Darude and Sebastian Rejman

Darude is one of the most successful Finns on the music scene today. The DJ and record producer was chosen to represent Finland in this year’s Eurovision together with Sebastian Rejman, a multitalented singer and actor who also wrote “Look Away,” the song they will perform together at Eurovision 2019. They each took a MyHeritage DNA test to learn more about their family histories. Both of them have predominantly Finnish ethnicity, which seems fitting; but there were also some surprises…

Sebastian Rejman
MyHeritage researchers also delved into our records to learn more about Sebastian’s family, and were able to go back 8 generations! Here’s what we learned:

Sebastian’s 6th great-grandfather was named Anders Ramstedt. He was born in Ramsberg, Norssjön, Sweden in June 1730, and moved to Finland with his wife, Elisabet Valentinsdotter, in July 1754.

Elisabeth eventually died, and Anders eventually remarried a woman 21 years younger than him, Sara Hellström, in the late spring of 1789. Anders died in 1811.

It turns out, Sebastian shares this common ancestor (Anders) with the wife of the President of the Republic, Jenni Haukio!
Sebastian’s great-grandfather, Julius Takolander (1876-1966), was involved in shutting down a huge fire in a sawmill in Hanko, Finland. Julius was a train conductor, and he was conducting the evening train from Karjaa when the fire struck. He had to stop the train a couple of kilometers from the city, and the passengers were brought the rest of the way on horseback. The whole factory burnt down and left 80 workers unemployed. A few months after, he received a reward of FIM 25 for his role in fighting the fire.

Karl Oskar Rejman

Sebastian’s great-grandfathers

Karl graduated college as a civil engineer in 1889 and had an important position on the national railway. He was a founding member of the Confederation of Civil Servants, and served on the board of the Central Alliance from 1917 to 1921 and vice-president from 1919 to 1921. After retiring, he worked for organizations providing aid to widows and orphans in Helsinki.

Karl was also a decorated soldier: he was awarded the 4th and 3rd Grade Liberation War, the War of Independence Memorial Medal and the 2nd Grade of the White Rose of Finland for his role in Finland’s War of Independence.

Sebastian is 63.8% Finnish, 33.9% North and West European and 2.3% Scandinavian.

MyHeritage found an astounding 15,800 DNA matches for Sebastian, including 8,200 relatives in Finland alone! He also has relatives in places as far-flung as Japan, Kenya, Chile and Armenia.

Sebastian is 63.8% Finnish, 33.9% North and West European and 2.3% Scandinavian.

MyHeritage found an astounding 15,800 DNA matches for Sebastian, including 8,200 relatives in Finland alone! He also has relatives in places as far-flung as Japan, Kenya, Chile and Armenia.

63.8%
Finnish
33.9%
North and West European
2.3%
Scandinavian

Darude

Darude’s real name is Toni-Ville Virtanen. MyHeritage researchers were able to trace his family back 6 generations. Here’s what he found about the origin of Darude's surname, Virtanen:
Darude’s 3rd-great-grandfather, Kalle Kustaa, was born in Kalanti in 1827. He was the son of Juho Laurinpoika and Juho’s 3rd wife. Juho was married 4 times.
Kalle was a farmer most of his life. He moved to Laitilia at the age of 15, and in the Laitilia Communion Book from the village called Torris he’s mentioned on the same page as his future bride, Henrika Matilda Matintyttö. He’s described as a farmhand, while she’s described as a maid.
The Laitila Communion Book from 1853-1859 mentions that Kalle Kustaa was working for a woman named Lena Johansdotter, widow Wallenström. She died in 1857, and Kalle Kustaa moved on but he adopted her surname as his own. From then on, he bore the name Wallenström.

Frans Niilo with his 2nd wife, Helmi Aleksandra Virtanen

Durade’s great-grandfather

Frans Niilo had 8 children; the eldest was Darude’s grandfather Into Johannes, born in 1916, apparently to a first wife.

MyHeritage found an astonishing 22,989 DNA matches for Darude from 54 countries worldwide! The closest relative is from Finland, who shares 7.5% of Darude’s DNA, making him a great-uncle, first cousin once removed, or first cousin twice removed.

MyHeritage found an astonishing 22,989 DNA matches for Darude from 54 countries worldwide! The closest relative is from Finland, who shares 7.5% of Darude’s DNA, making him a great-uncle, first cousin once removed, or first cousin twice removed.

94.4%
Finnish
3.1%
Scandinavian
2.5%
Mesoamerican and Andean

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