Ilosaarirock is almost over for this year, yet there is still one, highly expected performer left: the uncut diamond of rock, Jack White. Festival goers are not yet sleepy and many have gathered in front of the Main Stage. A countdown towards the starting of the gig goes slowly as we all wait for it to start. And then it happens! Drums are the first sounds we hear and they are soon accompanied by White’s distinct guitar riffs. White opens the gig with a song Over and Over and Over which was released at the beginning of this year. He continues to another new song from his third album ”Boarding House Reach”.
As White himself notes, it has been 15 years since he last time visited Finland. The long wait of the fans is finally rewarded, and White offers a variety of his own songs as well as hits from his days in The White Stripes. We get to hear The Stooges cover I wanna be your dog and groovy White Stripes song Hotel Yorba.
White cranks up the heat as he continues to a song Steady as she goes. He explains that he must ask us sing in English as he does not know Finnish. However, he promises to learn the language some day. Festival goers sing along and dance to the beats. White mentions his love for baseball between songs. Before his gig at Ilosaarirock he went to see a baseball match of Kiteen Pallo.
Even the very last, quite tired festival goers wake right up as the Grammy winning super-hit Seven Nation Army begins. Everyone is clapping their hands as the easily recognizable riffs fill the air. The crowd shows what it is made of and sing along their hearts out.
The rocker thanks his audience and disappears into the not-so-dark night. Festival goers start to head towards the gates and the light show of Main Stage gleams in the background. Everywhere people are singing the catchy riff of Seven Nation Army. The joyful people keep on singing long after we leave Ilosaarirock behind.
Text: Tuuli Ahonen
Photos: Kalle Kervinen