Q&A with Sweden Blues Rock band of FROM (Rikard & Henrik From), a gumbo made of blues and rock

"I think blues music is easy to understand and a great foundation to tell a story. It truly is a global musical language that everyone can be part of. And I think it’s evolving into something new. There’s a lot of pop music with lots of blues in it."

FROM: Rhythmical Bluesie Feeling

FROM is a Blues Rock band from Sweden. Henrik From – guitar and lead vocals; Rikard From – keyboard and backing vocals; Peter Löwgren – bass and backing vocals; and Simon Lundin – drums and backing vocals. Rikard says: "Me and my brother Henrik started writing music for the first time together right before the pandemic struck. Peter and Simon living in different towns recorded their parts at their homes and I put all the pieces together in my home studio." The debut album “Tear It Up” was released in January 2022. The song “Here I Go” almost ended up on Bonnie Raitt’s new album! All members are musicians with long experience but this is the first time together in a band. Originates from Umeå in northern Sweden. The band was the winner of the Swedish Blues Challenge 2022.

(Photo: FROM - Henrik From on guitar and lead vocals; Rikard From on keyboard and backing vocals; Peter Löwgren on bass and backing vocals; Simon Lundin on drums and backing vocals.)

Henrik says: "We have a rhythmical bluesie feel over a base of rock. The drive comes from feeling good from that creative outlet. The trill of creating." And Rikard continues: "Our sound is a gumbo made of blues and rock. Anything in between is allowed. We’re a rhythmic band and we like to improvise. We play with energy and that’s what drives us. There’s no better feeling when this band plays." Currently working on their second album. FROM will be the Sweden participation at the European Blues Challenge, Chorzów in Poland (June 1-3, 2023).

Interview by Michael Limnios

How has the Blues, R&B and Soul music influenced your views of the world and the journeys you’ve taken?

Henrik: I think it has opened up my eyes to the whole world and made me understand that we all are very alike all over the world. We feel the same pain and suffering as the other.

Rikard: As a musician from northern Sweden, it was a revelation the first time I heard blues music. Especially Mr. BB King. The sound, the timing and the voice. It changed me completely. Now when I play that’s always what I’m aiming for. It’s what I listen for in all music regardless of genre. Can’t live without the blues.

How do you describe your sound and songbook? Where does your creative drive come from?

Henrik: We have a rhythmical bluesie feel over a base of rock. The drive comes from feeling good from that creative outlet. The trill of creating.

Rikard: Our sound is a gumbo made of blues and rock. Anything in between is allowed. We’re a rhythmic band and we like to improvise. We play with energy and that’s what drives us. There’s no better feeling when this band plays.

Why do you think that the Blues music continues to generate such a devoted following in Europe?

Henrik: Because the blues keeps developing the same time as it has a strong foundation in a lot of musicians who are more pure to the original sound.

Rikard: I think blues music is easy to understand and a great foundation to tell a story. It truly is a global musical language that everyone can be part of. And I think it’s evolving into something new. There’s a lot of pop music with lots of blues in it.

"Sweden has been a bit traditional when it comes to the blues. We have many great bands an musicians all over Sweden. 50’s sound dominates. But a fresh wind is blowing that FROM is a part of. A more modern touch that finds a younger audience.(Photo: Blues Rock band FROM are Simon Lundin, Henrik From, Rikard From, Peter Löwgren)

What would you say characterizes Swedish blues scene in comparison to other European scenes?

Henrik: The Swedish blues scene is very much devoted to the purist of old sound, I think.

Rikard: Sweden has been a bit traditional when it comes to the blues. We have many great bands an musicians all over Sweden. 50’s sound dominates. But a fresh wind is blowing that FROM is a part of. A more modern touch that finds a younger audience.

Are there any memories from gigs, jams, open acts and studio sessions which you’d like to share with us?

Henrik: In the Swedish blues challenge final, the pickup on my guitar came loose so I don’t think I sounded very good the last bit of the song haha…

Rikard: Well, of course great memories from winning the SBC in Halmstad after a 1150 km car ride.. And the way we managed to record our album in the middle of the pandemic I’ll never forget. Everyone had to learn to record at home. Then I pieced it together in my home studio. We’re really proud of it.

What do you miss most nowadays from the music of the past? What are your hopes and fears for the future of?

Henrik: I miss honest loud singing soul voices without any filters. I hope that we in the future don’t need to put everything in a genre or label. Its all music.

Rikard: I don’t miss anything from the past cause it’s right here with me. I absolutely love the new ways of listening to music wherever I like. And everyone that listens get suggestions and suddenly old artists are resurrected to stardom.

What are some of the most important lessons you have learned from your experience in the music paths?

Henrik: You will never get too old for this!

Rikard: Personally, I’ve learned that if I what things to happen I need to make it happen. No one will ever do it for me. I’ve put in a tremendous amount of hours to get where I’m at and I’m not ever gonna stop.

Rikard From - Home

(Photo: FROM on stage, Sweden - Henrik From on guitar and lead vocals; Rikard From on keyboard and backing vocals; Peter Löwgren on bass and backing vocals; Simon Lundin on drums and backing vocals.)

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