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The Folk Music Podcast

The Folk Music Podcast

Each week, Norwegian musician Anders Lillebo sits down with remarkable people from the world of folk music to explore topics like music history, instruments, creativity, the place of music in society and much more!


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Exploring the boundaries, with Martin Green

Todays?s guest is Martin Green, member of the groundbreaking folk trio Lau and an accomplished composer and solo artist. I had a great time chatting with Martin, and we touched on a number of different topics, including what defines folk music for different people, creative techniques, band politics, approaching a band as an actual job, the current state of the music industry and lots of other things. The conversation jumps around quite a bit, but I find these episodes, where the conversation just flows naturally, to be the best ones! This episode is on the longer side, but it?s all very interesting stuff I think, Martin has a lot of great insight into these things and I?m sure you?ll find it valuable as well.
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Accordion, Art and Jellyfish, with Karen Tweed

In this episode I?m speaking with English piano accordion player Karen Tweed. Karen is known for her smooth, playful style on the accordion and is regarded as one of the finest performers of Irish Music on the instrument.  In this conversation we talk surprisingly little about the accordion, as we end up visiting a lot of different topics as diverse as creativity, art, role models, musical colors and cartoons(!) For show notes, videos and bonus material, please visit: (
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Folk Chamber, with Bjørn Kåre Odde

In this episode I?m joined by Norwegian fiddler and composer Bjørn Kåre Odde. He is one of the most exiting folk musicians in Norway at the moment and he has just released his debut solo album titled Folk Chamber. I got to sit down with him right after his concert at Osafestivalen this weekend and we had an interesting conversation about his work and creative process. We also got into important topics like having the right mindset and how to stay sane while doing what he does!
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Xeno Manía, with Ale Möller

We're kicking of the second season of the show with legendary Swedish folk- and world musician Ale Möller. In this conversation we're focusing on Ale's approach to folk music and how he's able to maintain his own unique voice across all his various projects.
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Swedish folk guitar, with Oskar Reuter

In episode 15, I?m speaking with Swedish folk guitarist Oskar Reuter. Oskar is a versatile musician who is currently in high demand on the Scandinavian folk scene. In August he released his first solo album, called «Current State», featuring a collection of mostly original tunes played on fingerstyle guitar. Highly recommended! I had a great time chatting with Oskar about his approach to folk music, his guitar style, his journey from jazz into the folk world, his solo album, his experiences in learning the nyckelharpa, and a bunch of other things! Please visit the show website for videos, links and more info about the episode:
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Landskein, with Lauren MacColl

In episode 14 I?m speaking with Scottish fiddler Lauren MacColl about her latest album, her creative process and the art of approaching old traditional material, whether it being in written or recorded form. For links, video and additional resources, visit the show website:
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A World of Folk Music, with Olav Luksengård Mjelva

In this episode I?m traveling to the Norwegian city Røros to speak with Olav Luksengård Mjelva, one of the busiest fiddlers in Norway. I?ve been a fan of Olav?s work for a long time, so it?s a real treat to be able to have him as a guest on the show.  In our conversation we discuss his approach to musical collaborations, how to succeed as a touring musician and the importance of finding your own voice as a musician. For show notes and additional resources, please se:
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The Art of Storytelling, with Matthew Byrne

In this episode I?m speaking with Folk singer and guitarist Matthew Byrne from Newfoundland about storytelling, tradition, creativity and guitar picks! For video, links and other resources, please visit the show website:
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The Music of Riverdance, with Emma McPhilemy

Emma McPhilemy is the musical director of the Riverdance. On this episode we speak about her work with the show and also how she approaches the music industry as a classically trained musician.
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Faroese ballads & Transatlantic Folk, with Raske Drenge

In this episode of the show I?m speaking with Ragnar Finsson and Oscar Beerten from the Faroese-Belgian duo Raske Drenge. Topics covered include their new album, the history of the Faroe Islands, the art of being in a successful band together and how push the boundaries of the folk music genre. For links, resources and videos, please visit the show website:
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Chicago Blues & Finnskogspols, with Richard Gjems

This week I?m joined by Norwegian Harmonica player Richard Gjems. Richard has been one of the most respected harmonica players in the Norwegian blues scene for a long time, but he has been working in pretty much every musical genre there is, and a lot of his style comes from mixing different genres and techniques in an original way. Topics we touch on in this conversation includes Nordic Folk Music on the Harmonica, similarities between the blues scene and the folk scene, what it means to play the blues in 2020, how to balance tradition and innovation, branding, and a bunch of other things. Classic podcast conversation in other words! For links, resources and videos, please see the episode page: (
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The Session, with Snorre Solem

This episode is all about the phenomenon known in Irish circles as «the session», which basically means a gathering of musicians playing Irish traditional music together in an informal way. Everyone that has been involved in Irish music, one way or another will be familiar with this. As any other social gathering, it comes with its own set of unwritten rules and etiquette, and that is something I find very interesting to observe.  For links, video and other resources, please see: (
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Exploring Scandinavian Rhythms, with Jens Linell

Today's guest is Swedish percussion player Jens Linell. Jens is a well-known musician on the Scandinavian trad scene, through bands like SVER and GKN5. He is also a very thoughtful person with a lot of interesting views on folk music, so I knew he would be a great person to have on the show! In this conversation, we touch on topics like the role of percussion Scandinavian traditional music, the relationship between music and dance, and what it means for a drummer or a guitar player to identify as a folk musician today. 
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Tradition & Experimentation, with Sarah-Jane Summers

In this episode I?m speaking with Scottish fiddler Sarah-Jane Summers. As well as being a tradition bearer of the Scottish old Highland style of fiddling, she has managed to create her own musical universe with a strong influence from free improvisation. In our conversation we touch on different topics like Scottish music, how to approach improvisation as a traditional musician, and how having a family impacts your work as a musician. For links and more info, please visit:
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Discovering Danish Folk Music, with Maja Kjær Jacobsen

In this episode I?m speaking with Danish fiddler Maja Kjær Jacobsen. Topics we cover in this episode includes the Danish folk scene, what it means to be a bearer of traditions, and how to find ones musical identity. For resources and links mentioned in the episode, visit:
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How to play in a band, with Guro Kvifte Nesheim

In this episode I?m speaking with Norwegian Hardanger fiddler Guro Kvifte Nesheim. She is a very innovative and productive musician, and I've been a fan of her work for some time now. I?m very happy that Guro could join me for this episode, because she has a lot of experience when it comes to today?s topic, which is Scandinavian traditional music played in bands. Yes, this is how nerdy and niche the show is already on episode three (!) In our conversation we touch on things like why the Scandi music has been mainly a traditionally a solo tradition, how the the folk revival in the 1970s affected the scene, how to transfer the hardanger music into a band forma, why there are more folk music bands in Sweden than in Norway and some predictions about the future. Links: (Guro's website) (GKN5 on bandcamp) Bands mentioned in the episode (Spotify links) (Väsen) (Hedningarna) (Kebnekajse) (Folque) (Bukkene Bruse) (Annbjørg Lien)
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The Irish harmonica, with Joel Andersson

In this episode I?m speaking with Swedish musician Joel Andersson. Joel is a harmonica player and harmonica customizer who specializes in Irish traditional music. Since I dabble a bit in harmonica playing myself, I knew that I would have a great time chatting with Joel. We talk about the instruments history in Irish music, as well as its place in the scene today. We also go through the different types of harmonicas and talk about some influential players and recordings. Predictably, there are some pretty nerdy moments, but I think that anyone curious about the harmonica in folk music will get great value out of our conversation.
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Bridging the Atlantic, with Patrik Ahlberg

In this first episode of the show, I speak with my friend Patrik Ahlberg. Patrik is a wonderful fiddle and guitar player, and although he is Swedish he has been living in Chicago for the last eight years. I highly recommend everyone to check out his album «Gitarrlåtar» (guitar tunes) where he plays Swedish and Norwegian Fiddle arranged for nylon string guitar. Topics we cover in this conversation is differences between the folk music scene in Scandinavia and America, his approach to playing Swedish folk music on the guitar, being a folk musician in a post-modern world, preservation vs innovation and various other rabbit holes! Listen to Patrik's album Guitarrlåtar:
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Introduction - What's it all about?

The awkward first episode. Listen to learn more about me and my vision for this show!
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