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Shamaani Duo

While other folk metal bands began with metal before adding folk music,
Korpiklaani started with folk music before turning metal.[1] The roots of
Korpiklaani can be traced back to a Sami folk music group under the name of
"Shamaani Duo",[2] an "in house restaurant band" created by Jonne Jrvel in
1993.[3] An album of folk music (Hunka Lunka) was released under this name
before Jrvel relocated and "Shamaani Duo" morphed into "Shaman".[4]

Shaman was the second incarnation of Korpiklaani, formed in 1996 which is

notable for the heavy use of original native Smic music elements and lyrics
in Smi. The band's music was based on the folk music of Shamaani Duo.[5]
The most widely used elements are the shamanic drum, yoik and humppa.
Besides yoik, the vocals vary from clean to rather aggressive growling.

The musical style of Shaman is quite distinctive, especially in the slow songs,
due to its entrancing atmosphere created by the monophonic, "narrow" synth
sound making the deep contrast to the spacious sound of the acoustic guitar,
the shamanic drum and yoik singing.

The first recording released under the name of Shaman was the demo single
Oa milbmi (New World in Smi). The video clip shot for the song featured
a wolf breaking free from its cage and running into the forest. Besides the
single CD the song was included on the band's first full-length album Idja
(Night in Smi, 1999) as well.

The band released another album, Shamniac, in 2002.[4]


The band underwent another evolution in 2003, and "Shaman" became

"Korpiklaani" (with only Jrvel and drummer Samu Ruotsalainen remaining
from the last "Shaman" lineup), with the music style to a more conventional

folk metal with folk/thrash vocals instead of yoiking. Shamniac had already
featured a strong resemblance to the future Korpiklaani style. In fact, the
song, "Vuola lvlla", has the same music as the Korpiklaani song, "Beer Beer".

The change in name was accompanied by a change in the music. The

traditional yoik vocals and the use of the Smi language were dropped while
the synthesizer was replaced with real folk instruments.[6] Jonne Jrvel
credits his work with Finntroll as the catalyst for the shift in emphasis from
folk to metal.[7] Their song lyrics are often related to alcohol and partying.

According to Jonne Jrvel, Korpiklaani's music would be seen as "old people's

music with heavy metal guitars"[8] in Finland.

There has been some collaboration between Korpiklaani and Finntroll, as

Samu Ruotsalainen of Finntroll provided session drums for their debut album
Spirit of the Forest and Jrvel provided the yoiking for the title track of
Finntroll's album Jaktens Tid.

Juha Jyrks has written the Finnish lyrics to Korpiklaani. Jyrks has also played
some kantele in two Korpiklaani songs, Kdet siipin and Tuli kokko, under the
pseudonym "Virva Holtiton". New Manala-album a large part of the lyrics
wrote the poet Tuomas Keskimki and he uses lyrics from the Kalevala-metre.

Korpiklaani released a sixth studio album in the summer of 2009, titled

Karkelo ("Party" in English).[9][10]

They released their new album Ukon Wacka in early February 2011.

The name Korpiklaani means "Forest Clan" in the Finnish language.[5] In

spoken language "korpi" means dark old forest. In biology it refers to boreal
forest appearing on moist moraine soils, characterized by dense growth of
spruce and a deep layer of moss as undergrowth.

In September 2011 Korpiklaani announced that Jaakko "Hittavainen"

Lemmetty would be leaving the band due to personal health issues which
made the constant touring and recording impossible. His replacement was
violist Teemu Eerola. Korpiklaani's first concert with this new line-up since
2005 was on Baroeg Open Air 2011 in Rotterdam(NL). On 7 December 2011,
Korpiklaani announced that Teemu would not be on the rest of the tour.[11]
His last show on the tour was in Vancouver.[12]

Current lineup

Jonne Jrvel vocals, guitars (1993present)

Matti "Matson" Johansson drums (2003present)
Kalle "Cane" Savijrvi guitars (2003present)
Jarkko Aaltonen bass (2005present)
Tuomas Rounakari violin (2012present)
Sami Perttula - accordion (2013present)

Former members

Maaren Aikio vocals, percussion (19931996)

Juke Erkangas drums, keyboards, backing vocals (1999)
Ilkka Kilpelinen bass, backing vocals (1999)
Tero Piirainen guitars, keyboards, backing vocals (1999)
Samu Ruotsalainen drums (20022003)
Janne G`thaur bass (2002)

Hosse Latvala drums, percussion (2002)

Veera Muhli keyboards (2002)
Toni Nykki guitars (2002)
Henri "Trollhorn" Sorvali keyboards (2002)
Jaakko "Hittavainen" Lemmetty violin, jouhikko, bagpipes, flute (2003
Toni "Honka" Honkanen guitars (20032005)
Ali Mtt percussion (20032005)
Arto Tissari bass (20032005)
Juho Kauppinen accordion (20042013)
Teemu Eerola violin (2011)