February 2nd marks the release of Liv Andrea Hauge Trio’s first studio album, “Ville Blomster” (Wild Flowers). The trio’s debut album, “Live from St. Hanshaugen,” was recorded in Liv’s living room just a week after they started playing together. In contrast, “Ville Blomster” represents the result of a year of frequent touring, practice, and studio time. The trio has developed its own expression, allowing room for exploration and improvisation. The title “Ville blomster” symbolizes the wild and improvised side of their music, along with the beautiful and simple melodic elements (the flowers) that stand out.
The album was recorded at Athletic Sound in Halden with Dag Erik Johansen in May 2023. Much of the music was written just before, and the album’s tracks range from rythmic, catchy tunes inspired by pianists like Keith Jarrett and Brad Mehldau to more melancholic, airy compositions like “Vår” (Spring) and “Ødemarka.”(Wasteland) Regarding the writing process, Liv says, “All the songs, except for ‘Ødemarka’ and ‘Du og jeg, baby,’ (You and me, Baby) were written in my apartment in the center of Oslo. I like to open the windows and listen to life outside, sitting alone at the piano for hours, searching for an idea with a clear character.”
Looking ahead, the trio has many plans. The day after the album release, they will perform at the opening of Bodø24 with the Arctic Philharmonic and three vocalists. Later in February, they will embark on a release tour, and in the summer, they will play at various festivals and concerts abroad. They have also been selected as the only jazz band to participate in Northern Expo 2024.
Liv, who has experienced challenges when it comes to recording improvised music in the studio in the past, had a very positive experience at Athletic Sound in Halden. Liv shares, “The three days in Halden were inspiring, creative, and we had time for playful exploration in the studio. We had decided in advance not to do too many takes of each song; it can be challenging to play the same solo over and over again, and this made us focused from the first take, in addition to having time to play and try out different things. One result of this is the track ‘Du og jeg, baby,’ which is a free improvisation. It probably also helped that we have played so much together in the past year, and that I wrote a lot of new music that was fresh when we went into the studio. A mix of familiarity among us musicians and fresh material made this my most positive studio experience so far.”
The title “Ville blomster” is also a reference to nature. “It becomes more and more important to take care of the untouched and wild, and the first track describes a kind of dream that one will find an untouched area with wild flowers where nature is not in danger of being destroyed. Just as nature is a free space for us, we want the music on this album to be a sanctuary for those who listen.” – Liv
The trio was formed when Liv Andrea Hauge was selected as Norway’s representative in the European jazz program Footprints in 2021. She invited August and Georgia to join the tour in Slovenia and Hungary in 2022, and that’s how the trio was born. The three musicians, who did not know each other before, immediately found a spark of chemistry and have since played together, developing their own unique expression.
Liv Andrea Hauge (b.1995) is an Oslo-based musician originally from Mosjøen in Nordland. She studied jazz piano at the Norwegian Academy of Music and, despite her young age and career, has made a mark with Kongle Trio (with Veslemøy Narvesen on drums and Øystein Skjelstad Østensen on bass) and Laydbird Orchestra. In 2022, she released the album “Live from St.Hanshaugen” with the Liv Andrea Hauge Trio, recorded in Liv’s living room. The album was acclaimed as one of the best Norwegian jazz albums of the year. In 2023, she released the album “Hva nå, Ekko?” on Odin, with Marte Eberson, Ragnhild Moan, Signe Emmeluth, Torstein Lavik Larsen, Fredrik Luhr, and Andreas Winther. This music was a commissioned work by the Festspillene Helgeland and toured in the summer of 2022, visiting the Kongsberg Jazz Festival, Oslo Jazz Festival, and Hemnesjazz. The album’s second single, “Again,” was praised in Dagsavisen as “a candidate for Song of the Year in a more just world.”