The country village of Skebobruk is located in the countryside, some 90 kilometers north of Stockholm. Right in the middle of woods, creeks, winding roads, abandoned work sheds and a blacktop road that in the end will take you to the dull and uninspiring industry cluster called Hallstavik.
Photo: Hasse Lindén
The village of Skebo is most known for the Skebo Herrgård (=Mansion) which is known for three things; here the band Europe detoxed and slimmed down before going on world tour in the 80s, the restaurant at the mansion is real fine dining and is mentioned in the White Guide, and in the mansion the ghost of the White Lady roams the corridors at night, checking out that all is well. A stones throw from the mansion is the old mill by the pouring stream. In the mill there is now a pub where films are shown now and then, bands perform for local audiences and a micro brewery produces strong and interesting brews not to be forgotten once they passed your thirsty lips.
And here The Ballroom band recording the new yet untitled album. Upstairs in the mill, in a big room with hardwood floor, big rafters high up in the ceiling and windows facing the pouring stream. Get you somehow thinking about The Band’s Big Pink. This is The Ballroom Band’s Big Brewery…
The plan was simple. Let’s record an album together in a big room IRL. Let all the instruments blend, let all the personalities swing in time, let the songs be created and let it be live and direct! And here we are, in the big room. With all the microphones, wires, headphones, instruments, amplifiers, and some refreshments at the little kitchen in the corner.
Here they are, the Honky Tonk heroes that call themselves The Ballroom Band.
In the corner behind all the drums, Peter Hjerpe. On his side the bass man Clas Lassbo with two Fenders and a Upright bass. Behind all the recording gear, the mixer, the piano/organ, and the accordion standing with his mandolin in hand – Pelle Andersson the composer. Guitarist extraordnaire Jonas Lönngren is sitting behind his immense pedal board with a couple of Fenders, a barytone and an acoustic guitar. He is checking his head phones ’cause his amplifier is standing in a cupboard out in the kitchen. Jesper Lindberg is sitting behind his pedal steel guitar with his 5-string banjo whithin reach. He has his amplifier miked up out in the toilet.
And behind the microphone the master of ceremonies, The Frontman, Martin Frontman Andersson. With two acoustic guitars, one used as a stand for his hat. He sings the songs of the Ballroom Band; songs of drifting, longing, loving and living. Songs from the heart of everything from the road to the sky.
The band get their rest in a nearby house but Frontman sleeps on a bed in a corner of the mill house. Every night he has felt the strong presence of someone who tucked him in at night. But there was nobody else around. Maybe the White Lady of the Skebo Mansion approved of the music…
On the last day the great Linda Ström came by and blessed the session on the track “Hard Times”. Now the album was complete .
The Album “Skebobruk Sessions” release in October 2014.