Above in the picture Aarnio’s painting ‘Dollavárri’ inspired by song ‘Dollavárri’.
Below in the picture Aarnio’s painting ´Pihani’ inspired by song ‘Pihani’.
Guest columnist for ‘On fountains of creativity’ Column
‘I SING, I BReathe’
Written by Teea Aarnio, edited by Tosha Einiö
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I sing, I breathe. I’m an echo basket, instrument body. Songs are spells that I voice out to raise nature, to soothe nature. Sometimes when I need a thicker silence I paint, I paint songs on a canvas. Earth beneath my feet is also a large echo basket, instrument’s body; it’s present through all existence where ever there’s room for the resonance.
My creativity stems from nature connection; from the understanding that all this is one. Creativity arranges the not visible and something new is born. Shamanistic worldview has been pulsating in me since early childhood, even though deep nature connection has unfolded slowly.
Vocal instrument is a wondrous friend; it travels with me in the grocery store, in forest, in the subway, in every sentence I speak, and even in my dreams. I sang before I could speak. I didn’t know how to walk when I sat on a piano chair the first time, wondering about the keys of my grand parent’s piano. Violin playing traveled with me during challenging years in childhood, to late teenage.
Year 2019 I moved to Helsinki to start my professional music studies.
Turning point in creativity
On my musician’s journey I’ve traveled many paths. I’ve worked in Finland and abroad. I’ve been in various ensembles, I’ve been charmed, intoxicated, lost, disappointed. Seven years ago I was living a turning point in creativity.
I reached a point, from where I started my voyage to this moment here and now. In that turning point volume grew more vociferous. For the first time in my life I even started to fear my precognitive dreams, ‘seeing’, it all grew in ways I hadn’t experienced before – I suddenly wasn’t able to perform in bars, in front of drunken audience. Spiritual growth took leaps. There were a lot of accidents during that time, within my closest circle of friends, and also passings. I had precognitive dreams relating to some of these events. Change of direction started to happen.
I gave up performing in public events, gave myself the permission to close all routes I had weaved for myself. I removed all my music pages from the internet. I moved away from Helsinki, sold and gave away almost all my fortunes.
I lived two years as a nomad, on the road. I thought about my roots, identities, emptiness, I faced childhood traumas and extricated myself, I called for my worldview. I thought about communities, cultures, individualism. I thought about the differences of east and west. A couple of years earlier I had been on a long travel in India and readapting to Finland was hard. I dived deep to Finnish cultural history and it’s most painful events.
I thought about creativity. I sang and painted just for fun, by myself. I decided to trust my nature!
What is Finnish culture, who am I? I noticed the changed scenery around my first home town Heinola’s forests. I read conservation reports and Karelian poetry. I read about Ingrian language. I immersed in cultural studies, Finnish folk poetry and singing traditions. I read about proselytising minority cultures into Finnish culture. I read about how the spiritual heritage of local root traditions had been reclothed into christianity. I resigned from church.
I unlearned a lot – and brought back a lot. I read books I had brought from India, about non dualism.
My solo album started to build up. Through multicultural collaborations new songs were born. My upcoming debut album has songs mainly in Finnish, also in Swedish and in Northern Sámi. I journey through elements and different realities, I fly with the wings of multi-colored music. My debut album is ready and waiting to be released. Visual EP, crafted in collaboration with Playart Productions, escorts us towards the upcoming album’s world.
Nature is a verb
Nature, science, arts, spirit, matter, earth, air, books.. All is one, in connection. Nature is a verb, it’s creativity in action. Words carry many insinuations, and modern Finnish languaged world view has at times been lost, been blind to it’s meanings.
It’s a life long challenge for a creative human to know one’s own culture and roots, to share one’s own stable handprint and one’s own voice, and regenerate the communal continuum.
I’m now—and perhaps always—in the start of something new. Journey continues.