HERBERT GUDMUNDSSON


Herbert Guðmundsson born 1953 is an Icelandic singer, songwriter and producer.
His most famous song is “Can’t Walk Away” released in October 1985, the song became a big hit.
Other of his most recognized songs are amongst others “Hollywood”, “I Believe In Love”, “Megi Sá Draumur”,
“Won’t Forget”, “Vestfjarðaóður” and “Time” released in 2010.

His Early life

Herbert was born December 15, 1953 in Reykjavík, Iceland. When he was 12 years old he began his music career by joining the band “Raflost”. Only 17 years old he became the singer of “Tilvera”, one of the most famous bands in Iceland in the 1970s. Herbert was a lead singer with many bands over the next years for example; “Stofnþel”, “Eik”,”Dínamit”, “Pelican”, “Sólskin” and “Kan”. Herbert also took part in the first staging of Jesus Christ Superstar, in Iceland 1972, and later on his band “Tilvera” performed in the staging of Faust at the National Theatre of Iceland.
With the band “Eik” he performed on an Icelandic television show for the state channel RÚV. There “Eik” played some popular songs like “Kung Fu Fighting” and original songs written by Herbert such as the song “Twenty One”. This footage was shown again in 2003 when a TV show about Herbert’s life was broadcast in RÚV.
Herbert left the music scene for a while and began working as a chef on an Icelandic fishing vessel and did well. He worked at the sea for 8 years. He had his guitar onboard and wrote some songs while sailing such as “Hollywood”.

KAN in Bolungarvík

When he finished working at the sea he moved to Bolungarvík in Vestfirðir and joined the band “KAN”.
With “KAN” Herbert made the album “Í ræktinni” (In The Gym) which included the hit “Megi Sá Draumur” and “Vestfjarðaóður”.
The band was very successful in Iceland, performing mostly around “Vestfirðir”; “Bolungarvík”, “Ísafirði”, “Suðureyri” and “Patreksfirði”.

KAN was the biggest band in Vestfirðir at that time along with “Grafik”. The album “Í ræktinni” was released in 1984 and Herbert was the main man behind the decision of making the album. Their popularity in Vestfirðir was huge and people at all ages bought their album. Herbert wrote the larger part of the songs. The song “Megi Sá Draumur” became very popular and was played a lot on the Icelandic radio. The album was a mixture of great party songs and gentle ballads. Herbert re-released two KAN songs in 2001 in a new version on his solo-album “Ný Spor Á Íslenskri Tungu”. The songs were “Megi Sá Draumur” (May Our Dream) and “Steypa og Gler” (Concrete and Glass). KAN made a comeback in April 2006 in the music festival “Aldrei Fór Ég Suður”, which is arranged by the famous Icelandic musician Mugison and held in Ísafjörður/Vestfirðir Iceland. KAN only played at that one gig but the reactions to the band were amazing. The reunion got a lot of attention and Kastljós the biggest TV-Show in Iceland talked to the band and showed some live footage from their performance.
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Solo career
Herbert left “KAN” in the autom 1984 and moved to Reykjavík (capital of Iceland). There he began his solo career with the album “Dawn Of The Human Revolotion”,released in 1985, on which He sang all the songs in English. The song “Can’t Walk Away” became a huge hit.

Can’t Walk Away success
The success of “Can’t Walk Away” was amazing and Herbert became well known. Later the song was included in a Superhits of the 80’s record. The song tells the story of how we shouldn’t just walk away from the world’s problems. We should face them and solve them. The lyrics are quite deep, especially for a pop song. This song has been re-released many times over the years in various versions and has lived throughout the years in the hearts of Icelanders.

Let’s Help Them
In 1986 after Herbert had released his major solo-title, “The Dawn Of The Human Revolution”, he took part in a recording session for a song released in an effort to create publicity for alleviating poverty and starvation in Africa. All the biggest stars in Icelandic music at that time helped and made the song Hjálpum Þeim (Let’s Help Them). Herbert sang both as a lead singer and as a backing singer in the song. It became very popular in Iceland.

Hollywood

Herbert kept on going and made some new songs after the major success of “Can’t Walk Away”, as “Hollywood”.
The song “Hollywood” tells the story of how hard it is to become a success in the big world when you come from a small country like Iceland.
“Hollywood” was released on the album “Being Human” in 1993. Herbert shot two music videos for the album, “Hollywood” the video on youtube and the song “The Night Of The Show”