The Slipped Disc daily comfort zone (61): Sweden’s John Williams

The Slipped Disc daily comfort zone (61): Sweden’s John Williams


norman lebrecht

May 15, 2020

Lars-Erik Larsson wrote music for invisibe movies. This is his most popular.

And this is the next.



  • Bone says:

    His trombone concerto is so fun to play!

  • Barry Guerrero says:

    Nice music but I don’t see the John Williams analogy. I think Larsson is closer to being Sweden’s Sibelius.

  • John Borstlap says:

    But these videos give straightforward, pure, traditional music, written from an innocent heart, without any reference to kitschy film music. It sounds like snow on a spring morning. Without intellectual or philosophical or historicist complications, but without any commercial hypocrisy. Quite different from John WIlliams.

    He also wrote some more meaty music:

  • Edgar Self says:

    Some less-known composersare incapable of writing unpleasing music, among them Lars-Erik Larsen, Gerald Finzi, Andre Gretry, and even some of the Greats. Larsen’s melodrama “Gods in Disguise” is notable, along with violin, chamber, and small orchestra works. I like everything I’ve heard by him.

    Then there are composers who write nothing that I like or that is in any way pleasing to me. I won’t name them, respecting the limits of personal safety and taste, but they know who they are, and many others do also from the comments I read here.

    • John Borstlap says:

      Indeed. But there is objective truth in the notion of beauty and pleasure that music can give, together with ‘musical meaning’, they are not incompatible.

      And it is quite easy to name the culprits who haven’t a clue about such basic truths, like [redacted], [redacted] and – of course – [redacted].

  • PHF says:

    His short instrument concertos are very interesting, the most famous is probably the trombone one.

  • V.Lind says:

    Don’t see any resemblance to Williams, but the music is quite enchanting.

  • Edgar Self says:

    that’s a good characterisation of Lars-Erik Larsson and his music, John Borstlap “Innocence of heart”, a good phrase,is what I hear also, and an easy lyrical expertise without pretentions. He evidently did muh Swedish Radio work, conducting some of his music for recordings.

    I apologise for mis-spelling Larsson’s surname in an earlier post. I knew better, and vaguely wondered at the time, but my eyes aren’t what they were.

  • Edgar Self says:

    If Lars-Erik Larsson wrote music for invisible films, then does he join Emil Nolde in painting unpainted paintings, Charles Ives in asking unanswered questions, Gertrude Stein in giving unquestioned answers, and John Keats in hearing unheard melodies?

  • Edgar Self says:

    Just so, John. We Slipped Disc posters are pretty good at focusing on what isn’t there. Otherwise I’d have nothing to say. It’s like the strange behaviour of he dog in the night.