Roxette is setting off on this long-awaited world tour in 2011. The band kicks off in Kazan, Russia on March 1st and will cover at least five continents during the year. Marie Fredriksson and Per Gessle are returning to the world stage full of new enthusiasm after their six sold-out concerts this summer. While Roxette toured Europe in 2001, their last real world tour took place in 1994-95 in conjunction with the “Crash! Boom! Bang!” album.
“If you’d asked me a couple of years ago, if there would ever be a new Roxette tour I would have very quickly said 'No!',” says singer, guitarist and songwriter Per Gessle. “Knowing what Marie (Fredriksson, lead vocalist) had to go through in recovering from her severe illness, this is not only unbelievable, it seems almost magical to me. It will be wonderful to meet all our audience on Planet Earth again.”
“I’ve been longing and hoping for this since 2002. It makes me incredibly happy to know we’re going to meet our fans all around the world again,” says Marie.
Besides the tour, Roxette fans can look forward to a brand new album in the first quarter of 2011.
Update November 9: Dates for Sofia (Bulgaria) and Bucharest (Romania) have been added.
Update November 10: Latest concert dates and venues as well as ticket information can be found in our Roxette World Tour 2011 Calendar.
Update November 16: Budapest (Hungary) added.
Update November 17: Athens, Greece.
Updated December 3: Stavern, Norway added.
SKÅNE - The Daily Roxette has reached Per for a short debriefing after the successful "tour":
Per, you've just landed after the tour, or as you called it - "merely a handful of concerts". How do you feel now, better or worse than when we talked before?
Oh it's been a wonderful "tour", so many hi-lites, so few downers. The very last show in St. P. was outstanding. Marie in top shape, Chris finally becoming the rock god he really is and the whole band kickin' serious ass. But all the shows have been great. It's a beautiful band, we really love to play together and I'm sure it shows. It's really really hard to stop playing live now!!
Did everything meet your expectations?
Rox has suddenly become much bigger than expected! Example: last time we played Moscow & St. Petes in 2001, we had around 5000 people per show. This time we had 9500 + 11000. Amazing!! What's cool is that Ozzy Osbourne played the same St. Petersburg-venue the night before us and had 6500 people, Sting performed the night after us and had 6000… And we had 11000… The interest in what we do is growing rapidly and it feels fab of course.
How was the audience?
Oh, without the crowd it could never have worked out! We're totally driven by the response from the audience. You know the Carlsberg-slogan? “Probably the best beer in the world”?? We're saying that about our fans: probably the best fans in the world!!!!!!
So, how was this concert compared to Sundsvall? Much better. 100 % better I'd say. Roxette removed the two Per Gessle songs in the middle, Marie didn't take a break this time. The band was tighter and Marie sang with more confidence even though she did have the same problem with the lyrics.
This reporter still thinks the arrangements are too similar to the Gessle over Europe arrangements. It doesn't sound like Roxette. Granted, it has a nice, heavy touch, but it ain't Roxette enough. I want the hooks in the songs, like in "The Look" or "Joyride". Per removed them for his solo tour because that "wasn't Roxette, but him solo", but this is Roxette. Having said that, the band was in top shape! It felt like Per, Marie and the band liked being in Halmstad in front of 20,500 fans.
And holy moly! Gyllene Tider joined Roxette on stage here in Halmstad… Gyllene Tider came on stage instead of Roxette for the second encore. Gyllene performed "Juni, juli, augusti, "Sommartider" and "När alla vännerna gått hem", the latter together with Marie and the Roxette band. And to be honest, Gyllene Tider stole the show. Roxette was great, but Gyllene Tider was awesome.
After the show, The Daily Roxette met Per and Marie at a meet & greet photo op arranged by RoxetteBlog and The Daily Roxette.
SUNDSVALL - In perfect weather in Sundsvall, Sweden, at 22.17 Per and Marie finally entered the stage for the long, long awaited real reunion of Roxette. The Daily Roxette was there too of course. Roxette started 13 minutes early (probably due to the midnight curfew) and played 20 songs for the 16,000 in the audience. German rockabilly act The Baseballs was the opening act. "I made a classical mistake this time" says Per "I thought it was so much fun I was exhausted after the first two songs."
The question on everyone's lips is "will Marie be able to handle this?" This reporter thinks that if nothing drastic happens, Roxette will once again travel the world in 2011.
Marie was doing terrific and she was beaming on stage looking stunned, happy and amazed. Everyone could see how she loved being back, and when the final chord of "Church of Your Heart" faded and the applause wouldn't stop, Marie had tears in her eyes.
Roxette this time around is Per and Marie, of course, with Pelle Alsing drums, Magnus Börjeson bass, Clarence (with a brand new fez) Öfwerman keys, Christoffer Lundquist guitar and newbie Malin Ekstrand backup vocals. They all performed greatly.
True, there were kinks, Marie forgetting lyrics, someone (Per?) playing in the wrong key on "Sleeping in My Car" and some other small things. But as Per says to TDR: "This isn't a tour so much as a handful of concerts flung together." Probably it will be different even tonight as Roxette plays Denmark. "I don't want to call it a test, but it is a test to see how much Marie can handle." says Per and continues "We'll have to evaluate this at a later point. Both of us want to continue doing Roxette stuff. There is a huge interest in the world. The album is halfway done, and when it is done it would be nice to take it on the road." Marie adds "It's good that one has performed as much as one has in one's life. It's in the body so to speak."
The only difference to the setlist this time was that "Things Will Never Be the Same" was cut. "Steppin' Stone" was performed in the honor of The Monkees this time, instead of Paul Revere like during Per's solo tour. Roxette is not happy with the tracklist, there will be changes according to both Per and Marie. They are open to more covers, but won't reveal which. Per also mentions that Roxette has loads of other hits they can play on a "real tour".
HALMSTAD (Updated) - Roxette performed 21 songs at the Leif's Lounge dress rehearsal concert last night. "Damn this was fun!" exclaims Marie and continues "I've waited so [long] for this." "This is a miracle. You're a miracle" says Per to Marie tenderly. Per tells Aftonbladet that the concert was supposed to be around an hour but it was so much fun they played almost two. "It just grew…" says Per.
Over 900 tickets were sold in the end. Per thinks they could've played Solgården, outside of the hotel, and sold 3000 tickets. "That would've been devastating to our concert here in Halmstad."
If all goes according to plan, Roxette will go on a world tour next year. This mini-tour is sort of a test to see if a world tour is in the cards. "We want it to be as big as it can be, we always think big. Big is beautiful. It's been great digging into Roxette's treasure box of songs. I pawed some of them during my solo tour, but it sounds tacky when I do 'Listen to Your Heart'" smiles Per.
The Daily Roxette asks: So, back on stage "for real" with Roxette, how does it feel, Per? "It was an unforgettable evening, the crowd was superb! We felt very very welcome!" says Per and goes on "The plan was to play for an hour and we played almost an hour and forty minutes. Marie was in top shape, Malin was excellent as well as Chris and the others, I just love this band! And of course my new nail polish!" When TDR asks Per if this was something he expected a few years back Per responds "No no, I thought Rox was over in 2002." Marie also seems satisfied as Per says: "This was one of the happiest days of her life, she said. I guess that says it all…" Per also mentions that he doesn't hope there will be any major changes to the setlist.
Finally, Per Gessle, did you have a good time last night? "Do fish swim in water?" Per smiles and goes off to new challenges.
And on Saturday the Sundsvall premiere awaits.
HALMSTAD (Updated) - Like in 2003 (Per Gessle), 2004 (Gyllene Tider) and 2007 (Per Gessle again) there will be a secret concert, like a dress rehearsal if you will, in Halmstad August 4! Roxette will play Leif's Lounge at Hotel Tylösand on Wednesday night. 600 tickets will be released on Wednesday morning, in order to stop ticket scalpers, and will cost 295 SEK. Tickets may be bought in the reception of Hotel Tylösand starting at 11.00 AM.
The concert starts at 10.00 PM.
Update: At 1.25 PM the concert was sold out. Doors open at 7 PM.
STOCKHOLM - After a great time in the Aerosol Grey Machine studio down in Skåne, and after a not-so-great time driving up to Stockholm due to the fact that all airports in Sweden are closed, The Daily Roxette has gotten hold of Per Gessle. Per says that the studio work goes awesomely and that they have a "killer album" on their hands. "Most things feel tremendous! We'll record 16 tracks, I think." On the question if the album will be out before Christmas Per responds: "We're taking a break over the summer, and we'll be done in October the way it seems now. But no, the album will likely be released in February 2011. And hopefully we'll pop out a single for X-mas. Oh and by the way, Marie's vocals are exceptional."
(Updated) - You heard us right! You can now hire Roxette to play in your living room.
"It's been so much fun to play live together that we wanted to offer our fans this special opportunity", said Per in our short phone interview. "It's not even that expensive to get us to perform to your friends."
There are of course a few requirements that have to be met: since it's a full Roxette concert and not an acoustic set, you need to provide at least 15.000 Watts for the PA system, and you need to cater for the band and the staff of 30 people. You also need to have a stage handy, 10 m (30 ft) wide and 5 m (15 ft) high, alternately a local pub/bar/club or similar. But other than that, the band will provide.
The form for setting up your personal concert date will be available at roxette.se later today.
However, we've heard a rumor that it's not only for the fun of performing that Per is organizing this. Christoffer Lundquist, who owns the Aerosol Grey Machine studio that Roxette has used in recording their forthcoming album, is demanding rent for the studio for the previous 7 years and is asking such a high price that Per is in desperate need of cash. Per's assets are locked in his companies and properties and the band will be kicked out of the studio if he can't get the money soon enough. So you better help him out!
Update: Hmm, yes you may or may not have figured out the date of this article… April 1!
This just in! Roxette is to play Russia this fall. So far dates confirmed are:
September 10 - Moscow Mega Sport Arena
September 12 - St. Petersburg New Arena
Per comments on Roxette.se:
It feels fab to start the new year announcing live concerts by Roxette. Both Moscow and St Petersburg should be great fun! And if we're all lucky there's even more to come. By the way, the new recordings are going great, we'll continue sweatin' it out for the next six months or so. You'll find videos/pics from the recordings on Snowfish.
HANNOVER - Toodiloo all Roxers!
2009 turned out to be a killer year after all!
Per’s small but heartwarming Party Crasher Tour around Europe in the spring was followed by the huge and glorious Rox comeback at the Night of the Proms.
Thanks everyone for your support (appreciated!) and for those loud voices in the front row (interesting!).
Also, we started recording a new Rox-album on the road. So far so good but there are, of course, lots more to be done. And for next year we have even more mighty plans. Will let you know what’s goin’ on in Roxville before long. But for now we wish y’all a great xmas och a extraordinarily swell new year. See ya around the corner.
Cheers from Marie & Per.