Troels Skovgaard
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Troels Skovgaard

Band Rock Singer/Songwriter

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1 Marts, 2006
Review by Endre 'Bandi'

The first time I reviewed a Troels Skovgaard album [check it in our archives] I joked about his name. Since then I have learned it pretty well because his self-titled album was one of the highlights of 2003 with a 9 pointer rating. Now he is back with a double CD to top that performance and what the hell, it's a perfect 10 pointer this time [something I do not hand out too often? actually I can't even remember the last time I gave an album such a high rating, I definitely didn't do so in 2005].

The "No Matter How Far I Go" package contains a disc with vocal tracks only and an all-instrumental disc in a very tasty cardboard folder with a booklet of fantastic images. Value for your money for sure! Musically the album picks it up where the solo debut left off: laid-back, high-quality blues-rock with various influences from jazz to funky, from traditional northern melodies to Italian and latin influences. The arrangements are even more vivid than on the debut and the production is simply stunning. Troels' vocals are soulful, crystal clear, and very diverse, his playing is either laid-back jazzy or in-your-face edgy bluesy; the solos are full of emotions, they are essential parts of the songs not just cheap excuses to show off. Countless musicians contributed to the album but Troels handled the production himself again. My personal favorites of the vocal disc included the opening title track, the uptempo "Satellite" with a cool acoustic chording base topped with tasty, bluesy guitar work and thick, melodic vocals; the tradiotional blues "Treat Me Nice", the moody, soulful "The Sun is Still Shining" with a great vocal performance from Troels and a soft-jazzy version of Billie Holiday's "God Bless the Child".

However the real treat was the instrumental disc that starts out with three tracks of Italian influences (at least Troels says so, I personally didn't hear all that much of Italy in them but anyway) the opening "Opemeo" features beautiful sax melodies by Fabrizio Mandolini (Italian influences there you go!). "Procida" follows in somewhat laid-back fashion with equally stunning flute melodies by Justo Almario and some Santana-like latin- blues solo towards the end by Troels. The Italian titled acoustic third track is probably the most Italian of the three with some more flute to spice things up. Great stuff all of them! The following tracks take us back to the musical world of the debut, some laid-back blues, some slow-blues, some jazzy-blues, and lots of tasty blues. Further favorites: "Song for Leon" with brilliant acoustic soloing and cool sax parts; "Just a Dream Away" with its moody, movie-soundtrack approach; and the closing "Brighter Day" with a rather similar mood. I may be getting old but I began to appreciate this kind of stuff a lot more than classic rock/metal guitar-playing I grew up with. Damn, I hope I won't grow a beer-belly and watch darts tournaments on TV?
- RockUnited.com


Did you follow last year's tour part one? In June 2002 Ralf was enthusiastic about the Bamboo Brothers' album. Since then their guitarist Troels Skovgaard has sent a solo-album on the market which should make the pulse of every westcoast-fan race.
The groovy "Almost a Sigh" with its tasty guitar passages is the first of 12 tracks which roughly lies somewhere between the Bamboo Brothers and the Eagles.
It gets really Glen-Freyish in the beautiful "Rosie", while the secretive, calm "Dive for Pearls" is decorated with lovely piano fills.
Mainly Troels keeps his album quite acustic and in the mid-tempo-area, not forgetting from time to time to pluck the strings and sparkle with delicate solos as in the bluesy "You just play".
Undoubtedly, Skovgaard is a great guitarplayer; add to this a pleasant and versatile voice which he uses in line with the multi-styled tracks (two of which are even in Italian).
All in all a strong summer-album.
- "Rock it"(Rockmagazine, Germany)


[...] Guitarist/lead singer Troels Skovgaard was especially provocative, singing and playing his tune "Johnny Told Susie". It was a rocking/contemporary jam reminiscent of vintage Steely Dan and featured a scorching solo from [Justo] Amario as well. [...] - By Chris J. Walker in "L.A. Jazz Scene" January 2003, Los Angeles


March 2006, By Georg Forchhammer
(...) Troels takes us into his musical universe with inspirations from west coast music, latin and blues. Besides all the fantastic Danish musicians, the album features international musicians like Alex Acuna, Justo Almario, Kenwood Dennard, Bob Bailey, Toots Thielemanns and Jimmy Haslip I’d like to mention a few of the songs: “I weep” is a beautiful jazzy ballad – a tribute to one on Troels’ guitar heroes, George Harrison. Another great song, “Dive for pearls”, which was also on his first album, was re-recorded in a more laid back version featuring Toots Thielemanns on harmonica and Alex Acuna on drums. Track no. 10 is a recording of the old evergreen “God bless the child” featuring Bob Bailey on vocals. According to Troels this bluesy version was inspired by another hero, Robben Ford. On the instrumental album, I’d like to mention the very touching ballad, “Antonio’s Blues”, which is a dedication to a young Italian man who was tragically killed on his first visit to Copenhagen. Troels’ guitar playing on this track can easily be compared to Larry Carlton’s! This time, as well as on the debut album, Troels – with the help of his Italian wife, Elisabetta Bosetti, takes us down to the Mediterranean with the Italian song, “Valzer Minore”. (...) - www.bluedesert.dk


Discography

2006
No Matter How Far I Go - double album, CD1 vocal/CD2 instrumental
Artist: Troels Skovgaard
Label: In The House Records - DK

2004
Svæve som en sommerfugl
Artist: James Rasmussen
Troels Skovgaard’s performance: Producer, guitarist, bassist and arrangement
Label: Mill Music - DK

2002
Troels Skovgaard
Artist: Troels Skovgaard
Label: Selina Records - DK

2001
No time at all
Artist: Michael Vesterskov
Troels Skovgaard’s performance: Co-producer, guitarist, back up vocals Label: Sand Aps - DK

2000
Optimism
Artist: Engqvist´s orkester
Troels Skovgaard’s performance: Producer, guitarist, back up vocals
Label: Baloo - DK

1996
Lyv mig natten lys – (Nomination to 2 Danish Grammies)
Artist: Laura Illeborg
Troels Skovgaard’s performance: Composer, producer, arrangement, guitarist, back up vocals
Label: Kick music - DK

1994
Bamboo Brothers
Artist: Bamboo Brothers
Troels Skovgaard’s performance: Guitarist of the band, back up vocals, composer and co-producer
Label: Kick Music - DK

1993
No easy way
Artist: Bamboo Brothers
Troels Skovgaard’s performance: Guitarist of the band, back up vocals, composer and co-producer
Label: Kick Music - DK

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Bio

Troels Skovgaard began to play guitar at the age of 12 after having heard “Here Comes the Sun” from the Abbey Road album of the Beatles.

After having played in different coverbands and studied for 2 years at the Conservatory of Classical Music, Troels and 4 other guys started a Rock´n roll band called "The Bamboo Brothers" in 1983.

The Bamboo Brothers. toured a lot in DK, and a little in Sweden and Germany and made two albums: "No Easy Way" and "Bamboo Brothers".
Troels started to get jobs as a sideman too and over the years he has played/recorded with a lot of Danish and foreign artists. Bamboo Brothers split up in 1995, and Troels went on with his own music as well as producing a little here and there.

He released his first solo album: ”Troels Skovgaard” in 2002. The same year he went to Los Angeles with “Engqvist Orkester” where he met and played with two of his heroes, Alex Acuna (drums & percussion) and Justo Almario (sax & flute).

In the fall 2003 Troels started recordings for two new albums (one with songs, one with instrumental tunes) together with his band. Alex Acuna, Justo Almario, Toots Thielemans, Jimmy Haslip, Kenwood Dennard, Ze Grey and Bob Bailey (musicians that Troels has met and played with over the years) who were all visiting Copenhagen during the recording-process joined in and dubbed beautiful stuff on some of the tracks.
At some point of the recordings Troels decided to turn the two projects into one and make a double album.

His double album ”No matter how far I go” was released in February 2006.

In June 2007 one of Troels songs “They talk too much” reached the final of “The blues Heritage Contest” that is a part of “the Lakeside Bluesfestival” in Finland. Troels went there to perform his song, which is now on air in Finland, Denmark and even Australia.