Former Finnish representative Riki Sorsa, who made a big impression at the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest with Reggae OK, is fighting a battle against cancer, it was revealed today in the newspaper Ilta sanomat. Fans reacted with concern and messages of support to the shock news from a well-loved figure on the Finnish musical scene.
The news comes as a cruel blow to both the singer and his family, particularly since Riki was part of the way into recording a new album, with four songs already complete and a new single in the pipeline. For now, he will focus his efforts on fighting his illness and returning to health, with the support of wife Barbara and his two sons. Riki explains that now is a time “to review my values in life … for my family's sake.”.
Always a popular and friendly figure on Finland's music scene, Riki won fans at home and abroad when he represented the country in Dublin in 1981. Although Reggae OK failed to win overwhelming jury support at the Eurovision Song Contest, his performance went down as one of the most unforgettable that year, and the song gained top-ten status in several European countries including Sweden, Denmark and Norway. Including that year, he participated in Eurovision selections four times in all, not only coming first to represent his country in 1981, but achieving a second place to Sonja Lumme in 1985.
Finland's answer to Rod Stewart
Often billed as Finland's answer to Rod Stewart, as much from his looks as his voice, he has released an impressive 16 albums altogether, and he has enjoyed popularity both in his home country and beyond.
One of his most recent performances was at the Oslo Europride last year, where he sang Reggae OK to huge cheers from an enthusiastic crowd. Those enthusiastic fans now send their best wishes to him in the hope that his recovery will be swift.
Everyone at esctoday.com joins in wishing Riki a speedy and complete return to health.