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Blog from 16. February 2019
Start The Engine
Greetings from home sofa after a week in Stockholm! I don’t know how many posts and blogs I posted about
Sweden already, but here we go again… Stockholm has become one of my home towns and favorite places
the last years, especially with all the song writing and music production trips. When your favorite hotel’s
reception tells you at check in “Mr. Haber, we’ve updated our gym since your visit”, you know you’ve become
one of the regulars. Or maybe they’re telling me to do more work out after my holidays. Good point. I was
chilling in the Caribbean for too long and pretty much the only workout there was dancing salsa. They call me
Salsa-Samu now in Havana after all my great moves at salsa classes. Cubans are still holding their breath…
Thank you for your patience with these hips dear teachers ;)
So I was in Sweden the whole week starting my song writing engines again with my friends Sharon and Moh.
We wrote some great tunes together in the past (Room, Home, Prisoner In Paradise, etc.) and it’s good to
start the journey towards new music with writer/producers you know. On a good day these folks can make
chocolate out of my shit. I have some other sessions booked this spring and it’ll be interesting to see what
comes out. I haven’t really composed any music after last summer and honestly it took a full day to hit the
right piano keys again. White keys are for happy, black keys for sad songs…. The great thing about making
new music now is that everything went so well with “Heartbreak Century”, thanx to all of you and everybody
around us. There’s no time pressure from anyone (besides my head;) and we can all just enjoy the ride, all
shoulders down, and be creative. The panic will hit us in the end again, as always. But I will not think about
that now. Now I’m just gonna enjoy Moh editing my demo vocals for a song called “Blood Moon” so he can
send it to me. Let’s see if that one ever sees the daylight. Last time only 12 songs out of almost a hundred
made it on the album and I’m not expecting it to be any less work this time. As soon as there’s a couple
super strong ones that feel right, we will start digesting them with the band guys in studio.
Last Thursday was of course Valentine’s Day but as most of you already knew, it was also the 17th Sunrise
Avenue birthday. It was on Valentine’s Day in 2002 when we sat in “Bar Memphis” in Helsinki making a plan
how we’d conquer the world with our music and then we also changed the band name from “Sunrise” to
“Sunrise Avenue.” We released our first album four years after that and the rest has made our professional
and many other dreams come true more times than we can count. Thank you all for the super sweet birthday
wishes and funny pictures on the internet. On Thursday night after having dinner with my publisher, I was
just laying on my hotel bed going through some of them and feelings went from loud laughter to deeply
missing the tour life. It’s these special moments when there’s no noise around you when you realize how
much has happened in relatively short time. Beautiful moments and amazing adventures. If all this would
stop now and we wouldn’t play one more single show ever, I’d say thank you life. But this story will continue.
And we can’t wait to take the next steps with you all.
There was A LOT (!!) of snow in Scandinavia this winter, but now it’s all gone and this morning it smelled like
spring for the first time as I walked to the studio. Amazing how happy that makes us Nordic folks. It’s still a
long way to go, but the summer and the summer shows are getting closer every day. We have announced
a few festivals already and some more dates will come out as soon as everything is fixed and our contracts
with the operators allow us to talk about them. It’s gonna be a bit less than the 26 festivals we did last summer,
but still a good summer run with lots of sunshine, a few beers and a lot of beautiful people sweating with us in
the night somewhere far away.
So until then, be safe everyone and enjoy your spring. I’m sending you all a big big hug from my favorite
place in the world. My sofa <3
Blog from December 2019
I started writing down my thoughts already yesterday afternoon. But after the first lines, I realized my thoughts
weren’t clear enough to be posted anywhere. Now after another night, I feel I’m slowly finding my way back
to this planet.
What a Monday. One I will never forget. First of all, thank you for sharing this moment with us online and in
Helsinki at Clarion Hotel. I knew I was doing exactly what needs to be done and also for the right reasons,
but It’s amazing how small it made me feel standing in front of you. But it surprised me how well you took it.
The reaction was exactly like the band rehearsals and video shoots have been the last months. Full of
sorrow and confusion, but still all coated with pure love and accepting what is.
The best thing in all this is that the other band guys understand me and that we are in this together. Now
I know we’ll be friends even after August next year. I wasn’t sure what they’d say when I asked them if we
should do the final tour together. I would have understood a NO. Going out one more time means the world
to me. Ending something this amazing without a proper goodbye, without doing it with you all, would have
been wrong. You all have surprised us with the amount of love and loudness before, but I guess this time
nobody knows what’s coming. I just can’t wait.
Writing these lines now on my home sofa, my heart feels more peaceful. I know that I am following the right
path and making the choices that are leading me where I want to go. I feel sad and also a bit tired in this
sea of emotions, but in the middle of the whole cocktail it all feels right. And I also feel quilt. I know that
I am stopping the dream train also for Raul, Sami, Riku & Osmo next August and to many of you too who
have worked hard for where we are with you today. This band has been a massive part of identity, life,
and routines to all band members, our team around us and to many others too.
To clear my head yesterday after a long day, I went to an Ice Hockey game. What else ;) I was scared going to the arena because I know most HIFK fans know my face. And after all the headlines yesterday, I was sure they’d know what’s going on. For my surprise, every second hockey fan, both teams, came to me on the breaks congratulating me for the big decision wishing me and us luck in life and hoping for a final mega moment together next summer. Then this (obviously) grandfather came to me with his grandson. Both were wearing a red Ice Hockey jersey, and the old man pointed at me and said to his little one “That is a brave man…” I almost died right there.
After the game I was also brave enough to read all the hundreds of messages from everyone and I also sat down a couple of hours alone reading all your comments and stuff on social media. I was shocked how full of love they were. Thank you all for your kind and beautiful words and you can all be proud of yourselves of how smart and loving you think. I didn’t sleep much last night digesting your wise words. What you wrote and said felt like a miracle.
In the hardest moments in life you face the biggest questions. It never feels fair. If you’re lucky, you know the answers inside you. Then in the middle of all the noise and opinions of others and also your own fears, you need to find the courage to do what’s right. And if you find the strength to follow your heart, it might take you where you truly want to go. Thank you again angels around me for helping me hear what needs to be heard. And thank you for standing behind me when I had my weak moment.
I know summer 2020 with Sunrise Avenue will be beyond beautiful. There can’t be any other way. This masterpiece that we have created together with you all will see its most amazing moments so far. And the farewell will be something we don’t even dear to dream about yet. It’s gonna be something we will never forget.
This sofa in Helsinki is full of love right now. And I’m sending most of it back to you. Because you also deserve it for our final steps together.
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