The Hova Skivmässa Record Fair In Sweden

The oldest record fair in Sweden is taking place in Hova again this year, and this time Discogs will be there! We’re looking forward to attending the fair and meeting the Swedish record collecting community. And we’ll make sure to pay a visit to the local Otterbergets campsite, where many records change hands during the Skivsamlareträff in the days leading up to the fair. We asked Per Theander, who has been organising the Hova Skivmässa record fair since the beginning, what we can expect:

Can you tell us a bit more about yourself?
My name is Per Theander and I have been collecting records since the early 70s. Before that, I was just a “normal” listener of rock, jazz, blues and folk. I still collect music I like, but I don’t buy any expensive original Blue Notes anymore. I bought my first 78 rpm record in 1969, and my collection of Swedish jazz/hot 78 rpm records is presumably the finest you can find.

Do you remember the first record you ever purchased? 
Fats Domino was my first idol, but the first record I got (from my big brother) was an EP with Harry Belafonte. My first LP was an old Commodore US original by Edmond Hall. The same year I saved some money and was able to purchase records by Leadbelly, Josh White and Coleman Hawkins.

Per Theander at the auction during the first Hova Skivmässa Record Fair in Sweden, 1981

Per Theander at the auction during the first Record Fair in Hova, 1981. Credit Mariestads Tidningen

How did you get into organising record fairs?
I saw an advertisement in a record catalogue about a record fair in England and thought I could try to arrange a similar event here in Sweden as well. So the first Scandinavian record fair was held in little Hova (about 1500  inhabitants) in 1981. I remember that there were 34 stalls (including my own) and about 350 visitors. We also had a small auction already this first time. It’s been a tradition since then.

What was your best find at a record fair?
One of Monica Zetterlund‘s first two (Danish) EPs in Mint condition for 30 SEK (about €3). The fair in Hova had been going on for at least two hours at that moment…

What can visitors expect at the event? 
Many private collectors are selling, you will find stalls indoors and outdoors. And good prices. (Sweden still has those!)

What makes Hova Skivmässa record fair unique?
Apart from the things I mentioned above I would say the beautiful surroundings. Just watch the YouTube videos taken at the campsite nearby! People arrive almost a week before the fair takes place just to relax among old friends and do some business.

Another thing which is very important is the idea of a maximum space for each dealer. We want to welcome as many different types of dealers as possible, so no one has more than 4,50 meters to display their records.

Any pro-tips for sellers and visitors?
There are three halls and two entrances. The big hall has almost non-existent air conditioning, so… DRESS LIGHTLY! Take your time and you will be successful.

Hova Skivmässa record fair is happening in the weekend of the 16th and 17th of June. On Sunday the 17th, the fair is mainly dedicated to 78RPM records (with around 20% vinyl records). Find more information here!

Photo Credits Mariestads Tidningen

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