”Jazz musician of the year 2016” awarded saxophonist Esa Pietilä leads his Liberty Ship quartet with new and renowned crew again to the waters of free improvisation. The two previous albums of the group received stunning reviews nationally and internationally. Liberty Ship debuted its new music recently with a new FIN-NOR line-up at Nordic Music Days 2018″.


Esa Pietilä, tenor saxophone

Håvard Wiik, piano,

Ole Morten Vågan bass,

Olavi Louhivuori, drums

Liberty Ship draw a broad attention globally already with its first album. The debut album of the group in 2012 was a powerful double album “Approaching” (Eclipse Music, 2013), which climbed to the list of the ”Year ́s Best Albums” of internationally acclaimed jazz magazine New York City Jazz Record.

Domestical no: 1 daily paper ”Helsingin Sanomat” praised : “Liberty Ship had sailed to the frontline of Finnish jazz groups”. Strongly trusting to the power of improvisation, the group still follows its original guideline exploring the free improv as free as it can bee. Four ingenious musicians unites their power with collective improvisaation and the ship of freedom is being piloted by teamwork.

Liberty Ship continues its musical journeys and expeditions with a new personnel which recorded a new album in dec. 2017. The album Signal Horn (label: Eclipse Music) will be released on Nov. 7th at Nordic Music Days 2018, Helsinki


Liberty Ship returns in spring 2015 with their second double album for Eclipse Music. After the undenieble artistic statement which was the 2013 debut ”Approaching”, the band continues to seek uncharted waters of creative expression in contemporary jazz music.

A bold double album: one acoustic CD, one electric, on which their music is adventurous, mysterious, creative and unpredictable.

The album was premiered at a Concert at Koko Jazzclub, Helsinki, Finland 1.3.2015 and it will be in shops on 20th of march.

Liberty Ship, formed in 2012, navigates the deep waters of free jazz and improvised music in constant pursuit of liberated self-expression. Acclaimed saxophonist and composer Esa Pietilä leads this all-star quartet of accomplished Finnish jazz musicians, pushing each musician to the boundaries of their creative ability. According to the reviews, authors, Liberty Ship is without a doubt one of the most exciting and adventurous projects to emerge from the booming Finnish jazz scene.

CD “Approaching” voted for ALBUM OF THE YEAR – Best new releases 2013″ by The New York City Jazz Record

Esa Pietilä, tenor saxophone, live-electronics
Aki Rissanen, piano, prepared piano, effects
Antti Lötjönen, acoustic bass
Olavi Louhivuori, drs

Pianist Aki Rissanen (b.1980) has built a reputation as one of the most forward-thinking and creative pianists of his generation in Finland. Rissanen has worked with some of the top names like Barry Guy, Mats Gustafsson, Daniel Humair and Robin Verheyen in modern creative jazz. Rissanen combines a classical training with a love of improvisation and contemporary jazz. In Liberty Ship his distinctive style lives up to its full potential.

Antti Lötjönen (b.1980) has established himself as one of the cornerstones and most in- demand bass players of Helsinki’s burgeoning 21st century jazz scene. Playing in key groups like Sun Trio and Verneri Pohjola Quartet and with countless major figures in the contemporary Finnish jazz scene like Alexi Tuomarila and Kalevi Louhivuori has made Lötjönen a recognized figure both in Finland and internationally.

Drummer Olavi Louhivuori (b.1981) has brought his creativity to a number of high-profile projects all around Europe. He has played and recorded with internationally acclaimed artists like Polish Tomasz Stańko, Italian Claudio Filippini, British Dave Stapleton, Marilyn Crispell from USA and Norwegian Mats Eilertsen.

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Liberty Ship in Japan