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27 April 2007
Source : Naturalia - Family Life
Article by Davide Ronca
Translation into English by the Lene.it Staff

Lene Marlin was born on August 17th 1980 in Tromsø, a city in Norway beyond the Polar Circle, known also as the "Paris of the North". She is fond of family and friends, likes sport, listening to music and living healthy: "I'm very friendly, I do a mix of many things. There's nothing I have to do with obligation". She is a simple and sweet girl, but her story is truly worth reading. Lene is one of the most famous singers and songwriters in her homeland, and has had a great success in Europe and many eastern countries. Her first album "Playing My Game", recorded when she was 18 years old in the Virgin studios in Oslo, has sold almost two million copies worldwide!

In 1999 the singles "Unforgivable Sinner", "Sitting Down Here" and "Where I'm Headed" topped the charts in Italy, keeping the album in the Top 50 for a year. In 2000 it was England's turn, while in Italy Lene took part in the Sanremo Festival as a special guest. But at this point, even though new songs were ready, a total silence fell around her and Lene disappeared from the spotlight. She didn't expect "Playing My Game" to become such a huge success, only years later she explained that she just needed time to figure things out: "I think that every new thing in life can be frightening, so it's important to sit down and think about what you are living, but when you are just sitting there travelling... there were times I could visit three countries in one day and at the end I was confused..."

So what was it then? The burden of fame? The awe of not being up to expectations? No. Lene just needed to understand who she had become, and to find her way around. "In the beginning I was uncertain about everything: contracts, charts, awards... Everything came just like a lightning fron the sky. Now I have learned to take my time. You need to combine an artistic career with your own life properly. That's the only thing that can help writing new songs."

In 2003 her many fans could finally celebrate her comeback: in Italy the single "You Weren't There" broke the chart. Her second album "Another Day" achieved good results, and in 2004 Lene had her fist live tournée, six concerts in Norway. In 2005 she coordinated together with Norwegian singer and songwriter Espen Lind the charity project "Venn", a song and an album with the participation of 60 artists for the Tsunami victims in Indonesia. But more was to come: three months later "How Would It Be" was released, the first single from her third album "Lost In A Moment", that made the little great Norwegian artist achieve a great success in Asia (China, Taiwan, Japan) and of course threw her Italian fans into raptures, who every day meet in the Forum and chatroom of the always updated official fansite www.lene.it.

Her last song is "Avalon", a duet with the Swiss band Lovebugs. Adrian from the band said: "It was an exceptional collaboration. It was so easy, with no plans, record companies or whatever. I wrote her an email with an mp3 of our song, and one week later she was in Switzerland to record it with us. Obviously we were fan of her, otherwise we wouldn't have asked her to join us".

And what about Lene's music? What's so extraordinary in it? How could a Norwegian girl, grown up in a small city, conquer a place in the heart of million people? Lene has indeed something special: she's different from the other singer not only because of the way she relates herself with the music industry and with her own life: she's a storyteller, capable of singing of great feelings like the ones that a marvellous book, an intense movie, or personal moving experiences could trigger. She manages to do that with wonderful, evocative phrases and melodies, slow or energic.

Her attractive voice, fresh and well modulated, her talent for guitar - which she received first at the age of 15 as a Christmas present - make an impression on every music listener. Her songs tell many stories, the possible interpretations or situations are hundreds. It's hard to tell what Lene exactly means in her songs: the interpretation of the lyrics is at the discretion and feeling of the listeners who often, carried by the stirring melodies, tend to personalize what they hear and to feel it as a part of them. Lene herself does not want to explain what her songs are about: she says she gets inspired by her life, what she sees around, but she won't reveal anything more.

And the future? When she was asked whether she regretted having chosen a music career, she answered: "I don't regret having chosen music. I have learned to set some limits, and in the same way, the life I live today is the result of my choice". There are probably new songs already: "How many of them have been there for years... I don't know, I think I'm getting old!". But there's no doubt that years will pass, Lene may grow, may ripen in her body and in her mind, but she will always remain the girl that everybody has fallen in love with: "I cannot get used to such definitions, I'm just myself".

Being herself and of noble sentiments is a real star indeed, a northern star that shines on music and that will keep shining for a long time.


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