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Espoo, Central Finland, Finland | SELF

Espoo, Central Finland, Finland | SELF
Band Folk World




"Kardemimmit - “Introducing Kardemimmit”"

Kardemimmit - “Introducing Kardememimmit” (World Music Network INTRO121DD)

"dreamy close female harmonies and ethereal kantele zither"
Kardemimmit are a four-piece Finnish female group based around tight-knit harmonies and the Finnish national instrument - the kantele (a form of Scandinavian zither).

The women and close friends: Maija, Jutta, Anna and Leeni each plays the kantele as well as singing. Played on the lap by plucking and stroking the strings, the kantele has a delicate, crystalline sound and this combined with the closely-woven vocals of the singers creates a serene atmosphere of great beauty, at once surprising and ethereal yet locked into the Finnish landscape and folklore.

The album contains a mixture of polkas, laments, lullabies and love songs alongside titles which translate as Sea Rush, Silent Sunset, Frozen Rose and Maiden of Death, the latter which tells of a spirit that rows in from the sea to collect the souls of the dead.

This is modern Finnish folk music, combining new songs and rejuvenated old ones with a quirky edge in the reki-singing, runosong and Perhonjoki valley styles. There are also some other instruments featured in a few of the tracks on the album such as fiddle, keys and banjo.

Entitled “Introducing Kardemimmit” (World Music Network INKTRO121DD) this is their first international release, although Kardemimmit are well-known in Scandinavia having played and toured for ten years together.

It is available through a Digital Download release only, after the 21st May 2012 here:


In summary: a beautiful chilled rejuvenation of Finnish folk featuring dreamy close female harmonies and ethereal kantele zither.

Glyn Phillips
WorldMusic.co.uk - WorldMusic.co.uk

"Autio huvila"

Autio Huvila (Frigg000008, 2012)

From Finland comes yet another musical wonder. Kardemimmit is a Finnish folk music quartet formed by young women: Maija Pokela, Jutta Rahmel, Anna Wegelius and Leeni Wegelius. Their new album, Autio Huvila, is a collection of beautiful vocal music with a mix of solo vocal interplay and harmonies, accompanied by the mesmerizing sounds of the kantele.

Although the music is rooted in Finnish traditional folk music, all the material is original, composed by Kardemimmit. To be more specific, Kardemimmit draws its inspiration from Finland’s Eastern and Western regions, including reki-style of singing, Perhonjoki valley kantele method, Karelian small kantele and runo-song traditions as well as ancient improvisation.

By this time, my list of best albums of 2012 was already completed, but after listening to this recording, I’m going to have to amend it to include this wonderful gem from Scandinavia.

Autio Huvila is a magnificent collection of graceful and spellbinding songs rooted in traditional Finnish music.
- World Music Central


Juvenalia MOJCD-0606 (2006)

New-made music in the Finnish tradition delivered with bright-eyed freshness and ability by four teenage girls from Espoo, blending the silvery highs and rich bass of 38-string chromatic concert kanteles with the brasher sound of the skateboard-shaped Koistinen Wing 15-string diatonic kanteles and their gamine group vocals.

© 2007 Andrew Cronshaw
- fRoots


Kardemimmit: Autio huvila, released 2012

Rough Guide to the Music of Scandinavia: Featuring Kardemimmit (worldwide release of Kaisla album), World Music Network 2012

Kardemimmit: Kaisla, released 2009

Kardemimmit: Viira, released 2006

Frigg: Polka V (featuring artist), released 2012

Jimmy Träskelin: Tuulisen kylän poika (featuring artists)

Frigg: Economy Class (featuring artist), released 2008

Tracks from all the albums have been broadcasted for example in BBC radio 3's Late Junction, Mundofonías in Spain and Global Village in Melbourne, Australia.



Kardemimmit is a Finnish folk music group formed by four young women: Maija Pokela, Jutta Rahmel, Anna Wegelius and Leeni Wegelius. They are singers and players of the kantele (the national instrument of Finland) in its 15 and 38 stringed forms. The group's repertory consists of modern folk music mostly composed by the members themselves. The music of Kardemimmit is fresh but it's strongly foundationed in Finnish tradition from both Eastern and Western regions featuring e.g. reki-style of singing, Perhonjoki valley kantele style, Karelian small kantele and runo-song traditions as well as archaic improvisation.

The group's roots go back to the music school Juvenalia in Espoo, southern Finland where all of the members have studied. Kardemimmit has played together for over ten years. This long history can be heard as a unique sound in both the group's singing and playing. As a kantele group Kardemimmit is a foregoer: in the year 2004 the Kantele Association chose the group as the kantele group of the year and the next year it won the national kantele group contest in its league. Kardemimmit was the group of the year in the Uusimaa-region in 2009 and 2010.

Kardemimmit has made plenty of performations during its career. In Finland the group has played over a hundred concerts. They have performed on e.g. the Kaustinen Folk Music Festival, the Haapavesi Folk Festival, the Folklandia cruise as well as the Athletics World Championship gala.

Kardemimmit toured in USA in September 2013. They performed on major world music festival such as Lotus Fest, Chicago World Music Festival, Madison World Music Festival and Globalquerque.

The group's debut album Viira was published in December 2006. The second album, Kaisla, came out during fall 2009. Kaisla was also re-released as a bonus disc of The Rough Guide to the Music of Scandinavia in 2012 as Introducing Kardemimmit (www.worldmusic.net/scandinavia). On their third album Autio huvila Kardemimmit continues with their original musical style combining song and the kantele. Autio huvila was released in June 2012. The album was chosen as the Folk Music Album of the Year 2012 by the Finnish Folk Music Association.

Anna and Leeni graduated as folk music pedagogues in the Central Ostrobothnia University of Applied Sciences, whereas Maija and Jutta study in the folk music department of the Sibelius Academy. Each studies with kantele as main instrument.

Band Members