In the middle of the hurricane

I have tried to keep me out of the Internetworld with not being a frequent writer in the blog but now I feel that it is time to write something. In February 2016 I have two albums out and the third is coming next month. I have to admit that it feels a bit like being in the middle of the hurricane :-) A nice one :-) I have had four tours counting the three from last year and one from January this year. I meet wonderful people everywhere I go and enjoy every minute of the music and performing. Could do a bit less of the administrative work, as it is not as enjoyable as playing to be honest. Luckily me and Hannah can now rely on Lorraine Carpenter from Different strings with bookings and arrangement! Hurray! Chatterbox and Upa-upa ubinakõnõ are both doing very well, the first one has got splendid reviews and ended in the Telegraphs list of best folk music albums of 2015. Upa-upa also found its place in the Estonian Public Broadcasting albums of the year list, so people seem to like the music I am involved in! What else can you wish as a musician! Now I am eagerly waiting for my first showcase at the Tallinn Music Week festival, which will also be the first release concert of my long-awaited solo album "Storied sounds". It has been hard work but interesting too and I am happy that the album is finally getting its shape. I am again working together with fantastic people: Krõõt Kukkur, Dylan FowlerRainer Koik & Minerva Pappi, Siim Mäesalu from Estonian Radio and the word sorcerers Evelin Tamm & Joanie Crump! Feeling almost too privileged to have this kind of crew. 

That's me playing in the bog lake in South Estonia during the international residency project  Active crossover  in 2015. 

That's me playing in the bog lake in South Estonia during the international residency project Active crossover in 2015. 

It feels quite calm in the hurricane :-) (I remember that my feet got really cold when I was sitting in the water but the acoustics made me to forget it)


Accordion vibes

I have hard times writing my blogposts because I try to avoid my computer and phone as much as I can and save my energy for making music instead. Still you have to be active online all the time to get the latest news and to tell the world about your stuff. I wish there was an easy way to avoid too much contact with computers and still updating my blog...Anyway. I have now recorded three albums and one of them is out already! We will have the actual release for Chatterbox in June at Maddy Priors Stepping stones festival near Carlisle in the Northern England. More info is coming about that. Hurray for me and Hannah James, partners in accordion crimes :-) WE DID IT! We had fabulous time in England last week, talking to Genevieve Tudor at BBC Radio Shropshire and having a really lovely gig at the Edibles in Paddock Farm in the Coine Valley in the South Pennines, west of Huddersfield, UK. Now we are preparing for our Estonian tour at the end of May and winter/spring tours in UK 2016. (I will probably eat myself overfull of Marmite and those lovely bunches of fresh coriander from Waitrose)

Some artsy pictures from the venue taken by Matt Whyatt.

Magical evening last night with 2 accordionists in a cowshed. Some people's idea of hell, but it was spellbinding. The musical chemistry between Hannah James and Tuulikki Bartosik is a thing to behold. -Belinda O'Hooley
Is just back from a beautiful, sublime and rather splendid gig by Hannah James and Tuulikki Bartosik. Two accordions on one room is some people's vision of hell, but what we got tonight was two musicians having a good deal of fun playing off and in sync with each other. Great tunes, wonderful musicianship and a shed load of viruosity. If you get a chance to see them, don't miss it. -Mark Whyatt