For the love of Finnish folk music
Lauluaika, Finnish for "Song Time,"
is a group of musicians who share
a passion for singing and playing Finnish folk tunes for audiences who enjoy listening or dancing.
Their repertoire includes Finnish couples dances such as waltzes, polkas, humppa, jenkka (schottische), masurkka, and hambo, as well as lively group dances for all ages to enjoy.
Lauluaika musicians play a variety of instruments including mandolin, two-row button accordion, violin, guitar, bass, nyckelharpa, octave mandolin, harmonium, jouhikko, kantele, and percussive instruments such as tambourine and pimpparauta.
The music of Lauluaika
In the fall of 2020, The Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures, University of Wisconsin, Madison, invited
Lauluaika to perform six historic treasured tunes from the book Songs of the Finnish Migration: A Bilingual Anthology, edited by Thomas A. DuBois, B. Marcus Cederström, based on the Anthology Reisaavaisen Laulu Amerikkaan, edited by Simo Westerholm. This publication is available through The University of Wisconsin Press, 728 State Street, Suite 443, Madison, Wisconsin, 53706-1428
We hope you enjoy these very precious tunes. Click on the button below for viewing.
"Amerikan leski," composed by Elisa Valkama, an America widow in her own right, was published in 1905. Here, Finnish women are warned about the men who leave them behind on their way to America.
"Lumber-Jäkki" by Arthur Kylander takes a comedic approach to the life of a lumberjack while poking fun at some of the challenges that these lumberjacks endured in the woods.
“Tiskarin polka,” by Hiski Salomaa describes the working conditions of a young and overworked woman and her anticipation for Thursday and her day off and the dance at the local Finn Hall.
Written by Santeri Mäkelä and originally published in "Työväen laulukirja" (Songbook of the Working Class), a socialist songbook printed in Hancock, Michigan, in 1909, "Kaivantomiehen laulu" describes the difficult and often deadly working conditions that many Finnish migrants faced in the mines.
Written by Hiski Salomaa, "Lännen lokari" describes the romantic pursuits of a western logger. Of course, while he sings of the benefits of having a woman in every town, we are also privy to the uncertainty of work and the itinerant lifestyle that many loggers lived.
Well known in Finland by 1930 when Ernest Paananen recorded the song, "Muistatko vielä illan sen" tells of homesickness and separation.
Lauluaika goes to Virtual Nisswa-stämman 2021
Because of the pandemic, meeting and playing at this beautiful event was unsafe. It was recommended that all musicians scheduled to perform at Nisswa-stämman 2021 submit two music videos of two dance tunes that would have been included in the evening dance. We submitted two tunes recorded outside on a chilly Minnesotan spring afternoon and were part of the Nisswa-stämman2021 broadcast, then later archived on Youtube.com.
Lauluaika shares music at the Roseville String Ensemble Sing-A-Long
On December 4, 2023 Lauluaika was invited to share Finnish Christmas music with the Roseville community at the Annual Roseville String Ensemble Christmas Sing-a-long. It was a joy to sing along with those attending, and enjoy the season together. Lauluaika shares Finnish Christmas tunes beginning at 28 minutes.
T E S T I M O N I A L S