This is my musical history – Part Two

GETTING SERIOUS: In the autumn of 1990 I reconnected with a guy some years older than me. When you were 18, a guy at 23 was OLD, you know what I mean, haha! 🙂

Three years earlier I had made my first real demo with this guy, writing the lyric to and deciding the song’s name, «SOMETHING’S REAL». I also sang it.

Some (… well, quite a few, actually … ) bewildered a-ha fans some years later seemed set to believe it was an a-ha-demo, but that is an entirely different story.

Kjell Inge Hansen was (and is) a multi-instrumentalist and a fantastic song writer. Songs came pouring out of this guy. He could play the bass, the guitar, his drum programming was exceptional, and he could do wonders with a sequencer. Wholed up at Roar Tømmervågs fantastic home studio – in the basement («Bunker Studios») – I had to let go off my distaste for a smokey environment. All for the arts!

The two guys chain-smoked and drank Coca Cola and coffee all day to keep up with the song ideas.

Here I could write lyrics and sing my heart out on a daily basis.

LIGHT COLOURS was our band name. My idea.

Looking back on it I wish we had a multi-track recorder at this stage, because singing all the way through each and every demo was a live performance on it’s own and often didn’t do my voice, or the demos, any justice.

But what hell! I got a lot of live performing experience!

It was in this basement that I got to know Miguel Bose and his album XXX. A fantastic pop masterpiece. I also remember Phil Collins‘ new album then, … But Seriously, was brand new and on heavy rotation. I also think Kjell Inge was a huge fan of Johnny Hates Jazz, and Roar played Depeche Mode a lot. Violator came out and was a big inspiration.

Demotape from 1990.

Looking back this was a magical time. We even had a couple of concerts at the discoteque, Tropicana, where I also could sing live – this time in front of an audience!

LIGHT COLOURS LIVE 1990. Note the band logo at the back! From left to right: Roar Tømmervåg, John Berge og Kjell Inge Hansen. Photo by – we don’t know.

We did try to get a record deal and even went down to Oslo for a week to visit all the record companies. Alas, we did not get the deal.

JB looks at his own SONY DAT-recorder and the rented ALESIS ADAT eight-track digital recorder in «Bunkers Studio» in 1992. It was fantastic to do our first digital recordings! Photo by Roar Tømmervåg.

 

But the dream lived on. We continued to make music for some years, even after we «gave up» LIGHT COLOURS as a band.

Kjell Inge came up with a new version of a song I initially called «WISH TO GIVE YOU SILENCE IN THESE WORDS», a typical JB-heavy-old-at-heart title, which Kjell Inge smartly called «HEAVEN SOMEDAY».

I remember well that he insisted on writing the lyrics. No offense, but writing lyrics and singing were his only minor drawbacks. But he had a point about some of my lyrics, though! Too «word-y» and somewhat difficult to understand. The new lyric consisted basically of song titles with some words added. I remember Kjell Inge laying out the backsides of LPs and looking at songtitles. I resisted some of the words, and insisted to rewrite some of it, but hey! The new version worked and was much more commercial.

We recorded «HEAVEN SOMEDAY» on a multi-track recorder and it was played for years on end on the local radio station. Many years later I did a new recording in the United Kingdom, and this song is available on all streaming plattforms. The lyric? Still much the same, but I did rewrite it even more and added a new lyric to the second verse.

Which leads me to «INNOCENT BLUE». This was also one of the best Light Colours-tracks, in my opinion, and producer Robbie Bronnimann seemed to agree, cos we made a new version of it. Very true to the original demo, I must say, but of course also much updated, as it should be. Now, after all these years, it is finally being released!

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