Not Your Average Hit List

© Per Mattsson and Gina Jacobi for the album cover.

© Gina Jacobi/Gimala Records for the music (excerpt).

© Per A.J. Andersson for the text. Written late 2002, updated November 2011.

Alla är
by Gina Jacobi

In the late 80s Gina Jacobi was hailed as the new Eva Dahlgren. Which in my homeland was quite a remark back then, following ms Dahlgren's top-ranking achievements in the Swedish musical charts. But then what happened?

— • —

Well, the "old" Eva Dahlgren stepped forward once more, to become _the_ female rock artist of the era. While Gina Jacobi slid from the public scene, partly of her being too personal and quirky (later to be awarded with being "the Pippi Longstocking" of her hometown Sundsvall!) for the record companies to put up with.

This charismatic artist appeared on the national music arena in 1985 with the rock group Rummet. The following year she went solo. But as she had written all of the material and was the lead vocalist and keyboardist of the group, this meant no big change. The Gina Jacobi style was already there, influenced by other artists of difference such as Kate Bush and Dalbello. But with Swedish lyrics and a lot of humour brought into the mix.

Over the years one of the hallmarks of Jacobi's work has been her personal approach to lyrics. Despite the many word-plays (reminding of both the French Guesch Patti and Sapho - and fellow Swede Nanne Grönvall) and ironies there is depth to be found. The texts are more often than not directly inspired by her own personal adventures and relationships.

— • —

Being a mother of three (2007 update: four!), the conflicts between parenthood and career have formed her life in many ways. To boot she's got an artist's attitude towards her place in the music business, which hasn't always been optimal for her career.

Gina Jacobi chose family instead of touring, record-making and record exec's advice after two comparatively successful records in '88 and '89. This may have prevented her from being a star on a national level. But she has always followed her own agenda, and this makes her music the more interesting.

Her 1995 album "Alla är" is probably her most personal effort yet. The humour is a bit toned down, and instead the lyrics shine with their intimacy. The record bears witness to her own life with texts ranging from relations with men and belief systems to her own frank acceptance of the consequences her own decisions have made. The song "Tro mig baby" (Believe Me, Baby) talks of...

— • —

"Maybe I had a flourishing future behind me
That was nothing I did notice, so I didn't miss it then - when I chose..."

During the 90s she has been mostly off from the public side of music, taking time to develop her skills as a painter. She started to work with immigrants and got involved in multicultural projects, and this led to two audio cassette productions with performances in different languages. Her 1995 production of "Care seretaye" had her singing in three different dialects - of Kurdish!

In the new millennium Gina has returned to record-making, producing several demo tapes and returning with a proper - self-released - album in 2005. And then a second one in 2007! With new "ethnical" rhythms and this time singing in English. There are obviously still new ground to be tread. Just as if innovation hasn't always been part of the Gina Jacobi condition.//

— • —

PS. Update of 2009: New album in Swedish arriving this Summer! Her old fans may rejoice, as she really is at her finest, most personal, when singing in her mother tongue. And you don't even have to understand the words - remember: anime sounds right only in Japanese, and I don't know so much Japanese. It's all about the feeling. And Google Translate can give you the general idea in any case. Click the banner at the bottom for a whole song from it!


(Gimala, 1995)

• Alla är
• Män är män
• Tro mig baby
• Jag ser inte Gud (EXCERPT)
• Ja
g ser dig blunda
• Vem kan lova
• Kärlek?
• En sällsam gåva
• Allt vi behöver
• Varför
• Regn är regn

Compositions: G Jacobi
Production: G Jacobi

• Bagateller (1985; by Rummet)
• Tid & Rum (1986)
• På jakt efter solen (1988)

• Gå som på nålar (1989)

• Det här är bara början (1992)
• Alla är (1995)
• Care seretaye (cassette 1995, CD 2007)
• Jacobi's World (cassette 1998)

• Like Me (2005)
• Unlike Me (2007)
• Ömtåligt gods (2009)

Gina Jacobi - Like Me!

• Eva Dahlgren
• Nanne Grönvall (collaboration
Kate Bush (inspiration)
Dalbello (inspiration)
Justyna Steczkowska (experimentalism)

Not Your Average Hit List 43 minutes... Alla är Ambition Consequences Door to Door The Dreaming Dzien i noc État d'urgence In the Spirit of Things Kaze no tani no Naushika Lights in the Night Martwa woda Nuit d'amour Once in a Million Open Door People Are Strange The Royal Scam Stationary Traveller Victim of Love Whore Music Up North Music Out West Music Far East Music Down South Films I Like a Lot Comic or Not On and Off TV About Me There's so much more out there ...