Rapper Paperi T holding the award for Debut Album of the Year and arriving to pick up his second prize for the night: Artist of the Year, at Club Pressa in Hotel Presidentti in Helsinki on Saturday January 6 2016. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Rapper Paperi T carrying the award for Debut Album of the Year while arriving to pick up his second prize for the night: The Artist of the Year, at Club Pressa in Hotel Presidentti in Helsinki on Sunday January 31 2016. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

The hottest names in the Finnish groovy music scene were awarded at Club Pressa in Helsinki on Saturday night during the 16th annual Funky Awards.

The artists sing and rap in their native tongue, but a speaker of any language can enjoy the flow, melody and, why not, practice their Finnish by getting hold of the lyrics.

Yona celebrating the prize for Album of the Year. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Yona celebrating the prize for Album of the Year. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Let’s take for example Yona, 31, who won the award for Album of the Year with Naivi (Naive).

Her album (fifth in a row) is a beautiful blend of slow, melodic pop tunes, with a jazzy twist. The songs make you want to crawl under the sheets with that special one.

The lyrics dig even deeper. Yona ponders on her past as a teenager, when she “naively” thought anything is possible. On her album, she tries to get some of that feeling back. And succeeds.

Paperi T received a prize for the Artist and Debut Album of the Year. The 29-year-old man is known for rocking sold-out clubs. Following the release of his first album Malarian pelko (Fear of Malaria) in 2015, he was featured as number one at the top of the official Finnish album charts.

His work features darker songs, with a carefully crafted flow of lyrics. One of his most popular songs is “Sä jätät jäljen (You Leave a Mark),” a tale of an ugly break-up accompanied with a grimy video.

For Paperi T, the awards were the first of his career.

“I haven’t received awards before. This gives me confidence,” he said to me at the backstage where he was quickly surrounded by three cheerful ladies. “Of course, it’s more important to me how fans react to my music and shows. But these awards feel good.”

Singer Anna Puu together with rap artist Asa won the award for the Song of the Year: "Taulu (Painting)." Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Singer Anna Puu together with rap artist Asa won the award for Song of the Year: “Taulu (Painting).” Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

 

Gasellit, a Helsinki-based rap group, won the award for Band of the Year. In picture, Hätä-Miikka dancing the robot. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Gasellit, a Helsinki-based rap group, won the award for Band of the Year. In picture, Hätä-Miikka dancing the robot. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Laineen Kasperi & Palava Kaupunki, a Helsinki-based rap orchestra, making the crowd move. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Laineen Kasperi & Palava Kaupunki, a Helsinki-based rap orchestra, making the crowd move. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

The winners of 2016 Funky Awards

Club of the Year: Afro Sunday

Club DJ of the Year: Dj GoodBlood

Music Video of the Year: Aivovuoto – Ai Wo Wu Show

Song of the Year: Asa feat. Anna Puu – Taulu

Newcomer of the Year: Biniyam

Debut Album of the Year: Paperi T: Malarian Pelko

Hiphop Album of the Year: Asa: Love

Album of the Year: Yona: Naivi

Band of the Year: Gasellit

Artist of the Year: Paperi T