Artist, entrepreneur, author, wine expert, fitness guru and father – how do you manage everything?
I am a very structured person who follows different passions in life and as long as it’s fun I manage to make time for my various endeavors. I see myself as an artist and songwriter – that’s my basis, like a tree trunk – but then small branches grow out everywhere and each branch becomes a passion, such as wine and wine imports. If you’ve got a good structure and work with great people and can delegate tasks you can achieve more than you may think.
We all remember when the super hit “Mikrofonkåt” was released. How did this breakthrough affect you and your career?
The way I experience my career is that it has never skyrocketed, but has rather been rising consistently, like a balloon, through hard work. In 2018, I will celebrate 20 years as a performer, and in retrospect I realize that the journey has been a roller coaster. My passion and my determination have helped me through tough periods, and by focusing on the art I have managed to stay on course. My best advice to young entrepreneurs is that if you really want something, you will get it eventually, but expect blood, sweat and tears as well as 10 to 20 years for success to come.
During the last years, wine has become synonymous with your name. How did that happen?
I love wine, have always done, but decided a couple of years ago that I wanted to know and understand what it was I was drinking. It’s like trying to understand or learn a new language, it was an incredible challenge. Almost like opening Pandora’s box, but in a positive way because when I started to understand wine and trained to become a sommelier I was hooked. Now I collaborate with wine writer Alf Tumble, and together we have written a book about wine called “Vin så funkar det” (Wine, how it works) and host a lot of wine tastings. I also import fine wines that I sell to restaurants.
It has long been known that you are interested in watches, what does Sjöö Sandström mean to you?
Yes, I’ve always liked watches since I learned to tell time – which was late. But I really like Sjöö Sandstrom. I enjoy the fact that it’s a Swedish brand and I am very proud of strong Swedish brands. And of course, I also like that the brand stands for excellent quality.
Which is your favorite Sjöö Sandström watch?
I have had several Sjöö Sandström watches, but I think “Landsort” is the one I like the most. It fits my lifestyle considering I enjoy swimruns, skiing and that I am constantly looking for adventure and new physical challenges. I like that it feels classic and robust but also that it is stylish and works in formal settings as well. Royal Steel Classic is another watch that I like a lot, and I usually wear it on special occasions.
Swimrun, skiing, running and working out in general are a big part of your life. When did you become this passionate about physical exercise?
I grew up in an arts-focused family where sports and physical exercise did not exist. So for me to ski, swimrun and exercise was almost like a rebellion during my youth. Today I balance both worlds since I’ve partly become what I revolted against. Before I released my first album, I studied art history and had probably continued with that had I not succeeded in music.
How was it to run and swim ÖTILLÖ with a UTC Extreme on your wrist?
I have raced ÖTILLÖ wearing UTC Extreme as well as Landsort, and the both work equally well. Many athletes do swimruns with fitness watches and I get that, but when I race I only care about the total time. I think Landsort is the ultimate swimrun watch since its design has a genuine archipelago feel.
It seems as if you have done everything. Is there anything that you haven’t done that you really would like to do?
I want to be good at food because it’s so closely related to wine. I want to understand both things, and therefore is cooking probably my next project.
Who are the men and women inspiring you?
I don’t have that many public figures as role models, but I have lots of people around me who are skilled in their respective fields. Passionate individuals such as musicians, artists, chefs, sommeliers, athletes, entrepreneurs and businessmen and women. They are my biggest inspirations.
If you had a day to yourself, what would you do?
I would do nothing. Or perhaps cook with some friends and try some good wines to the food and just laugh! And of course be with my family and my children.
What can we expect from you during 2017?
A lot! I’ll prepare myself for 2018 when I celebrate 20 years as an artist, since it’s a pretty big deal for me that I have managed to stay on top in this tough industry for so long. I will make a few exclusive performances in 2017, but I’ll also spend lots of time in the studio. In addition, I will write two new books, host wine tastings and be with my family