World Music from Norway

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Nino & Vinz tour the world, telling that they’re Afro-Norwegians, which is very exotic for most audiences. On stage they use African dance steps which they’ve been taught by their parents.

The international music sensation Nico & Vinc, made up of Vincent Dery (b. 1990) and Kahouly Nicolay Sereba (b. 1990) both from Oslo. Sereba was a promising football player but chose music as his career.

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Nico Sereba’s debut was the solo mix tape “Blinded by the Lights” in 2010.

Nico & Vinz formed their duo Envy in 2009 and released the mixtape “Dreamworks: Why Not Me” (2010) and the album “The Magic Soup and the Bittersweet Faces” (2012).

Since their debut in 2010 at the Emengeza Festival where they won first place for new, emerging artists, Nico & Vinz have topped Scandinavian charts thanks to their extraordinary storytelling, electrifying performances and riveting videos.

In June 2011 they released their debut single, “One Song” which peaked at #19 on the Norwegian Single Chart and earned them a Spelleman Award (Norwegian equivalent to a Grammy) for the song’s video.

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The duo petformed “Am I Wrong” at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo at the end of 2013. When the song made its American radio debut in April of 2014, it was the #1most added record at the Top 40/mainstream format with 90 adds, a rarity in first-week airplay for a new artist. The song saw remixes from artists like T.I. and Maino, to name a few.

In early 2014, Nico & Vinz received the European Boarder Breakers Award (EBBA) at Eurosonic Festival, performed at the Spellemann Awards, and completed their Scandanavian tour.

“Am I Wrong” has already crossed 50 million global streams on Spotify. The single has won an NRJ Award for “Song of the Year,” and another Spelleman Award nomination for “Hit of the Year.” To date, “Am I Wrong” has a 20x-platinum combined certification in Scandinavia. Nico & Vinz’s second Scandinavian single “In Your Arms” charted in Norway, Denmark and Sweden. In America, the video already has over 9 million views.

The singing/songwriting duo signed up with Warner Bros September 2013 and changed their name to Nico & Vinz in 2014 when they moved to Los Angeles to conquer the US market.

The album “Black Star Elephant”, produced by William Wiik Larsen, Stargate and Thomas Eriksen was released same year.

Since then they have set the world’s entertainment scenes on fire. The duo has tapped into the heart of global culture by writing and performing songs that joyfully speak of life, love and identity.

Nico & Vinz with Taylor Swift, 1989 Tour
Nico & Vinz with Taylor Swift, 1989 Tour

On her massive North American tour earlier this year, Taylor Swift brought out a different famous friend for a song at every show. At her concert in Vancouver on August 1 her guests were Nico & Vinz, with whom she performed their infectious hit “Am I wrong”.

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“I’m obsessed with Nico & Vinz,” she wrote on Facebook after the concert. “And so was the Vancouver crowd; such dynamic performers and SO down to earth.”

“Am I wrong”, which managed to reach the #4 position on the US Billboard Hot 100, is off the Nico & Vinz sophomore studio album “Black Star Elephant”.

https://youtu.be/bg1sT4ILG0w

In their video “My Melody” Nico & Vinz use their art to carry a message by highlighting stories of those living with HIV and AIDS intertwined with contemplative rhythms of the track from “Black Star Elephant”.

Nico & Vinz have honed a unique sound, born of their eclectic backgrounds as both Africans and Norwegians. Their vision for the future is boundless. “We try to be 100% us. That mixture and that balance is what creates us,” says Vinz. That creative combination is what has made the group so popular.

Norwegian Billboard-hits

1. A-ha: “Take On Me”, #1 – 1985
2. Nico & Vinz: “Am I Wrong”, #4 – 2014
3. Ylvis: “The Fox”, #6 – 2013
4. Aqua: “Barbie Girl” (the singer is Norwegian), #7 – 1997
5. A-ha: “The Sun Always Shines in TV”, #20 – 1985
6. M2M: “Don’t Say You Love Me”, #21 – 2000
7. Aqua: “Lollipop (Candyman)”, #23 – 1997
8. One 2 Many: “Downtown”, #37 – 1989
9. Stage Dolls: “Love Cries”, #46 – 1989
10. A-ha: “Cry Wolf”, #50 – 1986
11. The Tuesdays: “It’s Up To You”, “55 – 1998
12. M2M: “Mirror Mirror”, #62 – 2000
13. Maria Mena: “You’re the Only One”, #86 – 2004
14. Madcon: “Beggin’”, #89 – 2009

World Music from Norway, compiled by Tor Kjolberg