Verneri Pohjola

The unique sound and style of trumpeter and composer Verneri Pohjola is immediately recognizable. His work communicates particular depth, warmth and humanness through eloquent improvisation. Or as described in Helsingin Sanomat, Verneri Pohjola is ”The most human-voiced trumpet player in the country.”

Pohjola has had continuous success in making improvisation and jazz music approachable for audiences across genres, while never losing integrity or will to explore and surprise.

As an offspring of two artists, Pohjola started playing trumpet at age of 15. Originally inspired by rock and jazz, he eventually chose the trumpet due to his love for film music. He studied at Helsinki Pop & Jazz Conservatory, then at Örebro Music University in Sweden and finally at the Sibelius Academy from which he graduated in 2012.

In the beginning of the millennium Pohjola became a household name to larger audiences as the leader of the group Ilmiliekki Quartet and as the sole instrumental soloist in the hugely popular soul group Quintessence. His Emma (Finnish Grammy) prize winning debut album Aurora (Texicalli Records 2009/ACT 2011) shook the European and American jazz scenes claiming excellent reviews all around.

By the time of the release of his second album Ancient History he had irrevocably consolidated his reputation as one of Europe’s most appreciated jazz musicians. He has since released four highly acclaimed albums with the British label Edition records, of which the latest one The Dead Don’t Dream was released in May 2020.

In recent years he has been awarded with another Emma for his album Bullhorn in 2015 and the Yrjö Prize, which is the highest acknowledgement for a jazz musician in Finland.

His most current vehicles of expression are the Verneri Pohjola Quartet and his duo Animal Image together with the phenomenal drummer and gong master Mika Kallio. He continues to work actively in Europe collaborating with the highest level of jazz musicians and improvising artists.

His focus in the future will be composing new music for his quartet, but also for orchestras and other settings. He will be collaborating broadly with artists across the field in specially designed settings with his unique, genre-breaking vision.

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“Pohjola is a talented and sophisticated musician, unafraid to play beyond convention.”
Karl Ackermann, Allaboutjazz.com

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