‘The Siren’ is a fresh breath of air from Estonian singer, Susanna Aleksandra. Elegant songs celebrating the strength and charm of women, love’s infinite power to heal and accepting past errors, all infused with Susanna’s naturally warm vocals and inherent positivity. ‘The Siren’ features a wide range of original compositions, and two covers, Finnish folk song ‘A Rose of the Valley’ and the classic standard ‘Blame It On My Youth’.
Musically ‘The Siren’ is a blend from the award-winning Steinway Artist, Joonas Haavisto on piano and synthesiser, Joonas Tuuri on double bass and Ville Pynssi on drums. Clean and inspired, ‘The Siren’ was co-produced by Susanna, Joonas Haavisto and one of Finland’s leading percussionists, Abdissa “Mamba” Assefa who also features on the track ‘Summer Came Early’.
Mostly, sirens conjure up seductive creatures of the sea who would lure sailors into the murky depths with their irresistible voices. But Susanna’s song ‘The Siren’ was inspired by a chance encounter in a Parisian department store with a retired dancer and choreographer who left her own charm with Susanna. Musically, ‘The Siren’ is a jazz waltz with a modern twist that represents an imaginary scene of this dancer in full flight in her youth on the stages of Paris. As Susanna explains,
“I walked into a store to buy a hat and started chatting to another customer, a true Parisian lady in her 60’s. We became friends, she gave me her business card with a photo of her in her youth. She held an elegant pose that looked so easy for her. The Siren is a metaphor for a woman who looks so elegant but possesses a lot of inner strength.” Music has the power to heal.
‘The Love Song’ is a reminder of the positive impact that love has. With lyrics and music by Susanna Aleksandra, arranged by Joonas Haavisto, ‘The Love Song’ is a pop-jazz crossover tune about accepting true love and becoming ready to fully invest ourselves in a relationship. This song was a finalist in the Finnish songwriting competition, Unelmastudio.
The album also features the jazz standard written by Oscar Levant with lyrics by Edward Heyman, ‘Blame It On My Youth’ and has special meaning for Susanna, “It’s is a timeless song with a timeless message. For me, it a story of accepting past errors and learning self-acceptance. We should not regret the feelings that we have experienced but rather be thankful for them and grow.” The second cover included in the set is a beautiful rendition of a popular Finnish folk song called ‘A Rose of the Valley’ with its metaphor of a boy finding a beautiful rose that he will never forget but as he is a poor wanderer, she remains only a beautiful dream. ‘I Will’ is dedicated to the unconditional love of parents for their children and was written in a spontaneous moment while riding on a train.
Susanna Aleksandra was born in Estonia and travelled extensively spending a lot of time working and studying in Paris and LA before settling in Finland where she has found her new jazz home, collaborating and sharing the stage with some of the most revered Finnish jazz musicians top jazz musicians. These include Holger Marjamaa (Chris Botti’s pianist); trumpeter Jukka Eskola, guitarist Teemu Viinikainen, pianist Riitta Paakki and drummer Jussi Lehtonen.
As Susanna says, “I feel that music has been the driving force of my personal development. It has taught me self-acceptance, kindness, and the “okay-ness” of taking chances and making mistakes. Singing, composing, and writing lyrics help me process and deal with the world.”
Susanna Aleksandra – Vocals | Joonas Haavisto – piano, synthesizer | Joonas Tuuri – double bass | Ville Pynssi – drums | Abdissa “Mamba” Assefa – percussion (track 5).
1. The Siren | 2. Your Path | 3. Clumsy | 4. Blame it on My Youth | 5. Summer Came Early | 6. The Love Song | 7. Souls of the Night | 8. Ever Afters | 9. Let’s Call it a Day | 10. Ruusu Laaksossa | 11. I Will.
Release Date: 29 January 2021
Format: Digital | CD
Label: Eclipse Music.
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Last modified: February 5, 2021