Forograf: Laura Nardelli:

Nadja Itäsaari is an artist and aspiring producer living in Gothenburg.

Recently, she has been very involved in EQLovesMusic’s projects in that she reads as project manager in cultural projects at Kulturverkstan and chose to apply for an internship with us.

Her new album Oak Trust was just released and includes her own written songs where she also plays guitar. In addition, she has recently produced and recorded her very own version of EQLovesFestival Anthems 2019 which will be released this summer.

At the Nefertiti jazz club, she celebrated her release with an unforgettable performance alongside multi-instrumentalist Amori Mori Jorge Alcaide.

Below you will find her release and our interview with Nadja.

  1. Can you tell us about your work as an intern at EQLovesMusic ?:

When I came in as a new intern at EQLovesMusic in January 2019, I was met by the very influential, creative and energetic Melisha Linnell. In a week, I realized that she had so many balls in the air that she normally works at a very high pace. Melisha is also the brain behind EQLovesMusic, which has been very inspiring to get to know.

I have tried in various ways to support Melisha and EQLovesMusic in high, low and middle and I have and in this have found a workplace, colleagues and a work environment where I really enjoy and get the space to “flourish”.

  1. What does it mean for you to be part of EQLovesMusic and involved in its project?

For me, it means many different things, like the college mentioned above and tasks that feel rewarding, but also that I actually learn a lot of things all the time. Sometimes it feels like it is monsoon raining ideas here..and the nice thing is that they also take their place.

For myself, who was myself a songwriter, artist and woman in a male-dominated industry, the work with EQ has felt extra

important. I think if I can feel that I really enjoy this forum and work, there are many more out there who have the same type of needs and then I realize how much more there is to do. To quote Pop Kollo, of course, it is hoped that the need for work on gender equality will not be needed in the future.

I have also produced my first product which hopefully will be on this year’s EQLovesMusic album with Anthems. Anthems is a compilation disc format that is specially designed for our members in our network and it is based on the fact that everyone in the network can produce one and the same song in several different ways, but largely no rules about genres and such.

This year’s Anthem is written by Sophia Tako, Sara Lundberg aka Zukie Fioxu and Kina Nyman and is called “We are Here”. It feels extra fun that this became my first prodd! I’m actually even proud of it in the mixing stage! In the past I have also produced more as a pre / co producer. Now I finally got to go “all in” and “hands on” which means that I now get a bleeding tooth! I want more! Lol!

  1. Can you tell us how Oak Trust came about?

Yes, Oak Trust is partly the single and the song that eventually also got to be the name bearer of my new album that I just released on all digital channels!
Basically, it was all about trying to listen to the lyrics I had written to a number of new songs in 2016 after

I released my 1st solid solo record, then I realized that I wanted to work with natural acoustics and tree theme because many of the song names carried a tree theme. It took me a few years to find the right one, I was even on my way to Russia to record it with porta studio for a while, haha! But in the end, I was greeted at Spinroad Recording Studios in the countryside in Lindome thanks to my colleague Rosie Mc Lune (who is also on the record on a couple of songs and plays) and understood that this would be the place that would capture the essence of the songs.

I wanted to create something honest and naked, like the roots of the tree or a bare tree trunk.
This was what Spinroad had to offer, especially acoustics and mics, and that Pedro Ferreira who helped me to produce my vision for the album was very responsive and gave me a lot of artistic freedom.

Freedom has always been important to me and that is what the “Oak Trust” demonstrates, some kind of freedom under responsibility.

“When I wrote it I tried to imagine that I was a tree standing motionless in the ground and forced to see everything that humanity does, ie a metaphorical landscape where I wanted to explore my own roots and my own approach to humanity.” – from the interview in the link below with Caroline Furness at HYMN

Do you have any interview you want to share ?:

  1. Your music is very atmospheric and personal. Can you tell us where you found your inspiration, role models etc?

I have an incredible number of role models and among them are everything from friends and acquaintances to world stars, movies, photos etc. but my main inspiration is probably nature, humanity and complexity.
However, the artists, producers and songwriters I like are:
Joni Mitchell, Jolie Holland, Björk, Eivør, Sigur Ros, Jonsi, Robert Plant, Nina Simone, Radiohead, Cat Power

etc. The list can be endless

  1. How do you see yourself in a year?

Hopefully happy, loved by myself and by others and closer to my goal of reaching out to more people with my music and art. Then the newly started company may need a little rattle in the coffin, haha! And that life continues to pose new exciting challenges so you don’t get bored.

  1. Can you tell us a little about EQLovesFestival and what’s new this year?

New for this year is partly that a smaller network meeting part will be done in NewYork and a larger one will be done in Gothenburg. The happy news is also that we will be at both the Music Academy “The Artist” in Gothenburg during the day and in the evening at Brewhouse Arena like last year! This is coming

to happen on September 20th! This will be super inspiring and fun!

Foto taken by: Laura Nardelli:

Here is her official music video:

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