RR LogoHafdis Huld interview page one headline

Hafdis Huld interview page one photo subsitute“You can spend so much time and energy trying to be cool, if that is what you want, but the fact is I like having a banjo solo. I like telling stories about things that I find funny. I like the color pink and chocolate, and I just decided when I started doing a solo project that nobody needed to be embarrassed by my uncoolness. I just want to be me. Actually, people think that I became cooler after I stopped worrying about it, so I think I made the right decision,” says Icelandic pop singer / songwriter Hafdis Huld, from her home in London, England, where she lives, when she is not at home in Iceland.

In October of 2006, Hafdis Huld released her debut solo album, Dirty Paper Cup and as she spoke to Riveting Riffs Magazine, the mixing for her new album, which has a working title Synchronized Swimmers, was being completed.

 “Right after Christmas I went into the studio which was in a converted old barn, in Scarborough (England), in the freezing cold, and it was the middle of the winter. There were lots of good musicians and we stayed there for a week, as we recorded sixteen songs. It worked very well for us. We set up in different corners for the live takes and it sounded lovely,” says Huld talking about the recording session for the new album.

Concerning the album Synchronized Swimmers, Huld says, “I think that it has a happier sound than my first album, and I don’t know why, because it wasn’t on purpose, but it is a good thing.  The first album was acoustic guitars, banjos and a few little instruments, but now I have a full band with me. We did a song (on the new album) called, “Vampires,” which is a love song. I know that it isn’t a typical name for a love song, but there is no typical thing for love is there? We live in this neighborhood that is full of old people and we have this theory that they think that me and my boyfriend are vampires, because we stay up long into the night recording music. When they are going home for the day, we are going out. I think that I have seen some curtains move, as they spy on us to see if we are really evil vampires, but we are really not.

Then I have a song called, “Kongulo,” which is my first single, and it is out now. I wrote it about Alain Robert, who is called the human spider, because he climbs up the outside of eighty-five or eighty-six storey buildings. He will stop, knock on the window and have coffee with someone who is working in their office. The song is called “Kongulo,” because kongulo is the Icelandic word for spider. I put my friend Ben in a spiderman costume (for her video) that I bought in a kids’ store.  Then we hung a rope from a tree, while I sang the song and I think that it does the trick. “Kongulo,” is coming out in England about the 25th of June and in Iceland it is in the top ten. On one station it is # 2 and on another station it is # 7. It is doing very well in Iceland,” says Huld. 

When I queried her concerning how small a population Iceland has, Hafdis Huld responded with mock indignation, “There are 300,000 of us!  There used to be 250,000, now there are 300,000, so we feel like we are expanding quite quickly compared to the rest of the world. I am proud to be Icelandic.”

As the conversation turns back to her music, Huld explains where the title for her first album Dirty Paper Cup, originated, “The title (of the album) is from a line in my song “Happily Ever After.” It is about meeting a boy in a park and you write his number on a dirty paper cup. I wanted a title that didn’t say too much about the album, but that still had something to do with it, so people would make up their own minds about what kind of album it is. It seemed to leave it open to interpretation.

One song from Dirty Paper Cup which attracted a lot of attention is the fourth track “Tomoko,” a tune which has a nice easy melody line and possesses a very organic sound. The companion video shows two young women dancing and clowning around in a bedroom, The song talks about the double edged sword to having a friend who is the popular one, and you receive the same perks that come with being one of the “in” crowd, but still you feel that perhaps you do not quite ever measure up to your friend’s standards. Read more