coverage of the a-ha Fan Weekend on a-ha.com’s Twitter profile and Facebook page.

Other links:
TV2 Nyhetskanalen – interview with Morten at soundcheck, Oct. 24th
NRK Østlandssendingen – report from Sentrum Scene
dbmag.no – Morten Harket concert review (5/6)
Vimeo – Safe With Me (Oct. 24th) by After Event Productions
Vimeo – Whispering Heart (Oct. 24th) by After Event Productions
Vimeo – Brother (Oct. 24th) by After Event Productions
Facebook – Sentrum Scene photos by StageWorks
Facebook – Sentrum Scene photos by Christina Galbraith
YouTube – Morten visiting the fan party
YouTube – Harald Wiik speaking at the fan convention
YouTube – Terry Slater speaking at the fan convention

Over Oslo Festivalen: complete soundboard recording

The music show Radio Rock on NRK P1 in Norway has recently broadcast a complete soundboard recording of Morten’s concert at the Over Oslo Festival on June 20th, split into three separate parts.

Morten at Over Oslo Festivalen, June 20th (Picture by Jakob)

Morten at Over Oslo Festivalen, June 20th
(Picture by Jakob)

Click on the links below to listen. The audio will be available online until February/March 2015.

Part 1 (August 15th)
1. Do You Remember Me?
2. Oh What A Night
3. Spanish Steps
4. End Of The Line
5. Movies

Part 2 (August 29th)
6. Safe With Me
7. Send Me An Angel
8. Did I Leave You Behind
9. Wild Seed

Part 3 (September 19th)
10. Los Angeles
11. Whispering Heart
12. Brother
13. A Kind Of Christmas Card

Morten back in the studio

Haugesund, September 26th (From YouTube video by Iwona Magdzinska)

Morten on stage in Haugesund, September 26th
(From YouTube video by Iwona Magdzinska)

Morten was back in Sweden last week, working on new music with Peter Kvint.

“I’m back in the studio with Peter and we’re trying out some stuff. I can’t say that much about it now, but it will be out at some point”, Morten told Radio 102 ahead of his concert in Haugesund.

Peter Kvint also joined Morten at the concerts in Norway this weekend, filling in for Vicky Singh on guitar, while Rickard Nilsson filled in for Christer Karlsson on keyboard.

In the Radio 102 interview, Morten also mentioned that he’s keen on more touring:

“I’m proud of my band, they are excellent musicians. And they have chosen to go on tour with me, even though they could have played with anyone they wanted. They really want to do this, so I would have liked to play even more together with them. I would actually have preferred to do a more extensive tour than we’ve done so far”.

The studio session was also mentioned in an interview with Fædrelandsvennen (subscribers only), in connection with his concert in Kristiansand.

Recent Norwegian concerts – media links:

Bergen, 19 September:
YouTube videos   Bergensavisen review   Hissig.no review
Musikknyheter.no review   Gaffa.no review

Stavanger, 20 September:
YouTube videos   Rogalands Avis article

Haugesund, 26 September:
“Spanish Steps” live   Morten arriving at the airport
Haugesunds Avis interview

Kristiansand, 27 September:
“Los Angeles” live

Magne and Tini on Senkveld

Magne and Tini performing "You Can't Have It Both Ways" on Senkveld, September 26th

Magne and Tini performing “You Can’t Have It Both Ways” on Senkveld, September 26th

Magne and Tini Flaat Mykland were guests on the TV2 talkshow Senkveld on Friday night, to promote Tini’s debut album Undo My Heart which will be released in Norway on October 3rd. The album features several songs written by Magne, including Tini’s new version of “Running Out Of Reasons” from Magne’s solo album A Dot Of Black In
The Blue Of Your Bliss
.

“Tini initially appeared a bit secretive and didn’t quite fit the format of The Voice, as she didn’t really try to show off in her performances. Instead she stood out by being very pure and focused on the music. When I brought the talents I wanted to work with over to England, Tini was the one who got the best reactions and who people wanted to help develop”, Magne said.

“It’s been really exciting. Magne is a fantastic mentor who has helped me a lot, not least by allowing me to grow my ambitions. He has also introduced me to a great network of people, both in Norway and abroad”, Tini said.

Following the interview, Magne and Tini were joined by a few additional musicians and performed a live version of the new single “You Can’t Have It Both Ways”, which has also been written by Magne.

Senkveld is available online through TV2 Sumo (subscribers only).

More info about Tini: tinispage.com

‘Do You Remember Me?’ music video

From the music video; Morten on stage in Kristiansand, July 11th

From the music video; Morten on stage in Kristiansand, July 11th

The new music video for “Do You Remember Me?”, directed by Stian Andersen, premiered on VGTV today.

The black-and-white video was shot during Morten’s solo tour this summer and includes footage from the concerts at Over Oslo Festivalen, Paris, London, Stavernfestivalen and Odderøya Live in June and July.

VG also has an interview with Morten, who turns 55 years old today.

Update: the video has now been added to YouTube by a-ha.com.

Campaign for more a-ha remasters

The remastered deluxe edition of Scoundrel Days. Will more albums get the same treatment?

The remastered deluxe edition of Scoundrel Days. Will more albums get the same treatment?

A new fan campaign has now been started on Facebook, urging Warner Brothers to continue releasing remastered deluxe versions of a-ha’s back catalogue:

“In 2010, WB/Rhino released deluxe 2-CD editions of the first 2 a-ha albums with added demos, extended mixes, live versions and b-side only versions. These products were fantastic, not only greatly improving the sound of these seminal albums but also greatly expanding them with unheard material.

It seemed that the record company were only at the beginning of a release campaign to further improve ALL the a-ha albums. However, since 2010, there have been no further archive projects and the fans have been left waiting and waiting. At the very least, the next 3 a-ha albums (Stay On These Roads/East Of The Sun West Of The Moon/Memorial Beach) should get the same treatment with expansion to 2-CD sets and inclusion of rare and unheard material. “Stay On These Roads” in particular is crying out for re-mastering as the only available CD release sounds very tinny and lo-fi.

In these days of nostalgia, it seems that every artist from the same period apart from a-ha is getting the deluxe treatment. Consequently, their back catalogue is in a mess and seriously needs sorting out. This is a plea to Warner Brothers to do as we ask and accord a-ha with the same respect as it does with the other (sometimes lesser) artists on it’s own roster.”

To read more about the campaign and “like” the page, head over to Facebook.

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