2019 is a set to be a monumental year in the story of Ja Ja Ja, as we celebrate 10 years of our club nights taking place in London – and 5 years since we first staged them in Berlin!
Over the past 10 years, more than 250 new Nordic artists have performed at Ja Ja Ja’s club nights and festivals, with over 100 shows taking place in London, Berlin, Brighton, Hamburg, Vienna, Tokyo, Salzburg, Graz and Budapest. The likes of MØ, Aurora, Jaakko Eino Kalevi, Silvana Imam and Vök have risen through Ja Ja Ja’s ranks to achieve widespread success, making the platform the premier destination to discover the best emerging Nordic music.
We’ll be celebrating these special anniversaries in various exciting ways as 2019 unfolds – starting off by heading to Denmark’s SPOT Festival to present a special show with Ja Ja Ja alumnus IDA KUDO!
Danish artist IDA KUDO has joined us in both London and Berlin in 2019, offering up her phenomenal stage show and brilliant band to audiences in each city. Having just released a brand new single entitled ‘Born In The Sun’ (listen below!), we’re thrilled to present IDA KUDO’s performance at SPOT Festival in Aarhus, on Saturday May 4th at 16:00.
Ja Ja Ja London returned last week to present our final show of the spring season – and what a season it’s been! We’ve had the likes of IDA KUDO, Color Dolor, Cell7, Alexander Oscar and Linn Koch Emmery joining us to perform so far this year, and April 25th saw us wrap up the season with three more phenomenal artists. Our photographer Rachel Lipsitz was on hand to capture the night as it unfolded, so scroll down to explore a gallery of the show, featuring Norway’s Konradsen, GRANT from Sweden and Iceland’s Moses Hightower!
Ja Ja Ja will be setting off for a summer break – but fear not, we’ll be returning to London in September! In the meantime, keep a close eye on Ja Ja Ja as we pop up here and there over the summer – we’ll keep you in the loop, so make sure to sign up as a Ja Ja Ja member (for free!) to be the first to hear our latest news.
20-year-old songwriter/artist Saga Back from Gothenburg debuted in mid-November last year with the single ‘There You Go…Again’, a song that has already have garnered more than 800,000 streams on Spotify. Despite her young age, Saga has been writing music for years and now she’s ready to reveal the follow-up – the superbly atmospheric ‘Cry’.
“The idea for this song came from watching a video about volcanoes where someone said that eruptions are horrifying but at the same time really beautiful. “It’s absolute destruction and creation at the same time”. That expression stuck with me. I think it’s a beautiful description of what happens to you when you go through something. That you fall apart and break completely but at the same time you change and it’s almost as if you recreate yourself”, Saga explains.
‘Cry’ is the kind of melancholic song that’s certain to soothe your soul, all led by Saga’s poignant and unique voice. She’s definitely an up-and-coming artist to look out for, so we’re really looking forward to hearing more from her in the future. In the meantime, keep yourself warm with ‘Cry’ below…
After a refreshing winter break, Ja Ja Ja returned to Berlin on the 7th March to get a brand new season of our monthly new music series underway!
Joining us to kick off the brand new season were Denmark’s IDA KUDO, Norway’s Hajk and Iceland’s very own dj flugvél of geimskip, and photographer Ceren Saner was on hand to capture events as they unfolded – scroll down to check out the full gallery!
Ja Ja Ja will be back in Berlin next month, so make sure to sign up as a Ja Ja Ja member (for free!) to be the first to hear about the line up, and to gain access to our exclusive ticket pre-sale. See you in April!
We had 3 excellent artists perform : IDA KUDO from Denmark, who delivered stunning renditions of tracks from her latest EP Gold, along with a debut UK performance for rising Swedish star Vera Hotsauce and a rousing set from Finnish duo Color Dolor! Our photographer Rachel Lipsitz was on hand to snap the evening as events unfolded, so scroll down to find out more.
Ja Ja Ja will return to London on the 25th April, so if you haven’t already, make sure to sign up as a Ja Ja Ja member to be the first to hear about our upcoming line up, and to access tickets to all of our events for just £5!
With dreamy vocals and full to the brim with atmosphere, ‘DINO’ is a vibrant song from BRÍET, carving out a space between pop and R’n’B. Co-written with Pálmi Ragnar Ásgeirsson, it follows on from her thrilling debut EP, 22.03.99 and the assured single ‘Carousel’, both of which have drawn wide acclaim from critics and other artists alike.
Having delivered a captivating performance at Sónar Reykjavík at the start of last year, the 19 year old went on to win the Singer of the Year award at the People’s Choice ceremony and is clearly on a roll, collecting over 1.5 million streams on Spotify already. That number is likely to sky-rocket with the release of ‘DINO’, given that once you start listening, it’s almost impossible to switch it off. For a single that’s less than four minutes long, it provides an immersive listening experience and showcases BRIET’s talent to the fullest.
There are already rumours of a debut album set for release later this year, and if it contains anything like the tracks that BRÍET has put out so far, it’s destined to be a cracker. Keep your appetite whetted by listening to ‘DINO’, out now, below…
At just 19 years old, the Swedish singer and producer has already gained a reputation for her confident, stylish sound and a self-esteem that’s been described as ‘indestructible’. Thankfully, she’s got the goods to back that swagger up, as evidenced in the irresistible electronic flourishes heard on debut single ‘Bottom’s Up‘ last summer. That was followed by her debut EP Let Me Show U What Love Is later in the year and now we’re treated to a similarly impressive second EP, Happy/Bad.
Joining a surge of young artists who are writing and producing their own music, Happy/Bad demonstrates a maturity that only adds to its appeal. It’s a three-track offering – four if you count the fact that ‘Minute’ appears twice, with one version featuring a contribution from the 22 year old Swedish artist Mapiano – each of which stands strong in its own right. ‘Minute’ perfectly captures the auto-tune heavy American hip-hop vocal sound that emerged in the 00’s, ‘Hotsauce’ is a sensual song filled with a driving sense of urgency and ‘T-$hirts’ is bound to find a place as a club-goer’s favourite, packed full of energy.
Explaining her inspiration behind the EP, Vera Hotsauce says: “It’s about me, my artist name and together with humour and smash-tunes it feel so fucking natural. You usually say that things are happy/sad, like songs that make you cry. But to have done something that is more happy/bad, somehow makes it feel deeper. I have waited for this for so long…I love this mixtape more than anything right now – it is me. For real.“
With a performance lined up at the next Ja Ja Ja London club night on the 21st March, now’s your chance to familiarise yourself with Happy/Bad by taking a listen below:
Liberian-born Finnish singer songwriter Jesse Markin has been on our radar since the release of his debut double single last year. Actually, we were so impressed that we put him on our list of Finnish artists to watch in 2019 a few weeks ago, calling him “the kind of artist that comes along rarely.”
Stepping into the new year with the single ‘Jericho’, Jesse found inspiration from the biblical origin. Speaking of the track, Jesse says: “The name of the song came from the Old Testament, where the Israelites had to start from the walls of Jericho to get to their promised land. These walls can be found everywhere and that was the idea that led to a song.”
‘Jericho’ is about letting go and, through that, finding peace – and the accompanying video, directed by Kim Koponen, is showcasing a set of stories that revolves around this, who explains: “For example, Jesse’s character is put in a situation where he is forced to choose between lifting his finger off the switch or not. Or, the woman who is depicted as having lost a loved one. Or the kid letting go of his balloon. All these stories represent life saying that sometimes to get closure we have to let go but it’s all up to the individual”.
The song and the video evoke attention in an irresistible way – watch below and be on the lookout for more from the Finnish shooting star in the future…
With brilliant performances from Denmark’s Alexander Oscar, Iceland’s Cell7 and Sweden’s Linn Koch-Emmery, it was a stellar start to the new season – so a huge thank you to all of the artists that came to London to take part in the show! And the night was completed with Swedish Semlor buns, and Icelandic schnapps and chocolate – to add an ever more Nordic flavour to the evening.
Our photographer Rachel Lipsitz was on hand to capture events as they unfolded at The Lexington, so scroll on down to check out a gallery from the show!
Sweden has always been known as a pop-producing powerhouse, and on the back of the offerings that’ve arrived in front of us in the past few years, we’ve got no reason to argue with this title at all.
The likes of Zara Larsson, Seinabo Sey and The Toves (Lo and Styrke, obviously) to name just a handful, have enjoyed phenomenal success by letting their unique takes on stellar indie pop thrive, and the coming crop of artists we’ve selected for this year’s ‘5 To Watch’ series are all cut from a similar cloth. Want to know more? Then you’re in the right place – read on to see who we’re hugely excited to hear more from in 2019!
Photo: Alva Roselius
Linn Koch-Emmery has been on our radar for a while now, but it feels like she’s poised to take a great big leap forward in 2019 – and what better place to get it all moving than at our London club night next month?
Having dropped a stand-out debut EP called Boys back in 2017, Stockholm native Linn returned in the closing days of 2018 to unleash her sophomore EP Waves, propped up by the chiming lead tune ‘Don’t Sleep On My Luv’. Over the course of these two dazzlers of EPs, Linn has shown herself to be quite the dab hand at pulling together big melodies and irresistible beats, to craft some of the catchiest indie anthems we’ve heard in a long while.
Linn will be joining us at the first Ja Ja Ja London show of 2019 (find out more!) before embarking on a tour that’ll see her heading around Europe. Keep an eye on her Facebook page for more info – and check out the Waves EP below!
Psych-rock maestros Melby are already promising big things for 2019, with a by:Larm performance freshly announced, and the promise of more tour dates to follow. The Stockholm four-piece have been jangling round our speakers since 2016, when their debut single ‘Human’ became a firm Ja Ja Ja favourite thanks to its sumptuous central melody and vocals that you could run away with.
The outfit went on to release a handful of singles, culminating in a 2017 eponymous EP, before returning in 2018 with new tracks ‘Reject’ and ‘Overthinking’. The latest songs see Melby take a more adventurous approach to their songwriting than ever before, while making sure that exquisite melodies remain at the heart of what they do. And when a band releases two such fine singles, it begs the question – when will the album arrive?! Soon we hope – but until then, we’re happy to revel in the dynamic twists and turns of ‘Overthinking’ – and we recommend that you do the same.
If there was one album that we couldn’t bear to turn off in 2018, it was without a doubt the dazzling debut In Bloom from Stockholm’s GRANT.
From the first trickles of the drama-infused debut single ‘Waterline’ to the lightness-infused follow-up ‘Shimmer’, GRANT has deftly demonstrated that she can turn any emotion into an absorbing melody, and her debut album is a testament to this. So much so, that GRANT found herself nominated for not one, but two Swedish Grammys – for Best Pop, and Best Future Artist, before releasing a superb cover of Tove Styrke’s ‘Changed My Mind’ to wrap up an already memorable year.
With the album out of the bag, we’re crossing our fingers for plentiful live dates from GRANT in the new year so that we can finally experience In Bloom‘s vivid depictions IRL. While we await the shows, have a look at GRANT’s video for ‘Changed My Mind’ below…
Also known as 25% of Steve Buscemi’s Dreamy Eyes, Chez Ali is a Swedish artist who has most recently been spotted dropping tracks of his very own. The first was called ‘Blue Cheese’ so of course, our interest was immediately piqued. And by the time the second single ‘Adore You’ hit our speakers last year, we were hooked – line and sinker.
His debut EP Buenas Noches Club was released late last year and is an all round irresistible listen, packed with delectable, danceable tunes that will stay with you for days. You’ll find flecks of jazz in the guitar lines and playful, whimsical melodies throughout Chez Ali’s tracks, with references to Mac DeMarco and Connan Mockasin often appearing next to his name. But have no doubt – these tracks are something of their very own, and they’re set to be aired at by:Larm Festival and beyond in the coming months.
So, dig in to the EP below, and we’ll see you down the front for a dance, yeah?
Photo: Julian Marin
If you’re looking to make a statement with your first single, then you should follow the Vera Hotsauce method: bring pristine, glossy vocals, sit them atop some heady beats and irresistible electronic flourishes, add a whole lot of heart and soul, and entice the world into listening further.
This is exactly what Sweden’s Vera Hotsauce did when her debut single ‘Bottom’s Up’ was launched in the summer of 2018, and excitement for this emerging artist was further heightened when her debut EP Let Me Show U What Love Is arrived late last year.
Having already written alongside the likes of Elliphant and Diplo’s team, we’re certain that more excellent offerings will be landing in our playlists soon – so spend a bit of time getting to know Vera Hotsauce via the video for ‘Bottom’s Up’, and keep an eye on Ja Ja Ja as we keep you on top of the artist’s upcoming news!