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02 August 2003
A marvellous money gallop
Source : Dagbladet
At the age of two Lene Marlin fell in love with a guitar, but it was to take another 13 years before she got the present which should set off her million profitable pop career.

- Have learned my lesson.
The fairy tale started at NRK Troms in 1997. Lene Marlin Pedersen was 17 years old. She was allowed to enter a studio, and brought the guitar with her. One of the journalists became so impressed by the result that he immediately contacted Virgin's mighty record manager, Per Eirik Johansen. The record deal was soon settled.

October 12, 1998 Marlin's debut single "Unforgivable Sinner" was released. It was used as a title track for Erik Poppe's movie "Schpaa", but stood equally well on its own. In the history of Norwegian musical history only Idol-Kurt has sold a single at a faster rate than Lene Marlin.

All at once.
The newspapers wrote about the little girl with the big guitar. Great expectations were planted in the people, but she met them all. We loved Lene Marlin from the first minor composition.

Then a importunate half a year followed. The recording of the album "Playing my Game" was done parallell to Lene's graduation from 12 years of schooling. Some of the songs were recorded in Tromsų, and some in Oslo. The mix was done in England, with Trevor Horn behind the levers. Lene was doing her homework at night at that time, but never doubted she would take her final exams (G.C.E.) the same spring as of her album's release.

- Many seem to believe I have gotten extremely rich and extremely happy because of this. The only thing that there's been an extreme lot of, is work, she said to Dagbladet, 12th of February 1999.

A money machine.
The payment came later, but then in great amounts. The international career is almost unprecedented among Norwegian artists. Up until now, "Playing my Game" has sold over 1.7 million copies worldwide, and the three singles ("Sitting Down Here" and "Where I'm Headed" are the other two) more than 2 millions altogether.

According to Dagbladet's unofficial calculations Marlin has earned over 44 million nkr. The album and the singles have sold for an amount close to 380 million nkr in Norway and abroad. Of this amount Lene has got her rightful share. In addition there are royalties and other mandatory income.

Personal relations.
In May of 2003 Marlin bought a huge apartment on Frogner in Oslo. There she lives with her boyfriend Stian Barsnes Simonsen, known from the NRK TV-show "Reser" and "Hotel Cęsar". One of Marlin's best friends is the previous photo model Sunniva Stordal (whom by the way jumped off her career at about the same time as Lene Marlin went underground).

Prize sprinkle.
The Italians love her. The French and English are also enthusiastic. In Norway Lene is the pop queen. Up until now she has won four HitAward statuettes, one MTV prize, the "Karoline" award and an Honorary Prize from the council of Tromsų. February 25, 2000, she stood on stage and recieved her fifth Spellemann-award. Three days later she disappeared.

- It became a bit much to handle at once, she said to several radio stations on Thursday this week.

Marlin met the wall. The rumours spread about a breakdown and depression. Now we know she had to seek professional help to get up on her feet.

- These were not things I wanted to potter with on my own, she explained to the radio station P4.

Happy chapter.
For three years it was all silence. Now she is back. "You Weren't There" is the first single from Marlin's new album "Another Day", to be released on September 22. A new chapter in the story of Lene Marlin has begun. A fairy tale with an open, but hopefully happy ending.

Translation by Tef Johs


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