On 4 December President Toomas Hendrik Ilves will release a compilation called “Teenage Wasteland – Favourites 1963-1978”. A donation will be made from every album purchased to the Minu Unistuste Päev (My Dream Day) charity project, which makes dreams come true for seriously and chronically ill children in treatment at Estonian hospitals.
According to President Ilves, the songs in the compilation have all shaped his later tastes in music, from new wave to punk, grunge down to today’s Wolf Alice, Palma Violets and Vaiko Eplik. “These were the songs I listened to at night with a small 12 transistor radio when I was growing up, which provided much needed redemption for life in what The Who called a Teenage Wasteland. Funny to say now, turning 62, but back then my life was saved by rock ‘n’ roll,” he admitted.
The compilation includes 16 various songs from 1963-1978 that influenced the President when he was growing up in the United States of America. The following favourite songs of the Head of State have made it to the record: Four Tops – “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)”, The Temptations – “My Girl”, The Shangri-Las – “Leader of the Pack”, The Beach Boys – “Help Me, Rhonda”, Cream – “Tales of Brave Ulysses”, The Band – “The Weight”, The Velvet Underground – “Rock & Roll”, Roxy Music – “Virginia Plain”, The Who – “Baba O’Riley”, Lesley Gore – “It’s My Party”, New York Dolls – “Trash”, The Troggs – “Wild Thing”, David Bowie – “Panic in Detroit”, Ramones – “I Wanna Be Sedated”, Peter Sarstedt – “Where Do You Go To (My Lovely)?” and MC5 – “High School”.
“This isn’t quite a collection of my favourite songs. That would include all kinds of songs from 1963-78 most Estonians know – the Beatles, the Stones hits, for example,” said Ilves. “They also do not include bands that wouldn’t give permission for a collection of this type, which means crucial songs such as the Kinks “You Really Got Me” and “All Day and All of the Night” are missing. As are the We Five’s “You Were On My Mind” which a mere year later paled before Jefferson Airplane’s “Somebody to Love”. Missing too is the musical and spiritual father of Pearl Jam and Nirvana, Neil Young, in his “Cinnamon Girl” phase. As is the early garage punk band Music Machine’s “Talk Talk”.”
The collection is being released by Universal Music Baltics; it will be available from 4 December on CD and on the Spotify streaming service. You can buy the record from all good record stores throughout Estonia, incl. Lasering, Terminal, Apollo and Rahva Raamat.
Minu Unistuste Päev (My Dream Day) is an organisation that was established in 2011 based on voluntary activities and funding from supporters. Its aim is to make dreams come true for seriously and chronically ill children in treatment at Estonian hospitals and it tries to bring joy to the lives of the children and their next of kin. For example, this year Tristan had a helicopter ride with his family, Richard hugged a lizard, Aliide drove a race car, Johanna met with the President and Adele had a day where everyone could be a princess. In addition, group events are organised for children who spend lots of their time in hospitals or are treated at home to allow them communicate with each other. For additional information, go to: http://www.facebook.com/MinuUnistustePaev/ and http://www.minuunistustepaev.ee/
The album sleeve of the compilation, which is based on series of photographs by Herkki-Erich Merila for AKU Agency, is attached to the press release.
On Thursday, 3 December, at 8 pm the presentation of the compilation will take place at Cinema Kinos Sõprus; records will be played by the President, Toomas Hendrik Ilves, Vaiko Eplik, Helen Sildna, Artjom Troitski and Orav & Drummie.