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Hoven Droven BiographyThe original line-up of Hoven Droven was formed at Birka Folk HighSchool, Östersund in 1989. The members were Pedro Blom, Kjell-ErikEriksson, Jens Comén, Björn Höglund, Martin Andersson, AnnikaHolmer and Sven Olofsson. The band spent their first year indulging invarious acoustic experiments based on Swedish folk music, with noother thought in mind than to have fun and learn from each other. Thefollowing year involved considerable changes: Annika and Sven quit tocontinue theirmusic studies in other parts of the country and Martin’sassiduous touring with his other band, Lars Vegas Trio, finally pavedway for Bo Lindberg who replaced Martin in 1990. Gustav Hylén joinedthe band in 1991.During the period 1991-94 the characteristic sound that today is HovenDroven’s most distinctive feature came in to shape–the contagious mixof traditional Swedish folk, percussive excess and fierce guitars. Theband also managed to get invited to every single Swedish radio and TV-channel, thatwithout having released a record! A cassette ”ModernMusik Från Förr” was recorded though, and sold at the band’s shows.On the band’s first CD ”Hia Hia”, released in 1994, there are cleartraces of their acoustic background, although newer and tougher trackslike ”Köttpolska” blended in well. Around this time the band started totour diligently and before it was time to record the second album ”Grov”,released in 1996, the band had given approximately 100 concerts in,among other places Norway, Denmark,Belgium and The Faroe Islands.The extensive touring helped cultivate the band’s sound and ”Grov”turned out much heavier than its predecessor, and closer to the bandslive sound. Sometime during this period the band also started to discussthe possibility of involving vocals in their–up to this point–entirelyinstrumental repertoire. But the never lasting tour duties keptpostponing their next release…In May 1997 the American record company Northside released”Groove”, a compilation with materialfrom ”Hia Hia” and ”Groove”. As aresult the band made their first visit to the U.S.A. that same month.In the fall of 1997 Gustav Hylén announced that he wished to leave theband. Out of consideration to his family he wanted to cut down on thetouring,and spend more time establishing his newly built recordingstudio in Revsund, Jämtland. However, he continued to tour untilDecember-97, which gave the band time enough to rehearse with
Gustav’s replacement Jan Strömstedt. Jan, who also plays with Kjell-Erik in Triakel, was an easy choice for the band. He had known themember’s of the group for a long time and his organ playing became away to revitalize and broaden the band’s sound.After a spring and summer filled with touring in, among other placesCanada, The United States and England, the band headed for Gustav’s”Home Studio”to initiate work with their third album ”More Happy Moments With HovenDroven”. In order to live up to their ambition of using vocal elementsthey re-established contact with Sofia Sandén and Ulrika Bodén whohad toured with the band the previous year. The band also convincedStefan Sundström (one of Sweden’s better-known singer/songwriters) tojoin in, which he happily did since he and the band share a mutual loveand respect for legendary Swedish actor/singer Allan Edwall. One ofEwall ́s songs also ended up on the album. ”More Happy Moments WithHoven Droven” was recorded during five different periods betweenSeptember–98 and June-99, all while the band kept touring.In thebeginning of 2000 when the band was facing the most intensetouring summer of their career Janne leaves the band. He finds it hardto combine Hoven Droven with Triakel, plus that he runs his ownbusiness, so he decides to quit. Hoven Droven does not want to look forreplacement, and tours for the whole summer as a five-piece band.In Januari 2001 the band recorded their new album ”Hippa”. This wasthe first time they decided to turn off the electric guitars and opt for amore organic sound. The change resulted in an acoustic and muchmore laid back record that probably surprised some of the hard corefans. Although going for a ”softer” approach they managed to maintaintheir characteristic sound and groove a lot of people were pleasentlysurprised when faced with the, up till then somewhat concealed,versatilty of the band. The album was also released on the german labelWestpark, and on the American label Northside.The touring continued with a second visit to the Nordic Roots Fesival inMinneapolis, among many other events. In July 2001 the bandcelebrated their 10th anniversery by throwing a big concert for 8.000 oftheir closest friends at the town square in their hometown of Östersund.The year then came to an end with SVT, The Swedish NationalBroadcasting Company aired a whole hour featuring the band atlegendary Nalen in Stockholm.During the following years it was touring buisness as usual, and in thefall of 2003 The Hovens made yet another trip to The US and Canada.
In the spring of 2004 the bandstarted colaboration withDalasinfoniettan, one of Swedens finest symphony orchestras. Theirwork resulted in one tour, and two performances at Swedens coolestoutdoor venue;Dalhalla.In the fall of 2004 Hoven Droven recorded their fifth cd ”TURBO”.”Turbo” became a comeback for the more rock influenced sound fromthe bands first three albums, and ”Turbo” was also released on thegerman label Westpark. More touring followed, and at a show inMinneapolis the band recorded their live CD ”Jumping At The Cedar”.In the spring of 2006 Hoven Droven participated in the Swedish TVshow ”Musikministeriet” together with Swedish techno artist E-Type.The show was a musical experiment regarding music in different workout programs.In September the live album ”Jumping At The Cedar” was released as apart of Hoven Drovens 15 year anniversary, and shortly thereafter thealbum was nominated for a Swedish Grammy.In 2011 the bend released their /:th studio album ”Rost” to criticalacclaim.In 2014 the band released a complete live version of their debut albumnamed ”Hia Hia Live 2014”In 2015 they released the single ”Sigrid” and took part in the project”Hälsningar Från”together with refugees from around the world,wherethey created music with Nadeen Almudifat Aljawwia.In 2017 they released EP 2017 with four new tracks.In 2021 the band celebrates 30 years together with a brand new studioalbum named ”Trad”.Band members:Kjell-Erik Eriksson; fiddleBo Lindberg; guitarJens Comén; saxophonesBjörn Höglund; drums and percussionPedro Blom; bassHoven Droven has…
.. played the opening ceremony of the World Ski Championship 2019 inÅre Sweden, in front of 650 million TV viewers …. been Grammy nominated in Sweden for their live CD ”Jumping At TheCedar”….since the start they have toured Sweden, Norway, Germany,Denmark, Finland, Belgium, The Netherlands, The Faroe Islands,England, U.S.A., Canada, Estonia, Bosnia, Kroatia, Austria,Montenegro, Serbia & Slovenia…. and probably some more places …..played in front of nearly 10 000 people as opening act to AniDeFranco at the Winnipeg Folk Festival in Canada 1998. (The day afterthey played in front of ten persons at a pub in Sudbury….) In thesummer of 2000 the band returned to once again play in front of 10.000people….released eight songs to the American TV-documentary ”To Build aTall Ship”….released their first album ”Hia Hia” on cassette in Poland….received the 1999 Cultural Prize from Ländstidningen in Östersund….toured with a symphony orchestra