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TA124 Slåttar frå Heidal

Folkemusikk og spelemenn i Heidal

Heidal har hatt eit rikt folkemusikkmiljø med mange spelemenn på fele og trekkspel. Felles for dei fleste var hardt arbeid i små kår innan gardsarbeid og skogs arbeid, og fleire dreiv som skreddarar. Det var lite å tene på speling, så spelpenningane som vart samla inn der og da, vart lønn for arbeidet.

 Folketalet auka sterkt på 1800-talet, og resultatet vart stor utvandring, mest til Amerika. Så seint som i 1920-åra ut vandra fleire gode spelemenn. Åseng-fløyta har vorte eit begrep. I fleire generasjonar er desse trefløytene laga på garden Øvre Åseng. Denne handverkstradisjonen skriv seg frå tidleg på 1800-talet og er også halden i hevd i vår tid. Vi kjenner òg til nokre kvinner som brukte langeleiken, eller langspelet, som det ofte vart sagt. Heidal var ein del av Vågå kommune fram til 1. januar 1908, og kontakten med særleg Lalm i Vågå har vore og er stor. Vi veit også at det var kontakt mellom spelemenn i Heidal og i bygdene både nordover og sørover. Den kjende Fel-Jakup eller Jakup Lom (1821–1876) var ein del i lag med Hans Slettmo (1825–1894). Rundt 14 dagar fòr desse to rundt på setrer i Heidal og lét og kosa seg, fortalde eldre folk i Heidal. Sikkert er det at vi finn att mange av same slåttane her som t. d. i Ottadalen, men formene kan vera heller ulike.

Tre sentrale spelemenn
Av dei mange spelemennene står tre Hans-karar fram som dei mest ruvande: Hans Slettmo, Hans Horgjebakken (1825–1910) og Hans Arnesen Vineshaugen (1831–1909). Hans Horgjebakken var ein parlaus dansespelemann med magisk rytme i spelet. Hans Arnesen Vineshaugen reiste ut, lærde notar og spelte ein del såkalla storgardsmusikk ved sida av dei gamle, tradisjonelle slåttane. Han slo seg ned på Sel, og der skreiv Torgeir Olstad ned rundt 130 slåttar etter han. Hans Slettmo er nok den som har hatt mest å seia, og svært ofte er leikane i Heidal knytt til namnet hans. Han vart tidleg morlaus, voks opp i fattigdom og livnærte seg som skreddar. Han kom til å bli ein svært avhalden spelemann, og etter utsegner av mange, mellom dei Hans Vineshaugen og Fel-Jakup, var han av dei aller beste spelemennene Gudbrands dalen har hatt. Han var mykje brukt som dansespelemann i fleire bygder og lét i hop med både Fel Jakup og Fant Karl, truleg Karl Johansen Rosenberg (ca 1775–ca 1855).

Spelemennene på cd-en
Magnus Holshagen (1917–1993) og broren Bjørner (1924–2004) var to av fire brør som spelte fele. Det var ikkje alltid like greitt, for Magnus fortalde at dei hadde berre ei fele i fyrstninga. Når fleire ville spela samstundes, vart det krangel om fela og da kunne det gå hardt utover både strenger og boge. Det fyrste lærde dei av faren Steiner Holshagen (1884–1966), som kom frå Lalm i Vågå. Seinare spelte dei i lag til dans. Grannen deira var god spelemann og vart ein sikker læremeister, Ola T. Rønningen (1900–1971). Han var sonesonen til Hans Slettmo. Andre sentrale læremeistrar var Ola Rognstad (1898–1992), Anton Slettmo (1892–1976) og Hans Prestgard (1887–1955). Magnus flytte til Dovre i 1942 og var aktivt med i Dovre spelmannslag ei tid. Han vart A-klassing i 1964 og laga også fleire leikar. Fleire av desse er brukte i dag. Han var ein ivrig deltakar på kappleikar og var særleg kjend for valsespelet sitt. Det er mange opptak av han i NRK og i andre arkiv. Bjørner spelte både fele og trekkspel. Han har mellom anna laga ein springleik, «Sæterstigen», som er mykje brukt blant spelemenn i fleire bygder.

Peder Skavrusten (1904–1993) var ein traust spelemann med gamal dåm i lætet. Han lærde ein del sjeldne leikar av Mathias Vang (1881–1965) og laga òg nokre slåttar sjølv. Ved sida av å vera dansespelemann deltok han på kappleikar og var nestformann i Heidal spele mannslag frå stiftinga av laget i 1954.

Iver Krukhaug (1909–1995) var ein aktiv og engasjert spelemann. Han var særleg oppteken av at musikken skulle leva vidare og fungere i nye ættleder. Han var hovudpersonen bak stiftinga av Heidal spelemannslag i 1954, og var formann i laget i mange år. Elles var han aktiv på mange kappleikar og spelte i Heidal musikkforeining. Han var sikra stø tradisjon gjennom faren Ola (1876–1962), som i unge år fekk lære litt av Hans Slettmo. Ei tid spelte Iver til dans saman med Peder Skavrusten, Hans Prestgard og Kristian A. Steinfinnsbø (1903–1966). Teodor Bakken (1904–1988) var ein godlyndt spelemann som stilte små krav. Fleire sjeldne slåttar etter han er populære blant spelemenn i dag og er også spelte inn på plater. Særleg «Bjønn-hallingen», som han lærde av mora, har vore brukt av fleire. Teodor var svært pertentleg og nøysam, og det er fleire historier om han. Mange vil hugse det svært nette julevedaladet innanfor peisen som han ikkje brende noko av same kor kald julehelga var. Vel over nyttår bar han veden ut att i skålen slik at han var klar til neste jul. Vedastikkene var bunta saman med tråd.

Opptaka på CD-en er frå folkemusikkarkivet i NRK og frå Norsk Folkemusikksamling.

Takk til Ola Rusten, Heidal for hjelp med informasjonen.

Rolv Brimi
Ola Grøsland
Rasmus Stauri

 

Folk music and Folk musicians in Heidal

Heidal has had a rich folk music milieu with many fiddle and accordion players. Most of them did hard work in poor conditions, such as farm work and lumbering, and several of them worked as tailors. There was little to be earned by playing folk music, and the money that could be collected there and then became payment for playing. The population
increased markedly during the 1800s, resulting in large-scale emigration, mostly to America. Several good fiddlers emigrated in as late as the 1920s.
The “Åseng flute” has become well-known term. These wooden flutes have been made on the Øvre Åseng farm for several generations. This handcraft tradition dates back to the early 1800s, and continues today. Several women are also known to have played the langeleik, or langspel, as it was often called. Heidal was a part of the municipality of Vågå until January 1, 1908, and contact with Lalm in Vågå was, and remains, strong. We also know that there was contact between fiddlers in Heidal and the districts both
northwards and southwards. The well-known fiddler Fel-Jakup, or Jakup Lom (1821–1876), was often in the company of Hans Slettmo (1825–1894).
Older people in Heidal related that the two of them once traveled to summer mountain farms in Heidal for about 14 days, fiddling and enjoying themselves. Many of the same tunes can be found in both Heidal and Ottadalen, for example, but the forms can be somewhat different.

Three central fiddlers
Among the many fiddlers in Heidal, three men, all by the name of Hans, stand out as the most impressive: Hans Slettmo, Hans Horgjebakken (1825–1910), and Hans Arnesen Vineshaugen (1831–1909). Hans Horgjebakken was an exceptional dance fiddler with magical rhythm.  Hans Arnesen Vineshaugen left Heidal for a time, learned to read music, and played a good deal of so-called “storgardsmusikk” (ensemble music that was played on large farm estates) alongside the old, traditional tunes. He settled down in Sel, and Torgeir Olstad transcribed about 130 tunes after his playing. Hans Slettmo was probably the most significant of the three, and the tunes in Heidal are very often linked to his name.
He lost his mother at an early age, grew up in poverty and supported himself by working as a tailor. He became a very popular fiddler, and based on statements made by many people, among them Hans Vineshaugen and Fel-Jakup, he was one of the best fiddlers Gudbrandsdalen had fostered. He often played as a dance fiddler in several districts,
and he played with both Fel-Jakup and Fant Karl, whose real name was likely Karl Johansen Rosenberg (ca 1775–ca 1855).

The Fiddlers on the cd
Magnus Holshagen (1917–1993) and his brother Bjørner (1924–2004) were two of four brothers who all played fiddle. It was not always easy, for Magnus recounted that they only had one fiddle at first. When several of them wanted to play at the same time, an argument about the fiddle ensued, which could be hard on both the strings and the bow.
They learned their first tunes from their father, Steiner Holshagen (1884–1966), who was from Lalm in Vågå. They later played together for dance. Their neighbour, Ola T. Rønningen (1900–1971), was a good fiddler and a fine teacher. He was the grandson of Hans Slettmo. Other central teachers include Ola Rognstad (1898–1992), Anton Slettmo
(1892–1976), and Hans Prestgard (1887–1955). Magnus moved to Dovre in 1942 and participated actively in Dovre spelmannslag (Dovre Fiddlers’ Association) for a time. He became an A-class fiddler in 1964 and also composed several tunes. A number of these are in use today. He was an enthusiastic participant at kappleikar (folk music competitions) and was especially well-known for his waltz playing. There are many recordings of him in NRK’s archive, as well as in other archives. Bjørner played both fiddle and accordion. Among other thingsw, he composed a springleik, “Sæterstigen”, which is played a great deal by musicians in many districts.

Peder Skavrusten (1904–1993) was a solid fiddler with an age-old quality to his playing. He learned several uncommon tunes from Mathias Vang (1881–1965), and he also composed some tunes. Besides being a dance fiddler, he participated in kappleikar and became vice-chairman of Heidal spelemannslag (Heidal Fiddlers’ Association) in 1954,  the year the group was founded.
Iver Krukhaug (1909–1995) was an active and enthusiastic fiddler. He was particularly concerned with ensuring that the music would live on and function for new generations. He was the main figure behind the establishment of Heidal spelemannslag in 1954, and was chairman of the group for many years. He also participated in many kappleikar and
played in Heidal musikkforeining (Heidal Music Association). He learned a well-grounded tradition from his father, Ola (1876–1962), who had learned a little from Hans Slettmo during his youth. For a time Iver played for dance with Peder Skavrusten, Hans Prestgard, and Kristian A. Steinfinnsbø (1903–1966).
Teodor Bakken (1904–1988) was a good-natured fiddler and an undemanding person. Several of his more uncommon tunes are popular among players today, and have also been recorded on albums. “Bjønnhallingen”, which he learned from his mother, has been played by several current fiddlers. Teodor was very meticulous and modest, and there
are several stories about him. Many will recall the very tidy Christmas woodpile by the fireplace which he didn’t burn any of, no matter how cold the Christmas holiday was. Long past New year’s Day, he took the wood out again in its holder so that it was ready for the next Christmas. The wood was bundled together with string.

The recordings on this CD are from the folk music archive at NRK (the Norwegian state-owned public broadcasting company) and from Norsk
Folkemusikk samling (The Norwegian Collection of Folk Music).

Thanks to Ola Rusten, Heidal for assistance with information.

Rolv Brimi
Ola Grøsland
Rasmus Stauri