This years Tammerfest was just awesome. It was the first time that the main part of the festival was held at it’s new location in Tamperes Ratina Stadium. One thing that makes the Tammerfest very unique and different from all the other festivals here in Finland is the fact that it is a real city festival that approaches not only music fans but also the people who simply like to hang out in the many bars and cafes around the beautiful city. You don’t necessarily need to buy a ticket to be a part of the festival, you can feel the spirit in every corner of the city for almost a whole week long.
Those who decided to buy a ticket could either choose between different types of ticket offers or go to every single show that the Tammerfest had to offer. This gives you the fantastic opportunity to plan your very own schedule for the fest.
We left Helsinki on Friday morning and reached Tampere after a two and a half hours drive. This was our meanwhile third Tammerfest and I have to admit that this festival is always something special for us as Tampere has been our home for over two great years. Due to that we were lucky enough not to need a hotel. I think that would have been a problem as every year all the hotels are full until the last bed during the whole festival. You have to make your bookings many month in advance already. So should you ever plan to go to the Tammerfest, which you really should do at least once; make sure to book your hotel room right in time.
After having a quick coffee with some friends we rushed to the Ratina Stadium to do our interview with the Finnish Band, YÖ (Finnish for “Night”). The interview went well, their gig was great and it seemed that the weather was on our side. Unfortunately just for two hours. Than the rain set in…
I think one thing we got used to during this festival summer is that it keeps on raining and raining most of the time. It was just time for Popeda to enter the stage when it started to rain cats and dogs. Not even the give rain coats helped. But the bad weather couldn’t stop real Rock`n Roll and so most of the people stayed to see Pate and Co.
Popeda has been the last band to play at Ratina that day but don’t think that the festival was over with that. While other festivals have one so called “Jatkoklubi” (Finnish for “After Club”) the Tammerfest offers you plenty of opportunities to party after the shows. If you want to see some more bands, you could for example buy a separate ticket to Ilves bar and Night Club, you could go to a smaller Rock Bar like Jack the Rooster to have one of the famous delicious Burgers the Rock Restaurant has to offer while enjoying a cover band or you could simply sip some wine and have a chat with your friends on one of the many terraces in Hämeenkatu or elsewhere in the city. But you definitely won’t get bored. We kind of did everything just mentioned. After a bar hopping night we fell into our bed around 3 am.
However there was not much time for sleep. Saturday started quite early for us as we had a full schedule that day. Our dear friend was organising a barbeque party that was set extra early as we had to leave on time for the festival again. So we had our own little Tammerfest already right before everything else opened again.
Time was running and so we almost missed Chisus gig that started at 18.30. we have seen her and the band now four times and it´s always a great show. So we watched the last 30 minutes of the gig before we finally had the time to check out the new festival area a bit closer. I have to say that we liked the new location much much better. A good choice! There were two stages right next to each other, the Riverside Bar where you could celebrate with your friends and have a couple of drinks while listening to the bands, the VIP area right next to the lake. All in all a very nice atmosphere. Chisu was followed by a great show of Lauri Tähkä and Eepu Normaali. Both great Finnish bands. Eepu Normaali was the last band for us at Ratina as we left to another venue, Pakkahuone where Michael Monroe was scheduled for 00.30.
While walking through the city you could see many many people enjoying the city festival and you had a hard time finding yourself a place at a terrace. We decided to head on to Pakkahuone to sit at Klubis terrace next door. We were fortunate to get the last available place there. A little later some friends joined us and we had a great time waiting for the first show of the evening to start.
The Flaming Sideburns where the first band and kicked of the final Tammerfest evening. They are great but somehow their singer reminds too much on Mick Jagger from The Rolling Stones. This is not necessarily a bad thing but it felt a little bit strange. However their show was cool. After them you we went to see a smaller band called The Souls. The guys played at the Klubi stage, the smaller stage which is located right next door. The ticket for that evening cost only 22,00 Euro which is not much in my opinion. I mean you have three bands and access to two venues without even leaving the building to change the location.
As I said Michael rocked the Pakkahuone half an hour after midnight. There is not really much to add. Everybody who has ever seen a show of this great band knows that they never get boring. We had so much fun during their gig. Of course we didn’t go home after their set that lasted over an hour. We went to a small bar close to the venue, called Amadeus, where we haven’t been in ages. I can’t even remember when we have been there the last time even when we were still living in Tampere. It was super great to spend time with our friends which we haven’t seen for a while that it totally hit us by surprise when the bar suddenly was about to close at around 03.00 am. We left home with one of the night buses. As the “nice” bus driver didn’t show the stops we missed ours and had to walk about 15 minutes back. We were “home” at around 05.00 am.
The night was short and we found ourselves at the breakfast table around 10.30am. After spending a bit more time at our friends place we left back home to Helsinki.
There where so many great bands playing that day, that you stayed breathless when you wanted to see them all. Here is a list of all the bands who played at the Tammerfest on the weekend we where there:
Robin, Petri Nygard, Neljä Ruusua, Yö, Fintelligents, Kontra, Kaija Koo, Popeda.
Pakkahuone and Klubi:
Kari Peitsamo, The Nomads, Sara, The Soundtrack of Our Live.
Ilves Bar and Night:
Poets of the Fall
Mustat Enkelit; Cheek, Erin, Lauri Tähkä, SF Blues, Pariisin Kevät, Chisu, Eppu Normaali.
and many many more…
If I have to summarize this years Tammerfest I would put it like this: Great Bands, Super atmosphere, great food and a super great time with our dear friends. Just like a festival has to be! ;)
A special Thanks to Taija Holm for always making the organisation so easy and smoothly for us.