We are sad to report that Fredi has passed away. Fredi was an icon in the Finnish music scene and represented his country twice at the Eurovision Song Contest, in 1967 and 1976. Finnish outlet Iltalehti have confirmed the news.
Fredi: Two Eurovision appearances
Matti Siitonen, his real name, was born in 1942 in Mikkeli. He started his musical career at the age of 23 under the name of Folk Fredi. Two years later, he represented Finland at the Eurovision Song Contest 1967. His song, Varjoon – Suojaan finished in twelfth with three points.
Two years after entering Eurovision, Fredi married Eva-Riitta. She would later gain national recognition as mayor of Helsinki and member of European Parliament. They had one daughter together, Hanna-Riikka, who was a singer as well in the duo Taikapeili. Hanna-Riikka sadly passed away in 2018.
In 1976, the singer returned to the Eurovision Song Contest. As Fredi & Friends, they brought the classic Pump Pump. They failed to reach the top ten, finishing in eleventh in The Hague. His musical career flourished in the late 1970s and 1980s. His 1978 album Tänään Fredi includes his biggest hits Syntinen Yö and Elää mä sain. On most of his albums, he included Finnish covers of world hits. He received most acclaim for his rendition of Whiter Shade of Pale by Procol Harum.
In 2010 and 2011, Fredi hosted his own television show. In “Fredin Vieraana”, he spoke to Finnish musicians about their music. One of his Eurovision related guests was Katri Helena, who represented Finland in 1979 and 1993. Aside from his more serious career, he was also a comedy singer, known for his great entertainment value.
Fredi passed away at the age of 78. The thoughts of the entire ESCXTRA.com Team are with his family and friends in these difficult times.