Björk Guðmundsdóttir & tríó Guðmundar Ingólfssonar
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The band formed in 1990 when the singer-songwriter Björk Guðmundsdóttir, who at the time sang and wrote for The Sugarcubes, joined the tríó Guðmundar Ingólfssonar (Guðmundur Ingólfsson on piano, Guðmundur Steingrímsson (a.k.a. Papa Jazz) on drums and Þórður Högnason on bass).
According to one version of events, earlier Björk and Guðmundur Ingólfsson had developed a friendship after playing together in 1987 at Hótel Borg, Reykjavík. Another story has it that Björk's previous appearances on a local jazz radio program called Godravina Fundur had made an impression on Guðmundur Steingrímsson, and that he also had fond memories of her when she was just 16 years old, jazz obsessive, hanging around his recording sessions at Labbi Þórarinsson's farm Glora.
Be that as it may, the group's only album came out at the end of 1990. It is titled Gling-Gló, and was distributed through Smekkleysa label in Iceland, and later, through One Little Indian in the United Kingdom.
The album went platinum in Iceland. There were other live recordings as the group performed in nightclubs, but in 1991 Guðmundur Ingólfsson died of cancer and the group disbanded.
Gling-Gló in detail
The album features Icelandic jazz favorites and three versions of American songs: Björk sings in English “Ruby Baby,” by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, and the jazz standard “I Can’t Help Loving That Man”, by Oscar Hammerstein II and Jerome Kern; and in Icelandic “Það Sést Ekki Sætari Mey”, which means in English “There Is No Sweeter Girl”, and is misattributed in the album notes and on the CD as having been written by "Rogers/Hammerstein", but is in reality a completely reworded cover of "You Can't Get A Man With A Gun" by Irving Berlin from the famous musical Annie Get Your Gun.
The Icelandic songs on this album were recorded live almost entirely without overdubs in just two days at Reykjavík's Studio Syrland. Its two English songs were recorded on August 23, 1990 at Ríkisútvarpið (National Icelandic Television).
After the group broke up, Björk continued on with The Sugarcubes, who released Stick Around for Joy in 1992. She went on to launch a successful solo career, starting with Debut in 1993 and continuing to the present day.
- I Fall in Love Too Easily
- You Don’t Know What Love is
- Cry Me a River
- I Can’t Help Loving that Man
- Brestir og Brak
- Ruby Baby
- Pabbi Minn
- Gling Gló
- Í Dansi með Þér
- Bella Símamær
- Litli Tónlistarmaðurinn
NOTE: These recordings are available on a bootleg called Gling-Gló Live at the Hotel Borg.
- August 23, 1990 at Ríkisútvarpið (National Icelandic Television)
- Gling-Gló page at Björkish.net - includes mp3 samples from Gling-Gló
- Björk official website
- Lyrics at Björk.com
NOTE: This article features Icelandic characters. For more information see Icelandic language.