“Jarmo Jalava writes songs rich in whimsy and wonder. Think of Bruce Cockburn’s crisp melodicism and Daniel Lanois’s low-burn intensity….Jalava has edge, intelligence, heart and soul,” — Charles Foran, world music reviewer for The National Post.

“Warm, celestial sounds…mighty words…Jalava mixes lovely music with a mind, body and spiritual message,” — The Peterborough Examiner.

One of “Ontario’s most intriguing world-beat performers” according to the London Free Press (Oct. 2011), Jarmo Jalava’s musical influences span the globe (roots rock, traditional folk, Appalachia, blues, indigenous chant, Finnish, Latin, Hindustani…). His rich, contemplative, unpredictable, sometimes very funny and invariably melodic songs often evoke a deep connection to the lands and peoples from which he draws much of his artistic inspiration — the coastal regions of Lake Huron in Ontario, Canada, the volcanic mountains of south-central Mexico, and his Finnish roots.

Jarmo has performed on the main stage at Toronto City Hall’s Nathan Phillips Square, has been a featured artist with the Tlapan Cultural Center concert series in Mexico City, and in 2012, he performed at the grand Kaustinen Folk Music Festival in Finland.  Recent tours have taken him to Europe, across North America, as well as regular performances in Mexico.

Jarmo’s 2001 debut album, Hole in the Sky, led to invitations to perform in the Festival of Lights in Peterborough, Ontario, and the Tapsan Tahdit music festival in Nokia, Finland, and received raido play on both sides of the Atlantic.  Jarmo’s second independent release, Rites of Passage [2005], has been heard across Canada on CBC Radio and university radio.  From the sublime title track, What Is Your Dream? to the ridiculous Kiss Me (While I Still Have Teeth), which was featured on the popular CBC national radio program Definitely Not the Opera, Jarmo Jalava’s third album [IndiePool 2010] is a rich, diversely-textured musical journey.

Jarmo is embarking his fourth album project in early 2014 with a cast that tentatively includes Grammy-award winning bass player Marco Renteria from Mexico (Caifanes, Jaguares, Klezmerson, Lila Downs), Juno winner Mark Mariash, and Canada’s renowned guitarist/producer Jason Fowler, and award-winning multi-instrumentalist, composer and arranger, Paul Shilton.

Jarmo often performs with his partner, best-selling author Alison Wearing. Together they weave heartfelt songs with transcendent and often hilarious stories of their somewhat nomadic lives.   Alison Wearing is the multiple award-winning, best-selling author of Honeymoon In Purdah – an Iranian Journey, as well as a playwright, actor, singer and dancer.  She is currently touring a musical, spoken-word and dance performance based on her new bestselling memoir, Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter (Knopf Canada, May 2013), at theatres and festivals across Canada.

In his early twenties, while supporting himself as a busker, Jarmo hitchhiked the equivalent of the circumference of the globe, then spent eight years driving a taxi in Toronto, putting himself through university.  As a writer of poetry and prose, he has been recipient of three Ontario Arts Council Writer’s Reserve grants and is a past editor with the international literary journal Exile.  Today, when not making music, he is a respected ecologist, leading greening efforts in southern Ontario as Director of Ecosystem Recovery with the Carolinian Canada Coalition, a conservation charity.


Some past concert venues: 

Festival Theatre, Stratford, ON: Sept. 2013

Sunnivue Farm, Ailsa Craig, ON; June 2013

Callaway Gardens, Pine Mountain, GA, USA; May 2013

Damen’s, St. Mary’s, ON; April 2013

Factory 163, Stratford, ON; Dec. 2012

Kaustinen Folk Music Festival, Kaustinen, Finland, July 2012

Kiikoisten Purpurit, Kiikoinen, Finland, July 2012

Aeolian Hall, London, ON; October 2011

Lula Lounge; Toronto, ON; October 2011

DurhamTown Hall; Durham, ON; October 2011

Back Eddies; Paisley, ON; October 2011

Goettler’s of Dublin; Dublin, ON; September 2011

Cedar House Inn; Paris, ON; September 2011

Dancing Creek Retreat Centre; Vienna, ON; Sept. 2011

BrucePeninsulaNational Park Auditorium; August 2011

Lantern Festival; Southampton, ON; July 2011

Mextitla; Tepoztlan, Mexico; March 2011

Palais Royale; Toronto, ON; July 2010

Niagara Falls Butterfly Conservatory; June 2010

St. John’s Anglican Guild Hall; Peterborough; June 2010

SuomiKoti Finnish Centre; Toronto, ON; June 2010

London Music Club; London, ON; June 2010

St. John’s Anglican Parish Hall; Ottawa, ON; June 2010

Trinity United Church; Huntsville, ON; June 2010

Renee’s Café; South River, ON; June 2010

Anglican Parish Hall; Lion’s Head, ON (various dates, 2004-2012)

Downtown Bookstore; Owen Sound, ON; May 2010

The Black Swan; Toronto, ON; May 2010

Sticks & Stones Gallery; Paisley, ON; May 2010

Duc D’Orleans Boat Cruise; Sarnia, ON; May 2010

El Mango; Tepoztlán, Mexico (various dates, 2007-2011)

La Sombra del Sabino; Tepoztlán, Mexico (various dates 2010-2011)

Town Hall Theatre; Paisley, ON; December 2008

Radha Centre; Spokane, WA; April 2006

The Crooked Café; Kaslo, BC; April 2006

Yasodhara Ashram; Kootenay Lake, BC; April 2006

Hungry Wolf Café; Winlaw, BC; April 2006

The Abbey; Cumberland, BC; April 2006

Downtown Radha Centre & Eatery; Vancouver, BC; March 2006

Calrgary Scandinavian Centre; Calbary, AB; March 2006

Art Central, Calgary, AB; March 2006

La Sombra del Sabino; Tepoztlán, Mexico; March 2006

The Abbey Theatre; Courtenay, BC; March 2006

Casa de la Cultura de Tlalpan; Mexico City; February 2006

Café Jacaranda; Tepoztlán, Mexico; February 2006

BlueDeerCenter; Margaretville, NY; October 2005

Shambhalacalli; Tepoztlán, Mexico; October 2005

Parque Nacional Desierto de los Leones, Mexico   City; March 2005

Peterborough Festival of Lights; Peterborough, ON; June 2002

Gordon Best Theatre; Peterborough, ON; April 2002

Millbrook Gallery; Millbrook, ON; March 2002

The Market Hall Performing Arts; Peterborough, ON; May 2001

Nathan   Phillips Square (main stage); Toronto, ON; June 1973

"Jarmo Jalava writes songs rich in whimsy and wonder. There is a recognizable sound here-think of Bruce Cockburn's crisp melodicism and Daniel Lanois's low-burn intensity-but there is also a fresh voice.

Jalava has edge and intelligence, heart and soul. His music stays with you."

Charles Foran, music reviewer for the National Post

  • Transition Town

    Jarmo Jalava’s new single, Transition Town is a rocking 21st century environmental anthem that travels from apathy to awareness, and soars to inspired activism and hope.

    Transition Town - Official Video

    It's a cross of Aztec rythms, funk, rock and tango and recorded with Javier Carasusan, Alison Wearing, Charly Peña, James "Jimi" Doney and Grammy-winner, Marco Renteria.

    The single is available on iTunes!

  • Buy Jarmo’s Music

    Buy What Is Your Dream on iTunes

    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage
    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage

    On Amazon

    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage
    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage

    Through Indie Pool

    Indie Pool

    Buy Rites of Passage on iTunes

    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage
    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage

    On Amazon

    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage
    Jarmo Jalava - Rites of Passage

    Or through Indie Pool

    Indie Pool
    You can also order the CDs of
    What Is Your Dream?,
    Rites of Passage and
    Hole In The Sky
    direct from us using PayPal:

    What Is Your Dream?

    Rites of Passage

    Bookings or other info? Please e-mail us at: