violacd04: American Hanuri Prinsessa Volume 4 1949-1951 CD by Viola Turpeinen
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Tracks:
Elamaa suomalaismetsissa (Woods of Finlands)
Carl Jularbo, sov.Viola Turpeinen
2:25
Vingelska
Viola Turpeinen
2:32
Finnish Schottish
Viola Turpeinen
2:50
Ulla's Hambo
Viola Turpeinen
2:56
Sven's Hambo
Viola Turpeinen
2:27
Vekkuli polkka (Jolly Fellow)
Viola Turpeinen
2:51
Heinaaika
Viola Turpeinen
2:24
Talkoo polkka (Working Bee)
Viola Turpeinen
2:33
Kuun virran sillalla (Nidelven)
(On the Bridge in the Moonlight)
Hoddo - Cristensen, sov Viola Turpeinen - Tetos Demetriades
2:36
Meinasin, meinasin olla(Not single anymore)
Kansanlaulu, Viola Turpeinen-Tetos Demetriades
2:29
Ilalla (Tula tullalla) (In The Evening)
Kansanlaulu, Viola Turpeinen
2:31
Tahti ja meripoika (Star & Sailor)
Bror Karlsson, san. Olavi Virta, Viola Turpeinen
2:40
Kallen valssi (Carl's Waltz)
Tetos Demetriades
2:42
Saarijarven Liisa (Saarijarven-Waltz)
Georg Malmsten, san.R.R.Ryynanen
2:44
Sataa vetta, sataa lunta(Its raining & Snowing)
Viola Turpeinen - Tetos Demetriades
2:33
Finnish-Sweish Schottish
Tetos Demetriades
2:30
Ellin polkka (levan polkka)
Kansansavel, sov. Viola Turpeinen - Tetos Demetriades
2:30
Two Row Accordion
Viola Turpeinen
2:37
Taika yo Viola Turpeinen
2:45
Meilla ei taalla ole (Vieraalla maalla)
(We Have No Home)
sov.Tetos Demtriades
2:38
Kullallein mina kaffia keitan(Cooking Coffee For My Girl)
Kansanlaulu, sov. Tetos Demetriades
2:36
Sydammestani rakastan (I Love you Truly)
sov. Tetos Demetriades
2:48
Suomalainen sottiisi ja Kivijarven polkka
Kansanlaulu, Viola Turpeinen
3:31
Total Time
55.48
Sound Samples:
Name
Time
mp3 file size
RElamaa suomalaismetsissa (Woods of Finlands)
20s
Vingelska
20s
Finnish Schottish
20s
Ulla's Hambo
20s
Sven's Hambo
20s
Vekkuli polkka (Jolly Fellow)
20s
Heinaaika
20s
Talkoo polkka (Working Bee)
20s
Kuun virran sillalla (Nidelven)
20s
Meinasin, meinasin olla(Not single anymore)
20s
Ilalla (Tula tullalla) (In The Evening)
20s
Tahti ja meripoika (Star & Sailor)
20s
Kallen valssi (Carl's Waltz)
20s
Saarijarven Liisa (Saarijarven-Waltz)
20s
Sataa vetta, sataa lunta(Its raining & Snowing)
20s
Finnish-Sweish Schottish
20s
Ellin polkka (levan polkka)
20s
Two Row Accordion
20s
Taika yo
20s
Meilla ei taalla ole (Vieraalla maalla)(We Have No Home)
20s
Kullallein mina kaffia keitan(Cooking Coffee For My Girl)
20s
Sydammestani rakastan (I Love you Truly)
20s
Suomalainen sottiisi ja Kivijarven polkka
20s
20s
Description: American Hanuri Prinsessa Volume 4 1949-1951 CD by Viola Turpeinen
Viola Turpeinen Biography     Other Viola Turpeinen CD's

Viola Tupeinen (1900-1958) was the best-known Finnish-American accordionist of her time. The fourth volume of her complete recordings takes us through the final years of her recording career, 1949-51, when she was recording regularly for Standard Records in New York.

Viola Turpeinen and her husband Wiliam (Vili, Bill) syrjala had been playing regularly at the Finnish Workers' Hall (Tyovaentalo) in New York since the 1930s. Viola had made her first records in 1928, and now she was the only Finnish-American artist who was still recording regularly. After the war, she had moved from RCA Victor to Standard Records, ans she was the label's leading Scandinavian artist along with Walter Eriksson, a New York-based accordionist whose parents were ethnic Swedes from Finland. Eriksson's Finnish recordings were usually credited to "Pohjolan Pojat" (The Nordic Boys).

Between 1949 and 1951, Viola was still recording a dozen sides annually. Her repertoire reflects the changing tasted of Finnish-Americans. Many of the titles were traditional dance tunes from Scandinavia, much like the ones she and other Finnish- American accordionists like Willie Larsen had been recording in the 1920s. Wood of Finland (Livet i Finnskogarna) is one of the best-known Scandinavian waltzez of all time. The "woods of Finland" actually refer to "the Finn forests". a huge wooded area on the border of Sweden and Norway, which was orifinally populated by immigrants from Finland in the 16th century. Finnish was still widely spoken amng the farmers and woodsmen of the area in the 19th century. The tune is generally credited to the famous Swedish accordionist Carl Jularbo, who first recorded it in 1915, but a court later found that it was actually an older folk tune arranged by Jularbo. Workign Bee is a Finnish dance tune (Nujulan talkoopolkka) which had earlier been recorded by the Finnish comedian J.Alfred Tanner in 1926.

However, it is obvious that Viola was also following new musical trends. Saarjarven Liisa and Meilla ei taalla are Finnish pop songs from the 1930s. Tahti ja meripoika (The star and the sailor) had been a big hit in 1948, after it had been recorded by te up and coming Finnish singer Olavi Virta. Kuun virran sillalla (Nidelven was a Norwegian song which was also hugely popular in Sweden - six competing versions of the song were recorded in that country in 1949. The first Finnish recording of the songs was made by Henry. Theel in the same year. The overall sound of Viola's recordings is mordern, and reflects the current popularity of "polka musci" in the United States. Tetos Demtriades, who had earlier been a popular Greek-American singer, and it is unlikely that he had contributed much to these works.

Sydamestani rakastan (I love you truly), made in 1951, was Viola's last recording. the ethnic compostion of Manhattan was now changing. In the 1920s and 1930s, Harlem had been one of the centers of the Finnish-American population, with two large Finnish halls, a Finnish newspaper, and even a Finnish-language theater group appearing regularly at the Workers Hall, ut now the Finns were moving out. the Finnish Workers Hall at 5th avenue and 127th Street was sold to a Black congregation and converted to a church. In October 1952, Viola and Bill decided to move to Lake Worth, Florida, which now had a rapidly expanding Finnish population.

There were already two Finnish halls in the Lake Worth area, Turistihaali (Touris Hall) in Lantana and Kenttahaali (Field Hall) in Lake Worth. As the Tourist Hall already had a regular orchestra, Viola and Bill started promoting dances at the Field Hall, which was owned by the workers Educational Association. It now became their regular venue, although they also made tours to the Midwest and New England in the summers. Viola and Bill played at the Field Hall regularly until Viola's final illness. The dances became very popular, and they soon had to expand the hall. Te couple had originally lived in a rented apartment, but in 1955 they purchased a house on Riedel Avenue. Viola called it "the house that polka built".

Soon afterwards Viola learned that she had cancer. Despite the illness, she continued to play as long as possible, and when she was eventually forced to stop performing, she obtained a lighter instrument which she could play on their porch. Viola Turpeinen-Syrjala died at Lake Worth Hospital on Friday evening, December 26th 1958. At her memorial service, they played Bill's composition Kukkjan suviaamu (The wandered on a summer morning), which had been one of Viola's favorites. Her body was cremated, but Bill kept her ashes at home in a urn, to be eventually buried with him.

After her death, the newspaper Raivaaja (Fitchburg, MA) wrote that "the acordion most widely known among Finnish-Americans will now be quiet forever'. The writer also recalled Viola's first appearance at the Saima Hall in Fitchburg in the 1920s, when she had filled the 625seat auditorium to capacity, and many fans had to be turned away.

Bill, now officially William Syralia, continued to play at the Field Hall untill the 1980s. His last accompanist was accordionist Jorma Vuorinen from New York. Over the years. they still used the old bass drum with the legend VIOLA TURPEINEN ORCHESTRA. Bill finally retired in 1989, after playing regularly for almost 80 years. The last time he played was in 1991, when researcher Toivo Tamminen met him in Lake Worth and encouraged him to open again his violin case and play the old melody Mustalainen on the single remaining string.

William Syralia died at Kennedy Hospital in Lake Worth, Florida on Sunday, April 4th 1993. He had just celebrated his 95th birthday at Field Hall. He, and the urn containing Viola's ashes, were buried a few weeks later at Shell Lake Cemetery, Wisconsin.

Although she made her last recordings in 1951, Viola's recordings continued to be available in the United States for a long time. They were issued several times on LPS in the 1950s and 1960s, and on cassettes in the 1970s. In some cases, old recordings by the Walter Eriksson orchestra were also erroneously reissued under her name on vinyl, causing some discographical confusion. However, most of her recordings have never been available in Finland, although she has a legendary reputation in Finnish folk music circles. It is high time that all of her recordings are again available on CD.

The final track on the CD is an air-check from April 19,1936, which was recently discovered at the Library of Congress. It features Viola as guest performer on the popular radio show "Major Bowes Amateur Hour". Acter a brief interview, she plays her own composition Kivijarven polkka in front of a New York studio audience. The polka has not been recorded otherwise, but there exists a sheet music copy from the 1930s.

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