In the spring of 1946 a group of 15 singers assembled in a café in Pedersöre. They decided to establish a Finnish male voice choir in the town of Pietarsaari, Finland – the first and, to this day, the only one.
Laulu-Jaakot was born.
The chairman of that historic meeting became the choir’s first conductor. His name was Niilo Kentala, a school teacher in Kaustinen.
For over 70 years the voices of Laulu-Jaakot have echoed across the world – from the fjords of Norway to the river Danube in Budapest, from the beaches of Hawaii to the land of the kangaroos, from the Andes mountains to the pubs of Ireland. Every year the choir gives its traditional spring concert in its home town. It also performs loyally in many other local contexts.
Its repertoire comprises traditional and contemporary male voice music: folk songs, pop songs, light choral music, spiritual songs, Christmas songs, drinking songs; it has even performed children’s songs with the Sävelsäkki Children’s Choir.
Laulu-Jaakot has also published two CDs. The first one – Kaunehin maa – was released in 1993 comprising a selection of traditional songs typifying Finnish male voice choirs. The second one – Meristä kaunein – released in 2004 comprises more contemporary material such as male voice songs by Asko Vilén and male voice arrangements of songs by J. Karjalainen.
Today, the choir numbers 20-25 singers and has been led by Johannes Ahlvik – its twelfth conductor – since 2013.