About the album
As you listen to “Flying Like Eagles”, perhaps an episode from Jack Kerouac’s novel “On the Road” or a scene from the movie “Easy Rider” will flicker across your mind. And if it does, it will be because the point of departure for this album is traditional roots music from America, partly inspired by the American-Indian heritage, plus three classic songs that are also imbued with that same spirit of unspoilt authenticity and freedom.
The origins of the main protagonists on this album might come as a surprise, though: these two guitarists are not actually from the southern states of the US but from Scandinavia. And yet there isn’t any contradiction: Kalle Kalima, a Finn, had already developed a total passion for traditional American folk music while still a teenager. During his music studies, he spent a year on a student exchange in Chicago and immersed himself deeply in the local scene. As a result, Kalima has returned to this music again and again, most recently with his Americana jazz project “High Noon”. Knut Reiersrud has been demonstrating all his life that Norwegians have the blues too. After Buddy Guy and Otis Rush discovered him at the age of 18, the US became his musical home. He played with greats of American music such as Dr. John, Stevie Ray Vaughan, the Blind Boys of Alabama and soul singer Mighty Sam McClain.
Guitarists Kalima and Reiersrud complement each other perfectly – one comes from jazz and rock, the other from blues and world music. Kalima says: “In the studio, a natural flow developed quickly. I mostly took the melody line with my electric guitar, whereas Knut on his various different guitars tended to concentrate on colours, sounds and sound layers. It was important to us that the music should sound very genuine, so we didn’t fix much in advance. The album should sound like we’re jamming.” And so “Flying Like Eagles” has become a proper guitar album, in which Kalima and Reiersrud explore the manifold possibilities of their instruments. The fact that it sounds so fresh, intuitive and authentic is also due to the first-class rhythm section: Phil Donkin on bass and drummer Jim Black are both first-call players who have made their mark on the New York scene.
“Many of the songs on the album come from populations and minorities who have lived harmoniously and in a connected way with nature, and this album is a tribute to them,” Reiersrud makes clear. This message is now more topical than ever. May eagles continue to fly high, and for a long time yet...