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  • Tallinn

    OK gents, my turn with the Lonely Planet question today. . .

    I'm off to Tallinn with Mrs Tommo in a couple of weeks, in search of even colder weather and perhaps a few platters that matter. Has anyone had any joy digging in these parts?

    Ta in advance!
    The Pop Music Library

  • #2
    good luck! it's been bone dry whenever i've had a gander.. amino, mokka or seamus might be able to help out a bit more tho, my main priority was cheep booze when i was there


    • #3
      estonia had a very vibrant jazz scene in the 60s and 70s, with strong influences from Finland and the rest of Scandinavia. there's a lot of high-quality funky jazz-rock and big band jazz from there on the state label (usually labels and sleeves are in cyrillic). i guess our Finnish mates might be able to help you out here on spots and things to look for - uno naissoo is one guy to look out for.
      Chops for show, groove for dough.


      • #4
        There are a few Estonians post on my forum, you could ask them. Also, there's Rhythm Doctor, who lives there now, and runs a club in Tallinn. I played there in April, lovely place, but was with wife so didn't get chance to get my fingers dusty.


        • #5
          Hmmm estonian vodka....
 <- Changed URL


          • #6
            Perhaps not the &quot;new Prague&quot; , but a beautiful city with a great atmoshphere it certainly is&#33; Very compact, so you&#39;ll be able to walk around the centre easily. Digginwise, it&#39;s a tricky one. I haven&#39;t been able to find proper 2nd hand vinyl shops there, but there has to be a couple I&#39;m sure.

            Uno Loop&#39;s bossa lp with Marjo Kuut is one to look out for..very much in-demand with our Japanese friends. Some other good Estonian lp&#39;s exist as well. All music in the USSR was released on the state-owned Melodiya-label, so I&#39;m sure Estonia was on the distribution list for the gems that hide in their back catalogue as well. Plenty of funky jazz / rock was put out on the label..If you want, I can post some of the names later..


            • #7
              Cheers all for the info.

              Did Melodiya LPs have the year of release on them, or am I going to have to do my usual trick of checking shirt collar lengths and haircuts to get anything of the right age?

              Seamus - any names you can provide would be marvellous. . .
              The Pop Music Library


              • #8
                the date the lp was made and released is printed on it- probably in the bottom left or right of the back cover (it may only say the last two digits though, i can&#39;t rememer off hand)- and don&#39;t get it mixed up with the price which is also printed in the same place. quite pricey they were too, not really affordable for the average worker.

                tip: don&#39;t discard things unless it&#39;s after the late 80&#39;s- they seemed to be behind on production techniques and release schedules- often releasing material 3 or 4 years after it was recorded. i&#39;ve got stuff on melodiya from &#39;84 and &#39;87 that sounds great- definitely not what you&#39;d expect from mid eighties material&#33;

                try not to be too influenced by the design of the sleeve- there&#39;s often no relation between it and the music contained within. there were 4 pressing plants for meoldiya too, each with their own design house. so you can find up to 4 different sleeves for the same lp.

                for names, it might be difficult spotting them unless you read cyrillic.. but get yourself over to and memorise all the info form the red square groove compilation.

                enjoy the trip, lovely atmosphere around there&#33;


                • #9
                  Originally posted by [b
                  Quote[/b] ]Did Melodiya LPs have the year of release on them, or am I going to have to do my usual trick of checking shirt collar lengths and haircuts to get anything of the right age?
                  these do not apply in former USSR. neither does the sound of the music corresponding with ours. analogue gear was used for much longer than on this side of the curtain. styles of music are not corresponding either. your knowledge of euro-us music helps v. little.

                  having said that soviet funk is a bit of a eldorado for me. does it really exist?


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by [b
                    Quote[/b] (mokka @ Dec. 03 2004,14:13)]having said that soviet funk is a bit of a eldorado for me. does it really exist?
                    funky rock and funky jazz certainly do, but straight funk? i doubt there&#39;s more than a few tunes, if that.. pretty effin&#39; hard to find, but that area is sooo unknown and undocumented it&#39;s crazy


                    • #11
                      As everyone has said between the lines, Tallinn isn&#39;t the best place for digging. There just isn&#39;t records out there or shops in any matter. And yes, there has been active scene, but those guys haven&#39;t been able to put so much stuff on wax. There are some pretty good acts with couple of nice tunes like Apelsin and Helmut Aniko and Uno Loop.

                      I don&#39;t actually know so much about the artists, but everything is published on Melodyija (Melodika) label as said already. Also there might be a change to find some Polish stuff out there... There might be good acts and spots but I haven&#39;t usually bothered to go there for records since I tried to find out shops, but those just aren&#39;t there... maybe, well I really don&#39;t know

                      Tallin is a nice city, enjoy. Women are beatiful and it&#39;s kind of western atmosphere out there in many sense, but still you can spot the old-russian attitudes in many places... Vodka is cheap, 10 bottles Vodka case of is about 40 euros and 24 cans case of beer is about 14 euros. Imported alcohol is pretty expensive so consentrate on local Viru Valge vodka and Saku beer. There is really nice restaurents which are really cheap. Just grap Tallinn Shopping or Tallin Info brochure from tourist info or hotel lobby and almost everything is printed out there. There is really good Ethnic restaurants out there and the newest addition is African kitchen. There is also a really active reggae scene out there if you&#39;re into it.




                      • #12
                        Thanks again for all the tips and advice. It sounds like there&#39;ll be plenty to divert my attention from the absence of records, and if I do by any miracle stumble on any I&#39;ll keep an open mind and bring back whatever I can carry&#33;

                        I&#39;ll report back if I strike gold. Just nine more days of work to endure. . .
                        The Pop Music Library


                        • #13
                          Just thought I’d bump this back to the top because Tallinn does indeed have record shops:

                          Rockroad Music, Endla 38 (on the ground floor of a small block of flats, just beyond the railway bridge, opposite Kristiine Shopping Centre). Not sure that this was worth the trek out of town, but it has a smallish stock of Western LPs, including an improbably high quota of Dutch stuff. The two men in Santa hats manning the place didn't have much English between them, so I couldn't ask why either!

                          Raamatukoi, Viru 21 (right next to the Viru Gate – so very central and easy to find, particularly as it says ‘Vinyl Records’ in the window). This was more like it. It’s a bookshop with new stuff on the ground floor and excellent secondhand stock on the first floor. The records are upstairs too: boxes and boxes of ‘em, priced at about EEK30 per LP (GBP1.50). Pretty much everything was on Melodiya, and a lot of it was classical, but I still found 12-15 LPs of interest (ie 70s Russian and Estonian pop), some of which I’ll chart if there’s anything decent. Absolutely no jazz, though, from what I could make out.

                          Happy New Year!
                          The Pop Music Library


                          • #14
                            nice one, and good luck with you finds! i'll have to remember those places for whenever i go over next.. if you need help with titles i think lord thames speaketh the cyrilic, or i could check the cat. numbers against the english list from melodiya i have (though it's mostly jazz)


                            • #15
                              Update, the shop on Viru 21 seems to have been replaced by a souvenir shop.

                              Anyways there are two shops now to look out for if you are spending time in Tallinn. There is a big book shop in Harju 1 that has quite a large stock of vinyl, don't get too excited though if your not into classic, although I managed to find some jazz tucked in there.

                              Also check out Lasering Pro Kapitali Arikeskus (Narva mnt. 13) Has a selection of new and old stock here, nothing fancy but worth a look.
                              Buckingham pecker!