LÓN – My Father

LÓN – My Father

LÓN – My Father

LÓN – My Father

ARTIST NAME: LÓN

 

SONG TITLE: My Father
 
RELEASE DATE: June 16th, 2021
 
GENRE: Folk/Singer-Songwriter
 
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One of Iceland’s most beloved artists, Valdimar Guðmundsson (better known as the frontman of 6-piece rock and roll band Valdimar), explores his folk roots along with powerhouse performers Ásgeir Aðalsteinsson and Ómar Guðjónsson in new Americana project LÓN.
Self-described “country dads who wound up in the suburbs”, these long-time friends and collaborators dealt with the lockdown of 2020 by playing and recording either in Ómar’s studio garage or in a cabin by Iceland’s biggest lake, Þingvallavatn. So out of the pandemic, LÓN was born, with their first single ‘My Father’ being released on June 16th.
With decades’ worth of experience in the music industry and a handful of university degrees in music between them, the members of LÓN have played in countless bands and toured Europe and North America several times over. Valdimar and Ásgeir’s previous project Valdimar earned them two Icelandic Music Awards for Best Rock Song (2016) and Best Rock Album (2018) and Ómar has received the same award for Best Jazz Album (2009 and 2010), Best Jazz Song (2019) and Best Recording Engineer (2018). 
On LÓN’s debut single, My Father, we are taken on an introspective journey of a sort of second adolescence that happens when entering middle age. There’s a comfort that comes with ageing, growing into your bones and your stories, but also a grieving of youth. This age also brings on new challenges such as parenthood and having to look at your parents as the imperfect and often frail people they are.
Lead singer Valdimar is expecting his first child this summer and he said ‘My Father’ was born out of musings on what it is that parents pass on to their children, raising questions of how much his own parents affected him… 
Valdimar’s iconic deep and warm vocals sing over a playful melody that is more contemplative than depressing.  Having often been likened to Rag & Bone Man with their previous soulful rock and roll project Valdimar, LÓN have managed to completely switch gears and hold back from overly complicated arrangements, letting the touching story told in ‘My Father’ to unfold gently.
With this muted but impactful tune, LÓN have proven themselves to be a much-needed mature and authentic addition to the already diverse Icelandic music scene.
These themes then carry into LÓN’s debut music video, directed by Blóð Studio (founded by Ási Már & Erna Hreins). With cinematic shots where decay and freshness, stillness and play are juxtaposed, the members of LÓN find themselves in an almost dream-like scene of moving between rooms in a derelict old house, having memories return to them while asking questions of the past.
 
LYRICS:

 

My father
You look for warmth in icy waters
Your talents have been so distorted
By insecurity
 
And I’ll give you
My honest take I know you hate it
Your habits have become outdated
And alien to me

 

I know life is hard
You try your best
You just have lost your confidence
And all the leaves
Have fallen to the ground

 

All your kindness
All your beauty
And all of your tears
All your heartaches
All your mistakes
And all of your fears
Are embedded in me

 

My mother
You never seem to know your limits
I sometimes wish I had your spirit
And positivity
 
But I know that
Your words can swiftly turn to daggers
And it’s hard to see whether you’re my friend
Or my worst enemy
 
All your kindness
All your beauty
And all of your tears
All your heartaches
All your mistakes
And all of your fears
Are embedded in me

 

In me
In me
In me

 

 

Discuss how you develop your melody.
Sometimes we get lucky and the melody comes to us without any effort or intention, but other times we have to really work on it and make changes and revisions over and over again.

 

Tell us your source of inspiration.
I think the three of us have many different musical inspirations in general and that is probably part of the chemistry between us. But for this album, we talked a lot about music that we have a shared love for and there are some albums that we all admire. I think it is safe to name Nick Drake, Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens, Bob Dylan, Beck, and Bright Eyes as a source of inspiration for this album.

 

Tell us the most memorable experience in your music career.
There have been so many great moments so far and I have been lucky enough to travel around and play in different countries and cities. I guess the first times are the most memorable. The first time I heard a song I wrote on the radio. The first time I played a show for a full house of people. Those sorts of things…

 

Discuss how you build your song.
Most of the time we start out with a simple idea that is maybe a part of a song. It can be a short melody or a chord progression then we sit around and play with and exchange ideas and try to build around it until we have something that we feel is a complete song.

 

Tell us how you ensure your music inspires others.
I think it is quite impossible to ensure that our music inspires others. People are so different and it is really hard to predict what inspires other people. But we make music that matters to us and we write about stuff that matters to us and hopefully, there is someone out there that connects.
 
Discuss the relevance of promotion to the music business.
I think there are few musicians that love the promotion part of this job. I think most of us would rather spend time making some music than writing emails or sponsoring Instagram posts. But I can see how this is a very important part of the business. Especially now when so many people can record and produce music and there’s so much coming out every day… So the biggest challenge is making sure people know about your music and connecting to possible fans out there.
 
Tell us what you will do apart from music.
We all have families that we like to spend time with. And there are some hobbies that we attend to but we are so lucky enough to have music as our main job. Mostly performing and writing it but we all three have also worked as music teachers at some point.
 
List the names of the instruments you can play.
Valdimar plays the trombone. Ásgeir plays guitar and Ómar is a guitar and a bass player. These are our main instruments but then we can play on some other stuff too. For example, Ómar played a lot of drums on the album.
 
Tell us if you have any music background.
Yes, we all went to music school and graduated with various degrees. We have been in various bands in Iceland for the last ten years.
 
Elaborate on melody and rhythm.
It’s like salt and pepper, most of the time you need both to make a good meal.
 
Tell us your future goals.
We would really like to play gigs again for real people. We also want to go on tour and travel again and then make some more music.

 

Share your recording experience with us.
Recording this album has been a really great experience. Even though it was recorded during difficult times. It was our way to get through the pandemic. While society was in lockdown and the whole music industry was on hold we were lucky enough to be able to meet just the three of us and work on these songs.
 
Tell us the most difficult part of the recording.
The recording and the production normally come quite easy to us. I think that the lyrics are the real tricky part. We sometimes have to spend hours just to get one line right. I don’t know why but the lyrics have always been the hardest part.
 
Discuss the greatest mistake you have ever made in your music career.
I can’t remember any right now. Luckily I tend to forget the most embarrassing moments of my career quite soon.
 
Tell us how you build up your composition.
Most of the time we start with a small demo. Maybe a short chord progression or a melody. Then we just sit around the three of us and play with it and try to build something on it. Maybe we need a chorus or a bridge and then we just bounce ideas around until we have something that everyone is excited about. At this point, we are ready to begin recording the song. In the recording phase, we work on all the arrangements and figure out the parts for each instrument.
 
Discuss the relevance of music.
I think that the supply of entertainment these days is overwhelming and people can choose so many other things than music to entertain themselves. But the emotional impact of music is so powerful and I think that there are few things that can move people and make them feel something as music does. You can listen to a three-minute song and it takes you on an emotional journey. I think that is very unique and makes music extremely relevant.
 
Elaborate on the song.
‘My Father’ is based on thoughts about parenthood and generations. How we inherit all the hopes and dreams, mistakes and fears from our parents and pass them on to the next generation. It also deals with the fact that when we get older we begin to see that our parents are frail human beings just like ourselves and that maybe we are slowly turning into them.
 
Elaborate on your artist’s name and the title of the album.
LÓN has several meanings in Icelandic, all related to still or calm water. It just came up when we had a brainstorming session looking for a name for the project. It has some kind of internal calmness that we liked. We also started to record this album in a cabin on the shore of Þingvallavatn, which is Iceland’s biggest lake. So we figured that a water-based name would fit perfectly.

 

 

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