Jakop Janssønn

Sámi ritmmat / Sami Rhythms: An artistic research of exploring rhythms in Sámi culture

University of Bergen, Faculty of Fine Art, Music and Design / UiT The Artic University of Norway, Academy of Music

Photo: Knut Åserud

As a drummer, producer, and composer in the Sámi music field, I have
developed a personal understanding of how to play and create within
the context of traditional Sámi music. This expertise has been acquired
through practical experience as both a listener and collaborator with
numerous well-established Sámi artists and musicians.

Having grown up on my mother's side of the family with both Sámi
heritage and connections, I have been exposed to and actively
participated in Sámi traditions and cultural life since birth. As a result, I
possess a sociological understanding of traditional Sámi music that
surpasses that of the average person. However, there remain several
knowledge gaps regarding drumming practices in Sámi music and the
rhythmical foundations of traditional Sámi music.

As a drummer, producer, and composer for Sámi artists and yoikers, I
have questioned the origins of my reference as a drummer in this
context and the specific drumming traditions and practices that underlie
my approach.

Furthermore, as a listener, I have pondered why certain band
configurations integrate yoik more effectively than others.


Can the foundation of drumming in Sámi music extend beyond one's
personal experience?

Is there an undiscovered rhythmical or drumming tradition within Sámi
culture waiting to be uncovered?

Ultimately, I aim to approach these questions holistically to uncover the
rhythmical foundations of Sámi culture as a whole from my artistic


Jakob Janssønn is a drummer and composer from Tromsø and have a bachelor- and masters-degree in jazz performance and a one year diploma in composition from NMH, The Norwegian Academy of Music. Since studying I have been a part of the sámi music community and have over the years through drumming, producing and composing become an important voice of the new sámi music scene.



Artistic Research Spring Forum 2024 

1st presentation

The presentation will be conducted in North-Sámi with English subtitles, and audience questions and comments will be in English.

At the forthcoming Artistic Research Spring Forum, I aim to delve deeper into my past and present research work as a fellow. During this event, I plan to experiment with a new presentation method, incorporating various mediums and performance elements to showcase my holistic approach.