Nordic Fiddle Fest

H.A.T. -  Nordik Tree
H.A.T. – Nordik Tree
H.A.T. – Nordik Tree (2006)

Arto Järvelä – Far In! (2004)

JPP Artology (OArt Music, 2006)

Nordik Tree is a collaboration between virtuoso Scandinavian musicians: Swedish fiddler Hans Kennemark and two Finnish members of JPP, fiddler Arto Järvelä and harmonium player Timo Alakotila. The three musicians met for the first time at the Kaustinen Folk Festival in Finland back in 1984. Since then, and despite the geographical distance, the three musicians have been jamming and collaborating.

For this CD collaboration, the three versatile musicians chose a collection of enthralling Swedish and Finnish polskas, menuetts, wedding tunes and other folk pieces as well as new pieces composed by Järvelä and Kennemark.

Arto Järvelä’s solo effort, Far In!, shows the innovative side of the Finnish musician. Known as a fiddler with JPP, Järvelä plays all instruments on the CD. The track selection is international in scope. The CD begins with Celtic sounding piece which Järvelä picked up from Quebecois band La Bottine Souriante.

The next piece is what Järvelä calls a Pakistani polska. Here, Järvelä combines acoustic instruments with electronics. The recording continues with sounds that take you to Finland. Järvelä uses several traditional Finnish folk instruments such as the venerable kantele, fiddle and jawharp.

Throughout  Far In! there is room for melody, improvisation and experimentations. This is the work of an outstanding instrumentalist.

On JPP‘s Artology one can find three Järveläs: Arto, Mauno and Antti. JPP is a fiddle lover’s fest with four outstanding fiddlers, a bassist and a harmonium player.

Artology features folk rooted pieces treated with the massive fiddle arrangements. Most of the music has roots in Finnish folk, but there is also tango. Finland is one of the countries outside of Argentina and Uruguay where the passionate musical tango has taken deep roots. The last piece was recorded live at the Kaustinen Folk Festival.

Buy  Nordik Tree, Far In! and Artology.

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for TelevisiĆ³n EspaƱola (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.