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Subject: Singapore #77 - Swedish Snaps Songs
(Posted on Feb 12, 2014 at 01:06PM ) Tags:
You know you have a diverse group of friends when you find yourself singing Swedish drinking songs at a wedding in Singapore with a bunch of Chinese folks spread around your table. You don’t fight the situation, suck back the snaps / aquavitand sing along as best you can.

While we all sang in English at the time to make it easier for the assembled international collective, you just know for sure that these tunes sound way way better in their original language. To prove it all, some of the energetic Swedes present decided to let us hear the difference in their native tongue.

Three songs, and three shots of snaps went down in quick succession. This type of Swedish snaps drinking song is called a snapsvisa, and is usually short and simple (to be sung with vigor) so as not to have too much time between you and your next shot (or song).

How strategic of them sly Swedes. It was probably all about getting oiled / lit up more quickly and letting that Scandinavian shyness slip swiftly away into the shadows.

Here is Hell and Gore (or Helan Går in Swedish), considered by some to be the Big Mama or Daddy of all these songs. 


No offence to the lads in the version above, but some may find this more impromptu, feminine version as sung here by Malin Åkerman to be a little more endearing and charming, if less boisterous. Who do you want to be out belting back shots and singing these songs with at the end of the evening when all is said and done? 


Last, this interpretation of "1, 2, 75, 6, 7" with sign language as added accompaniment makes it a little more interesting (and tricky if you want to try both deliveries simultaneously). Note the numbers in Swedish are much more musical in nature. After a couple shots already down the hatch, this litle ditty can prove to be a real challenge if you try and sing it more quickly (and in Swedish too if you are an English speaker).


When faced with a tough, spur-of-the-moment choice in life, like choosing between a shot from the red/black label bottle of snaps (O.P. Anderson)  or a shot from the touch-of-green label bottle of snaps (Läckö Slotts Aquavit), what is one to do?


Decisions, decisons. Take’em both down between the rounds of songs and shots, and cover the bases, Bobbolin(o/a). That's what you do.

After a few, no doubt everyone present felt much better about their singing capability. Still, I wasn't about ready to quit my day job, no matter what that was. Somedays, it felt like attending weddings all over the place was my part-time job. 

To all my Swedish, and wannabe (with) Swedish, friends out there, Skål / Skol!