Norwegian music is fantastic. For a country of just over 5 million, they really produce some high quality stuff.
Some of the more famous artists you’ll have heard of include Kygo, Aha and Nico & Vinz, who all call Norway their home.
Yet some of the true wonders are not sang in English, but Norwegian. If you fancy brushing up on your Norwegian, there’s no better way than finding a couple of songs you really love and just memorizing the lyrics until you hate it.
But where to start? Fortunately for this post, my not-so-secret passion is Norwegian music. Let me take you on my wonderful journey to music greatness.
Where it started.
My first introduction into Norwegian music began in 2014, sitting in the passenger seat of a car as it rolled through the glorious western Norwegian fjord roads.
NRK P3 was on the radio, and one single song dominated the playtime more than anything. Gabrielle’s “5 fine frøkner”.
If you’re a fan of SKAM, then this might be one on your radar, but if not then no problem. It’s an incredibly catchy song, even for a non Norwegian speaker. Give it two listens and I guarantee you’ll at least be humming the chorus.
She also sings another brilliant song “ring meg“. The music video also tickles me as it’s nice to see someone enjoying the London sights.
What you’re about to hear next is…
Morgan Sulele. God I have conflicting feelings about posting this. What you’re potentially about to hear is corny to the highest level, but it was the next step in the discovery process, so the least he deserves is an honorable mention.
Here’s “Bare min”. I’m sorry in advance.
Terribly corny, but god dammit it’s catchy. I hate myself for even posting it, but I promise i’ll get to the good stuff.
The Good stuff (If you don’t like hip-hop / rap…scroll down)
Thankfully, Mr Sulele didn’t really put me off discovering more about Norwegian music. I’m fortunate enough to have a group of Norwegian friends who are also passionate about Norwegian music, so they really steered me in the right direction.
I’ll try and demonstrate a variety of different genres that shows off the diversity of Norwegian music, but apologies in advance if this isn’t to your taste.
I have a man-crush on this dude. A rapper from Bergen, if you’re a fan of the genre then he’s definitely worth checking out. Here’s one of my favorites.
Also worth mentioning is “Det ordnar seg for pappa”, especially for a good showcase of his range.
It’d be rude not to mention Karpe Diem too. Based in Oslo, their impact on the Norwegian hip-hop scene is huge. Check out “Lett å være rebell i kjellerleiligheten din”. Awesome song with a strong message behind it.
Awesome rapper from Oslo, super talented and apparently his live shows are crazy. His diversity in style is also crazy good.
Enjoyed the above. Good. Here’s some others that may tickle your fancy.
Good stuff (That isn’t hip-hop / rap)
If hop-hop / rap isn’t your thing, then the last three videos might have been wasted on you. However hopefully the following might also be to your taste.
Super talented artist, found him through a spotify discovery list. I’d highly recommend supporting him if you like the music.
Stein Torleif Bjella
Introduced to this artist by a friend, been addicted ever since. His voice is hauntingly amazing. His entire discography is worth a listen, but this was the first that got me hooked.
Another band found through spotify. They have a great bunch of songs, the ones that really spring to mind are either the one below or “E du med mæ”.
Perhaps well known for “Du Fortenar Ein Som Meg”, however my personal favorite would be “Om ikkje no, når?”
I have a whole list of artists & songs I’d love to post, but this page would be far too long. If you want to discover more, I’d highly recommend getting a spotify account, picking an artist above and just going through the discography / related artists.
Listening to music is a great way of learning the language and absorbing the culture. Even if you don’t understand it, you should be able to pick up a couple of words and google translate the rest of the lyrics.
If you find any new artists I like, i’ll buy you a beer. Let me know.