Sofia Talvik, a Swedish folk/pop artist with a beautiful yet melancholic voice, has been on a grassroots U.S. tour for the last year - and on Thursday, she'll play a show in Kingman at The Cellar Door.
On top of being well-established in Sweden, she became the first Swedish female singer/songwriter to play the Lollapalooza festival in Chicago in 2008. Additionally, she has played more than 200 shows on her current tour, which is scheduled to last through 2013.
"It's been great," Talvik said. "We've been to 34 states so far and have seen so much."
She calls her current expedition a grassroots tour because it's just her and her husband, who doubles as her sound guy/manager, touring the country in a small recreational vehicle and playing small venues.
Two states are at the top of her "favorites" list: Idaho and Louisiana.
"I really loved Idaho," she said. "It's beautiful and the nature is amazing."
She also had a great time in New Orleans, though she found it difficult to compete with the city's already robust music scene.
She still had a blast playing several coffee shops and witnessing a Mardi Gras parade.
The small settings make for audience/artist interaction that rarely happens at big shows, she said. Playing solo also gives her more freedom because she doesn't have to coordinate with her backing band, which plays with her at larger venues, and she can do whatever she wants - such as extending a song or switching up a set list - without explaining what she wants to do to her band.
But she also enjoys playing the larger shows because she gets to share the music with her band and the people who come to see her.
"I enjoy both" types of performances, she said.
In Sweden, all children get the opportunity to learn an instrument of their choice through the country's public school system, she said. She chose piano, and played a great amount of classical music throughout her childhood.
But she got bored.
She received a guitar for her 18th birthday, trained herself to play and sing and by 2005 she released her first album. She has released four since, including her most recent, "The Owls Are Not What They Seem."
She grew up listening to Janis Joplin and The Doors, but started listening to artists such as Suzanne Vega and Aimee Mann. Vega, Talvik said, is one of her main influences.
"I think she's wonderful," she said.
In fact, Talvik opened for Vega once, and though she didn't get to talk shop with her, she was able to meet her and say hello.
"I was a little starstruck," Talvik laughed.
After Kingman, she's on to Phoenix for two shows. But for one night, locals get her all to themselves.
Nancy Rhoades, the co-owner of The Cellar Door, said Talvik's manager called her and asked if she would like to have Talvik play a show. Rhoades checked out her music online and immediately agreed.
"(Her music) sounds like something that would fit in here," Rhoades said. "It's beautiful."
The Cellar Door is located at 414 Beale St. The show starts at 7 p.m. Thursday, and there is no cover charge.