Paal Nilssen-Love

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Paal Nilssen-Love
Paal Nilssen-Love.jpg
Paal Nilssen-Love at the Empty Bottle, Chicago, September 24, 2006
Background information
Born (1974-12-24) December 24, 1974 (age 42)
Molde, Møre og Romsdal, Norway
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Drums
Paal Nilssen-Love.
Paal Nilssen-Love playing with his band Large Unit in Aarhus, Denmark 2015.

Paal Nilssen-Love (born 24 December 1974) is a Norwegian drummer active in the jazz and free jazz genres.[1]


Nilssen-Love was born in Molde, Norway. He was raised at a jazz club in Stavanger, run by his mother, and his father, who was also a drummer. He did musical studies at Sund folkehøgskole 1993-94. In 1994, during studies on the Jazz program at the Trondheim Musikkonservatorium (1994–96), he formed the band Element which musically became a platform for several other groups with bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and pianist Håvard Wiik and led to collaborations with Iain Ballamy and Chris Potter.[1]

Relocating to Oslo in 1996, he took part in the forming of bands like Håkon Kornstad Trio, The Quintet and Frode Gjerstad Trio, as well as self-initiated projects and collaborations with Swedish musicians such as pianist Sten Sandell and saxophonist Mats Gustafsson. In 1999, Nilssen-Love played his first solo concert.[2]

Today his portfolio also includes his own trio with Ken Vandermark and Ab Baars, the bands Large Unit, School Days, The Thing, Scorch Trio, Territory Band, FME, and various duo projects such as with reedmen Peter Brötzmann & Ken Vandermark, guitarist Terrie Hessels (The Ex), saxophonist John Butcher, organist Nils Henrik Asheim and noise experimentalist Lasse Marhaug.[1][3]

In 2014, Nilssen-Love decided to leave the band Atomic, to concentrate on Large Unit and projects involving more improvising.[4]


Selected projects[edit]

Major collaborators[edit]


  • 2001: Sticks & Stones (Sofa)
  • 2005: 27 Years Later (Utech)
  • 2010: Miró (PNL Records)
  • 2012: Chiapaneca (Bocian)
  • 2015: News From The Junk Yard (PNL Records)


  1. ^ a b c "Nilssen-Love, Paal Biography - Norsk Musikkinformasjon".  (in Norwegian)
  2. ^ "Paal Nilssen-Love Biography -". 
  3. ^ "Stressa ned med intens kontorkonsert - Kultur og underholdning". (in Norwegian)
  4. ^ Margasak, Peter (July 2015) "Atomic – Lucidity". Down Beat. p. 52.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Christian Wallumrød
Recipient of the Kongsberg Jazz Award
Succeeded by
Live Maria Roggen
Preceded by
Arve Henriksen
Recipient of the Buddyprisen
Succeeded by
Jon Larsen