We are Fu*king Sunrise Avenue
I know I say this pretty often, but I just had the best week of my life. OK, there have probably been better weeks or at least weeks as good as this one, but I can tell you there was one happy 192 cm tall 97 Kg Finnish guy flying home to Helsinki from Zurich last night.
As the pandemic started two years ago, the first show we had to cancel was the Snowpenair winter festival in Switzerland. The snow mountain festivals are very cool events but they’re also always on my wish list because usually the mountain folks invite you for a one week treat before the show. This time they did too.
I’ve been to the Alps probably 30 times in my life, but the weather has never been this great. Every night it went slightly below zero, so the slopes were well frozen in the morning and every day it was sunny and warm and there was just no wind. We stayed at this nice chalet with the crew boys and spent the days on the mountains and in the evening we cooked food for each other and stretched our sore muscles by the fire place. In my opinion the winner dish was Mikko’s (Visual designer) Carbonara on the third night. Every morning the bell rings at seven and you have breakfast together and head up to where the air is thin, views are breathtaking and the Sun burns your skin in a nice way. Feels like I’ve been inside a post card for a week.
So on Saturday we were finally on stage with the Sunrise Avenue boys after a two and a half year break. Jesus Christ years move fast. And that afternoon was just a big wow… They had sold out the whole 10.000 capacity mountain venue well before the show and man it was amazing. After the long break, we were all five like Bambi on ice, barely surviving the moments with our instruments and we all know damn well we can and will play much better together as the journey continues. But it was just so great and perfect. I remember thirty+ moments when I missed a chord or lost the lyrics, but somehow it didn’t matter on Saturday. I thought about the performance the night before in my bed and it felt just so amazing to finally get to climb on stage with the guys and I knew that little mistakes we would definitely make would never kill the vibe. Because I know you folks too well. You are not there to see us as perfect musicians or super power people. You are there to share those magic moments with all the tears, flaws and explosions of love and you are there to support us. Supporting someone, a band, a sports team or your loved ones doesn’t mean it needs to go all nice. It means you stand strong in good and not so good and you go through this life and moments together, no matter if it rains or shines. That is what makes you so god damn special and that is why I love you so much. I didn’t remember how beautiful it sounds when you sing and cheer. And again, I know I have said this before, but I don’t remember feeling that free and good on stage ever before. All that with the mountain view backdrop. No words.
Thank you so much for coming out and thank you for being the way you always are. There are many things that should be fixed or that could be better in this world, but you – please don’t ever change. We’ve never taken anyone coming to the shows for granted and I have always been more than grateful for having people at the clubs or arenas, but this weekend I remembered again how damn lucky I am. In the middle of the Swiss mountains, I saw many familiar faces from the past and even if I don’t even know most of your names, a million memories went through my head from the past years on Saturday afternoon. Every jump and every tear drop felt pure and beautiful and as if they were meant to happen.
This show was also great proof that the final tour must happen. There were many mixed emotions on the way the last few years especially as I didn’t see the band guys at all during the pandemic. I understand my decision and the words I have said aren’t easy to swallow or to understand. And I had a hard time digesting some things on the way too. But this is what makes me proud of us. We take things as adults, accept everyone’s feelings, we put our fists together and go out there and rock the house with everything we got. The respect and love we all have for this band goes above our own egos and everything else and it’s just unbelievable. As I had decided to end this journey I was wondering if it makes any sense playing another long tour together just to say goodbye. What I felt on stage and backstage this weekend made me sure it’s the only way there is. Every Sunrise Avenue band and crew member will have my full love and respect until the day I die. You are my brothers forever. The tour should happen as it’s announced now. But if something happens, I guarantee you, this tour will be cancelled only over my dead body. Thank you Mikko, Crew and agents for working so hard and for finding new solutions, dates and arenas so many times already.
I can’t wait for May and the tour start. If we’ll be kings of the house every night or if I’ll break down in front of you all, and I probably will, I will still love every micro second of it all and I’ll just try to save every moment on the hard drive of my heart. Bring it on <3
Thank you everyone at Grindelwald for taking such great care of us. Your valley is so beautiful and everything just works like a Swiss clock. And extra thanx for arranging the ice hockey playoffs trip to Biel. Your hockey fan culture is just as great as your rock’n’roll crowds. Good luck Jere, Toni and gang for the rest of the payoffs.
I haven’t opened my calendar for a week and I don’t even remember what’s waiting for me the next weeks. That is a good sign though. I know will be quite much in studio finishing my Finnish album, getting a few new tattoos ;) and also preparing everything for the tour. And today afternoon I will go back to my Combat training with Timo, Bob & co and see where my real skills are without a 90 minute rock show and a few beers with the boys at backstage. Please treat me gently, I’m a sensitive artist ;) After this week in Switzerland I feel like I’m ready to climb any mountain twice.
Morning greetings from my own sofa with a fresh oat cappuccino. This is the best place in the world. I love the good sides of this world very much right now and I’m sending you all a hug bigger than ever before. Things you do for us and things you do for me matter more than you can ever imagine. You give so much more than you know <3