Born in Helsinki, Kari Kuivalainen is a Finnish singer, composer and lyricist. The first band where Kari played in, The Rock Hec, was established in 1974 by a couple of teenage boys. His breakthrough came with The Buddies in 1979. A debut single with the songs”Toshin ‘and Turnin” and “Cathy’s Clowne” was released. In 1983 the band changed its name and line up and became Ya Ya. Kari Kuivalainen participated in Euroviisut 1985 as a composer with the song“Haaveissa vainko oot mun”, sung by Riki Sorsa. The song came second but remained a popular song. In 1986, Kuivalainen was chosen to represent Finland in the Eurovision Song Contest with a self written song called “Päivä kahden ihmisen”. The title of the song was changed to “Never the end” and Hector also changed the last verse of the song’s chorus to “Koskaan sano en- the end”.
Kuivalainen’s first solo album was released in 1985. The album included his own production, the most famous of which was “Yö keinui pois”. Kari is one of the founding members of the band Menneisyyden Vangit. He played drums and sang in the band from 1991 to 2005. During that time, “Menkkarit” released three record albums that also included Kuivalainen’s compositions. In addition to his compositions, he also wrote lyrics in Finnish for international hits. Kuivalainen has also been with the band Scaffolds since 2005. They have released a single “Sydämesi tyhjä huone”. Kari Kuivalainen and Arto Vilkko started their musical collaboration in 2005 and it is still ongoing.
Kari released of “Tanssikengät jalkaan” on September 26, 2019. The idea of the album is to publish versions of almost all songs published by Cliff Richards & The Shadows in Finnish. The English version is called Dancin’ Shoes.