Eevalotta Matikainen – bass
Bandleader and bass player Eevalotta Matikainen is originally from Hyrynsalmi in Kainuu. Since (the year) 2000 she has been living in Kokkola and is an active freelance musician playing both electric bass and double bass. Through Soul What? Eevalotta is able to fulfill her dream; to play and make music which is close to the heart together with great musicians. Eevalotta (has) graduated as an instrument teacher in bass from Keski-Pohjanmaan Ammattikorkeakoulu Centria and now teaches bass in Kainuun Ammattiopiston Konservatorio in Kajaani. Eevalotta is CEO of her own company ELive Music, which among other manages all practical arrangements for Soul What? Feat. Joonatan Rautio.
Instruments: Fender Jazzbass ’73, Fender Precisionbass ’66, Rubner-double bass ’85, Ampeg V4-head (70s), Ampeg V2-head (’73-75) & Ampeg 2x10 cabinet, AER Bass Cube2
Joonatan Rautio – saxophone
Joonatan Rautio is one of the most appreciated jazz musicians in Finland as well as on the international scene. When playing with Soul What? he brings a strong jazz tradition to the group and gives solo improvisations a boost through his energy and innovative use of the saxophone. Joonatan challenges the band members to a musical race which gives Soul What? a new level of energy and forces the band to encounter challenging musical situations. Joonatan has performed with many top Finnish and International musical artists, including Jim Beard, Randy Brecker, Adam Nussbaum, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Jon Balke, Mike Stern, Chris Minh Doky, Jukkis Uotila, Lars Danielsson, Anders Jormin and Peter Erskine etc.
Mikael Svarvar – vocals and keyboards
Singer and keyboard player in Soul What?, Mikael Svarvar, has 25 years of experience as a musician in American soul- and gospel music. Mikael has a fabulous voice and knows how to interpret lyrics with genuine feeling. He is a very popular freelance musician in the Swedish-Finnish music scene, and has among other things worked as an arranger and musician for Yle FST5 music shows. Mikael has also published three solo soul music records. Svarvar has graduated with an MA in Music from Musikhögskolan in Piteå. He works as a teacher in Yrkeshögskolan Novia in Pietarsaari.
Instruments: At live shows, Mikael uses a Wurlitzer electric piano and Grand Piano (if available)
Martin Söderbacka – guitar
Martin Söderbacka combines jazz guitar with guitar effects to create different soundscapes, giving Soul What? a vast amount of sounds. Martin co-writes the music for Soul What? together with Eevalotta Matikainen. Currently living in Kokkola, Martin works as a freelance musician and has graduated from Yrkeshögskolan Novia as an instrument teacher and he teaches guitar in Jakobstadsnejdens Musikinstitut among other places. Martin also works for the company ELive Music together with Eevalotta.
Instruments: Gibson ES125TDC & ES125, Gibson Les Paul Studio, Gibson LG-0, ’64 Fender Super Reverb Amp, ’65 Fender Vibro Champ Amp, effects from different manufacturers.
Toni Porthén – drums
The drums are played by the very inventive and explosive virtuoso, Toni Porthén. Through his personal style of drumming he brings fun, surprising and energetic elements to the music. Toni is know as a super-energetic drummer from jazz groups such as; Nassaun Fasaani, MP4 and Lenni-Kalle Taipale Group. He has worked with many of Finland’s top musicians and artists among other Redrama, Anna Abreu and Arttu Wiskari. With an MA in music from Sibelius Academy’s jazz department, Toni Porthén has also taught a large number of drummers in Finland.
Instruments: Yamaha drums, various cymbals