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Blog from 05. Februar 2021
I L.O.V.E. this time of the year for the first time ever. In the past I wasnít honestly the biggest fan of cold winter, but this year it feels like this is somehow the time when good things start happening. Itís so beautiful every morning with the sunshine and lots of snow and as the days are getting longer, it feels like thereís new air in my lungs and fresh hope in my heart too.
We had to postpone the farewell tour one more time, but I guess nobody was too surprised with the news. What has made me and us really happy is that almost nobody has returned their tickets by now. I was expecting something else as the times are unpredictable, but it all looks super good and whenever we are allowed to do what we have planned, weíre gonna go all in. For now it looks like weíre gonna start the tour in Helsinki this July and it all would end in Vienna in November. Fingers crossed. If you ask me, Iím more and more hopeful every day. But all we can do now is just to wait and hope. Fingers and toes crossed.
One side of me would like to plan future a bit more and to be active. The other half is happy that itís peaceful and easy. I feel a bit guilty saying that I also love this strange period in life when you canít run 110 % speed every week and you need to be ok with what you have around you. Of course I realize that Iím more than lucky with how things are in my life and it could be much worse, but thereís much positive in all this too. If Iím allowed to say so. Wishing you all lots of strength with your jobs, health and daily challenges. But Iím hoping we all could try to see the positive sides in messy times too.
It is time to announce the reading challenge winners. As I launched my little campaign, I didnít realize how many great moments Iíd have viewing your masterpieces. And of course I knew youíre all creative and wonderful, but you really surprised me with your work. Once again ;) I wanted to give the last videos posted some time to get all the potential viewers as some videos were out already for months and now I feel that they have been available long enough to reach good numbers. Thank you all for taking your time and being so damn great!
So. Based on the viewsÖ (snare drumsÖ.)
TadaaÖÖ. The winners are:
Ina / @ina.lida_
Laura / @littlefighter.photos
Ronja / @ aqua_mandrake
Congratulations ladies <3
I will approach all three and theyíll all get a singed copy of the book sent or hopefully even given to them personally. Ina with the biggest numbers will also get the ďEvening with SamuĒ super secret award for her and her friend as soon as the times are a bit more ok for such plans. If she feels itís still a good idea ;)
You can find the TOP 3 on my Instagram highlights. I only counted in people who sent the video without me asking for it. So for Example Nico Santos or Irina didnít have a chance because I asked them for it. Even though their numbers werenít too bad. And those two must get more than enough evenings with me anyways ;)
I must also thank my dear friends and colleagues for the efforts and help. You made my heart melt many times and also you made my book sales numbers huge. Just like everyone supporting in every way with pictures on social media or just by spreading the word. You are all made of gold. Thank you <3
Have a great weekend everyone. Iím gonna have a romantic dinner with my Boa Brother Siim Liivik now and weíll talk some man stuff. Itís too intelligent to write it down here. You know the basic topicsÖ.
Sending extra big love and lots of super hugs from winter wonderland to you all <3
Blog from 18. Februar 2021
Orchestrating Hard Drives
Probably the coolest thing musically I have ever experienced was the Wonderland Orchestra tour back in 2016 with Sunrise Avenue. Before that tour we had done the Big Band Theory tour with horns and extra percussions and later we were invited to Luzern Switzerland to perform three nights at the legendary KKL with the 21t Century Orchestra with strings and everything. After these experiences it was obvious that these two concepts needed to be put together and so the Wonderland Orchestra idea was born. I loved everything about it.
The project was massive. We were a total of 40 human beings from Finland on stage every night consisting of 24 strings, 9 horns, percussions and additional Keys by our buddy Lasse with us. Every crew member grew double size with professionality and the jobs they did every night was something not from this planet. The whole process was a musical mega blast and every moment even at the rehearsals was something I could easily live again and again. That show was the first one that took us to the Helsinki IFK home arena and a total of 11 sold out arenas in 4 countries. The two and a half hour concert was enjoyed by more than 100.000 souls. The nights between the shows were like a road movie. Eight night liner busses and trucks driving somewhere in the middle of the night and you could hear a violin or a saxophone playing somewhere every second since the journey started. Day and nightÖ Iíll still remember that trip when Iím wearing a diaper someday. Hopefully not soon.
We recorded every show on that tour and now weíre releasing the whole concert mixed and mastered and I must say it sounds just amazing. After not being able to feel and hear a real live audience for a year now, my eyes got a bit wet and my heart melted as I heard the crowd sound on the first final mixed track.
I Can Break Your Heart is the first track out at midnight and the rest of the live album will follow on April 9th. I canít get over Ailiís violin solo in the beginning. Her leather pants, your mega love from the crowd, life feeling like an endless adventure and every moment being like Saturday night.
Other kind of news
We also filmed the Frankfurt show and the idea was to release a DVD or to make the video available somehow. Iím super annoyed saying that we canít find the hard drives. Yes.. Nobody knows where the multi camera recording is at the moment and we have looked every-goddamn-where for a really long time. There might be this one basement left where it can be, but we havenít been able to access the place due to the world situation at the moment. First you invest a fortune in filming the show, then a crew works their asses off with their cameras and stuff and then someone loses the hard drive. I know many of you have hoped for this one for years, but thereís not much more we can do. If someone finds the disc, please send it home...
A few weeks ago mixing engineer Jesse Vainio sent me the first mix for approval. I was in my car in the middle of Helsinki driving back from my workout and after the first 60 seconds I realized I was driving 74 km/h on a 40 zone. Banging my head like crazy. Luckily I didnít hit anyone and there were no cops around. So be careful with this one. But bang your heads, it feels greatÖ;) I canít wait to hear the rest of the finalized tracks soon.
Itís Heartbreak Century. And times are strange. So maybe a little bit of Wonderland sounds is good for us all right now <3
Enjoy & Hugs to you all,
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