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article imageRiverboat Jazz Fest in Denmark features its first Finnish band

By Aili Maria     May 11, 2009 in Arts
Spirit Of New Orleans, the Helsinki-based band that was founded in 2001, will be performing at the Riverboat Jazz Festival in Silkeborg, Denmark June 25-27, 2009.
This is the first time in the festival's 44-year history that jazz musicians from Finland are a part of the performer roster. Riverboat Jazz Festival is one Europe's biggest festivals featuring traditional jazz. The five-day festival draws about 50 000 music lovers and 70 bands and soloists to the small picturesque town of Silkeborg in Midtjylland. In addition to the Spirit Of New Orleans, this year's lineup includes for example Lillian Boutté & Her Musical Friends, Julie O’Hara Rifftet, Luiz Diaz y los 5 del Son, Sammy Rimington Band, Second Line Jazzband, Jive Aces, and The Brasshoppers.
The Spirit Of New Orleans, also as known as SONO, has performed on most major Finnish festivals and clubs (Pori Jazz, Imatra Big Band Festival, Linna-Jazz, Baltic Jazz, Korpo Sea Jazz, Ruskaswing, Ylläs Jazz Blues, Kalott Jazz & Blues, Jazz by The Sea, Otava Happy Jazz, etc.) and on festivals in Switzerland, New Zealand, Sweden, Norway, and Fiji. The band has featured international soloists including Tricia Boutté, Yolanda Windsay, Leroy Jones, Mari Watanabe, Miriam Aïda, and Eeppi Ursin. SONO has released two recordings: Bogalusa Strut (2002) and Some Of These Days (2006); the latest one is scheduled to be released in the fall of 2009.
Although Finnish jazz, especially its modern forms, is well know all over the world, the European traditional jazz circuit is still dominated by groups from Denmark, UK, France, and other European countries. Spirit Of New Orleans is one of the few Finnish bands that has been invited to perform for some of Europe's biggest festivals like JazzAscona, Sildajazz and now the Riverboat Jazz Festival.
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