Tag Archives: Sami

Artist Profiles: Mari Boine

Mari Boin Ohoto by Ola Røe

Mari Boine (aka Mari Boine Persen) was born November 8, 1956 in Karasjok, Norway. She is feasibly the most famous Sami artist in the world. This remarkable singer has been an effective spokeswoman for Sami culture, both in her music and in interviews. As she explained: “I used to think men oppressing women or governments oppressing people realized what they were doing and were just cynical. But then I realized that often they are unaware and are filled with fear. I feel I have to find my way to their hearts to let them know what they are doing. It’s the only way to change things. That’s why I feel my music is important.”

Our first relationship is to nature. You are part of nature, not the master of nature. This also gives us a strong sense of solidarity – you are about other people. Money is not important and power is not important. It’s more your personality, the human being that is important.”

Mari Boine’s music is directed by her robust and passionate voice, plus a few carefully selected instruments from people all over the world, notably the native South Americans. Most characteristic is her drum. She uses an African drum, but the combination of drum and voice goes back to ancient Sami culture and pre-Christian shamanism.

The colonizers brought Christianity and told the Sami they had to forget their primitive religion – and music was part of that religion. A lot of people of my parent’s generation don’t accept the music, they say it’s devil’s music and what you sing when you’re drunk – the colonizers also brought alcohol. When I started to use a drum some people got worried and said, ‘Is she a Shaman?’ So I decided I couldn’t use a Sami drum.”

I think your voice is a mirror of your soul and how you feel inside. When I began I was singing pop songs and ballads and didn’t sing from the heart. Over the last ten years I’ve been fighting this feeling of being inferior to Norwegian or western people and my voice got stronger as I decided I wouldn’t let anyone oppress me and that I have a value as S?mi. Western culture makes a distance between you and your body or heart. In Sami culture you think of everything as a whole.”

Her debut album Jaskatvuoda manna was released in 1985, although her breakthrough came in 1989 with Gula Gula.

Mari also collaborated with various international artists, among them Peter Gabriel on One World One Voice (1990) and Jan Garbarek in 1991/1992.

She has written commissioned works for both Vossajazz (1994) and Telemarksfestivalen (2005).

She composed the music to, and had the only role in, Mona J. Hoels short film Vuolgge mu mielde bassivárrái (Bli med meg til det hellige fjell) (1995).

Mari also wrote the music for the German film adaptation of the Hans and Greta fairytale (2005).

In 2003, Mari Boine was presented the Nordic Council Music Prize.

Discography:

* Jaskatvuoa maá Etter Stillheten (1985)
* Gula Gula Hør stammødrenes stemme (1989)
* Salmer på veien hjem, with Ole Paus and Kari Bremnes (1991)
* Møte i Moskva, with the band Allians (1992)
* Goaskinviellja Ørnebror(1993)
* Leahkastin Unfolding (1994)
* Eallin Live (1996)
* Bálvvoslatnja Room of worship (1998)
* Odda hamis Remixed (NorthSide, 2001)
* Gávcci jahkejuogu Eight Seasons (2002/NorthSide, 2003)
* Idjagieas In the hand of the night (2006)
* Kautokeino-opprøret (2008)
* Čuovgga Áirras / Sterna Paradisea (2009)
* Gilve gollát – Sow Your Gold (2013)

web site: http://www.mariboine.no

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Artist Profiles: Lars-Ante Kuhmunen

Lars-Ante Kuhmunen

Lars-Ante Kuhmunen was born in 1979. He is a musician and reindeer breeder from Rensjön in Kiruna, a small town in the territory of Swedish Lapland (also known as Samiland). Lappland is the region inhabited by the Sami, geographically distributed throughout northern Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia.

Kuhmunen specializes in yoik, the traditional vocal style of the Sami. In 2006 Kuhmunen released his debut album titled Birrasis, which won a national award that same year for best folk album. Birrasis includes a booklet with lyrics in the Sami language and Swedish as well as a comprehensive explanation in English of each song.

His second release was Somas Muittut, an album with strong political lyrics as well as subtle and poetic songs. In 2016, Lars-Ante Kuhmunen released Riihmagállis (A Legend), where he mixed Sami traditions and American roots music.

Discography

Birrasis (Singing Frog, 2006)
Somas Muittut (2012)
Riihmagállis (2016)

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Artist Profiles: Johan Sara Jr.

Johan Sara Jr.

Johan Sara Jr. was born in 1963. He is one of the leading artists in the Sami music area. His musical activities range over a wide field. In addition to his work as a performing artist, he composes, arranges and produces music.

He has composed works of great complexity for orchestra, and has been involved in theater, film and television projects. In his performances he combines the traditional joik technique with other musical genres.

His album “Ovcci vuomi ovtta veaiggis” is an experimental fusion of Afro rhythms, jazz, rock and folk music. In another project, Sami joik meets Andalusian flamenco to the accompaniment of Indian tabla.

Sara is devoted to the traditional joik as a travelling partner along the way, and maintains an open mind to other musical forms.

Discography

Ovcci vuomi ovtta veaiggis – Nine Valleys in one dusk (DATCD 20, 1995)
Calbmeliiba (DATCD 29, 1999)
Boska (DAT, 2003)
Orvos (DAT, 2009)
Transmission – Rievdadus (DAT, 2015)

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Artist Profiles: Adjagas

Adjagas
Adjagas

Norwegian act Adjagas is a yoik group formed in 2004 by Sara Marielle Gaup and Lawra Somby, both from a long line of Sami ancestry. A yoiker is a singer or a chanter with a Sami origin, and it represents a very historically important part of the musical history of Northern Europe.

Sara Marielle Gaup, born in 1984, is from Guovdageaidnu/Kautokeino, whose musical heritage was passed down to her from her parents and generations before that. She began singing at a very early age, and it was through continued musical education at SMG she developed her unique sense of performance and perfected her singing voice.

Lawra Somby, born in 1981, was taught the great gift of yoiking from his father, Ande Somby. Lawra started performing on a variety of stages in 1997, and he has performed his music both solo as well as with his father Ande, making him a an experienced singer with a strong stage presence.

Yoik is not about making stories about people, animals, situations or landscapes. Yoik is the young woman, the eagle, the grass field by the river they are recreations of a moment, a sense, a memory how the wings of a bird slowly touches your chin, the smell of a fireplace and and how it evokes memories. The yoik is about bringing memories into the light of day, making them available and inviting new people into this special world

Samiland, also known as Lapland, is the territory at the very northernmost parts of Norway, Sweden and Finland, spreading into Russia.

Discography

Adjágas (2005)
Mánu Rávdnji (2009)
Nordic Woman (2012)

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