Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Maria Kalaniemi

Last Friday as part of the Homegrown Radio series, we posted a piece Eberle composed & performed on the accordion.  As part of her write-up about this piece, Eberle mentioned how much she loved the music of Finnish accordionist & composer Maria Kalaniemi, & she suggested I post a clip of Ms Kalaniemi so that readers might get an idea of this woman’s wonderful music.

Things have been a bit hectic & scattered since Friday here at Robert Frost’s Banjo central—Eberle’s been laid up with a bad cold (now apparently on the mend!) & yours truly has been trying to keep everything going in the midst of a nasty late February cold spell.  But late is almost always better than never, so today I’m posting not one but two videos of Ms Kalaniemi’s music!

Eberle & I first encountered Maria Kalaniemi’s music when watching the documentary Accordion Tribe, a film about a band of five accordionists touring Europe.  The documentary is fascinating, filled with amazing music & highly recommended.  But Ms Kalaniemi’s career encompasses much more than her stint with this accordion “supergroup.”  A classically trained accordionist in her native Finland, she has developed into a major force in the Finnish folk music movement, while using her formidable composition & performing skills, she has created memorable music that incorporates not only folk elements, but also jazz & progressive rock.  She has recorded both as a solo performer & also as a member of several bands, including Neikku, Aldargaz & the Helsinki Melodeon Ladies.  Her music is passionate, lyrical & complex.



  1. Hi Tess: So glad you liked it. E & I are especially fond of her album "Bellow Poetry," tho I couldn't find any cuts from that on YT.

  2. Wow! That's incredible! The first tune sounds like a Celtic melody with pure zydeco accordion accompaniment, while the second tune sounds so very Irish; I could almost see Paddy Maloney and the boys backing this up, and the percussion sounded so much like a bodhrán that I saw Kevin Conneff in my head and expected him to start singing any minute. great stuff.

  3. Hi Roy: Interesting observations--I can hear what you mean. Kalaniemi's music is awesome. There's some more of her on YT, & her cds are available in the States.


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