Tag Archives: Trad.Attack!

Artist Profiles: Trad.Attack!


Trad.Attack! members, Sandra Vabarna, Jalmar Vabarna and Tõnu Tubli have been good friends for a long time, and have been involved in the Estonian music scene since the early 2000s.

Sandra started playing the Estonian bagpipe when she was thirteen. She has been disseminating folk music by being role model as a female bagpiper and band leader.

Jalmar is a Seto: a member of a small ethnic community in southeastern Estonia. Setos have their own kingdom and king and a unique culture, which is predominantly known for its traditional singing called leelo. Jalmar’s great grandmother, Anne Vabarna, was one of the most famous folk singers in Estonia. Jalmar’s mother and sister preserved the family singing tradition, so he has grown up in this tradition as well.

Tõnu’s father was the conductor of a brass orchestra so Tõnu played brass at a early age. He learned classical trombone and drums, and is now one of the most in-demand drummers in Estonia.

In 2014, Sandra, Jalmar and Tõnu decided to play together just for fun and to do something different with folk music. When they applied to play at Tallinn Music Week 2014 they didn’t even have a band name; they only had five musical pieces, but it was just enough for the short showcase.



After a great reaction from audience and critics, the trio decided to take things more seriously. They named their act Trad.Attack!




Trad.Attack!, EP (2014)
Ah! (Nordic Notes, 2015)
Kullakarva Shimmer Gold (2017)


Estonian Act Trad.Attack! On Tour in the United States


Estonian Neo-Folk Trio Trad.Attack! is currently touring the United States. Trad.Attack! includes Sandra Vabarna, Jalmar Vabarna and Tõnu Tubli, musicians dedicated to carrying the folk traditions of Estonia forward into the 21st century.

Trad.Attack! draw inspiration from archive recordings of the great Estonian folk singers and instrumentalists who created and performed music for work, leisure and festivities in the old times. The musicians build a modern sound and pulsating rhythmic structures around old recordings, using acoustic 12-string guitar, drums, an array of whistles, bagpipes and mouth harps.

Since their 2014 debut Trad.Attack! has released two internationally acclaimed albums, won 14 music prizes, and played in over thirty countries from Chile to Malaysia — including such festivals as WOMEX, WOMAD, Eurosonic, Transmusicales, and Mundial Montreal.

Trad.Attack! 2017 U.S. Tour Dates:

10/10: Joe’s Pub, New York, NY

10/13: Estonian House, Lakewood, NJ

10/14: Latvian House, Washington, DC

10/15: Crossroads Concert, Philadelphia, PA

10/17: Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, Washington, DC

10/20: LEAF Festival, Black Mountain, NC