Swedish singer-songwriter comes to Bama Theatre

A 1994 Gulf Stream Conquest camper can take you a lot of places. Just ask Sofia Talvik, the Swedish singer-songwriter touring the United States in one. The tour, titled “Driving and Dreaming,” started in December and will make a stop at the Greensboro Room of the Bama Theatre tonight.

The 33-year-old songstress played classical piano during her childhood but never quite felt comfortable with music until she received a guitar on her 18th birthday and she started writing her own.

“The writing really came together with me beginning to play the guitar,” Talvik said. “I could do what I wanted to do with the guitar.”

Her style, called “neo-folk,” has what she describes as a folk sound with contemporary feel. On her current tour of the United States supporting her new album “The Owls Are Not What They Seem,” she left her back-up band at home and goes on stage alone.

“When you’re all by yourself you can’t hide behind the band,” Talvik said. “It’s more personal.”

Talvik describes a deeper connection with the audience when she plays by herself and feels like it offers more intense and meaningful shows. She also played Lollapalooza, a large music festival in Chicago, in 2008.

“People in the United States are open to more music. In Sweden, people don’t just go to concerts to see something new,” Talvik said.

David Allgood, the manager of the Bama Theatre, said after Talvik contacted him about filling some open dates in the Southeast leg of her tour, he listened to some of her songs and was very impressed with the songwriting.

“It’s really neat for an artist from Sweden to come to Tuscaloosa,” Allgood said.

While Talvik will be performing alone, she will not be the only act. Newly regrouped local band Sparrow and the Ghost will open the show.

The band got their start at the Bama Theatre years ago and returned in December to play their first show after a hiatus.

“There’s a rising popularity of guy-girl music duos, and I think the Sparrow and the Ghost are just as good as any,” Allgood said.

The Arts Council started Acoustic Night five years ago, and Allgood is happy with what it has become.

“We just want people to come out and hear original music from people they haven’t heard before,” Allgood said. “It’s a great opportunity to do something new.”

The show will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Greensboro Room of the Bama Theatre. Tickets are $5, and 100 percent of ticket sales will go to the artists.

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