PUBLISHED Jun 29 '09

Those Dancing Days

by Maria Juur

1 Comment

© Gavin Watson (gavinwatsonsphotography.blogspot.com/)

(For those who do not know yet:) What exactly lies behind the name Those Dancing Days? Who are those five girls and under what circumstances have they joined forces to make some catchy tunes?

It all started in early autumn 2005: Lisa, Cissi and Rebecka sat in Lisa’s basement and made huge plans for the future. The plans would be impossible if Cissi did not know Mimmi so she got a phonecall wondering if she and her bass possibly wanted to join a band. Luckily they did! Since the four had to concentrate on their instruments, a singer was needed and Mimmi said she knew a girl in her class that could sing. So in September the last piece was found and the catchy tunes were under construction. The first song they played together was “100 degrees” by Shout Out Louds, one of few bands admired collectively.

Dancing Days is a loan from a song by Led Zeppelin. So what’s the story behind it, did someone’s dad just happened to listen to it or are we dealing with some hardcore Zep-fans?

The only one who is hardcore is Mimmi but that is not the reason really. As we were a band we needed a nice name, we had some different ones to pick between but nothing was good enough. Then one day before a rehearsal Mimmi had gone through the songtitle list on her itunes, one big interest of hers. When she saw “Dancing Days” she brought it to us as a suggestion. Hmm. Yees it sounds good. What about “The Dancing Days”. Noo, too many bands starts with a “The”, maybe “These”?. Maybe “Those”. Yes. It didn’t mean that much in the beginning, actually we all didn’t like it that much, but we had a gig coming up so we had to be called something and then we were stuck with it. But as time went on we started to grow into the name and now we can’t live without it, ha ha. Now it has started to mean a lot of stuff for us. Like, those dancing days are now, tomorrow and yesterday. It’s something you can look back at, look forward to and feel happy to live in. And it is a good song also, of course.

Besides Zep, are you willing to name some artists that you can say have really influenced your way of thinking about pop music? Yes, this is the compulsory question about the influences.

t is quite hard, each one of us have so many different influences. But I guess it goes from the 60′s and forward. At the moment I’m obsessed with early 80′s stuff like Teardrop Explodes, Echo and the Bunnymen and such. But as for everyone it’s always changing. As I said before I think we all can agree we have Shout Out Louds as an influence, but I think we slowly are getting somewhere else now. But there are a lot of other things than other bands that inspire you to write songs, like we have started to write music about trees (maybe we miss summer). The pop music thoughts are mainly taken from your own head than anothers. It is all about feelings and if you don’t know what you feel or how you are feeling you put out a record and then it will tell. I think it is much about giving and taking when it comes to music.

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How do you position yourselves in the long tradition of girl-groups from the Spice Girls to Rrrriot Grrls? Was it a conceptual choice or it just happened that way?

There were no thoughts about that when we started the band, we just wanted a band. And that we happend to be just girls just happened. And I don’t know about that long tradition, for me it feels like something new because there has not been that many of these so called girl groups during the past. And most of them have just been singing, having male musicians backing them. I’m glad and proud that we do everything ourselves and I hope there will be more girls in the future that will take that stand.

I guess I am not only speaking for myself when I say that today’s youth, surrounded by pop culture and music, is actually obsessed with stardom and celebrity. What part did this fantasy play in your lives while still living and going to school in “Nacka, a suburb of Stockholm”?

I think its always been somewhere in the back of our heads but when we started the band we just wanted to make music because it was fun. Then we became famous and now it is just a fun part of the music making. Of course fantasy is a big part of your life when you grow up, it is a way to handle all the boring stuff that surrounds you. Not only when you grow up, always. People always fantasize.

And now we get to the question that a grandmother would ask – how do you find time to make music and touring/travelling while still going to school? Only wondergirls are capable of doing that.

We beat school! And if you want something bad enough you’ll find time for it. Of course it was stressful, we could play three times a week sometimes, but then we decided just to play on weekends and vacations. The tough part was to come back to school after a small tour, it was too grey to come back to reality.

Your lyrics are rather hedonistic and sweet but there are also more serious moments, for example “Hitten” is basicly a song about growing up. Where do you get the inspiration for your lyrics…and what’s with the space suits?

I don’t know. You write what you write, it is about persons, thoughts, life, everything. But the songs on the album were written from when we started to when we recorded it, so it was during a growing up process. Spaceherosuits is about friendship I guess and the album title is a line from that one. It describes the mood you get when things are the best. When we get to that mood while playing it feels like nothing can beat us and it is that time we like the most. I don’t know, it is all about thoughts really.

© Gavin Watson (gavinwatsonsphotography.blogspot.com/)

© Gavin Watson (gavinwatsonsphotography.blogspot.com/)

© Gavin Watson (gavinwatsonsphotography.blogspot.com/)

© Gavin Watson (gavinwatsonsphotography.blogspot.com/)

© Gavin Watson (gavinwatsonsphotography.blogspot.com/)

Is it correct to say that you’re the biggest MySpace sensation to come out of Sweden lately? How exactly did your career proceed from uploading your songs online to your first LP In Our Space Hero Suits, released in 2008?

It depends on who you ask. Haha myspace sensation, it sounds so weird. Well, we recorded a demo and made ourselves a myspace as every other band. Then Cissi started to take contact with other bands and clubs to get gigs, as every other band. So people got to know about us and they also thought we were good! I remember Linnea was home from school because she was sick so she was online on myspace all the time and called us on the phone whenever something had happened. Listen what this guy said! This club want’s to book us! Record labels from far away made contact. Then one thing after another happened and in May we had a record deal. We played a festival summer with five songs out just riding on hype. Then we survived it and now we have an album in our pockets, working on number two.

And finally, what are your plans for the future? I mean both personally and professionally. Aren’t you afraid that for example graduating and going your different ways might be fatal for the band? Or does music always come first?

When we all had quit school we decided to go for the band only. So we have been touring a lot since then and now we are going for another one in April. Our plan for the moment is to make a second album, tour and have fun. Then you never know. Take over the world.

ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTOR

Maria Juur

3 CONTRIBUTIONS

Maria Juur

Maria is a writer based in Tallinn, Estonia. Her background is in art history but prefers Mutant Discos to museums and sees herself in the space between art and music culture. In 2008 Maria made her debut as a lecturer in the Estonian Academy of Arts.

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