A Norwegian MC, rapping in English, making his mark on the globalunderground hip hop scene is pretty rare. Eivind Øygarden aka Ivan Ave is thatrare exception. He has carved out his own path with jazz-fusion heavy, nineties-inspired rap, creating his own lyrical universe whilst collaborating with world-class producers, such as Mndsgn, Dâm- Funk, Kiefer and Kaytranada.
Growing up in Telemark in Norway, an area surrounded by rugged, majesticmountains, more known for its hiking, literature and folk music heritage than rap.Ivan found his musical influences in the RnB records of his older sisters; TheFugees, Janet Jackson and Raphael Saadiq. His love of music was established andwhen the family relocated to Stavanger in southwest Norway, the teenagergravitated to the city’s prominent Hip- Hop, break dance, DJ and graffiti scene.All influences he took with him to NYC in his early 20s, a life-changing self-imposed residency, where he was hanging out and collecting records at cultinstitutions such as A-1Records. Through Hip-Hop he discovered 70s jazz andsoul, and the eye-opening experience of sampling as a way of making music.
Back in Oslo, Ivan met one of his earliest collaborator Fredfades. They createdMutual Intentions, a label and a collective, along with some like-minded friends.It became a platform that hadn’t existed in Oslo previously, and opened the doorsto work with international producers. Ivan signed with Berlin-based JakartaRecords in 2014, and released his acclaimed debut “Helping Hands” (2016) andthe sophomore album “Every Eye” (2017).
His 2020 album “Double Goodbyes”, released on Mutual Intentions, wasrecorded in LA and Oslo in 2019, with contributions from Sasac, Byron TheAquarius and Joyce Wrice among others. The eclectic sound of the record isdeeply connected with the scene he is a part of. For the first time in his career heleft the sample-heavy sound of yore behind and decided to produce the majorityof the record himself. It was awarded with a Norwegian Grammy for best Soul/RnB album of the year.With his newest material, Ivan circles back to sampling obscure jazz, withoutlosing sight of his soul and RnB influences. As a single leading up to Ave’s nextbody of work, «What A Day» highlights his ever-expanding musicality.