Q&A With Tobias Froberg

Tobias Froberg iPod broke, so he was nice enough to answer some questions for yours truly.

Grandma's Basement: What sounds are going through your ears, and what albums are you looking forward to this?
Tobias Froberg: My friends laugh at me sometimes because I'm not aware of what is happening in the scene today. I listen to Paul Simon, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Carole King, Beach Boys (don't miss their Sunflower album, its amazing), Neil Young, Nina Simone. Well as you probably can imagine I'm not the best person to answer such a question. But, there are a couple of bands and artists that I know and sometimes work with. And I really love their music. I'm talking about Ane Brun, Teitur, Jose Gonzalez. There's a Swedish trio called The Tiny, and their new album is great.

GB: Sweden is producing tons of great artists at the moment, how does this make you feel that your own country is succeeding so well?
Tobias: Because of Internet, because of the fact that the music scene is so international today, you are always one click away from your favorite artist or band. I don't really think of Swedish music as "Swedish music". But I understand what you mean. The water is cooking here in Sweden, things are happening. There's a lot of good music, but there's also a lot of bad music as well. I don't want to say I'm proud of Swedish music in general, because I'm not. I just think it's fun when things are going well for people I know. That makes me proud.

GB: Are there any artists or bands from Sweden that we don't know about yet that we should know about?
Tobias: There's a band called Antennas, they are very good. Another great pop band is PeterBjornandJohn. And, as I mentioned before, The Tiny. They are amazing.

GB: What inspired you to become the musician you are today?
Tobias: It's difficult to say. I have played in bands, and I have tried different kinds of music. I guess that everything that happens to you in some way inspired you in your music. Fucking hell, that was a boring answer. My iPod broke down the other week, and suddenly my focus for writing new songs were gone. I think I need to listen to music. Good music inspires me. My friends inspire me. Ane, Teitur, Jose.

GB: Are you planning on touring the USA for Somewhere In The City? Please say you're playing Chicago.
Tobias: As we are talking, my manager is closing a US deal for the new album. I don't know where and when things will happen. But I'd love to play in Chicago.

GB: How do you like touring?
Tobias: I love it. That is one of the reasons I record albums. I like traveling and put that together with playing music. Well, then you have everything you want.

GB: How often do you get noticed in Sweden?
Tobias: Not very often, not that I know of anyway. Sweden is a small country, people who are interested in music perhaps know me. But you know, that is nothing I think of really.

GB: Do you want to become huge or do you prefer being just another artist?
Tobias: Difficult question. I want people to like my music. I want to be able to record albums, tour, and make a good living out of it. That's the only answer I can ou you. I'm certainly not interested in being on celeb photos in a tabloid. That is not the reason I play music.

GB: Is there any artist you would dream to collaborate with?
Tobias: Teitur and I are writing songs together when we get the time. And me, Teitur, and Ane Brun are hoping to do a tour together. We have done concerts before and that is so cool. If you're thinking of huge stars, I think I would be terrified if I was to play together with Paul Simon, Neil Young, Levon Helm from the Band or anyone else. I don't want to ruin a good thing, you know.

GB: Explain to us why Somewhere In The City is different from For Elisabeth Wherever She Is.
Tobias: Elisabeth was recorded by me and my good friends Linus Larsson (known for producing or working with Anna Ternheim, Nicolai Dunger & Mercury Rev, The Concretes, Ed Harcourt, and others) in a short period of time. We recorded the songs and that was it. This time, I started recording some of the songs on my own in my apartment, under my bed actually. I knew what I wanted from these new songs and I was certainly not looking for perfection, but I really wanted to get the right feeling. For some songs, I think I did like 80-90 takes. It sounds awful, but I learned a lot. When I was ready, I brought it all to Linus' studio and we began with the overdubbings. But then again, some of the songs were recorded in that old Linus and Tobias kind of way. Press record and play! We are very satisfied with the result. I think it's a great album and I'm very proud of it. I really love Elisabeth as well, but you know how it is. Artists tend to prefer their latest work.

Thanks to Tobias for doing this for us. Check back at a previous post for some more info and MP3's.