The Origins of Icelandic Pop and Rock Music

Unfortunately, there is still no real Encyclopaedia of Icelandic music, yet. The almighty Dr. Gunni comes close. He wrote a coffee table book, the size of a dozen of LPs, in Icelandic about the history of Iceland’s music entitled “Stuð vors lands” (Sögur útgáfa, 2012, ISBN: 9935416550). This big book was an update of his previous 1,5 kg heavy book “Eru ekki allir í stuði? – Rokk á Íslandi á síðustu öld” (2001).

For the English speaking people there are 2 books to have in your library. The first one for your bookshelfs is Paul Sullivan’s book, “Waking up in Iceland” (Publisher: Sanctuary, 2003), a detailed 300 pages guide to the Icelandic music history (ISBN: 1860744605).

Waking up in IcelandGrab this must-have book @ Amazon:

Waking up in Iceland backTen years after Paul Sullivan, Dr. Gunni published the book “Blue Eyed Pop – The History of Popular Music in Iceland” (Sögur Publishing House, 2013)

Grab this 2nd must-have book here:

Read my review here:

Blue Eyed Pop cover

133144_550x814Now it’s time to go back to the future!

From now on you can stream a 2 hours documentary about the history of pop and rock music in Iceland on Vimeo: “Rock Islandica”. It’s the synthesis with English subtitles of the seria “Popp- og Rokksaga Íslands”: Twelve episodes of one hour were broadcoasted in a weekly schedule on Icelandic National TV (The 3DVD box).

This must-see rockumentary (2 parts) is available here:

It’s a splendid mix of news footage, interviews with the usual suspects in the Icelandic music scene (Bubbi Morthens, Paul Oscar (Páll Óskar), Egill Ólafsson, Sigtryggur Baldursson, Einar Örn Benediktsson, Daníel Águst Haraldsson, Högni Egilsson, Jakob Smári Magnússon, Jakob Frímann Magnússon, Gunnar Örn Tynes, Georg Hólm, Orri Páll Dýrason, and so many main characters as well), live gigs, videos, newspaper clippings, TV footage, …

RO(C)K ON!!!

– Wim Van Hooste