"Expressive, distinctive interpretations of traditional music from Norway."
Liv Runesdatter lives in Stavanger, a small town in western Norway. She works a freelance singer, composer and producer. She is one of very few singers performing the rare music tradition of Vestfold and Rogaland. Runesdatter has produced performances in cooperation with dancers, film makers, musicians, searchers and visual artists, and is leader of the production company CARMA Contemporary Art, Music and Dance.
Seven years ago she discovered some old recordings with forgotten songs from a small pietistic laymen`s movement that emerged in eastern Norway in the 1860s, and it became the beginning of pationate relationship, and a study. Hours and hours has been spent in archives, pot after pot of coffee brewed in retirement homes, moving conversations an a surrogate grandmother..
Autumn 2008 she released her first solo album "Syng hjerte" (Sing heart), presenting a vigorous collection of songs. Musicians on the cd are high class Norwegian musicians such as Rolf-Erik Nystrøm (sax), Alfred Janson (accordion), Trygve Seim (sax), Håkon Thelin (double bass), Tuva Thomassen Bolstad (harding fiddle) and Vidar Skrede (baglama). The cd has received wonderful reviews. The Norwegian Broadcast journalist Kjetil Bjørgan proclaimes it to be an important music project, challenging the Norwegian traditional music field, both through Runesdatter voice performance and because of the catchy and untraditional musical choices.
Østlandsposten (newspaper of eastern Norway): "Playful, near and warm. A distinctive, elegant experience. Beautiful, fearless vocal and varied, fresh accompagnement made "Song to heaven" a wonderful concert."
Stavanger Aftenblad (newspaper of western Norway): "Warm as the sun of spring, sharp as the night of April! Yesterday night Liv Runesdatter and her ensemble delivered a synthesis of old and new sounds. The program was brilliantly put together. The ensemble created a meditativ, pieceful hour in the sunset."
NRK (The Norwegian National Broadcast): «What we hear is a heartfelt, personal music, with a rare creative fantasy: Liv Runesdatter, remember her name. A certain voice, encircled by a powerful ensemble of musicians. I immediately recognize small details: crackling, air without sound/delay through the saxophones, a hint of splinteres bowstrokes.. It is blessed, it is cheerful and drifting, and it is heavy and refreshing at the same time. It is imainative art! The musical material is well worked through and well arranged, and at the same time with interresting improvisations. Also the cd challenges the Norwegian tradtional style, both through Runesdatters song technique, and through the catchy and untraditional susical solutions.»
Norsk Viseforum (Norwegian Songwriters Magazine): "The songs are followed by untraditional arrangements, sometimes dreamy and sometimes rythmical defiant. Together with the cd "Syng hjerte" is a small booklet and a beautiful little text. You must admit they have done good job with the arrangements. Runesdatter sings beautiful, such are the texts and the melodies. Together with the accompaniment by floating and dreaming arrangements, you recognize them as something special. The ensemble between the accordion and the harding fiddle touch me. In the song "So, ro snubberusken min" Liv Runesdatter sings together with Vidar Skrede on baglama, it`s world music. So long "Solrenning Sæle" is my definitive favourite. Excellent done!"
Spelemannsbladet (The Norwegian national magazine for traditional music): Old, spiritual songs with a sound bringing a heavenly yearning through generations of lived lives, is the gift Liv Runesdatter bring on this cd. She is an artist who creates something new out of an old material. Together with her musicians she creates a young, beautiful and elegant expression. Liv Runesdatter has made a pleasant recording that open new rooms to experience and discover the songs."
Østlendingen og Halden (newspaper for Eastern Norway and Halden): "Beautiful traditional psalmes: She sings wonderful, and surround herself with Spartan music. Some of the songs are meditative, others are more unruly and playful. This people know what they are doing."