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In jos 

Number of posts : 172
Registration date : 31/05/2008

MesajSubiect: JOSE GONZALEZ (Indie/Folk)   Sam Mai 31, 2008 11:47 am

(Thanks to Lillian)

Born: 1978 in Sweden
Genre(s): Indie, folk
Occupation(s): Singer-songwriter
Instrument(s): Classical guitar

González was born in Sweden to Argentine parents in 1978. In 2003, he released his debut album, Veneer, in Europe. The album has since been released in the UK, on 25 April 2005, and on 6 September 2005 in the United States.

His trademark sound is solo classical guitar with soft melody. His work, although mostly original, does include acoustic covers of such hits as "Heartbeats" by his fellow Swedes The Knife, "Love Will Tear Us Apart" by Joy Division, "Born in the U.S.A." and "The Ghost of Tom Joad" by Bruce Springsteen, "Hand On Your Heart" by Kylie Minogue, "Smalltown Boy" by Bronski Beat and "Teardrop" by Massive Attack.

José González's story is rare in modern pop – a heartening case of the artist resisting the vicissitudes of musical fashion to carve out a unique, intimate style that is all his own, then defiantly following his muse all the way to the top of the charts.

An established star in Scandinavia, José’s critically adored album Veneer is currently bedded down in the UK Top Ten while his single ‘Heartbeats’ continues to trouble the sharp end of the singles chart – and it’s a similar story across Europe. It’s uplifting then, in an age of spin, hype and wall-to-wall hyperbole, to note that José’s music has required no lavish production (he records on basic equipment, at home) no exotic packaging or gimlet-eyed marketing strategies, to make it cherished by thousands. For once even the Sun got it right: ”In a world of musical clones, the Argentinean Swede is a thrillingly original new talent”.

Relying simply on his own masterfully eloquent classical guitar and a voice that marries mature assuredness with poignant delicacy, José has been creating his inimitable sonic world since the late ‘90s, though his recording career didn’t begin in earnest until 2003.

Born in Gothenburg, Sweden, in 1978, José was bought up in a house that teemed with all kinds of music. His Argentine-born father’s natural taste for Latin American music was only rivalled by a penchant for American and UK pop classics – and the eclecticism rubbed off on his young son. After these fledgling dalliances, José followed his own path, initially playing bass in Black Flag-inspired rock combo Back Against The Wall, before flirting with hardcore in Gothenburg’s Renascence and dipping into indie rock with the unlikely sounding Only If You Call Me Jonathan… But these rites of passage only led him back to the voice and six-string, and, after a series of lessons in classical guitar, the beginnings of a very personal style. Vocally, José admits to the influence of some appropriately intimate-toned forebears: Eliot Smith, Geoff Farina and Songs:Ohia’s Jason Molina among them. He’s also happy to point out the positive effect on his music instilled by listening to such disparate artists as Cat Power, Tortoise and Joy Division.

After these tasteful and diverse influences had done their work, José’s rise was meteoric. After untrammelled Scandinavian success in 2004, José signed to London-based indie Peacefrog, releasing his UK debut, the EP Crosses, in February ’05. Press hosannas and some jaw-dropping, heartstring-tugging UK shows set off the proverbial buzz and by the time the debut album Veneer was released in April, word had spread like wildfire. With the press salivating, radio went into meltdown, with more plays on BBC Radio 1 than a play-listed record! Sessions were recorded for everybody from XFM’s John Kennedy to Radio 4’s Loose Ends and there was also a rapturous live session for Radio 1’s Zane Lowe that culminated in a wondrously singular reading of Massive Attack’s ‘Teardrop’.


Touring in support of the album, Jose reinforced his magnetic qualities, tantalising his live following with another magnificent make-over – Kylie’s ‘Hand on your Heart’, which has to be heard to be believed. By the time he embarked on another major UK tour in February ’06, Jose had capped twelve months of incredible live shows including a support slot to the Dalai Lama in Sweden - which may just have pipped other bills shared with the likes of Arcade Fire and Juana Molina…

Meanwhile, another cover, ‘Heartbeats’ (originally by Swedish band The Knife and a Veneer highlight) was gaining wide UK currency thanks to its use in the high profile Sony Bravia TV campaign, helping usher it into the upper echelons of the UK chart in January 2006 (it was even a ringtone Number One!). José’ played ‘Heartbeats’ on Top Of The Pops in January and was the subject of a Channel 4 TV documentary titled Orchestra Of One in early February.


Still full of energy, José is currently hunkered down with his other project, the band Junip, working with a premier league UK production duo (details to be unveiled in the very near future). The words ‘world’, ‘his’ and ‘oyster’ spring to mind…


* Veneer (October 2003) #7 UK, #86 AUS
* In Our Nature (September 2007)

* Crosses EP (June 2003)
o 7" single (limited to 500 copies): "Crosses" / "Storm"
o CD EP: "Crosses" / "Hints" / "Deadweight on Velveteen" / "Storm"
* José González & Jens Lekman Split Tour Single (December 2003)
o 7" single (limited to 330 copies): "If You Ever Need a Stranger to Sing at Your Wedding" (Lekman) / "Hand on Your Heart" (González)
* Remain EP (January 2004)
o 7" single (limited to 300 copies): "Remain" / "Lovestain"
o CD EP: "Remain" / "Lovestain" / "Love Will Tear Us Apart" / "Suggestions"
* Stay in the Shade EP (June 2004 - Sweden; August 2005 - UK; January 2006 - US)
o 7" single (limited to 220 copies): "Down the Hillside" / "Sensing Owls"
o CD EP: "Stay in the Shade" / "Down the Hillside" / "Sensing Owls" / "Hand on Your Heart" / "Instr."
* Australian Tour EP (November 2005 - Australia & New Zealand)
o CD collection of 8 Veneer era B-sides
* B-Sides Collected EP (November 2006 - South Africa)
o CD collection of 7 Veneer era B-sides [see Australian Tour EP]
* 3 EP Collection (September 2007 - Taiwan)
o 3 CD collection featuring Crosses EP, Remain EP and Stay in the Shade EP
* José González & Promise and the Monster Split Tour Single (December 2007)
o 7" single (limited to 500 copies): "How Low" (González) / "Sheets" (Promise and the Monster)

* "Heartbeats" (January 9, 2006) #9 UK, #66 AUS
o b/w: "Suggestions"
* "Laura, Laura" (February 6, 2006) #8 Uk, #60 AUS
o b/w: "Suggestions"
* "Crosses" (April 10, 2006) #107 UK
o b/w: "Storm"
* "Hand on Your Heart" (July 3, 2006) #29 UK, #88 AUS
o b/w: "Down the Hillside" / "Sensing Owls"
* "Down the Line" (September 10, 2007 - UK) #140 UK, #12 UK Indie
o b/w: "Smalltown Boy"
* "Killing for Love" (September 19, 2007 - Sweden)
o b/w: "Smalltown Boy"
* "Teardrop" (November 12, 2007)
o b/w "Four Forks Ache"
* "Down the Line" (February 20, 2008 - Sweden)
o b/w "Neon Lights"
* "Killing for Love" (January 14, 2008 - digital download; April 7, 2008 - 7" vinyl - UK)
o b/w "Neon Lights"
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