When Dagbladet meets Odin Staffland, 38, in a café in central Oslo, it is a winter's day with eyelashes frozen, cheeks flushed bright red, and hands warming themselves fiercely over a cup of coffee.
Fortunately, after a few minutes, the heat returned to the body, and we could talk about what we came for. The familiar hat is on the table. The bag is on the floor. He says he comes directly from the airport and always travels with a backpack and a suitcase.
– When we arrived at Kjerringøy, everyone had a lot of luggage with them. Then I arrived immediately three weeks into the tour, with a backpack and a bag of changes. I had less, so to speak, but – I could wash clothes there, laughs Staffland.
Artist, composer, producer, lyricist. Patch member. And now – participant “Every time we meet.”
– It was strange to show a part of me this way. Because that's what it is – part of me. But there may be some things that many people have never seen before.
– I was terrified
Staffland is a person who thinks. Whoever writes what he feels does not have to say it out loud. When he wrote it, he put it into words, and he actually said it in a way.
But on this show he has to talk out loud about things he's never talked about before.
-I knew I had to do it, and I was a little afraid of it. But when I first started…it was like going to the dentist, once you're there, it's OK, he says.
Staveland already has a long resume full of music, productions and theater on small and large stages. This year he will perform a concert for the first time, in addition to a new tour waiting for him.
He himself says he was lucky to be able to work as he does.
Cheating on homework
However, it was not a given that Staffland would become an artist. He played in the first team for Haugesund, and was on the verge of becoming a footballer.
– I wasn't interested in music.
-But why did you go into music then?
– Because my parents forced me, he says and takes a sip of his coffee.
He doesn't seem bitter about the choice his parents encouraged him to make before entering high school.
The breakthrough was what he himself described as “out of the blue.”
-I cheated on my piano homework. It wasn't my specialty and I found it really boring, so I started playing other things. But my father heard me, and came over and asked me if he could use some of it in a movie.
Staffelland's father, Øyvind Staffelland (63), is a musician and composer – perhaps best known to most people through the band Vamp.
Eventually it became fun to play a little for yourself. He writes. Put words to the things he doesn't want to talk about. Music became his place, his secret.
I lost my mother
On “Every Time We Meet” Mary Bowen sings “Denne uro”. Staffland wrote it when he was a teenager, knowing that his mother was terminally ill.
She died of cancer when Staffland was eighteen.
“In all my good time: to keep my anxiety“, says the song.
– When I played Marie, I was taken back to the time when I did it, in a difficult time. It was a great experience. In fact, you sit in such an artificial place, then you hit, and then I go back to my room.
When the song was released, it disappeared. He never spoke of loss and grief.
– Releasing the song was a very beautiful thing. It was seen as a good thing and was well received. I've become… What's a good word, he asks, catching his breath.
– It was worthy. As a kind of ending.
In the period after his death, he refused to talk about his mother, and did not lift the veil after that.
-I was very young, so it was difficult to talk about it properly. I didn't want to talk about it.
– How can we talk about it now then?
Staffland's eyes became empty, but he answered:
– It's been 19 years now, so things are going well. In a way, it's nice to think about it more again.
He straightens up before saying:
– What I'm afraid of is that it will seem like I'm too sad, because I'm not really a sad person – even if something is very sad. Life has its ups and downs. We will all die.
– Now it's nice to think about it, bring it up and talk about it with my children.
She met her boyfriend at work
After a life full of touring, Staffland doesn't travel much anymore. But he says he and his girlfriend of more than two years do not have permanent residency, but live together.
-We alternate between Haugesund and Stavanger. Maybe it's easier for me than him, I'm used to moving, he laughs.
Staffland met his girlfriend in 2021. She is a dancer, and they met naturally in the course of work.
-We continued to work together and then it became more than that, he says and smiles.
His girlfriend also has a song dedicated to him, which is his favorite way to express himself.
– She started writing it when she was sad, and you know the feeling when someone you love is sad and you don't quite know what to do – so it became that song.
However, he kept it a secret until recently that the “bullet dance” was all about her.
-I said it during the recording, so I had to say it to her too. But she was so happy, he laughed.
“Infuriatingly humble web fan. Writer. Alcohol geek. Passionate explorer. Evil problem solver. Incurable zombie expert.”