Samuli Putro – “Hoidetaan Kämppä Berliinistä” (Let’s Get a Flat in Berlin).

   Hiya people! 🙂 

   I shared with you a song by Zen Café a while back, and in that post I mentioned that I also really like the solo music of their vocalist – Samuli Putro. – So here’s a song by Samuli Putro for today, coming from his 2009 album Elämä on Juhla (Life is a Celebration). 

   I haven’t been able to find a reliable translation of this song, but I translated it with Deepl to be able to tell you anything about what it is about, and it seems to me to be about wanting to start your life afresh, doing something different somewhere else, because there are so many possibilities. So the lyrical subject encourages the person to whom this song is addressed to move with him to Berlin and get a flat there, because it’s so nice and they could work and live there and come back to Helsinki on vacations etc. 

Zen Café – “Nainen Vailla Historia” (Woman Without History).

   Hey hi people, Bibielz are back! 🙂 

   I posted an announcement on here on Saturday that I’d be away on a camper trip, and while on it, I happened to listen to a lot of Finnish music while riding. And it keeps niggling at me that while I generally like a lot of Finnish music that I hear, I feel that I still don’t really know a lot of it, and rarely end up actually sharing something Finnish on here, which results in a gross underrepresentation of Finnish music in my song of the day series despite Finnish is one of my favourite languages. So I thought it’s time to share something Finnish today, and I chose a song that I really like and have a good associations with, though I also generally really like this band and it’s very possible that I’ll be sharing more of their music in the future, sooner or later. We shall see. 

   Zen Café is a band that I discovered thanks to the amazing programme in Polish Radio 3 called Strefa Rokendrola Wolna od Angola (Rock’n Roll Zone Free of English) which I have mentioned a couple times before because I’ve made some interesting discoveries thanks to it. It’s a programme where you can hear only music in languages other than English, and the vast majority of the time also other than Polish, except for some special occasions when Polish-language songs of foreign artists are played. And this song was the first one by Zen Cafe that I heard. I was finding myself a bit on the crossroads language learning-wise at that point, wondering which language should I actually start learning now that my Swedish was on a decent enough level for me not to need to devote my whole attention to it, and the two strong contenders were Welsh and Finnish, so I was definitely on the lookout for Finnish music then, and checked out more of Zen Cafe’s music and listen to them to this day and like a lot of their songs. 

   The band is actually no longer a thing really, well they haven’t disbanded officially but went into an indeterminedly long hiatus over ten years ago. It was formed in Turku in the 90’s. Its name is the idea of the band’s bassist Kari Nylander, based on Robert M. Pirsig’s book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. Their vocalist, guitarist and lyricist – Samuli Putro – has released a lot of solo music since the band’s hiatus has started, and I really like his solo albums as well. Aside from the aforementioned Nylander and Putro, part of the band right before the hiatus was also Pete Parkkonen. 

   Sadly (also for mé because I can’t speak Finnish just yet) I haven’t been able to find a reliable, logical-sounding, properly grammatically English translation of this song, but what I was able to figure out of those not very good ones that I found as well as with the help of my multilingual friend Deepl, it’s about the lyrical subject’s relationship with, well, a woman without history, or perhaps not necessarily relationship but at the very least it seems like he’d be happy for one to develop. He’s also very curious about her past, and generally who she might be and what sort of life does she have. 

Haloo Helsinki “Tuntematon” (Unknown/Stranger).

   Hey people! 🙂 

   I thought I’d share some Finnish music today for a change, because while Sámi music is now better represented on my blog than it used to be, there’s still few Finnish songs on here. Haloo Helsinki is a great rock Finnish band and as far as I’m aware they’re pretty popular and chart-topping in their motherland. Finnish radio stations that I’ve listened to definitely like to play them. I have already shared one song by them in the early days of my blog. A couple years ago (guess it was 2018) I had a phase where I was listening to Radio Suomipop all the time. My computer was away being fixed, and I had some bad Finnish music cravings and found that radio station in the stations catalogue on my Braille-Sense which can play Internet radio. I didn’t have an iPhone or anything like that back then yet. And, discovered a LOT of cool Finnish pop via this station, their playlist was just so extremely repetitive, and this song was among their particular favourites as it seemed. I haven’t listened to them in ages now but I wouldn’t be surprised if they still played it like every hour. 😀 I originally really liked it just like pretty much everything from Haloo Helsinki, but Radio Suomipop made me feel really fed up with it, and it took some time before I could listen to it again with a fresh mind. 😀 It’s also a bit funny for me as a Polish speaker because during my Suomipop phase, Sofi heard this song once while being in my room and she claimed that there’s a Polish swearword in the chorus. I’d never paid any attention to that, but once Sofi said that I too started hearing it very clearly, even though what she’s actually saying is korvamaton which means priceless in Finnish, at least according to DeepL. DeepL also claims that the title of this song means either unknown or stranger. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to find an English translation for you, or actually the only one I did find seems to have a broken link or something. But I fed DeepL the original lyrics and it seems to be something about how we all have different backgrounds and experiences and are in a way strangers to each other and about fear and stuff like that. 

Cornelis Vreeswijk – “Luffaren Och Katten” (The Traveller and the Cat_.

   Hiya people! 🙂 

    have a quirky little song from Finland for you today. It was originally sung by a very famous Finnish 50’s singer Tapio Rautavaara (who also happened to be a  successful Olympic athlete, mainly a javelin thrower) and for whom it was his first huge hit as far as I know. This song was written for him by Reino Helismaa. In 1980, Cornelis Vreeswijk – one of my faza peeps as I’m sure all of the regular readers know – released an album called En Spjutkastares Visor (Songs of a Javelin Thrower), with Swedish translations of Rautavaara’s songs. I’ve already shared in the past one song from that album of his, called Den Blåa Drömmen in Swedish, or Sininen Uni in Finnish, or The Blue Dream in English, which is a very cute lullaby all about Sandman. This one isn’t quite so cute, despite the fact that it involves a cat. I’ve read somewhere that Helismaa was inspired to write this song by some sort of a book where there was a story telling about how a poor man’s happiness is an illusion. While I never like generalisations like that, I think what this song shows well is that human autosuggestion knows no boundaries, especially in a crisis situation like this when one is freezing. Also Tapio Rautavaara himself said that the black cat here symbolises death. Whenever I listen to this I just feel relieved that the traveller didn’t actually try to light up a proper fire in there, ‘cause what would happen to the poor cat! 😱 

   In the post where I shared that Blue Dream song, I also shared a Finnish version, sung not by Rautavaara but a more modern one sung by Suvi Teresniska and Arttu Viskari. I love the Finnish language and Finnish music, and I realise that there’s a large disproportion of how much Swedish music there is on my blog compared to Finnish, but Rautavaara himself is way beyond my comfort zone, I don’t really do fifties’ music, so I actually sat down and listened to like a dozen of different versions of this song in Finnish (it’s called Reissumies ja Kissa in the original) to hopefully find one that would catch my attention. But I found none that would actually speak to me and about which I’d feel that I like it enough to want to make people aware of its existence. So just Vreeswijk’s version it is. 

   I’ve managed to make an English translation of this translation, which is definitely not free of errors. The word that I decided to translate as traveller in English is “luffare” in Swedish and “reissumies” in Finnish. As far as I’m aware, luffare is more like a tramp kind of traveller rather than just any traveller, but I guess reissumies is more general, so it made more sense to translate it as just traveller rather than tramp. If you have some idea about Swedish and/or Finnish and think that tramp, or perhaps something yet different, woould be a better word to describe this guy in English, lemme know. There’s an expression in this song (har man sett på maken” which had always puzzled me and I could never understand it. Finally though, today I learned that it literally means something like “Have you seen the like”, so it’s just like an expression of disbelief or surprise. I didn’t know how to best put it in English so it wouldn’t sound clumsy or unaesthetical yet still be somewhat accurate. Wiktionary says that it could be translated as “golly”, but “golly” alone didn’t seem to convey the level of emotions I believe he must’ve had so I decided on “golly, have you seen anything like this” which I guess does convey it but I’m not sure if it sounds natural in English. Oh, and then there was the obscure word kosa, which took me ages to figure out what it means, and it turns out it’s some rarely used or perhaps even archaic word for road. I translated it simply as way, but perhaps there’s a word that could be just as accurate yet fit better in English with the obscure/archaic or perhaps somewhat sophisticated feel that the word kosa seems to have in Swedish. I’ve also found a translation of the Finnish version, which as far as I, as a (yet) non-Finnish speaker can tell is also not free from  errors, but I guess it still can give us an idea how different these two versions are so if you’re curious the link is here, and below is Bibiel’s translation of the Swedish version. 

   

A traveller goes whistling on the road to somewhere
And it is dark and it is night
Our Lord, no one else, knows his destination
And with himself he has a black cat
And of course the traveller is cheerful but he feels cold
He longs to a fireplace in a Quiet corner of the home
A traveller goes whistling on the road to somewhere
And it is dark and it is night

But look there in the forest, with the door half ajar
A cabin where no one lives
A refuge for the night as if sent from heaven
And the traveller’s gratitude is huge
So he whistles at the cat, but the cat he disappeared
And the traveller is freezing so he’s just as happy
For cats have nine lives, after all, and will probably be fine
All in the cold, black forest
But golly, have you seen anything like this, there’s glow in the stove
He sits down very close to it
If I’ll blow on the fire, it will be extinguished
This will have to be enough
He warms his hands, he thinks everything is well [?]
And Pleasant thoughts fill his soul
He falls asleep and he wakes up and he is freezing like a dog
In the bleak morning hours
In the ashes has the cat spent his night
There was never any glow in this stove
What was glowing in the dark was the eye of a cat
But the fire was cold and dead
But the traveller is just as happy, brooding would make him listless
He Whistles a song and goes with his cat
Our Lord and no one else knows where his way goes
A traveller is out walking

Venla Edelmann – “Puhdasta Vettä” “Pure Water”.

Hey guys! 🙂 

   The song i want to show you today, as well as the artist singing it, are both new to me. I just heard it for the first time last week and I liked it a lot. As you may know, I don’t speak Finnish myself (yet) but DeepL claims that the title of this piece can be translated as either Clean or Pure Water, I don’t know which word is closer to the original. I found no translation of the lyrics, so I again asked DeepL for help and it seems like it’s about one’s relationship with God, or, more exactly, how God is still by our side even when we repeatedly turn our back on Him or curse Him, yet still, at the same time, the lyrical subject has some doubts, as he or she seems to be asking over and over: “Can You hear me?” 

  Quite as I was expecting when I first saw her name, Venla Edelmann is daughter of Finnish singer and actor Samuli Edelmann., and I have also found this song sung by him, so maybe it was him who was first? The lyrics to this song were written by Samuli Laiho, who is a musician himself as well. 

Vesala – “Sinuun Minä Jään” (I Will Stay With You”.

Hi people! 🙂 

   Time for some Suomipop, or simply Finnish pop, if you prefer! 🙂 This singer whose song I want to share with you today is very popular in Finland, particularly as a former member of the band PMMP but I think she’s widely recognisable due to her solo career as well. Her full name is Paula Julia Vesala, although apparently she used to go by Paula Anneli Kivivuori, she’s originally from Kärsämäki, and aside from being a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist with a degree in music, she has also studied drama and is a playwright and actress. She used to be in a relationship with the vocalist of The Rasmus (also a very successful Finnish band whose song “In The Shadows” achieved success also in other countries, to be honest that’s the only thing I know them for 😀 ) Lauri Ylönen. 

   I am not crazy about her music, but I do like most of it and I think it’s nice to listen to. I generally find most Finnish pop that I have come across very nice to listen to even if I don’t necessarily fall in love with a lot of Finnish pop songs to any spectacular degree. 

Úlla Pirttijärvi – “Gietkka” (Cradle).

Hi hi people! 🙂 

   Even though I generally really like Sámi music very much, there hasn’t been much of it that I’ve shared with you guys on here. Moreover, I think I haven’t ever shared any Sámi music from Finland on here, so it’s time to do it now. Ulla Pirttijärvi was actually the very first Sámi singer that I came across. I had just fallen in love with Finnish language, and wanted to look up some Finnish folk on Last.fm, and Ulla Pirttijärvi’s music was the first thing that Last.fm decided to show me and, while technically it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for, because when I went looking for Finnish folk I was thinking, you know, Finnish-language, “actual” Finnish folk, I loved her music straight away because it was so different from anything I’d ever heard before and really beautiful. I didn’t even know that it wasn’t the “actual” Finnish music. I mean, I could hear that this didn’t quite sound like the Finnish language I was accustomed to hearing so far, , I knew that Finnish doesn’t even really have letters like “g” or “b” which I could hear in her language, but, who knows, maybe they have such distinctive dialects, or something? I didn’t have a clue about such a thing as joiking at the time either. I don’t know when exactly it was that I ended up actually learning about Sámi music and culture and what joiking is and that it’s a separate thing from Finnish, but for sure when it comes to my love for the Sámi language and interest in Sámi music, at least some of the credit for sparking that in me must go to Ulla Pirttijärvi. 

   And this song is one of my favourite songs by her. I must say that I am not sure what its actual title is. Spotify says “Boares Gietkka/Lullaby” other places say just “Gietkka”. What I’m quite sure of is that gietkka likely means cradle. I’ve even found a 

translation 

For this song, although I have absolutely no idea how reliable it is. 

  The cradle had been left in the shed
The old cradle
in the corner of the shed, swaying in the wind
and hummed bedtime songs to it
 
Rocking babies a long time ago
To sleep

 

Sana ft. Maya Paakkari – “Haava” (Wound).

Hiya people! 🙂

Let’s listen to Finnish rap today, for a change! I’m not big on rap, unless it just expresses something that I also feel strongly about, but I sometimes like to listen to rap in either some “weird”, that is rarely heard, languages in which I don’t understand a word, or in “my” languages, especially those which I still am not learning yet because that’s more interesting to speculate what it might be about and I don’t have to bother if it has some incredibly stupid lyrics. I just like to hear how rap sounds in various languages that I don’t speak, and it seems like I’m not alone because I’ve come across people who do the same just out of curiosity. 😀 And I don’t know what it is about Finnish, but I think that out of all my favourite languages, this is the language that rap sounds the best in. It just really fits this genre. More, imo, than metal does, which is commonly associated with Finland so much.

The sad thing is that I don’t really know much about this song at all, nor the artists who made it. I believe that Sana, or Sanna Rönnberg, is quite a popular young pop and rap singer in Finland and that she is from Espoo, but I know nothing about Maya Paakkari. Google claims that haava means wound in Finnish, and from the very broken translation of the song that I was able to get out of it it does seem to be true, but in general I wasn’t really able to make out of that translation enough to be able to say anything constructive as for what this song is about, other than likely some kind of difficult or hurtful relationship and being wounded as a result, but even that’s very much a guess. But I like this song regardless and have liked it for a few years already, so I thought maybe someone else will like it too and will like how rap sounds in Finnish.

Samae Koskinen – “Myrsky” (Storm).

Hey guys! 🙂

Let’s leave all the folky stuff for today and listen to some Suomipop (Suomi means Finland in Finnish, just in case you are confused 🙂 ). I quite like listening to some Finnish pop rock stuff like this sometimes, and I believe Samae Koskinen is quite a recognisable artist in his country. This song comes from his 2015 album “Henkilökohtainen ennätys” which apparently means Personal Record. I haven’t been able to find a translation of the song, although I do know that myrsky means storm in Finnish. I tried getting Google Translate to tell me something about what this song is about but I wasn’t very successful at this as hardly anything of what Google threw back at me made sense, so that I wonder whether this is written in some sort of slang or maybe even a dialect…? that would be interesting, I honestly don’t have a clue what’s the situation like in Finland regarding dialects and how diverse the Finnish language is. I know they do have a lot of contractions though in colloquial speech so perhaps it’s simply that what Google didn’t understand. What I did figure out is that the lyrical subject in the song is called Storm by people, and apparently he agrees with it and considers this appropriate, and I guess most of the song is about why he indeed is like a storm, but I didn’t understand much out of Google’s nonsense and I could well be wrong even about what I think I did understand from this patchy translation. Still, at least with this kind of music, I don’t think it’s necessary to understand the lyrics to be able to enjoy it, and I think it’s a pretty cool song.

Saara – “Superpowers”.

Hi people! 🙂
Today I have for you a song from a very interesting, Finnish (or actually half-Finnish, half-Swedish) singer and YouTube personality. Saara, born Sara Maria Forsberg, previously also known as Smo(u(kahontas, grew up travelling a lot, due to both her parents being Baptist missionaries. That’s why her English is so good. Since I love Finnish, I know well what it sounds like and I know what Finns sound in English and I would never have guessed that she’s Finnish based on her accent. Currently she is based in LA.
I’ve known this song in its acoustic version for a long time and have always liked it a lot. But since lately I’ve shared a lot of acoustic versions of songs, and here I like the standard, electronic version just as much, that’s the one I’m sharing.

Roosberg – “The Author”.

Hi hi people! 🙂

Today’s song is from Finland. The people behind are a duo, for whom, from what I know, this is their first song on which they collaborated together, both in terms of writing and producing it. They are Jori Sjöroos and Christel Sundberg, the latter more commonly known as Chisu. While I don’t know anything about Jori Sjöroos, I’ve been familiar with Chisu’s music before and she’s quite successful in her home country. This song was written for the 2019 Finnish-British TV series The Moomin Valley. Never watched it, but I absolutely love Moomins, and I think this song is really cool, hence I’m sharing! 🙂

Gjallarhorn – “Herr Olof” (Master Olof) & Nordman – “Herr Olof Och Havsfrun” (Master Olof And The Mermaid).

Hiya people! 🙂

So recently I’ve shared the music of quite a few Nordic folk artists with you, and I thought we’d stay in this Nordic folk climate for a while yet. The song I want to share with you is one of the first Swedish folk songs that I’ve heard of. Herr Olof (or master/sir Olof in English, Gjallarhorn translate it as master so we’ll stick to it here) is a young knight, who one day decided to visit the court or homestead of a mermaid. She greets him very happily, stating that she’s awaited him for fifteen years, and then proceeds to ask him all sorts of nosy questions – where he was born, where his family live, where are his fields and meadows etc. etc. but most importantly “Where do you have your fiancee, with whom you want to live and die?” Herr Olof has one answer to all these questions, that he has all these things and people at the king’s court. Then the mermaid finally lets him in and gives him “the clearest wine” to drink, after which herr Olof actually changes his mind and decides that all he has is now at the mermaid’s court, and that she is the one with whom he wants to live and die.

Usually, if I share two or more versions of the same song with you in one post, it’s because I can’t decide which one I like more. It’s not the case here though. I’m very partial to Gjallarhorn’s version, because I love Gjallarhorn in general, but I also do like Nordman’s version because this is the first version of this song that I’ve ever heard and I thought it would be interesting for people to compare perhaps. This is also one of very few songs by Nordman that I actually like, because their way of mixing folk and pop together just doesn’t speak to me. Of course I’ve nothing against mixing folk and pop, I often love it, but I simply don’t like the way they specifically do it with most of their music, it feels a bit cheesy.

When it comes to Gjallarhorn, it is thanks to them that I developed an interest in Finland Swedish, or at least the amazingly cute accent that Finns have when speaking Swedish. The band’s members are all Swedish-speaking Finns, but I didn’t know it when I first came across the music, so I was very amazed hearing the vocalist’s accent, and then I figured out why she sounds the way she does and that she’s Finnish, I decided to have a deeper look at finlandssvenska and totally sank. It’s just such a cute accent! The name Gjallarhorn means hollering horn in Old Norse, and refers to the horn belonging to Heimdal – the watchman of the Norse gods – who, according to the Norse people’s beliefs, was to blow this horn during Ragnarok, so loud that the whole world would hear it.

Gjallarhorn – “Herr Olof”:

Nordman: “Herr Olof Och Havsfrun”:

Auri – “Night 13”.

Hey people! 🙂

Today, I have a song from Finland for you. Auri is the after hours project of Tuomas Holopainen (most well-known as the leader of Nightwish), his wife Johanna Kurkela, who is a prominent folk singer and violinist in her homeland, with as it seems quite wide musical interests, and another Nightwish member and uilleann pipes player – Troy Donockley. – The three had plans to collaborate on something more folky and as they say they knew they had to do it at some point, but as they all had quite busy lives, the chance only happened in 2018. Their sound could be described as prog folk, or folk metal. Both the band’s name and a lot of motives in their music are inspired by The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss (where a female character is called Auri).

I used to listen to Nightwish years ago, and a lot of other symphonic/Gothic metal like that, now I no longer do, initially because my views on life and all sorts of things have changed and I considered it no longer congruent with my current beliefs and values system to listen to stuff like Nightwish, and then I guess I just naturally sort of grew out of that phase. But while I’m not like very hugely into Auri, I really appreciate their sound and I’ve liked and followed Johanna Kurkela for years.

This is one of their songs that I really wonder what it might be about, I’ve had countless ideas, haha. I guess though most likely it’s inspired by something I simply have no clue about (perhaps The Kingkiller Chronicle as well which I’ve never read). Anyway, it is an interesting song.

Suvi Teräsniska ft. Arttu Wiskari – “Sininen Uni” (Blue Dream) & Cornelis Vreeswijk – “Den Blåa Drömmen” (The Blue Dream”.

Hey guys! 🙂

Let’s listen to yet another, beautiful and cute lullaby today. It was written by a Finn of many talents – Tapio Rautavaara (1915-1979) – who was a successful athlete (javelin thrower and archer) and then (also successful) singer and actor. Some of his songs, from what I know, were quite big hits at the time of his career. While I don’t really feel them musically all that much as they just don’t stand out to me I guess and are totally not my thing, I like the lyrics of some of them, which are often humourous, sometimes a bit ironical and often have a fair bit of wisdom in them, in which they remind me of Cornelis Vreeswijk. Their political views were also very similar from what I know. It is not surprising then, with that similarity, that Cornelis Vreeswijk actually did an album consisting of Rautavaara’s songs that he – Vreeswijk – translated to Swedish. The album is called “En Spjutkastares Visor” (Songs of a Javelin Thrower) and was released in 1980. Among these songs is “Sininen Uni” in Finnish, or “Den Blåa Drömmen” in the Swedish translation, or Blue Dream in English – a lovely lullaby about the Sandman, or Nukkumatti in Finnish, or John Blund in Swedish (blund means close your eyes and is the imperative form of the verb blunda).

Sandman is one of my most favourite folklore characters, next to Jack Frost, selkies, changelings and some others, because I love sleep and dreams and I just really like the concept of the Sandman, so I instantly fell in love with this lullaby when I heard it for the first time and understood well enough (in Vreeswijk’s version).

Thanks to Spotify, a couple months ago I also came across a cover version in Finnish sung by Suvi Teräsniska and Arttu Wiskari, which speaks to me more than the original. And I thought that, because Finnish is just as beautiful a language in my opinion as Swedish, and because it’s interesting to hear how the song sounds in its original language, I would share this Finnish version too, and also I just plain like it, unlike the original.

I don’t speak Finnish (yet), so I don’t understand any of the Finnish lyrics, but I tried my best at translating the Swedish translation into English for you. I got Google to translate the Finnish one for me out of curiosity and it doesn’t seem like there are any huge differences between the two language versions, perhaps except for that, according to Google, the Finnish Nukkumatti “devours ice cream” whereas John Blund is better and gives you a sleepy cookie.

 

Every evening when the lamp goes out

And the night is about to come

The Sandman knocks on the door

So quietly and so carefully.

He tiptoes in through the door

In his sleepy shoes

And sits down nicely by the bed

In the room where you live.

He has such a sleepy cap.

It is full of sleepy sand.

He gives you a sleepy cookie

With his sleepy little hand.

His car is blue, can you see it_

It’s going to drive away soon.

Vroom, vroom, says the car

In me you can ride.

Now he puts up the umbrella

And puts on his cap.

What does he carry under his arm_

Well, a dream book which is blue.

And the car drives to the dream land

With a sleepy speed

Vroom, vroom, says the car.

Now I guess we’ll fall asleep very soon.

And there you see the golden trees

That grow in the forest of dreams.

And the dream blue bird.

Well, I guess you know him.

Crawl now down under the bird’s wings

And sleep well and fine.

Hear the bird sing a song:

La la la la la la la.

   Suvi Teräsniska ft. Arttu Wiskari:

Cornelis Vreeswijk:

Song of the day (6th December) – Sanni – “Nälkä” (Hunger”.

On December 6, Finland celebrated its Independence Day. Unfortunately I couldn’t celebrate it on here at that exact day, as I was an anxious mess and didn’t feel like writing anything, but I listened to a lot of Finnish music and though that, to commemorate the independence of Finns, I’d share something in Finnish, especially that there’s not very much Finnish music on here. It’s a nice pop song that I’ve been liking this year. I couldn’t find a quality translation, but as far as I know, the lyrics are about a woman who was in a great relationship in which she felt truly alive, but she has now moved to a different city, her life evolves around work and sleep, and she is missing that relationship and is feeling the emotional hunger for it.

Maria Kalaniemi – “Pilvet”.

Hey people! 🙂

Today I have a Finnish folk piece for you. It comes from Maria Kalaniemi’s brand new April album called “Mielo”, which means Mind in Finnish, recorded together with harmonium player Eero Grundström. Maria Kalaniemi is a multi-instrumentalist, but her main instrument, andt the one she’s most known for playing, is accordion, she also seems to be a bit of a promoter/propagator of accordion in Finland, and Sweden too.

I am generally not a fan of accordion at all. Like, it’s my second least favourite instrument after saxophone, though I don’t like these two instruments for vastly different reasons. I don’t like saxophone because it doesn’t agree with my brain, I find the sound of it sensorily overwhelming, while with accordion I just think it’s not particularly aesthetically pleasing. I’d always had such an idea about accordion that it’s just the most primitive, kinda ribald, kitschy instrument that has ever existed and I’ve always associated it with cheap, village bridals and heavily drinking people. 😀 Okay, alternatively with tangos as such, which I’m not into either. I guess it’s not just me being weird because lots of people seem to share such opinions. Not even my fascination with Celtic music was able to change that. But… it did change a bit after I first heard Maria Kalaniemi. When I was trying to learn something about Finnish folk, back when I was still completely clueless about it, Maria Kalaniemi was the first Finnish folk musician that I came across, and was mentioned as very popular in her genre in Finland, and I was a bit disappointed, because “What? Really? Doesn’t Finland have anything better in her musical heritage than accordion? That sounds concerning!”. But when I heard her I changed my mind. Because when Maria Kalaniemi plays accordion, it sounds nothing like what I’d ever heard on this instrument. It suddenly becomes very lyrical and dreamy. And even folk dances performed by her sound better than most dance pieces for this instrument I’ve heard. She’s really, really good, or at least resonates with me somehow. I do not like all of her music, but she definitely managed to change my view on this instrument a bit. Another interesting person (also from Finland) who made me see that accordion doesn’t necessarily have to be kitschy was another Finn, though not folksy – Kimmo Pohjonen. – I watched a documentary about him with my Mum and it was quite stunning what bizarre and intriguing things he could do with this instrument. It still remains one of my least favourite instruments but, as I said, has a better reputation with me now.

And this piece from Kalaniemi I want to show you is definitely very lyrical and emotive, I just love it and its harmonies. It does really make me feel a bit like I was floating on clouds, and I love music that can convey such rich images/emotions.

I haven’t made up my mind about it yet but it’s possible I’ll share another piece by Maria Kalaniemi tomorrow as well, the one I’ve heard first. For now, I hope you enjoy Pilvet.

Lxandra – “Swimming Pools”.

Hi lovely people! 🙂

I have a song from a really cool, young singer for you today. Alexandra Lehti, aka Lxandra, was raised in an inhabited Finnish fortress called Suomenlinna, and has a Finnish father (Pekka Lehti – bassist who played with a fair few bands including a great female folk Värttinä, and he also seems to be a music producer -) and a German mother. I’ve heard this song for the first time a couple weeks ago and this was my first contact with Lxandra’s music. I really like her vocals, which are often compared with Adele and indeed there is some similarity. This song is about being true to who you are and where you come from, which is something that resonates with me as I feel strongly about cultivating your roots, on all sorts of different levels, and the message in Lxandra’s song seems to be more about our individual roots and background.

Olivera – “I Can’t Sleep”.

Hey people! 🙂

Yesterday I said that I listen to a lot of Finnish pop lately. Well, here is one of my recent favourites. I was thinking for quite a while whether I’d prefer to show you the normal version, or the acoustic one, as I like both, but in the end I thought I like the acoustic more in this case, so I’ll share the acoustic. Olivera is a Finnish artist that is very new to me but I am hoping to explore more of her music. By the way I had no idea that the name Olivera is used anywhere outside of countries like Serbia or Macedonia, would never think it’s used in Finland, that’s interesting. Not that it wouldn’t sound right in Finnish, it just somehow surprised me.

Song of the day (15th September) – Kaija Koo ft. Reino Nordin – “Paa Mut Cooleriin”.

Hi guys! 🙂

After sharing with you one song by Maija Vilkkumaa, I wanted to discover some more Finnish music, and listened to a lot of it. As a result, I thought I’d share with you another Finnish song, by another well-known female artist in Finland called Kaija Koo. Her style is a bit similar though she’s been around in the music industry for a decade or so longer and the feel of her music has been changing a lot over the years. This song is in collaboration with a Finnish actor and musician Reino Nordin. Sadly, I couldn’t find a reliable translation for this one, and am not even 100% sure what the title means, so that’s a little bit of a disappointment, but Finnish music is great anyway!