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Nina Susann Åström (née Lindkvist, born 1962 in Finland) is a Finnish singer-songwriter who represented her native country in the Eurovision Song Contest in the year 2000 with the song ”A Little Bit” (aan't Goor/Genta)
Åström got into songwriting in her pre-teens and the years that followed saw the development of a singer accompanying herself with the piano. She began to perform regularly towards the end of 1980's with this style. Her first album, Person 2 Person, was released in 1992, produced by Martin Kantola.
Åström's musical career got a boost when she was invited to perform at the Christian Artists Seminar in Holland in 1992. Through this event she was invited to perform on a Dutch TV program. The producer of the program, Gerrit aan't Goor, liked the act so much that he offered to become her manager. Aan't Goor was then the main lyric writer for Åström's compositions up until 2003. During these years Åström collaborated with Luca Genta, Ralph van Manen, Buddy Miller, Julie Miller and Phil Keaggy, to name a few. Nina Åström's pop/folk style of music has drawn influences from artists like James Taylor, The Carpenters, Stevie Wonder and Jennifer Warnes.
Nina Åström performs regularly outside of her native Finland – all in all she has worked in almost 30 countries. In 2001 a completely new area opened for her when she was asked to join Ilkka Puhakka and Reijo ”Klinu” Loikkanen for evangelistic tours in Russian prisons. Since then she has been touring regularly in prisons and drug rehab centers, mostly within the former Soviet countries.
A new creative period for Åström started with Landscape of My Soul -album that was released in 2007. According to critics and fans this album was her best so far. This album also saw the re-claiming of lyric writing for her own compositions. Moreover, this was the first time the artist produced her own album.
The momentum carried on, and in 2010 The Way We Are was released – 9 out of 11 of the lyrics on this album are penned by Åström. This album was recorded in London and produced by Dan Weeks and Matt Weeks. Nina Åström, who is now experiencing her artistic peak season, has been characterized to be as a good wine that in the course of years has matured to have an aroma with many nuances.
A new Finnish language album was released in the spring of 2012, under the name ”Avoin taivas” (Engl. Open Heaven/Skies). The lyrics are by Hilja Aaltonen and most compositions by Hannu Huhtala. This album was produced by Markus Vainiomäki. "Avoin taivas" sold gold in Finland in June 2013.
Passing on the experience and skill has become increasingly important to Nina Åström; she teaches seminars and does coaching/mentoring both in Finland and abroad on what it means to be a Christian artist and communicator. The musicians that have been accompanying Åström for many years are Kaarle Mannila (percussions, vocals) and Kimmo Suomela (guitars).
Nina Åström (née Lindkvist) was born in 1962 in Öja which is on the Swedish-speaking west coast of Finland. She is one of three siblings. Her parents are Sirpa Lindkvist and Rude Lindkvist. Nina Åström went to school in Kokkola and graduated from high school in 1981. The same year she entered Turku University, majoring in English philology. She got her MA in 1986. In 1980 Nina met her future husband, Benni Åström, and they were married in 1982. Benni Åström is a teacher, professional historian and translator. The domestic language of the Åström family is Swedish. In 1987 twin daughters Wilma and Natalie were born. During short periods of her professional life Nina Åström has also taught the English and Swedish language.
When Nina is not traveling in music or ministry, she is re-charging her batteries at home in the countryside; often with reading and spending time with family and friends. The sea, open landscapes and beautiful trees are things that easily catch her attention – even for a longer time. Language(s) is a passion for Åström – she is a fluent speaker of Finnish, Swedish and English; in addition to that she speaks a couple of other languages. Nina feels that she is a part of at least three cultures (the Finnish, the Finland-Swedish and the Anglo-Saxon). This has naturally made it easier for her to travel and make contact with people, but at the same time it means that she has felt herself to be a little bit of an outsider or ”in-between”.
C.S. Lewis, Henri Nouwen and Watchman Nee, among others, have had significant impact on Nina through literature. Further, Nina often listens to the music of Dani Strömbäck, Take 6 and Julie Miller. The people that Nina meets, the places and events – these are intertwined in her thinking into song lyrics or otherwise presented thoughts. The basic foundation for her life and thinking is her relationship with Jesus Christ; Nina became a believer when she was 18.
- Person 2 Person (1992)
- A Matter of Time (1993)
- Moods (1995)
- A Friend (1999)
- A Little Bit of Love (2000)
- Vierelle jäät (Finnish version of ”A Friend”) (2000)
- Merry Christmas Jesus (2001)
- Real Life (2003)
- Landscape of My Soul (2007)
- The Way We Are (2010)
- Avoin taivas (2012) Gold album in Finland (2013)
And a wealth of songs recorded/appearances on various special projects and compilations.
Sana-lehti 13-14, 2012