Meeting Magnus

Over the last five years or so I’ve become quite a fan of the Swedish singer, Magnus Carlsson. Not to be confused with Magnus Carlson (one s, not two) from the band, “Weeping Willows”, it’s the dance band and pop singer that I really like.

I first became aware of him when he was a member of Alcazar. Though the story gets a little complex and there are conflicting stories on the public record, but it looks as though he and Alcazar mainstay, Andreas Lundstedt were in a relationship together. And while that relationship lasted, Magnus was a member of the band.

As much as I loved his work with Alcazar, I’m also a great fan of his Swedish language solo album which contains a bunch of my favourite songs by him, especially “Funnit min angel”. As someone learning Swedish, I really appreciate that he has really clear diction, which has allowed me to really enjoy the work and learn a little Swedish along the way.

His performance at Golden Times nightclub in Stockholm was terrific. In about 30-45 minutes (I lost track of time) he sang an extended “medley” of work from throughout his career, including a fair bit of Swedish language material which really went down well with the locals. Obviously, Barbados was a pretty popular band in its time here in Sweden. I was impressed.

Knowing that I was a fan, but also quite a shy person (yes, really), my friend Graeme grabbed him as he came off stage and asked if I could have a photograph with him. “Yes, but let’s do it over by the door”, he said.

With a buzz in my step it wasn’t long before I found myself on the dance floor. “Shall we dance?”, a middle-aged woman who was sitting nearby asked me. I didn’t need much encouragement, as I love to dance. Although it often takes me a while, and a few drinks for me to get on the dance floor, I love to dance, especially to Swedish pop music. Absolute joy.

“Golden Times is a real meat market”, I was later told by a woman living here. And yes, it was true. I think it may have been the Hard Rock Cafe at some point, as the bar was decorated with lots of pop music photographs and memorabilia.

The crowd was overwhelmingly straight, aged between about 20 and 50, and fitted into two categories: those looking for a shag and those looking to dance. Generally, it’s the woman who were looking for a dance and the guys who were looking for a shag. Still, the guys recognised they needed to dance if they were to have the shag. Fairly universal theme eh?

As one of about half a dozen gay men in the bar, I was clearly a “safe option” for a few of the girls who wanted to dance without someone trying to hit on them. Thus, I was asked to dance by three separate women all of whom I’m sure enjoyed the amusement of dancing with a gay bloke from Australia with a love of Swedish pop music, and who knew all of the words to the songs.

My only disappointment with the night was discovering all too late they had karaoke in the downstairs bar. OMG, I would have loved to have done Swedish language karaoke.

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