Bands know better than most those moments when you’ve got to put together what you have to keep the show on the road. It could be trying to turn a dime into a dollar to record a demo or trying to fix an equipment meltdown mid-show. At Flow Festival Helsinki, an explosion of music, art, creativity and culture in a breathtaking former power station we’ve been asking the hottest local bands and international superstars: What was your biggest DIY or die moment?
Little Dragon, Sweden
Erik Bodin, percussion: I remember one time we went to play in Colombia. For the first time ever I saw the the kick pedal, the stick that actually hits the drum, was made out of wood. After two songs I had made hole through the skin of the drum and I was like ‘aaaaaaaaaaaaah!’ Extreme desperate stress! I made a drum skin out of gaffer tape during the show. I made the hole disappear and made a whole skin with gaffer tape and the show went on. That was my do it yourself moment, but as a band we’ve had a lot of those…
Check out Little Dragon.
Cocoa Music (Finnish hip hop label)
Markku Mäkelä: It’s been a constant DIY or die vibe for us from the very beginning. We are a young label and as you can probably imagine, it’s not exactly easy to break new hip hop artists from Finland. It’s hasn’t been what people expect from Finland. Cocoa Music basically started as a very street level operation around Gracias and I have to say we are more than happy to see the guys like him, Noah Kin and Biniyam getting a lot of attention around Europe and the US at the moment. We’ve been working on a true DIY level and finally the work is paying off. But the DIY mentality sticks with us. We’ve been just grindin’ on a daily basis.
Get deep into Cocoa Music.
Aino Venna, Finland
Aino Venna, frontwoman: Our band started in that kind of moment. I had been doing a solo thing for about two years and I got my first bigger gig at a huge venue in Helsinki. The idea of me playing there alone was terrifying, so I just started to ask people to join me. Our drummer was playing on the street and I remembered him because we used to hang out when we were fifteen. He was playing this wooden box, and I was like ‘Hey, that’s cool. What is that?’ And he was like, ‘Hey, its called cajonita.’ I liked it so I asked him if he wanted to play in my band and he said ‘yes… who’s playing with you?’ At that point it was only us, but then we found this 12-year old double-bass player (he’s not 12, he’s really 22), so he came and we had just two weeks to rehearse. We found each other, played the first gig and it went from there.
Find out more about Aino Venna.