After ten years, The Other Finnish music competition makes a comeback. When Euroviisut was serious and Finns were trying to find a song to please the Europeans jurors - and failed badly most of the times - Syksyn Sävel aka Autumn Melody was shamelessly commercial. (And even created a sister competition Kevään Sävel aka Spring Melody in the early 1980's) Everyone wanted to take part. Big names participated to score a new hit and sell a lot of records. Most of the big singers careers started or got a new boost from the contest. A sort of thing that Melodifestivalen is in Sweden today in Finland of the late 1960's-early 1980's.
When Metsämökin tonttu by Jussi Raittinen & The Boys won in 1974 the contest took a turn into humour music and many several followed when Mikko Alatalo and Erkki Liikanen took home the victories in 1975-76, 1978, 1980-81. But, many evergreens were born at the same time with "real" songs. Those songs may have reached the final, or simply were sent in and with the boost of "Syksyn Sävel reject" made it big in the charts. Some personal favourites are Katri Helena's Syysunelma and Mun sydämeni tänne jää. Both evergreens that failed to win. Scandals, accusation of plagiations and TV favouring certain artists were the norm of the day. Finnish music scene would have such a bore without Syksyn Sävel at the time when we only had two TV-channels and only two contests.
Come 1990's, changes in rules, changes in music business changed it all and slowly the contest died away until the last one was held in 2001. Tonight with an excelent line up it makes a welcome return. But as in the good old days there are the big pre-contest favourites and if Juha Tapio don't win tonight this blogger is mighty surprised.... (Or Kaija Koo?)
And like in the good old days there's a compilation CD released as well!