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Topic: Pekka Pohjola has passed away< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
Olivier Offline




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Posted: Nov. 27 2008, 20:35

Finnish multi-instrumentalist and composer Pekka Pohjola has passed away on November 27. Pekka played bass with Mike during the 1979 tour and is credited on Exposed. Mike produced and contributed to Pekka's album Keesojen Lehto - Mathematician's Air Display.

Kiittää te, Mika
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Holger Offline




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Posted: Nov. 27 2008, 21:06

That's sad news indeed. Even though Mathematician's Air Display is the only album of his I'm familiar with, I really like it a lot. I think I'm going to listen to it tomorrow.
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Pink Lemonade Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 02:49

Rest in peace Pekka.

Lepää rauhassa Pekka.
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backwoodsman Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 04:01

What?!?  :O
Oh shit...
This is bad news indeed.
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Dirk Star Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 05:41

I must admit I was completely unaware of Mathemetician`s Air Display/Consequences of Indescisions,until Scatterplot posted up his vinyl copy of the album a few months ago.An album which I really enjoyed listening to,and not just for Mike`s contribution`s on there as well.It`s strange since hearing that album how often I`ve seen Pekka`s name mentioned in different music articles and blogs etc.Relating to either his musical abilities/technical prowess.Or merely as a great inluential figure of music within his own country,where he was/is obviously so highly regarded..Sad news.
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Harmono Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 12:08

Lepää rauhassa.

I really liked him.
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Blue Dolphin Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 16:48

Jeez, that's the last I had expected. Rest in Peace, Pekka!!

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-The mark of a good musician is to play one note and mean it-

Mike Oldfield - 1980
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Mix Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 17:17

Quote (Dirk Star @ Nov. 28 2008, 05:41)
...how often I`ve seen Pekka`s name mentioned in different music articles and blogs etc.Relating to either his musical abilities/technical prowess.Or merely as a great inluential figure of music within his own country,where he was/is obviously so highly regarded..Sad news.

Yes, he was highly regarded here, but he certainly wasn't in the news on a regular basis. He had more or less retired from music scene altogether during the last couple of years.

I went to see him live on two concerts in late 1990s and early 2000s and on both occasions he played something from "Mathematician's Air Display" with his band. On one of those concerts I was lucky enough to get his autograph on the concert poster - he was very friendly person through and through, that's the picture I was able to form of him. He was no mega star even here, so after the concert I just walked to the back stage and knocked on the door and asked if he would autograph the poster. He was very friendly, asked what I liked about the concert and seemed genuinely surprised that someone really came to ask his autograph...

He was part of a here well-known "music-family" Pohjola. His two sons are succesful musicians (trombonist and trumpetist), and both his father and uncle were major figures in Finnish music life, especially with choirs.

What a shame that he is gone. He never got the respect and recognition he deserved for his input in Finnish music - both in the Prog/Jazz-field or classical (he composed a symphony as well). Yes, he was highly regarded among fans and colleagues, but I would have hoped that he would have been a more respected character in the music life in this country in general, though. Then again, he maybe enjoyed the low profile.

Anyway, RIP Pekka.

Those of you who like "Mathematician's Air Display" should try and find the CD "Visitation" (1979) or "B the Magpie" (1974). Those are stylistically very similar and I'm sure you would enjoy them as well - not that his later recordings were any less enjoyable at all.

Mika
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Harmono Offline




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Posted: Nov. 28 2008, 19:44

Thank you for that, Mika. I'm sure he would have been even a bigger star if he wouldn't have turned down Abba and Frank Zappa, but maybe he had something better to do.
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Markus K. Offline




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Posted: Nov. 30 2008, 15:02

Here's a live band clip from 1980:

http://www.yle.fi/player/player.jsp?name=El%E4v%E4+arkisto%2F03438_1


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Markus K.
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Fine_old_Tom Offline




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Posted: Dec. 02 2008, 03:27

Sad sad sad. What more can I say. Another great musician has left us.

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Sad Sing
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CuNimb Offline




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Posted: Dec. 03 2008, 03:19

Very sorry to hear it....  :(

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Happy? ha ha ha....
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Ratty Offline




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Posted: Dec. 04 2008, 11:48

Very sad news indeed. RIP Pekka.

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Far away across the field
The tolling of the iron bell
Calls the faithful to their knees
To hear the softly spoken magic spells
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soz97dnl2 Offline




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Posted: Dec. 07 2008, 11:39

Quote (Mix @ Nov. 28 2008, 17:17)
He never got the respect and recognition he deserved for his input in Finnish music - both in the Prog/Jazz-field or classical (he composed a symphony as well). Yes, he was highly regarded among fans and colleagues, but I would have hoped that he would have been a more respected character in the music life in this country in general, though. Then again, he maybe enjoyed the low profile.


I very much assume he really did prefer it that way. If I got his biographical facts correct, he had already toured with Mike as he declined Zappa, so he knew what touring with a big star would be like. And even if he didn't, what other reason than to protect one's private style of living could there be for a musician to decline Frank Zappa, especially as Pekka often was quoted for being a fan of his?

Also, having declined Abba, while artistically very much understandable, shows, that big $$$ wasn't what he wanted in life either.

So perhaps the life he ended up having was the kind that he wanted for himself. After all, he had enough following to do musically whatever he preferred, but he didn't have to deal with any side effects of fame. So it's thinkable, that he simply was free to do what he liked in his life.

At least I would hope so. 56 is a far too low an age to go, especially if you're a genious with still a bunch to give. But it's still easier, if it happens after a fulfilling life well lived. Pekka's life was too short, but it definitely was unique. I hope he had a good time.
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captainjjb Offline




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Posted: Dec. 07 2008, 17:01

yeah, he was a real cool customer.  I watched most of Exposed on Friday night - fantastic.
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Mix Offline




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Posted: Dec. 12 2008, 14:44

Quote (soz97dnl2 @ Dec. 07 2008, 11:39)
Quote (Mix @ Nov. 28 2008, 17:17)
He never got the respect and recognition he deserved for his input in Finnish music - both in the Prog/Jazz-field or classical (he composed a symphony as well). Yes, he was highly regarded among fans and colleagues, but I would have hoped that he would have been a more respected character in the music life in this country in general, though. Then again, he maybe enjoyed the low profile.


I very much assume he really did prefer it that way. If I got his biographical facts correct, he had already toured with Mike as he declined Zappa, so he knew what touring with a big star would be like. And even if he didn't, what other reason than to protect one's private style of living could there be for a musician to decline Frank Zappa, especially as Pekka often was quoted for being a fan of his?

Also, having declined Abba, while artistically very much understandable, shows, that big $$$ wasn't what he wanted in life either.

So perhaps the life he ended up having was the kind that he wanted for himself. After all, he had enough following to do musically whatever he preferred, but he didn't have to deal with any side effects of fame. So it's thinkable, that he simply was free to do what he liked in his life.

At least I would hope so. 56 is a far too low an age to go, especially if you're a genious with still a bunch to give. But it's still easier, if it happens after a fulfilling life well lived. Pekka's life was too short, but it definitely was unique. I hope he had a good time.

I'm sure you're right, and I agree with you that he must have been pleased to have been able to retain his personal life away from limelights. I seem to remember that his denial of Abba's offer was mostly because of the "stylistic" differences and that he considedered Abba to be way too commercial for him to join them. And he denied Zappa's offer to tour with his band due to the scheduling difficulties - he had something cooking in the studios and couldn't depart.

He lived his last years very close to where I live now, and... well, I certainly don't want to sound disrespectful or judgemental at all, believe me, but I did see him in the neighborhood a couple of times during these last few years, and my impression was that he really wasn't doing well  :/ I'm pretty sure he suffered from alcoholism and maybe just wasted his life away. And that is SO sad. I am not 100% certain of this, but the appearance of him, and the circumstances where I saw him, bore all the earmarks of someone having been beaten and knocked out by the booze.

He definitely had so much more in him, much more beautiful music to give. In his 50th anniversary interview 6 years ago he speaked about KNOWING that he still has his *major work* in him. He never got that out of him...  :/

I don't know if these 7 clips of that interview can be viewed outside Finland (and they are in Finnish, so... :) ), but here they are any way, courtesy of Finnish national broadcaster YLE:

Pekka Pohjola interviewed


Regards,
Mika
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soz97dnl2 Offline




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Posted: Dec. 12 2008, 15:58

Quote (Mix @ Dec. 12 2008, 14:44)
Quote (soz97dnl2 @ Dec. 07 2008, 11:39)
Quote (Mix @ Nov. 28 2008, 17:17)
He never got the respect and recognition he deserved for his input in Finnish music - both in the Prog/Jazz-field or classical (he composed a symphony as well). Yes, he was highly regarded among fans and colleagues, but I would have hoped that he would have been a more respected character in the music life in this country in general, though. Then again, he maybe enjoyed the low profile.


I very much assume he really did prefer it that way. If I got his biographical facts correct, he had already toured with Mike as he declined Zappa, so he knew what touring with a big star would be like. And even if he didn't, what other reason than to protect one's private style of living could there be for a musician to decline Frank Zappa, especially as Pekka often was quoted for being a fan of his?

Also, having declined Abba, while artistically very much understandable, shows, that big $$$ wasn't what he wanted in life either.

So perhaps the life he ended up having was the kind that he wanted for himself. After all, he had enough following to do musically whatever he preferred, but he didn't have to deal with any side effects of fame. So it's thinkable, that he simply was free to do what he liked in his life.

At least I would hope so. 56 is a far too low an age to go, especially if you're a genious with still a bunch to give. But it's still easier, if it happens after a fulfilling life well lived. Pekka's life was too short, but it definitely was unique. I hope he had a good time.

I'm sure you're right, and I agree with you that he must have been pleased to have been able to retain his personal life away from limelights. I seem to remember that his denial of Abba's offer was mostly because of the "stylistic" differences and that he considedered Abba to be way too commercial for him to join them. And he denied Zappa's offer to tour with his band due to the scheduling difficulties - he had something cooking in the studios and couldn't depart.

He lived his last years very close to where I live now, and... well, I certainly don't want to sound disrespectful or judgemental at all, believe me, but I did see him in the neighborhood a couple of times during these last few years, and my impression was that he really wasn't doing well  :/ I'm pretty sure he suffered from alcoholism and maybe just wasted his life away. And that is SO sad. I am not 100% certain of this, but the appearance of him, and the circumstances where I saw him, bore all the earmarks of someone having been beaten and knocked out by the booze.

He definitely had so much more in him, much more beautiful music to give. In his 50th anniversary interview 6 years ago he speaked about KNOWING that he still has his *major work* in him. He never got that out of him...  :/

I don't know if these 7 clips of that interview can be viewed outside Finland (and they are in Finnish, so... :) ), but here they are any way, courtesy of Finnish national broadcaster YLE:

Pekka Pohjola interviewed


Regards,
Mika

Well, that's sad news indeed. But I'm actually not surprised, due to the fact that his cause of death is being held back from all the articles about him. This is usually the case, when a great life comes to a less than flattering end and the media - quite correctly - decide, not to reduce the person to whatever banality it was that took him down. And as Pekka has spoken about his boozing problems before, it's a fairly easy equation.

Still very sad, how it's so often the same minds that reach the highest of beauties who in the end tend to lose against the lowest of demons. The art seems to be so much bigger than the artist and the world doesn't seem to be too reluctant of keeping reminding him of that.

Well, ars longa, vita brevis. And 56 years was at least less brevis than some other creators of great arts. Still, for all the great experiences he provided, I would have wished Pekka a sweeter dawn for his life than the gutter in Kivenlahti.
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larstangmark Offline




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Posted: Dec. 21 2008, 04:23

The title track from "Mathematician's air display" is a great piece of music. It sounds very Incantations-like, which is not strange considering it was recorded in Throughham using Mike's equipment.
The whole album is great actually, but the title track stands out.


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