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About Harv

Going from Jimi Hendrix covers to traditional Scandinavian fiddle music might seem like a giant leap of imagination, but it's exactly what the Swedish duo of Harv has managed. Magnus Stinnerbom and Daniel Sandén-Warg first played together in 1992, when they were 14, while attending a high school for musicians in their hometown of Karlstad. In Harv's very earliest incarnation, Stinnerbom played drums and Sandén-Warg guitar, as they jammed on old Hendrix songs, aiming to be rock stars. The idea of moving to traditional music came a year later. Stinnerbom had grown up with the music, his father having been a fiddle player with the seminal Swedish folk band Groupa, and when he finally played some of the old sounds for his friend, Sandén-Warg was an instant convert. However, it would still be a while before the pair appeared in public. Their debut as Harv (which translates as "harrow") came in 1996, when they provided the music for a production of Hamlet by the Västanå Theatre, and their eponymous first CD arrived a year later. Stinnerbom later described it as "just the two of us, and it was just tunes from our part of Sweden, our chance to show people where we're from, and explore on our tradition. Then we could build on that." It took a little while for them to build on it, though, as Stinnerbom began performing with former Hedningarna vocalist Sanni Kurki-Suonio before becoming a member of Hedningarna. Sandén-Warg began to immerse himself in traditional music, researching tunes and history. The pair reconvened in 2000 to make Must, which included guests Roger Tallroth from Väsen on guitar and Hedningarna's Björn Tollin on percussion. The album saw them widen their horizons, playing not just local music, but even pieces composed by Stinnerbom. In 2001 they undertook their first North American tour, but upon arriving home they stepped back into the studio to record. Putting together another inspiring and fun record, the group released Tost the next year on North Side Records. ~ Chris Nickson

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