New Jazz from Finland

Finnish jazz has gained recognition and fans around the world from the days of Edward Vesala, Heikki Sarmanto, Olli Ahvenlahti and Matti Oiling. Building from that tradition, today’s Finnish jazz scene is more flourishing than ever. Ranging from Dalindèo’s groovy retro sounds to Oddarrang’s cinematic crossover, not to mention Espoo Big Band’s jazz-rock fusion, Kalle Kalima’s adventurous guitar tones and the melodic piano jazz of Aki Rissanen Trio.

Dip your toes into Music Finland’s frequently-updating playlist of the freshest Finnish jazz, available on Spotify and Apple Music. And scroll down for artist bios!

New Jazz from Finland

Related Artists

Espoo Big Band

Espoo Big Band (EBB) is one of Finland’s most prominent big jazz orchestras and especially known for performing new Finnish big band music. EBB has toured in Asia, Australia and Brazil, performed at several festivals such as Detroit, Montreaux and Paris and released ten albums.

Katu Kaiku

Katu Kaiku was founded when the three young musicians spontaneously got together in one of the streets of Helsinki. After the summer in Finland they continued their grooves indoors concentrating on making their own material and finding their free way of expression. The music of Katu Kaiku is influenced by bebop, free jazz, popular music, nature and human temperaments.


Drummer and vibraphonist Okko Saastamoinen formed his quartet OK:KO in 2015 together with pianist Toomas Keski-Säntti, saxophonist-flautist Jarno Tikka and bassist Mikael Saastamoinen. OK:KO has already gained positive attention at the Young Nordic Jazz Comets showcase, and We Jazz festival awarded the band leader Okko Saastamoinen with an honorary title “We Jazz Rising Star” in 2016.

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Emma Salokoski

Singer Emma Salokoski has become known both as a talented musical performer and as a strong group leader in her own bossa nova band Emma Salokoski Ensemble. Salokoski plays also an important role as a featuring artist on many live performances and recordings of several pop and rock bands.

Aapo Heinonen Quintet

Aapo Heinonen has a taste for swinging melodies and open-minded compositions, which he dips into the bowls of modal jazz, fusion, Latin jazz, world music and film music. The pieces come in big band form, but go through a gentle transformation in the hands of this improvising and communicative quintet.

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Outi Tarkiainen

Outi Tarkiainen is a composer who has one foot in the Modernist camp and one in the jazz camp. Several of her works exhibit, in a deeply instinctive way, an organic, innovative dialogue between these two traditions – an example being the title work of her acclaimed disc "Into the Woodland Silence". Tarkiainen’s music is frequently performed abroad and has been dubbed to draw on the immensity of the northern natural environment. As if an evidence of this, her recent orchestral song cycle The Earth, Spring’s Daughter, inspired by the Sami poetry, was commissioned by the three northernmost orchestras of Europe.

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Jimi Tenor

Composer and musician Jimi Tenor needs no introduction: after 30 years of career as an established artist, Tenor has redefined his style and sound over and over again and moved from 60s and 70s jazz, psychedelic soul and African funk to techno and experimental rock. Tenor continues to release music in different formats and through different labels at a formidable pace.

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Mopo is a collective of three musicians from Finland. The energetic band saw daylight in the fall of 2009 as a result of a bar fight. Mopo (a moped) accelerates easily from zero to speed of light, but mostly the trio steps on a gas pedal for a ruff ride in the countryside. The band draws their inspiration from jazz, punk and the Finnish nature. Their latest album, Mopocalypse, was released in January 2018.

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Heikki Ruokangas

Heikki Ruokangas is a jazz/avant-garde guitarist and composer. Since 2015 Ruokangas has released four albums that consist of performances as both solo artist and as a leader with various groups. By combining of melody and noise, music of Ruokangas moves from delicate and melodic atmospheres to all the way to violent avant-garde.

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