The Early Years....
Lena Andersson was discovered when she as a 15 year old sent in a tape to the Swedish Radio Broadcasting Company. On the tape were 7 songs where Lena played the guitar and sang. Her repertoire was American folk music and her voice sounded much like Joan Baez and Judy Collins, popular folk singers at that time. Lena's songs were played on the radio and record producers started calling. Lena and her dad decided to go meet the one that was the most eager. His name was Stig "Stikkan" Andersson. He later became manager of (and sometimes called the fifth) ABBA. He also founded the now so famous "Polar Music Prize". Stig Andersson wanted to move fast so only a month after they met, Lena recorded her first album. After a TV debut in a very popular Ed Sullivan type show, (Hylands Horna), one of the songs went straight up from nowhere to number one.
Her first year in show business was very hectic. She went on a summer tour with 79 shows, lots of TV programs, radio, interviews for newspapers and magazines.
And Lena was only 16!
She received a Gold Record for her first album. In the fall the same year she recorded her second album. Lena made 4 albums at Polar Music and several singles.
She had 13 songs on the Swedish chart. She also released one album for the Japanese market. She participated in the "Tokyo Music Festival" with a song written by Bjorn and Benny from ABBA. The song named "Better to have loved" actually won the whole competition where artists from all over the world took part. With names like Julio Eglesias and Rick Springfield to mention a few. After a few years at Polar Music ABBA started to take form and the two producers Bjorn and Benny started to do music with their wife/fiance. Lena was asked to come on their first world wide tour to Europe and Australia. This was 1977. Quite an adventure. ABBA the Movie was made on that tour. Lena's carreer started to fade a little bit after this. Lots of activity at Polar Music but not so much time to develop Lena's talent. She recorded some of ABBA's songs in German for the German market and did some TV in Germany. Lena released her last album with Polar in 1977.
She did 10 summer tours in the Swedish Folk Parks with different artists but with Lena being the main attraction. The last one was 1980.
Lena came out with a couple of singles at SONET Music under the name "Kiss & Run" in the early 80's. She co-wrote pop songs together with guitar player Lasse Finberg. One of the songs, "Tonight" she performed in a TV show called "Lite Grand i orat" hosted by ABBA-Frida.
Searching for meaning.....
Lena continued to do music but on a smaller scale. She also became somewhat of a seeker and she found herself wondering what life was really all about. A friend introduced her to TM meditation. She tried that for a few years. When she was 24 she started to have anxiety and panic attacks. She kept searching for answers and was looking into eastern philosophies. She also went to take classes at the Scientology center in Stockholm. It was interesting but something didn't quite add up. Around the age of 26 she felt led to start reading the Bible. It was as if a voice told her to do that. All she had was her New Testament that she had kept from her confirmation when she was 15. She began to read and the words of the Bible spoke right into her heart. She felt like "somebody knows me. Somebody sees me. I'm not alone!" Light came into her darkness. After about 4 years of reading the Bible she got saved at a beach in Spain. Jesus just became more and more real to her and at the beach, actually at Magaluf, Mallorca, the Holy Spirit came over her with this huge, huge love and she was given a choice between life and death. She felt that if she would receive this, she would die. That's how strong it was. And she felt that "alright, it's worth it!" and she said "yes!" Liquid love totally filled her and she was born again in that moment and her life was completely transformed. No more anxiety, no more panic attacks. Everything became new...
Lena found a church in Stockholm called the Södermalms Church that was very much alive and in a revival mode. The next 15 years were full of Bible School studies, (Word of Life), mission trips to foreign countries and evangelisation. She would sing solos at Christian conferences, in worship teams, in different choires and out in the streets.
The one thing that was missing from her new, very joyful, satisfying life was a husband. Turned out to not be so easy to find a good Christian man. In year 2000 she went on a Christian matchmaker site and after a while her now husband Tobe showed up. After frequent e-mailing and many phone calls they met in person and they got married about 6 months after the first contact. Tobe is an American and lived in Carlsbad, California at the time. Lena didn't mind moving to the U.S. so after the wedding in Sweden Lena came over about 2 months later which was in August 2001. The first 10 years they lived in California and now have their home in Phoenix, Arizona where they moved 2011. Lena became an American citizen in 2015.
The first 12 years of their marriage Tobe worked as a children's Pastor at different churches. Lena sang in the different Choirs and did solos from time to time. She even did concerts at some retreats in both California and Arizona. 2013 Tobe left his last Pastor's position and the couple felt that now finally they would have time to do some music with Lena. 2015 their first album "Open Your Heart" was released with 12 original songs written by Lena and Tobe in English and for the Swedish market 2 Swedish songs written by Lena was added. New music is in the making and a single for the Swedish market was being released in May...They are also working on a Christmas album for this coming fall.
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