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Accordion Metal Indoctrination Tour: Ensiferum, Korpiklaani, Trollfest, North America 2015

May 9, 2015

The Accordion Metal Indoctrination Tour, or “Squeezebox Ragnarök” [I made those up] continues across North America [Dates] with the triple-bill of Scandinavian bands, Ensiferum (featuring Netta Skog), and Korpiklaani (featuring Sami Perttula) both from Finland, with Trollfest (featuring Manskow) from Sweden. I hope to see you at the shows! (Vancouver, is tomorrow, Sunday, May 10 at the Rickshaw.) Trollfest provides a handy video of their tour plans: https://youtu.be/nx9lD2yvfvw This week Accordion Noir Radio broadcast an interview with Netta Skog, who’s sitting in with Ensiferum for their regular keyboard player Emmi. Today we publish a transcript of Netta’s interview with some relevant video content to spice it up. Netta Skog Interview (April 24, 2015) Netta Skog with Ensiferum With Bruce (Accordion Noir Radio) and Netta Skog (Ensiferum). N: I think I was five years old when I started to play accordion. I was in childrens’ music school and the teacher was playing accordion, and when I saw that I told my mom, “I want to do that too.”  B: What kind of music where you playing? N: At that age? All kinds of children’s music. From ten years old I started to play classical music (of course) and then I started to get into heavy metal and pop and rock music and now I’m playing in a heavy metal band. B: Where did you go to school for music? N: It was a private music school at first, and then I went to the Sibelius Academy in Finland for three years. Then we have this Sibelius High School, so I was there, graduated after four years of studying, and after that to be honest I have no time for private lessons from anyone. I have so much to do. B: How did you get into metal? [Are there other metal accordionists that inspired you?] N: We have this one competition in Finland, it’s called Sata-Häme Soi, it’s like the “Best Accordion Player in Finland” in 2006 and I wanted to play something different so I picked a song from Nightwish. That’s how I got into heavy metal, that was the first time. And someone took the video of that performance to Youtube and that’s how the Turisas guys found me. https://youtu.be/quSs_Ef4L94 B: Then how did you get involved with [Ensiferum]? N: I’ve been touring with them in 2008. Turisas and Ensiferum were on the same tour, so that’s how I got to know them. And the keyboard player Emmi and me became really good friends from that day on. We keep in touch and we’re really good friends and last summer Emmi called me and asked if I can come to the studio and play some accordion for their album One Man Army, and I said, “Yes!” I also did some singing as well. After that, the whole band asked me if I could join them on tour because Emmi wasn’t able to do that tour.  [Ensiferum doing an acoustic gig with Netta and Emmi together.] https://youtu.be/emD24pv3UU0 B: Here in North America there aren’t many metal bands that have accordionists. So now this tour there’s three bands that all have accordionists. How do you think accordion fits in a metal band? N: Perfectly! Absolutely. Accordion is like the easiest instrument to put in many different kinds of music, and heavy metal of course. I play a digital accordion, so basically I’m playing all the keyboard stuff with accordion, so that’s really easy. I don’t have that acoustic accordion with only that accordion sound, so for me it’s easy because I can play almost every instrument on that.  B: Have you tried different kinds of accordions, like the digital and acoustic? N: Both of them. Actually in Turisas I played with acoustic accordion at first yes. Of course there’s always a little bit of feedback with the micing system, but basically we managed to do it very easy. [Netta on amplified acoustic accordion with Turisas in 2010.] https://youtu.be/wqPKYlkyBJs B: Do you play other styles besides metal? N: Yeah! I have a lot of shows on my own where I play disco and techno music. Netta Skog %22First Digital Accordion Show%22 Feb, 2015B: Where do you do those shows? N: In Finland! B: If you have any recordings we’d be happy to play them. N: Actually no, I don’t have any. I should go in the studio and record my own music finally. And let’s see what’s coming in Autumn, but in summer I should try to record my own stuff. And it’s not going to be disco or stuff like that, it’s going to be pop heavy metal. With accordion and singing.  B: This tour you’re playing with three bands that all have accordions. Do you know the other accordionists in the other bands? N: Yes, I know the guy from Korpiklaani. [Korpiklaani’s Pilli On Pajusta Tehty] https://youtu.be/T_0daiXOiWw B: In my head I have this picture of all three of you on stage together. I don’t know that that’s ever happened in North America, three metal accordionists in the same room. [Trollfest’s Vulkan. These guys are fun.] https://youtu.be/RVa-rnoOiyo B: Do you have any advice for young people for how to become a famous metal accordionist? N: Oh my god, I don’t know! You have to keep practicing and believe in yourself. That would be my advice. B: Anything else you’re particularly excited about for this tour? N: Well, of course I’m excited to go to North America/Canada with Ensiferum because it’s my first time and I think we’re going to have a marvellous tour. B: Thank you so much for talking with us Netta! And we’ll see you at the show. [Ensiferum Tour Dates.] N: Thank you! Netta Skog offstage [Thanks again Netta! I forgot to ask the standard gear-geek questions about your effects chain and stuff like that. Any metal accordionists out there? What’s your preferred set up for what the Finns sometimes call, “The Devil’s Lungs”?]

2 Comments leave one →
  1. AstroBob permalink
    May 9, 2015 6:32 pm

    Bruce, This tour sounds interesting….I wasn’t able to find a list of locations they are playing at…are they going to be coming to Michigan or Ohio area?  If so I can get word out to these areas. In particular I would be interested if they are coming to Detroit, Michigan area. I also have connections with San Francisco, California where I originally lived and was president of the accordion club there…accordion is very big in SF with multiple clubs in the SF Bay Area. So if they are going there I am sure the SF club could get the word out also.

    Another interesting accordion factoid. Have you head of accordion wrestling. It is popular in Finland and started when Finland one the gold medal at the olympics a few years back. For some reason they started playing accordion during wrestling and the sport with accordion has become a bit of a national art form. They recently sent a performance group of stylistic wrestlers and an accordionist here to the US where they performed at Kennedy Center. It reminds me of how Irish step dancing was all the rage a few years back here in the US.

    You can see some of these performances by searching for ACCORDION WRESTLING at Youtube.

    These types of performances are what the accordion world needs to show young people that the accordion is a very versatile instrument and in the hands of a fine player can equal or exceed any other instrument.

    Bob Berta VP Michigan Accordion Society member Roland V groups at Yahoo and owner of a 8x Dallape.

    Sent from my Samsung Galaxy Tab®|PRO

  2. May 10, 2015 4:46 am

    Hi Bob,

    The tour dates should have been clearer (fixing that now). Here’s the Ensiferum list:
    http://www.ensiferum.com/gigs-coming

    Maybe one of these is near you? Cleveland or Toronto might be closest?

    US / Canada tour 2015
    With Korpiklaani and Trollfest

    10.05.2015 Canada Rickshaw Theatre, Vancouver, BC
    12.05.2015 Canada Republik, Calgary, AB
    13.05.2015 Canada Union Hall, Edmonton, AB
    15.05.2015 United States Summit Music Hall, Denver, CO
    16.05.2015 United States Bourbon Theatre, Lincoln, NE
    17.05.2015 United States Mill City Nights, Minneapolis, MN
    18.05.2015 United States Bottom Lounge, Chicago, IL
    19.05.2015 United States Agora Theatre, Cleveland, OH
    20.05.2015 Canada Opera House, Toronto, ON
    21.05.2015 Canada Mavericks, Ottawa, ON
    22.05.2015 Canada Club Soda, Montreal, QC
    23.05.2015 Canada Imperial de Quebec, Quebec City, QC
    24.05.2015 United States Brighton Music Hall, Boston, MA
    26.05.2015 United States Mr. Small’s Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA
    27.05.2015 United States Baltimore Soundstage, Baltimore, MD
    28.05.2015 United States Theatre of Living Arts, Philadelphia, PA
    29.05.2015 United States Irving Plaza, New York, NY

    And the Finnish Wrestling story is so funny! We saw Kimmo Pohjonen’s film Soundbreaker which is amazing and includes some of that. I interviewed him a few years ago when his film came to the Vancouver International Film Festival. We posted twice about that:

    https://accordionuprising.wordpress.com/2012/10/03/soundbreaker-the-world-of-kimmo-pohjonen-at-the-vancouver-international-film-festival/

    https://accordionuprising.wordpress.com/2012/10/06/kimmo-pohjonens-soundbreaker-film-continued-at-the-vancouver-international-film-festival/

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