Swedish Gem

Swedish Freaks’ Favorite Swedish Bands

Recently I asked Swedish Freaks on our Facebook fan page to show off their favorite Swedish bands. It was a great turn out and I got a taste of some great Swedish music that I have not heard of before.

That day I ended up listening to all of this Swedish music. So I wanted to share it with you, the readers as well! Everything is embedded so feel free to press play and fill your day with some Swedish sounds!

What is your favorite Swedish band? Let me know in the comments below and I will add it to the page!!

Bo Kaspers Orkester – Innan allt försvinner

Händerna mot himlen (English and Swedish) | Petra Marklund

Säkert! – Dansa, fastän

In Flames – Alias ft. Timo Räisänen live Grammisgalan

September – Satellites

Alina Devecerski – Flytta På Dig

Anette Olzon – Falling

First Aid Kit – In The Hearts Of Men

The Tallest Man on Earth | Where Do My Blue Bird fly

Backyard Babies – Abandon

The Hives – Tick Tick Boom

In Nomine Satanas by Bathory

Amon Amarth – “The Pursuit of Vikings”

The Knife – Full Of Fire

Jan Johansson – Visa Från Utanmyra

Edge Of Sanity – Crimson

Deathstars – Virtue To Vice

Takida – The Things We Owe

Mando Diao – Dance With Somebody

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Revolver Harry

A Real Life Law Enforcer from Sweden

Do you know who Dirty Harry is? Of course you do. But I bet that you have no idea who Revolver Harry was, even though he, in contrast to Dirty Harry, was a real living and highly remarkable person.

Here’s a sample of his achievements:

  • In the 1920’s: made a bike tour from Sweden to China, through the turbulent regions of Middle East, Persia, India, Burma, and the Baluchistan Desert.
  • In 1928: graduated as a Doctor of Forensics i Lyon, France, specializing in ballistics, invented a microscope for comparison of bullets.
  • In 1934: the head of New York City‘s forensic laboratory.
  • In 1937: reorganized the Irish police force.
  • In the 1940’s: in Sweden during WWII, secretly trained 17,000 Norwegian soldiers, preparing to free Norway from the Nazis.
  • On May 1, 1945, went to Oslo by train and persuaded the German commander to surrender. With a German motorcycle orderly, continued to open the gates of the infamous concentration camp Grini, releasing the inmates.
  • He founded, and for 14 years was head of the Swedish National Forensic Science Institute, SKA, later reorganized to become today’s SKL.


Here’s some more facts about this astounding man:

Picture via skl.polisen.se

Picture via skl.polisen.se

Harry Söderman, a.k.a. Revolver Harry was born 1902 as the son of a local county sheriff (länsman) in Delsbo, Hälsingland, a lawless place notorious for bootlegging, shooting and knife murders (still a legend). He was an ardent democrat and anti-fascist and he meant that the free society could only be sustained by legal security. He dreamt about becoming a police chief, but he hated the necessary law studies.

Instead, as a young boy, he persuaded a bicycle manufacturer to sponsor a bicycle ride to Istanbul. But he didn’t stop there, he went on all the way to China, writing travel reports for a couple of magazines; the trip lasted two years and offered adventures that could have been written for Indiana Jones.

Back in Europe, he went to Altenburg, Germany, where he graduated as a civil engineer in 1924. A couple of years later, he was accepted as an intern at University of Lyon, France, world reknown for it’s forensic scientists. He graduated as a Dr after studies in ballistics, developing methods and tools for comparing handgun bullets (hence his nickname, Revolver Harry).

As associate professor at Stockholm University, he went to the USA for further studies, and in 1934 he accepted a position as head for New York City’s forensic laboratory, where he stayed one year. In 1937, answering a request from the Irish government, he went to Dublin and spent the following year reorganizing the Irish police force. Back in Stockholm 1939 he was asked to create the SwedishNational Forensic Science Institute, SKA.

Now you are thinking “That’s an impressive career, but…”. Wait, you have yet not heard the most impressive achievement:

WWII started, Norway and Denmark were occupied by the Germans, while Sweden, having almost no Atlantic coastline and declaring itself neutral, was left alone. The Norwegian government, who sought refuge in England, sent a secret request to Sweden, asking Revolver Harry’s help to organize and train Norwegian refugees in Sweden to be soldiers. With the blessing and financing of the Swedish government, Harry started a series of “health homes for refugees” all over the country as a cover for the training of 17,000 Norwegian soldiers, and, on the fly, a few thousands of Danes as well. On Swedish behalf, this was of course a violation of international treaties for a neutral country, but the military training was masqueraded as police training.

The first of Harry’s Norwegian soldiers were deployed, transported by US American airplanes to northern Norway in January 1945, taking over from retreating Germans and intruding Russians. One of these soldiers later earned international fame: Thor Heyerdahl (the scientist who travelled across the Pacific on the rafts Kon-tiki and Ra).

On May 1, 1945, Harry took a train to Oslo and walked in, alone, to the German commander, told him that his days were numbered, and demanded him to surrender. After some thought, the Germans actually did surrender, and Harry ordered a German motorcycle orderly to take him to Grini, the infamous concentration camp, where he opened the gates and released the prisoners. He was of course celebrated as a national hero in Norway at the time.

Much more can be told about Revolver Harry, in several books and on the Internet. He emigrated to USA in the early 50’s and continued to work internationally, organizing police work in many countries. He died 1956 by a heart attack on a mission in Tangier.

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Swedish Art in Florida

Pippy Toy Box

Recently I had a chance to be virtually acquainted with Åsa Lind Schrader, a Swede who has been living in Florida, USA for the last 9 years.

How did she get there?

Why, she met her great love of course!

It seems that many of us can relate to moving to a completely different land for love.

But living in America hasn’t made Åsa any less of a Swedish Freak!

Between raising two beautiful children, Åsa is also a Swedish artist.

She makes beautiful pieces great for a child’s room.

And many of these pieces have a dash of Sweden in them.

Including the Pippy Longstocking toy box (yes, Pippy Longstocking is Swedish! That is general knowledge, right?)

She also did an amazing pot plant for the Royal Swedish Wedding (will there be one for the newborn?)

Swedish Royal Wedding Pot

All of her work can be seen and purchased on her Etsy shop which is properly named SwedeArt!

I was lucky enough to be able to interview Åsa and found out that she really is still a Swedish Freak!

Asa and Hub in Copenhagen

Where abouts in Sweden are you from?

I’m from Helsingborg, Sweden

How often do you go back to Sweden?

I go back every year, at least once. It’s getting harder and harder though now that I have 3 kids…

Do you speak Swedish at home in Florida?

Yes, I only speak Swedish to my kids and they understand everything but they usually answer me back in English.

What do you miss most about Sweden?

I miss my family and of course some of the Swedish foods. Sometimes people send me candy and stuff, nom nom!

I miss Swedish cheese too and sometimes I try to bring it from home when I visit. It’s just different, you know? My family and friends send me “lösgodis” which is just a mix of different candies and licorice & chocolates.

At home I usually drink Swedish coffee (zoegas). It’s made in Helsingborg and I just love it, so my dad alsways brings a suitcase full of it with him when he visits.

What is something very Swedish your family does in Florida?

We have a small Swedish “club” and every year we get together and eat “semlor” in a park, we also celebrate Christmas on the 24th, we take our shoes off in the house, and I always offer people coffee when they come to my house .

We try to watch as many Swedish movies as possible, and I read Swedish books. I love the “Änglagård” movies and of course all the “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” trilogy.

I also enjoy the Wallander series, even my husband likes those, it’s a murder mystery type thing.

Wanna win some SwedeArt?

Stay tuned! Tomorrow we will have a contest where Åsa will away a fabulous piece of SwedeArt exclusively on Swedish Freak!

Win SwedeArt


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Swedish Gem: Veronica Maggio

Veronica Maggio

taken from www.veronicamaggio.se

We have a very interesting project in my Swedish class. Basically we were given a Swedish artist to research, we must find a song, the lyrics, play it for the class and talk about the artist, all under 5 minutes. The artist I get to research is Veronica Maggio.

She is pretty cool, from what I could find about her. She comes from Uppsala, is 30, and comes from Swedish and Italien ancestry. When I was given her name, I didn’t know who she was, but I recognized the song “Jag kommer” immediately as it is on the radio all the time (and was a number one hit).

She is definitely a Swedish gem. I couldn’t find out more information about her online and do not like to pry. So will leave it at that and leave you her music to enjoy!

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