Jo Asgeir Lie’s compositions reflect primarily an affinity for Norwegian and Swedish folk music, but he has feeling for jazz and classical music. His compositions range from music for theater, major and minor solo works, chamber music, choral and liturgical music. He has arranged music for a variety of ensembles.
His largest single work so far, has been liturgical music based on traditional repertoire from his home community of Ål, in the Hallingdal valley. This folk mass is an innovative liturgical composition developed for the Norwegian Lutheran church service. The mass is now in use throughout Norway, and is among the proposals for new liturgy for the Norwegian Church.
Major works commissioned for various occasions
Fem songar [Five songs] (2015): Composed for female choir (SSAA), accordion, tuba and percussion.
Sol og skodde [Sun and Mist] (2014): A work in 10 movements for vocals, trumpet, piano, guitar, bass and percussion.
Stavkyrkje [Stave Church] (2013): A work in 12 movements for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion.
Vinden blæs dit den vil [The Wind Blows As it Wills] (2010): Commissioned for Den Norske Folkemusikkveka [The Norwegian Folk Music Week in Ål, Hallingdal] in collaboration with Carl Petter Opsahl. Arranged for clarinet, accordion, bass and percussion.
Folkemusikkmesse [Folk Music Mass] (2007-2010): Commissioned for the Ål Church. This folk music mass is among the proposals for new popular liturgy for the Norwegian church and is arranged for song (by the congregation) and organ. In addition, an arrangement for choir (SATB), three obligato voices, guitar and bass is available, published by Cantando Musikk forlag A/S.
Kom la oss juble for Herren [Come, Let us Sing to the Lord] (2010): Commissioned by the Hol Church Council for the opening of a cultural church in Geilo. The work is arranged for choir (SATB), fiddle, accordion and organ.
Svaner og himmelsprang [Swans and Sky Leap] (2008): Composed at the request of Ingunn Stræte Lie (accordion / free-bass button accordion) and Tone Elisabeth Braaten (soprano). The work, with texts by Wenke Kolstad, has six movements.
Dances for clouds (2007): Saxophone Quartet, commissioned by the Erie Saxophone Quartet in New York. This work in five movements had its premiere in spring 2008.
Dødsdansen på Norefjell [Dance of Death at Norefjell] (2005): Jo Asgeir composed theatrical music for Dødsdansen på Norefjell that premiered at Den Norske Folkemusikkvekain 2005. Lyricsby Eldgrim H. Springgard. Instrumentation: fiddle / Hardanger fiddle, accordion / free-bass button accordion and percussion.
Vinterliv [Winter Life] (2003): Commissioned for Den Norske Folkemusikkveka for the female vocal trio called Tre Begrædelige Piger. It is arrangedfor fiddle / Hardanger fiddle, accordion / free-bass button accordion, song and flute. The trio recorded this work on the CD called“Til deg”which was nominated for Spellemannprisen 2004, in the class for folk music and old-time dance.
In association with folk music group Kvartz, Jo Asgeir has composed music for a number of major productions:
Gneistar [Sparks] (Den Norske Folkemusikkveka, Ål), 2000
Skal, skal ikkje [Shall, shall Not] (Rikskonsertane/ Førde Internasjonale Folkemusikkfestival), 2002
Messe for tvil [Mass for Doubt] (Tvilsdagene, Hamar), 2005
Musikalske vossastubbar [Musical Bits from Voss] (Osafestivalen/ Voss Spelemannslag), 2007
Tonar til hjarta [Tones to the Heart] (Den Norske Folkemusikkveka/ Jørn Hilme Stemnet) 2009
Vozzakvarts [Voss-jazz Kvarts] (Vossa Jazz) 2010
Other compositions/Minor compositions
Svenneprøva [The Journeyman’s Test] (2001): for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion. The work is also arranged for duo.
Augustblomen [August Bloom] (2004): for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion. The work has also been arranged for KORK[The Norwegian Radio Orchestra]by Øyvind Westbye)
Kulu (2003): for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion.
Gudl rudl (2001): for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion.
Voggesong til nordavinden [The North Wind Lullaby] (2005): for song, trumpet, piano and accordion. Lyrics: Eldgrim H. Springgard
Bakom høgevarde [Behind Høgevarde mountain top] (2005): for fiddle, accordion, tenorsax, bass, guitar and piano.
Med dyne og pute [With Puff and Pillow] (2007): for vocal, accordion 3 Hardinger fiddles, guitar and bass: Lyrics: Arne Moslåtten
Vårvinden [The Spring Breeze] (2010): for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion.
Snøkrystallen [The Snow Flake] (2010)*: for flute and piano. Also arranged for accordions / free-bass button accordions.
Bergpolska [Mountain Polska] (2011)* for fiddle/accordion, accordion, organ, guitar, bass and “neverlur”[Norwegian wooden trumpet]
Fanfare (2013): for 3 trumpets
Regnbogemarsj [Rainbow March] (2013)*: for two accordions and organ.
Monrad [Remembering Monrad] (2013): for solo accordion / free-bass button accordion.
* Co-composer: Ingunn Stræte Lie