Shenanigans plays folk-rock inspired by the lightness of the irish airs as well as the roughness of the scottish highland pipes. We mix traditional tunes with elements of rock and punk. All delivered with a norwegian touch. Can also be visited at
Shenanigans is a folk-rock band based in Bergen, Norway. The band has taken years to develop it's unique sound and it's distinct presence when playing a new venue. The band has been playing all kinds of stages from the smallest unplugged gigs to larger outdoor stages like the Cutty Sark festival in Bergen. Originally the band was was put together from a group of friends playing together an evening a week at an irish pub called Finnegans in Bergen. This was an open stage and a lot of artists joined in.
Experience from these sessions gave the band insight into the tradition and ways of the irish and scottish folk music. The band original cast was Sigrid Lunde (fiddle), Asle Festø (guitar and vocals), Håvard Røkke (harmonica), Halvard Husefest Lunde (bass) and Anders Vengen Jensen (drums). The original motto of the band was:"Rehersal is only for wannabe musicians. It flattens the artistic expression and makes music uninspiring." This motto was wisely abandoned after the bands first gig. Shenanigans had learned their first lesson.
When the band recorded their EP called Shenanigans a lead guitarist called Guy Van der Noort was playing with the band. The EP was only printed in limited numbers and is now unavailable. A reissue is not very likely.
In the years that followed Sigrid, Guy and Halvard left the band to pursue other projects. They were replaced by Stig Bruhjell and Bård Larsen. Asle took the role as the bands only guitarist. This is the bands coplete line-up now: Asle Festø (guitar and vocals), Håvard Røkke (harmonica), Stig Bruhjell (banjo, flute and mandolin), Bård Larsen (bass) and Anders Vengen Jensen (drums).
The bands musical expression changed as time went by. From the more subtle irish tunes to more compressed and upbeat tunes combined with elements from rock and punk.
Inspirational sources are as diverse as the Pogues, Dropkick Murphys, Dubliners, Johnny Cash, Rolling Stones, Brian McNeill, Dick Gaughan and Waterboys. Inspiration comes from a wide range of musical styles and expressions. That is also the case for Shenanigans syle and sound.
Previous venues are located around southern Norway and Iceland. Reykjavik, Oslo, Flekkefjord, Selje and others have been visited by this gang of musicians.
People in the band:
Plays the guitar and sings his songs with a vengance. The bands main source for the punk-rock elements of the band.
"The best f%ing harmonica player in the world", (Shane MacGowan 2004).
Håvard is a well eduated and very enthusiastic source of scottish folk music and history. Though underutilized he tries to push his knowledge to the rest of the band. He as yet to learn them the proper name of the tune Håvardsolo though ...
Håvard is the main source for scottish elements in the band.
Stig first appeared with Shenanigans around the table ai Finnegans in Bergen. With his good looks he was welcomed to join the band. Did i mention that he also plays the banjo like he sold his soul to the devil? With experience Stig has evolved to be a pillar in the band with his skills on many different instruments. Stig is a geysir of diddely-dey-diddely-oh.
Bård was a good friend of the band ever since the early days at Finnegans. Beeing a skilled bass player and a good friend he was a natural replacement for Halvard. He introduced us to the "Irish Bass" which we will now introduce to the rest of the world. Bård plays the bass in an improvisational melodical manner that suits the band very well. With his energetic playing style he inspires the rest of the band to really hit the chords harder and harder.
Bård desperately wants to put some structure into the songs and tunes of Shenanigans but so far we've managed to keep it simple.
Anders Vengen Jensen
Drummer by heart and soul. Perhaps the most skilled musician in the band. He has played the drums(or watever is closest) constantly for 20 years. With a diverse (and obscure) background from brass bands , pop bands and rock bands he has a lot of valuable input to the band. His famous words are: "everything is om-pa!"
Lately Anders has gotten a challenge apart from the various rythm of Shenanigans. As his son made his presence in 2005 Anders has suddenly gotten all respectable and responsible. Proper job and a proper flat. My oh my, who would have guessed that.
Anders is definitely our main source of ... yup ... rythm.
Iceland, Bergen, Flekkefjord, Oslo, Reykjavik
Alvarez Yairi, Epiphone LP Boneyard, Clareen banjo, a Fürch mandolin, a Fender octave mandolin, and a low D Chieftain whistle, Anders plays a Pearl Maple Custom glx drum kit and a handmade DW Craviotto snare drum using Silverfox sticks. And he's got a new Chau Gong, Suzuki Promaster and Hohner Meisterklasse harmonicas, a Bushman Xaphoon and a Gremlin Anglo Concertina, Peavey bass