Sunna Gunnlaugs

Touring Central Europe

February 24, 2010 1:00 pm | Filed under: Music,Road Stories | Comments (1)
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I have played in Central Europe only once and it was quite an experience. It was March 2002. We had been performing in Western Europe and had grown accustomed to crossing borders without showing passports, not having to worry about exchanging currency and communicating using either English, German or French. You might say we'd been spoiled. As soon as we crossed the border of Austria into Central Europe it was apparent that we had left our comfort zone and were in for something decidedly different. (read more…)

Bebop Laundry

February 16, 2010 12:23 pm | Filed under: Road Stories | Comments (0)
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Tours seem to have some magical appeal to me. Playing music every night with the same band is great. Seeing new places, although sometimes you're only getting a little glimpse, is neat. But when you spend all day travelling, changing trains and hailing cabs you want to pack lightly.

In 2003 I had a tour of Europe with my quartet. I was living in New York and I had bought brand spanking new pants at the Gap before departure and washed them and all. To keep luggage to a minimum I usually wear a pair of jeans while travelling and then have a couple of pants in my suitcase for performing in. This time however, I decided not to wear my jeans during the flight because the tiny metal buttons on the pockets triggered the alarm at the security gate. Unfortunately my bassist Matt Pavolka spilled coffee on me during the flight. (read more…)

The Ingenious Music of Bill Frisell

February 8, 2010 1:36 pm | Filed under: Music | Comments (3)
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I belong to a collective trio called Frisell Projekt. It was initiated by my hubby, drummer Scott McLemore a few years ago and also includes bassist Róbert Þórhallsson. As the group name indicates we focus on music by guitarist Bill Frisell. The neat thing is that we are a guitar-less trio and I mostly play my vintage wurlitzer electric piano. When we first started rehearsing this music it was so intriguing to find ways to transfer his arrangements to our instrumentation. It really makes me and Róbert think differently. I may have a melody part in my right hand, another melody part in my left hand while he is playing a bass groove and chordal accompaniment. Scott has it easy… just hitting some drums. (read more…)