27. time is the Ilios festival in Harstad, the festival for new music.

When should you perhaps not believe that there was room for reggae, but it has festivalledelsen done anything with. For the festival has developed from being a festival with a lot of “new music” to contain several different genres, with a mix of everything from classical to rock.

And then also it become the place for reggae, ” says festival manager Anders Eriksson.

– Same culture, same language

“Reggae from Vittula” is the name of the concert Friday night. The place Vittula in Pajala is most known from Michal Niemis novel “popular music from Vittula”. But the band admits that they are not from Vittula, nor from the Pajala municipality. They are from Haparanda.

– It is on the meänkieli we sing, or tornedalsfinska, it is in principle the same though Pajala is located 20 miles away, ” says Jani Nikola, who plays bass.

– Haparanda is in the same river valley, we are located down by the mouth and Pajala, located 200 km up, so it is the same culture, the same language, shoot the lead singer Adam She.

About why it was reggae, ” says She:

– I would make språkpolitisk impression in Sweden, and raise the status of Finnish and tornedalsfinsk, and reggae has a political character and stamp from the previous and it is used politically, ” he says.

Reggae is also on the skolekonsert

festival manager Anders Eriksson says Iliosfestivalen have changed character.

Anders Eriksson, festival manager for Iliosfestivalen, believes that the people in Tornedalen, who speak meänkieli or tornedalsfinsk, is a significant part of the identity in the North and therefore it is natural to give them space on the festival.

Photo: Øyvind Arvola

“New music” 20 years ago was certainly “cha-ching plong”, but today it may as well be reggae from Tornedalen or sámi music or whatever. It is fun to take out those who speak meänkieli, it can be maybe a 40-50, 000 people or something like that so it is a significant part of the identity of the North, ” he says.

With on the program was also a skolekonsert Thursday morning in which around 300 students participated.

– It is a very nice collaboration with the municipality here in Harstad through the DISTRICT scheme (The cultural rucksack), I think it is nice that the young people in high school get a glimpse of what we have here at the festival of culture and expression, ” he says.

For the band, it is great to get to Iliosfestivalen and play. Friday night goes hovedkonserten of the stack.

Then people can expect something different than they hear on the otherwise, I think. It is simply “jätteroligt” to get hit, it’s always fun to play abroad, ” says Jani Nikola.