Danielle Wood of Education.com recently explored West Sweden with her family. She describes her trip below and explains why the region is so family-friendly…
Hundreds of food and travel companies from across the globe will gather at the World Food Travel Summit in Gothenburg, West Sweden (21-24 September)
At 6:30 PM, Cat Power came on stage, and the audience was rather large, as it had started to gather for the very last shows of the festival. Cat Power has a very nice, relaxed and a somewhat hoarse-sounding voice, and she sang emotionally to her great songs. Her show was quite minimalistic, but the tunes in themselves carried the show. When Cat Power had finished, there was only two more shows that we wanted to see before the festival ended – Kendrick Lamar and Alicia Keys – and to prepare for those very last hours of music, we went to one of the food trolleys in Slottsskogen, and had some Asian food, this time some fresh noodle salads.
It is the third and final day of Way Out West, and even though an amount of tiredness has started to set in, we are still looking forward towards seeing the last artist’s shows. The first part of the day started with rain, and walking towards Slottsskogen, we crossed our fingers that the drizzle should stop or at least not turn into heavy rain. When we entered the area, we ate some tacos and hurried down to the Flamingo stage to see Swedish band Dungen perform. Dungen plays music influenced by folk music and psychedelic 1970s style music, but has expressly dissented to being labelled a Swedish progg band, as the band does not have a political message. Their performance was very energetic and fun, but we did not have time to see the full show, as Ravi Coltrane, the son of jazz legend John Coltrane, was performing at the same time. Ravi Coltrane’s jazz was speedy and up-beat, led by Ravi’s saxophone playing, and we really enjoyed it.
As the clock struck 7:40 PM, one of Sweden’s biggest and most well-liked pop artists Håkan Hellström entered the stage singing one of his many hit songs “Jag har varit i alla städer”, accompanied by the harmonica. The huge crowd joined in on the singing, knowing all the lyrics by heart, and Håkan Hellström declared that he was very happy to finally perform at Way Out West again after three years since the last time, and that he had gladly accepted, when he was asked just the week before the festival. Håkan Hellström is from Gothenburg and it is hard to think of anybody with such a loyal and big fanbase as he has, so the crowd was positively bursting with joy at every thing Håkan Hellström did. The repertoire consisted of most of his biggest hits as well as some songs from his latest album, such as “Det kommer aldrig vara över för mig“.
The second day of Way Out West began with – after starting up with a large lunch to refuel before another day full of concerts – watching Rodriguez perform. Before we got to his stage, we caught a glimpse of Giorgio Moroder, a legend within the field of electronic music. Even though it was bright daylight people were dancing to his 1980s sounding disco music quite fanatically. Rodriguez’ show, in contrast, felt very laid back and much calmer. The audience was big for an early afternoon show, and everybody was listening appreciatively to the songs.
The first day of the Way Out West festival has ended, and before we go to bed and get some much needed sleep before the next day kicks off, we wait around for a while and sum up the impressions from day 1. Entering the area in the afternoon, we got our first glimpses of the all the expectant people as they were queueing up to enter the festival area in Slottsskogen. People were laughing, talking upbeat about plans for the day, and looking large-eyed on all the decorations spread out over Slottsskogen, in the purple-yellowish colors of this year’s Way Out West. A couple of kids were playing agreeable street music with brass instruments, taking the opportunity to play for a large and openminded audience.
This day is a special day for Swedes interested in popular music: it is the first day of the annual music festival Way Out West, set in Slottsskogen in Gothenburg. The festival lasts for three days, and this year’s biggest names are Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Alicia Keys, Håkan Hellström and The Knife. The weather forecast predicts mixed weather, which we choose to see from a positive perspective – we will experience the festival in all kinds of weather.
Gothenburg, Sweden’s second largest city, is located on the west coast. The fantastic archipelago is easily reached by a 30-minute tram ride from the city centre. Closeness to the sea results in top-quality, fresh fish and seafood and Gothenburg was appointed the Culinary Capital of Sweden 2012 making it a gastronomic hotspot in Northern Europe. Simply put, Gothenburg is a perfect destination during the summer with the combination of a vibrant city and breath-taking archipelago. Since there is so much to choose from, here comes a guide of our top reccomendations for a wonderful Gothenburg summer!
Mixing a warm sense of tradition with slick Swedish design, Gothenburg is truly magical during the festive season. From rustic Christmas market stalls and the atmospheric St Lucia coronation to the scattering of hundreds of twinkling candles, cosy fika hotspots and a ‘Julbord’ Swedish Christmas buffet. Continue reading…