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Blog from 01. March 2018
Back to the tour bus
It feels like it was just yesterday we ended our club tour in Barcelona. I can still smell the smoke machines and mojitos at this strange underground club near the Barcelona harbor as we were all dancing (!) there until 6 in the morning after our last show. Believe it or not, but we were Osmo, Riku, guitar tech MP and myself doing a two-hour dance battle with a professional dancer. All against all. I didn’t find a gold medal on myself in the next afternoon when I woke up, but I’m glad there’s (obviously) no video recordings.
Last year was so great and crazy. So much happened professionally and in life and I must say most of the memories are a bit blurry because it went so fast. We released a new album with all its duties and of course we were more and more in a hurry towards the deadline. There’s always that panic and I guess it’s a natural part of any album process. The “Heartbreak Century” album has been super successful and the songs are playing on the radio like hell. I also did two massive TV shows last year, one in Germany and one in Finland and that together with the tour and massive album promotion really took all the juices off this body & soul of mine. So, taking more than a month off after the last duties last year felt like the escape I needed. I must say there was not much left of me and it’s just now, these last few weeks, I ‘ve been feeling stronger and whole again. Lucky me. Not everyone would have the chance to get away like this.
So now I’m back with my boys and it feels great. Actually it feels better being and playing together than in a long time. Like we’re all able to enjoy it a 100%. We didn’t have to start rehearsing for this tour from zero as the new album’s songs proved their quality on stage already last year, so now it was more about finding little new things into some of them and of course also bringing more old songs into the set. If last year was more of an old-school album release tour representing the new material, now we’ve been enjoying more oldies again. And it felt so good at Raul’s new rehearsal studio as we started touching the new set.
We will fill fourteen arenas in three weeks in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Finland and we are supper happy that it’s almost sold out everywhere. I heard this morning that there are just a few tickets left to two cities only. Could be worse. We have a brand-new production gang around us too, so also that should feel fresh. Of course, the main crew guys are the same as for years. We still wanna hear their two-minded idiot jokes every day to make ourselves feel intelligent. And I guess they have grown too deep into the family to be replaced. So glad almost everyone could join again.
Now we’ve been in Dusseldorf, Germany for a couple days rehearsing the whole set with the full production together with our new team. I don’t feel nervous at all at the moment, but I’m sure as we get closer to Friday evening, we’ll all have shaky hands in a good way again. I love the mood in the dressing room right before the very first show on every tour. We’re all gonna be telling each other again how “Not nervous” we all are. But you can hear it in everyone’s voice. Big guys telling each other how damn cool they are with everything ;) But it’s also so cool when the first show is over. Everyone’s screaming and jumping around like little kids. “We made it jeeeee!” It still happens every single time.
We haven’t planned the off-day activities yet, but playing pool (and Winning backliner Ilari) has to be one of them. This winter has been super cold in Finland and I heard it’s also cold in Central Europe. I got two pairs of grandma-made sock in my suitcase so I should be fine. The flu epidemic is also quite bad everywhere we go the next weeks and we need to stay smart with it (I heard in Germany alone 200 people died??!!). Shaking hands, hugging, kissing strangers and all that stuff is fully forbidden with our whole crew and staff and we will try to avoid crowded places even on off days. Someone always gets a bit ill on every tour anyways, but this flu that’s been harassing people everywhere righty now might mean cancelled shows. And we don’t want that. But let’s not worry about it too much. Wash your hands everyone and don’t put your dirty fingers into your mouth. Osmo, you too!
So you lovely people. See you all very soon. I. Just. Can’t. Wait.
Blog from 10. March 2018
Deep in tour bubble
We just had our off day in Dusseldorf between the Hanover and Dortmund shows. The tour start has been just unbelievable and the crowd has been like never before in every city. I know I write this every time, but it feels again like the best tour ever and also the best show set ever too. The songs just seem to work together great and it feels as if it moves super fast on stage. Last night I accidentally looked at my watch on the tenth song and I was like “Have we been already playing for almost an hour?” Felt like 10 minutes. But don’t they say that you’re having the most fun when the time flies.
We’ve got five shows done and it’s actually good to have a slower pace for a couple of days now. I always get this strange tiredness after two weeks on the road. First I was worried I might be getting sick, but then I remembered that it always hits me at this point. I guess your body and mind are so focused and in a “fight mode” in the beginning that it just has to rest at some point. I also admit that I did some work out almost every day for the last two weeks and that together with the quite exhausting performances has been tough for body. It’s always the same tiredness feeling after the fourth or fifth show on every tour. Luckily we had a day off now and also after tonight’s show in Dortmund, there’s another day free in Berlin before we start our five show week on Monday.
We arranged some of the songs completely new for this tour and I just love them! Some of them we actually turned all upside-down and they still work crazy good. That is a good sign if a song can have many versions. But this is what we’ve been always doing anyways with all the different acoustic, big band, orchestra, etc versions.
So I will drink some hot chamomile tea now and then I’ll pack my bags for leaving to Dortmund. No sports today before the show. Or maybe just a little bit of Thai boxing with mixing engineer Mikko. He really kicked my ass in Hannover before the show and it felt good in a strange way. Maybe that’s the way to get my body moving today…
Thank you all for the great evenings together and see you very soon. Maybe even tonight!
Blog from 16. March 2018
Spring in Munich
Here we are back at Olympiahalle and the sun is shining. It’s actually so cool that we’ve played some of these arenas so many times already that we know where the backstage, catering and other stuff are. Feels like coming home every time in the afternoon when they bring us in. We have another sold out show tonight at the BMW city and sound check is just one hour away.
This tour has been in many ways the coolest and easiest tour ever. Everything just seems to work great and there haven’t really been any bad technical issues either. On the second show in Stuttgart the whole sound system was off for 1,5 seconds in the very first song and my heart skipped two beats, but after that it’s amazing how well the whole circus has worked. I guess we get better and better with each tour preparing everything before. We would be f**ked big time without Raul being in charge of all the tech stuff on the band’s side. Luckily he loves playing around with his cables and gear. I will buy him a massive thirteen ball ice cream when we get home if all goes this well.
Ilari, one of our crew guys, arranged us our own pool table for this tour. It weights 600 Kg and the crew put it up in some room every day in the morning and they take it out as the last piece of equipment after the arena is empty in the night. I have never played this much 9-ball in my life and you can just imagine the pub spirit before and after the shows in the “Country Club” as we call the pool room. There’s a list where you have to write down your name if you wanna play and the winner always stays playing. It’s the greatest way to get ready for a show if you win a couple of games in a row. You feel like a champion. Or it can work the other way too and you lose all your confidence…
I had to see a doctor yesterday. I wasn’t really that sick, no fever luckily, but since I had the flu last week and there was no chance to rest this week before yesterday, my throat got pretty bad and the stupid dry coughing kept me up two nights in a row in the bus. I tried sleeping sitting and drank a billion liters of hot stuff but nothing helped. And as you don’t really sleep, you don’t recover. It’s annoying how it gets you mentally. You know the only cure would be good sleep, but you just can’t. On stage you have all the adrenaline and you don’t think about it in the show mood, but taking all the pills every night and just biting you lip trough the shows won’t do no good in the long run. I was happy they didn’t find anything super bad in me at the hospital. And I slept ok last night in the hotel with the super stuff the nice doctor dude gave me, so I should be fine soon. But all this is part of touring life and I’ve had this before. So I’m off to sound check now with my ginger-honey-lemon-chamomile-tea
I can’t believe there’s only five shows left. It’s not fair that it goes so fast. You’ve been super amazing all the way, every single night! We got another chance to thank you on stage tonight with the guys by giving it a 120%.
Feel hugged everyone & see you in a couple of hours,
Blog from 18. March 2018
Day off in Hurtsville
Here we are in the German carnival capital enjoying our last day off on tour. I don’t even want to think about the fact that there are only three shows left. I don’t understand why all the shops and stuff are closed on Sundays in Germany, but maybe we will just focus on eating and resting tonight instead of shopping our suitcases full. Once again.
Cologne is one of my favorite cities in Germany. EMI music record company was here when we started operating in Germany and we spent a lot of time here back then. We played our very first club show in Germany here too at the Underground club and I was even thinking of having a flat here at the Belgian Quarter. But never got one even though my local buddy Thore Schölermann is trying to resell the idea to me again now. It’s a super cool neighborhood. I heard they tore down the Underground club. That’s sad.
I’m feeling better already and actually last night in Leipzig my throat was functioning like 99%. If someone gets a bad flu, now I know what to take for it. Just call Doctor Haber hotline.
There have been many moments on stage this tour I have just been standing there in between my vocal parts just looking at the crowd thinking about how proud I am of all the songs we have. I don’t know why, but on this tour the emotion has been there even more than before and when I sing or hear these tunes, it takes me back to when I wrote them or what happened around that time. There are so many high lights at this show that it’s hard to pick one. Some evenings it’s “Home” or some nights the new version of “Forever Yours” just steals the show in my heart. And “Heartbreak Century” especially on the part when you sing your “oo-oo-oo’s” before the last choruses. Or “Prisoner In Paradise” because we never played it before. Especially all the new songs are so damn personal and there are moments I have to bite my lip a bit every night.
I’m so happy we decided to bring “Hurtsville” back to the set and it just kills me every night. There’s just something magic about the story and the moment we play it. I wrote the song together with my buddies Carl and Sharon a couple of years ago in Stockholm. Last night I started missing Sharon on stage like hell. I’ve been sending her <3 messages today ;) Sharon’s been in the business for decades and she has taught me everything you need to know about brining emotion into the lyrics. About being honest and open. I must get into a writing room with her again soon. “Hurtsville” is a song about the twisted tour life. How we celebrate music with you all in the evening and then in the night you sit alone in the front of your bus staring at the empty road just thinking about what happened and how lonely you actually are. In a beautiful way. I also heard and red so many beautiful stories from other people who travel for living and how that song has given them power on tough moments. That’s my power song in the l
Now I will try gym after a one week break. Easy start and should not punish my recovering body too much. Then I will wash my hair (you have to do it on ever tour;) and then I’ll order something really good from the room service. I’m starting to sound like a 16-year old blogger girl telling you about my daily routines. But anyways.
Thank you all for the amazing moments night after night. You have made these five guys from Finland more than happy and we are all super thankful.
See you all at the biggest indoor arena in Continental Europe tomorrow! Let’s show Lanxess arena how we make noise together!
Blog from 18. June 2018
It’s only middle of June but we are already deep in the summer touring mood. We started the summer shows three weeks ago with two shows in Germany and last night we played at the Nova Rock festival in Austria. It was our fourth time at Nova Rock and again it felt like someone hit us on the head. It was so loud and energetic. Also the vibe on the two German shows was somehow so relaxed and great that we felt we could go on playing shows every day for the whole summer.
I really love doing TV shows and producing new music albums, but I must say it feels so great having nothing but the shows with the Sunrise boys right now. It’s been so many summers in a row that I had to freshen up on Monday morning for TV studio or for producing music. This summer the only thing I have to worry about is that I have all my belongings with me and that I don’t miss my plane.
It’s so great how well the new songs from “Heartbreak Century” work on stage with our older babies. Of course it helps that we have two tours behind already with them. The set has never felt as good as it feels now. Of course the new songs with every new album gives us more variety to choose from but now it really feels great!
Thank you all for the great moments at the shows so far and see you on Friday in Munich at Königs Platz on the next one.
The five guys from Finland are tired but happy again ;)
Lots of love and hugs,
Blog from 09. Setember 2018
It’s funny when you fly enough with the same airline, they don’t ask you anymore if you want milk in your coffee, they just pour it in because they already know…
What a night again… We played our last 2018 summer show last night near Munich at Bubenheim airfield and it couldn’t have been better. We ended our Heartbreak Century summer tour with some 80.000 lovely Germans and other folks and even though it got quite cold in the end compared to the other shows this year, we all feel extremely warm and blessed inside right now.
This summer was clearly the best ever with Sunrise Avenue. We played 26 festivals and I can honestly say we have never felt this relaxed and good with the guys. All the way, it felt so great being on stage together and the crowds every night were just WOW! My parent always tried telling me (not that successfully) when I was a kid, that you should quit playing while it’s still fun. With the summer shows it worked out. Everybody is more than happy with what we experienced this summer. But also the thought of unpacking the travel gear and bags and being more at home feels good after all the backstage beers and boarding passes.
I had a very beautiful moment on stage yesterday. The whole summer kind of went on like a fast film in my mind during the second last song “Let Me Go” and I got a bit sad realizing that it’s over for now. There were again so many faces that you remember from so many shows and we won’t see them for a while. We still don’t understand how you find the power waiting behind the gates and fighting for your spots in the crowd every show, but as long as you have the power – please keep going. Never stop doing what you do. You are all perfect and beautiful the way you are and you all make us so happy every night.
We’re landing soon. And as it’s still warm in Helsinki, I’ll jump in my boat with some friends and head to the seas for some sunset and water skiing. The sea water is still close to 20 degrees and the sun is shining. Helsinki is the new Bahamas.
So thank you all for the most amazing summer ever. Big Big Big love & enjoy the warmth as long as it lasts and see you all very soon <3
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