• 25 Years Later, ‘Cotton Eye Joe’ Remains A Worldwide Hit

    Twenty-five years ago, a Swedish band released a dance-mix version of an American folk song. Improbably, for many reasons, “Cotton Eye Joe” remains popular today. The song, the product of the Swedish band Rednex, was released on Aug. 12, 1994 before being released in the United States in early 1995. “Cotton Eye Joe” reached No. 1 in 13 countries, peaking […]

  • Fika, Yeah! Our Interview With ‘Fika That’ Author, Émile Odbäck

    We’re going to go out on a limb to assume that it takes a lot of coffee to publish a book. And to publish a book about a coffee-fueled gathering like fika, well, that just solidifies our assumption. For Émile and Åsa Odbäck, a mother-and-son duo based in California, they put their passions and expertise together to publish the book, […]

  • You Say You Want A…Scandinavian Revolution?

    Look no further than Louisville, Ky., for a Nordic uprising When we get an email telling us that the Scandinavian revolution is under way in Louisville, Ky., your Umgås team doesn’t waste a lot of time before checking out this claim. After all, what does this Kentucky community – a mere 4,426 miles west of Stockholm – have to do […]

  • A Q&A With ‘America’s Got Talent’s’ Chris Kläfford

    Monday and Tuesday nights have taken on a new meaning for Chris Kläfford. That’s because Kläfford, a 30-year old singer/songwriter from Ramsberg, Sweden has been standing in front of an audience of roughly 3,500 including the likes of Simon Cowell, Howie Mandel, Julianne Hough and Gabrielle Union. And he’s not in Sweden anymore. He’s in Hollywood. At Dolby Theater, the […]

  • Skål Beer Hall Brings Updated Viking Traditions To Seattle

    The life of a Viking was tough, and a meat-centric diet and hearty beverages were key to fortify those Nordic legends. When you add in rough winter conditions – particularly in the region’s icy northern region – a hearty fire became the literal and figurative center of life for that era. The recently opened Skål Beer Hall recreates that warm […]

  • Not A Cake, Not Yet a Sandwich: Breaking Down the Smörgåstårta

    Everyone knows that person who doesn’t like birthday cake. Or sweets altogether. And while we feel like they are sad, sad people, they are still people and deserve to be celebrated, in a safe, savory way. This Swedish “treat” is part sandwich, part salad and part cake. And it just might be your ticket to pleasing your savory-loving friends. Americans, […]

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