Jörgen Elofsson InterviewJörgen Kjell Elofsson (born 14 January 1962 in Ängelholm) is a Swedish songwriter who has written or co-written hits for stars such as Britney Spears, Kelly Clarkson, Guy Sebastian, Ana Johnsson, Marie Serneholt, Shayne Ward and many many more. He has also written hit singles for groups such as Il Divo and Westlife. His musical career started when he was 16, and was the lead singer and guitarist in different bands. After that he had a solo career and released two albums in 1989 and 1992, under the name "Shane".
Jörgen became a full-time songwriter in 1994, when he worked with the Swedish artist Carola. His work at Cheiron Studios began in January 1998, and he has mainly been working together with David Kreuger and Per Magnusson. (taken from from wikipedia)
We are very happy that Jörgen spent some time answering the questions of our members of the Cheiron Songwriters Forum www.swedishsongs.de for this exclusive interview
Thanks also to all our members who
handed in questions
Thanks also to all our members who handed in questions
Question: How did you notice your talent? Was there any key moment where you realized you can do it for a living or you just slide into it? Do you sometimes get the feeling of losing confidence in your skills?
Jörgen Elofsson: A friend of mine had an electric guitar, I tried it and I was hooked, I was 16 years old and I knew what I was going to do for the rest of my life!! I was never thinking about making a living on music , it was really just a passion. I started my own company in 1993 and I’ve been living on music ever since. I’m losing confidence all the time, but then I get it right back :-)
Q: Could you share a story with us about working at Cheiron? Can you tell us your favorite memory from that time and your favorite song from that time?
JE: I started hanging out at Cheiron already in 1995 because Per and David produced an album with me and my band called “me and Pete” later, “Hear’Say”. However that never took off, in early 98 I got signed with Cheiron though!
A favorite memory would be me playing my new song “Sometimes” for Max, Denniz and Tom Talomaa, they loved it and suggested it for Britney.
The rest is history:-)
Q: What is your fondest memory of Denniz PoP? How did you meet for the first time and how was your relationship?
Q: Will you be working work with any of the Cheiron crew in the future? Any plans to work with Max Martin in the soon future?
JE: Every now and then our roads cross, and I work as much as I can with my old friends
I’ve done a lot of stuff with Per and David and Andreas Carlsson after Cheiron closed, nothing planned with Max at the moment.
Q: How much contact do you have with the guys from the old Cheiron crew?
JE: We speak all the time
Q: What is in your opinion your best song? And can you think of a song that you
wish you wrote in general or lately in the charts ?
JE: Honestly I can´t tell you a favorite song I´ve written, there´s too many!!! Though I really would´ve loved to have written “Moves like Jagger”, love that song!)
Q: Many Swedish writers seem to have settled down in California these days; would this be an option for you too?
JE: I´m in LA all the time, but I don´t want to move there, I have a little daughter and I want her to grow up in Sweden
Q: How do you write a song? Do you compose first with piano or guitar, or do you make the instrumental and then you compose the melody?
JE: I write songs in many different ways, guitar, piano, to tracks, anything goes
Q: What do you do if you don't have any good ideas? Do you sometimes get frustrated or do you stress yourself too much? Are you thinking about songwriting all the time?
JE: I don´t worry so much about that, If I have no ideas, I just don´t write
Q: What's the general process in coming up with ideas for a specific artist. Do you analyze songs published by that artist before and try to come up with something different/similar? How much do you prepare for a writing session with an artist?
JE: Whenever somebody asks me for something specific, I get inspired, I try not to listen to old stuff
Q: Swedish melodies are by far the most pleasing my ears have ever heard. What's the process for finding that perfect melody, and do you ever experience writer's block when searching for it?
JE: I can´t tell you where the melodies come from, but they come naturally, almost like channeling, I have no writers block, but sometimes I lack good ideas and the I leave it alone for a while
Q: I've always wanted to know how pop producers go about achieving that big double vocal sound in choruses. Is it simply two takes by the artist panned left and right, or is it mainly done in post using plug-ins?
JE: These things are trade secrets :-) . Try things out, if it sounds good, it´s usually good.
There are so many ways of achieving great sound today, no plugins for great songs though :-) Not yet anyway!
Q: Who would you like to work with in the future (Songwriters, Artists)?
JE: No one particular, I take it as it comes
Q: What music do you listen to at home? What are your hobbies apart from music?
JE: I don´t listen that much at home, watching movies instead, and I paint as well
Q: What our users want to know most: What's your favorite part in the production process and why? How is the usual routine? (Writing, arranging, producing, recording vocals etc...)
JE: I like cutting the vocals the most, nowadays I work with different producers who deal with the other things in the production process, I do love mixing as well
Q: What is your current standard studio equipment like?
JE: I have a great studio, top of the line
According to your website, you don't really seem to have a large mixing console
as seen in other studios. So do you mainly use software for mixing? In general,
do you think the "gear hype" is overrated and that today's software
is good enough to get the job done? Or do you also prefer analog equipment Max
JE: Old website, old pictures, new website is coming soon, there you´ll see my new studio
Q: Is there any certain style of music you can't relate to at all ? Do you have a favorite genre in specific?
JE: I think all genres have great stuff, just as long as the songs are good
Q: You're one of few Swedish international songwriters that actually write for Swedish artists too, not just acts from the US. Why do you think many of the Swedish songwriters do not write for local artists?
JE: Could be a business decision, could be another reason, I write a lot of music and people need songs here and there, I´m cool with Swedish artists cutting my songs even though the money´s better in the UK or America or elsewhere. It´s different when you produce, then you won’t get a proper budget in Sweden compared to the US for example.
Q: A few years ago you signed Marie Serneholt to your label Planet Six. You even ended up in a scene in the “I need a house” video. Whose idea was that?
JE: The video director did that on his own, he thought it was funny! So did I.
Q: Do you plan to sign more artists to Planet Six or do you already have an artist about to break the market?
JE: Planet Six is not alive anymore, I have a new label called 33,3 together with Roxy Recordings, first album just released with well known Swedish artist Björn Skifs.
Q: You wrote many Idol winning songs. These days winner songs are sadly often covers. How many songs do you still have in the cupboard and how many of them do you think are potential megahits?
JE: I have about 360 songs recorded and another 700 or so still waiting for a home some of them a really good!
Q: What can we expect from you in the near future, which releases can you reveal? (We know that you have a song for Il Divo and worked with Björn Skifs on his album)
JE: I Have a song on Jennifer Lopez new album called “Until it beats no more” And the upcoming single from Kelly Clarkson’s new album, a song called “What doesn´t kill you (Stronger)
Q: Have you ever handed in a song for Melodifestivalen or Eurovision and do you plan to do so in the future?
JE: No, I haven’t and I don´t plan to
Q: I read you dreamed the melody of Il Divo’s “La promessa”. How often do you dream melodies?
JE: That happens, not often though
Q: You achieved so much in your career, is there something you really want to achieve?
JE: I want to keep on making great music with great artist for many years to come and also stay healthy and happy
Q: You worked with Delta Goodrem but the songs were never released. Can you tell us what kind of style were these songs and will they be released one day?
JE: That happens all the time, songs don´t make it on to the records , sometimes they´re just not good enough, but mostly it´s political reasons. The songs with Delta sound pretty much like her songs on the records, they will find a home eventually, cause they are really good
Q: Do you still have contact with Jessica Folcker, and could you imagine to work with her again?
JE: I haven’t met Jessica in a long time but if she wants a song from me, why not
Q: Last but not least, do you have a thing to say to our members and your fans from the forum :-)
JE: I would say that I´m grateful and happy that you keep the memory of Cheiron alive THANK YOU for that!
Thank you Jörgen for your time and all the best! We
hope to hear all 1000 songs and more in the future!
Thank you Jörgen for your time and all the best! We hope to hear all 1000 songs and more in the future!
Copyright: Jörgen Elofsson and www.swedishsongs.de 2011
Do not use without permission.
Do not use without permission.