Tasavallan Presidentti - what Prog from Finland was all about in 1970.

Tasavallan Presidentti – Live At Ruisrock Festival – 1970 – Nights At The Roundtable: Rock Without Borders/Mini-Concert Edition

Tasavallan Presidentti - what Prog from Finland was all about in 1970.

Tasavallan Presidentti – what Prog from Finland was all about in 1970.

Click on the link here for Audio Player – Tasavallan Presidentti – Live At Ruisrock Festival, Turku Finland – August 22, 1970 – YLE Radio Finland

As Progressive Rock started to gain popularity, the message quickly spread throughout the world. Coupled with several companies actively engaged in importing new and interesting records from far corners of the earth, the audience was now able to get a better idea of what was going on in the area of current Music, and was able to access it in ways they weren’t able to, even two years earlier.

One of those bands, heavily imported into this country, but which sadly never got a label domestically, was the Finnish group Tasavallan Presidentti.

Tasavallan Presidentti represented what was probably an ideal situation in Prog – they took elements of Psych and Rock and blended elements of Jazz and Classical and combined it all with high technical proficiency into a tight, cohesive tapestry of sound. This was what ProgRock was all about, or much of it. But what it signified to many people was that new and progressive music was no longer just in the domain of the Brits or the Italians or Dutch – it was now a worldwide phenomenon. And bands like Tasavallan Presidentti were just the tip of the iceberg.

Since their albums were never issued in the U.S., they never performed live here – which was a shame. So this concert, part of the Ruisrock Festival in Turku, Finland from August 22n 1970, is a rare opportunity to sample a band who were very influential and very popular among Prog enthusiasts at the time.

Another extreme rarity and another chance to hear music which didn’t get the widespread exposure or commercial appeal perhaps it needed (but thankfully didn’t) in order to achieve mass popularity. Nonetheless, Progrock was the product of word-of-mouth, by enthusiasts and sympathetic voices in the Press and those pockets on FM Radio – and it got to the people it needed to get to. And they all took it and ran with it and made it their own.

And that’s why we love music.

Here is Tasavallan Presidentti from a set recorded by YLE (Finnish Radio) at the Ruisrock Festival on August 22, 1970. No Finnish-to-English translation needed, unless you want to know what the rather excited DJs are saying at the end.

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