Jens Martin Lekman (pronounced "Yens", born February 6 1981 in Angered, Sweden) is a Swedish indie pop musician. His music is guitar-based pop with heavy use of samples and strings; the lyrics are often witty, romantic, and melancholic. His work is heavily influenced by that of Jonathan Richman and Belle and Sebastian, and he has been likened to Stephin Merritt (of The Magnetic Fields) and David Byrne.
In 2003, Lekman self-released a 7" vinyl EP, Maple Leaves. When the same EP was released on CD by the Swedish independent label Service Records later that year, he was a well-known name. The songs "Maple Leaves" and "Black Cab" were heavily played on Swedish national radio. He soon signed a contract with the American label Secretly Canadian for releases outside of Sweden. Heavy touring and his debut album soon followed.
His first album When I Said I Wanted to Be Your Dog was released in 2004, and consisted of recordings made between 2000 and 2004 (some tracks had been previously released independently by Lekman). The album attracted attention among the alternative music press in both Europe and the U.S. The song "You Are the Light" was a successful radio hit, and a video received some rotation in the Nordic MTV and ZTV. In Sweden, the album reached #6 on the national chart. Lekman was nominated for three Swedish Grammies, three P3 Guld and three Manifest awards, and the album was named the album of the year by Nöjesguiden.
A concert film shot from Lekman's sold-out show with José González at Göteborg's concert hall in December 2003 was broadcast by Swedish national television in 2005. In June 2005, a compilation CD of Lekman's first three EPs (plus extra tracks) was released as Oh You're So Silent Jens. Lekman's cover of Scout Niblett's "Your Beat Kicks Back Like Death" appeared on Secretly Canadian's SC100 compilation.
Live performances by Lekman have differed in style; at times he has performed alone with only a guitar and a CD player, sometimes doing a cappella versions of his songs, while at other times he has been accompanied by a choir and string quartet. In 2008, he toured with an all-female back-up band (dressed mostly in white) that provided basic rock instrumentation as well as horns and backing vocals.
Jens Lekman's kalediscope of sound.(FEATURES)(WEEKEND)(Night Falls Over Kortedala)(Sound recording review)(Brief article)
Nov 02, 2007; Jens Lekman - Night Falls Over Kortedala (Secretly Canadian): Jens Lekman has been called a Swedish Burt Bacharach, and a...