An English translation of the Swedish article (in Smålandsposten, Aug 9th 2010) about Harry and the Potters' Scandinavian tour and wrock in general.
Original article is here. This unofficial, non-direct translation is made by WrockWay.
Published Aug 9th 2010, by Cecilia Alstermark
[Caption 1: Harry and the Potters in their show in Östersund last week]
[Caption 2: Jennie Söderberg, Caroline Sundkvist and Agnes Fransson are hardcore Harry Potter -fans, and they're arranging the show with Harry and the Potters who play wizard rock.]
The first and the greatest wizard rock band to Växjö
Wizard rock can be in whatever genre. The common thing is that the lyrics are about Harry Potter. Tonight the first band to make music in this style - Harry and the Potters - will play in Växjö.
"There is a whole culture around the Harry Potter books, and the music has references to the books which all fans understand" says Caroline Sundkvist.
Together with her friends Jennie Söderberg and Agnes Fransson she has arranged a show with the American band Harry and the Potters at the Music Hall tonight.
The songs are about happenings in the books, or happenings which should have occured in the books, or about the characters.
"They can be either from a person's or a thing's point of view" says Agnes. "Yes, there is actually a band that writes songs only from the point of view of the Whomping Willow."
Wizard rock is quite a new phenomenon in Sweden, and unknown to many. Earlier this year there was a small festival in Åre, and in May there was a show in Växjö with five bands, arranged by Caroline and her friend. The fact that Harry and the Potters are coming to Sweden and Växjö is such a big thing that the girls can barely believe it's true. They are the first and the greatest band in the genre. The show in Växjö is part of their Scandinavian tour.
Wizard rock is not a specific genre of music but it's made in all kinds of styles, including pop, indie, metal, rap and punk.
"You don't even have to be good as a musician. You just take a guitar, write a song and everybody loves it anyway" says Caroline.
The girls see it only as a plus if the music sounds good. They consider the most important thing to be the community, and the feeling that they are part of the fandom.
"The songs have also started to tell about the fandom itself" says Jennie.
"Everyone can relate to the songs so there are many who like them" says Caroline.
Harry and the Potters was formed in 2002. Caroline started to listen to them in 2006, when the music style had become popular among Harry Potter fans abroad. Today there are 600-700 bands that play wizard rock, she says. Other bands in the genre are, for example, Ministry of Magic and Draco and the Malfoys. In the past few years, Swedish bands have also been formed, including The Swedish Shortsnouts, who appear as opening act tonight. Because the names of both bands, like Harry and the Potters, and the lyrics, it's difficult for bands to release records because it violates copyright.
Caroline, Jennie and Agnes came to know each other through a Harry Potter website a few years ago. Around the publication of the sixth book, they recall. They are 17 to 20 years old which is the age they believe to be the most common among the fans. They were about Harry's age when the first book came out and they've been hanging around since.
"There are many who say 'aren't you too old for that'"says Jennie who is 20.
Another prejudice they've faced is that being Harry Potter fans is weird.
"'Are you serious?' I've been asked several times"says Caroline.
There are also Harry Potter fans who don't like wizard rock.
Is it possible to enjoy the music without being a Harry Potter fan, then?
"Yes, I think so" says Caroline. "Because of their joy and engagement they are a great live band."
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