A Conversation with Finnish Singer-Songwriter Helmie
Helmie is a Finnish singer-songwriter who started her musical journey at the age of five. Starting with the piano, she soon found joy in writing songs and was quickly writing original music for her elementary school band. Her musical sound is majorly affected by the years that she spent living abroad in Australia and England. She writes about her rich emotional world with honesty. Helmie has played alongside artists such as The Mowgli’s and Liimo.
With her single, “Lighthouse,” out now, we took some time to hear more from Helmie. Read below to learn more about Helmie, the story behind her single, and what’s to come.
Hi Helmie! Let’s start with how did you get your artist name?
Hi there! For sure, Helmie comes from my middle name which is Helmi. In Finnish, Helmi is directly translated as “pearl” or in Finnish slang ”super cool/ dope.” Then, I just added the “e” because I thought it sounded cooler (also my name starts with an “e” as well, so that was a bonus)!
What city are you from and where are you based now?
I am from Helsinki, Finland and am based here too. I was born in Stockholm
though and have also lived in Australia and England, so in a way, I’m from a lot of places haha!
At what point in your life did you decide to pursue a career in music? How did you get started?
I come from a musical family. At every family gathering someone always picked up a guitar and started singing, so in a way, I feel like music is in my blood. However, I grew up surrounded by crazy talented people as I went to schools that specialized in music. It really wasn’t clear to me that I would be good enough or interesting enough to pursue music for a long time as I always kinda compared myself to everyone around me. When I finished school and first moved to England, my boyfriend at the time and I were having a conversation about the future, and he asked me what I’d do if I didn’t have to please anybody else or think about how much money I was making. I said I’d sing. I feel like that changed everything for me, I realised how much I loved music and how happy it made me. So, I decided it was worth taking it more seriously.
Has your upbringing played a role in shaping who you are and defining your sound today? If so, how?
Oh definitely! I feel like we’re all a combination of the experiences that we’ve had, the people we’ve been surrounded with, and how we’ve been raised. As mentioned, I spent almost six years living abroad, five of those without my friends or family in the same country as me. It was tough at times, but it’s also made me the woman I am today. I am majorly influenced by the music scenes in England and Australia because of my experiences of living there. Growing up, I was also told a lot that my emotions were “too much” and that I was weak for crying. It took me a long time to understand that actually my biggest strength is being open to the world and showing my emotions. I want my
music to be a way for people who sometimes feel a lot in this crazy world — that it’s freaking amazing. It means you’re living! What’s better than that!
How would you describe your sound to readers who may not be familiar with you?
I love mixing electronic sounds and synths with organic instruments such as piano and guitar. I’d say my music is Indie Pop with honest lyrics and Finnish twist.
Do you have any hobbies outside of music? What do you do to stay creative?
I do indeed. I’ve played football or soccer (whichever you like to call it) for most of my life, and still enjoy playing it with my mates. Nature is also really important to me. I feel like there isn’t a better way to recharge than going for a walk into a park or a forest. Being creative in other ways than music is also important to me: painting, photography and doing DIYs. I think overall creativity needs time and space, so I try to give myself time to just sit with my thoughts.
Who are some of your main musical influences?
I think both of my parents listened to some really good music when I was young. On road trips, we’d listen to artists such as Randy Crawford, Toto, Earth, Wind & Fire, and Jennifer Lopez. I love going back to their music! These days what moves me the most are artists who never stop growing with their music and are trying new things. I am also drawn to honesty in lyrics. I love LÉON, Emilie Nicholas, Amber Mark, and Oh Wonder to name a few of my current favourites.
What are some of your future music career goals?
I hope I’m still making music when I’m old and grey, and I hope people find my music and come to my gigs. I just want to share the joy of music and connect with people through it.
Now onto your release, “Lighthouse.” What inspired this song?
I was at uni in England when I wrote “Lighthouse.” I was sitting at the University’s library and was supposed to be writing an essay on something. I was super annoyed at being so emotional, and always getting hurt by being so open to every single new person and opportunity. Back then, I thought it was a curse to be like that, and I wondered if it was ever gonna get better. So, I wrote “Lighthouse.”
What is “Lighthouse” about in your own words?
Losing hope after multiple disappointments, but also knowing there has to be something better ahead.
What is your favorite lyric in “Lighthouse” and why?
“Feel my body in surge, aching of hope.” Think it just describes quite well the deepest feeling of hope. It can take over your whole body.
What message do you hope fans take away from your music and from “Lighthouse?”
That it’s okay to feel whatever you’re feeling. That you are not weird for feeling a certain way.
What’s one of your proudest moments of your music career so far?
I think the courage to start releasing music and really following my dreams.
What would you say are the greatest lessons you’ve learned so far?
That you are never too old to start something new, that healing from past traumas isn’t easy, but it’s so worth it, and that everyone should go to therapy (I really wish it was possible for every single person in this world).
What’s next for you? Are you working on any upcoming projects that we should be on the lookout for?
Yes! The music video for “Lighthouse” came out last Friday, I’m super proud of it, so you should definitely check it out. I’m also already working on my next release that’ll hopefully come out in the summer!
Where can we follow you on social media?
Before you go, let’s ask you something random. What’s your special skill?
Thank you for the great interview, wish you much continued success!