Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Ilari Hämäläinen: "It'll make your blood flow faster and make you sweat, but it feels good"

We are on fire! This is the 4th interview of the year and its the turn of another UMK 2013 finalist. He is ready to bring us some finnish Rock n Roll (YEAH!), Here are the answers of ILARI HÄMÄLÄINEN:

Name: - Ilari Hämäläinen
Age: - 34
Zodiac sign: - Gemini
Height: - 1.78cm
Favorite Color: - red
Favourite food: - grilled salmon or pasta with pesto sauce
Shoe Size: - 42 European, 8 UK, 8,5 US
Eye color: - bright blue
Where are you right now?: - I'm at home, doing some paperwork in our bedroom
 3 Fears:
- The biggest fear I have is that something bad happens to my kids
- I fear that I never learn to be satisfied with what I have achieved. But it feels like I'm slowly learning this.
- It would be a nightmare if lost my ability to hear. Or if I hurt my fingers badly or lost my voice permanently
3 things that makes you happy:
- bright sounding rock music
- travelling
- getting into a relaxed mood
What’s your strangest talent?: - I am pretty good in archery - at least I used to be
Do you have any nicknames?: - some call me "iltsu" or "Ila"
Home alone and your bored. What do you do?: - I will start doing some music or editing a video. I have always some project going on, so it's very seldom that I get bored.
What are you really good at?: - I think I am really good at arranging music and resolving musical conflicts
What are you really bad at?: - I am a very bad sales-man and secretary. My paperwork are always late and messed up.
Childhood idol: - My first childhood Idol was Joey Tempest (from Europe), after him I was a great fan of Freddie Mercury and Queen
Tell me something no one knows about you: - sometimes even I don't like my cookings myself
What would you do if you were invisible?: - What? Is this even a question? I would the same thing that every man would - I'd go to the women dressing room to check out the beauties :D
Favorite movie: - Lord Of The Rings trilogy or West Side Story. I'm really looking forward seeing the Les Miserable -movie. I'm expecting it to be my new favorite one.
Tell me a super power you wish you had.: - I'd love to fly, but if that's too hard to get, I'd be satisfied with a super power called "ability to sing full chest voice all the way up to G2" (European scale - That's half an octave above the famous Pavarotti C)
What's your favorite part of your body: - I think they are either my arms or my chest
Tell me one of your insecurities: - I'm pretty insecure at self-promoting. I don't want to seem pushy. Otherwise I'm pretty self-confident.
What is your guilty pleasure?: - That must be eating junk-food and goodies
Name a song that never fails to make you happy: - I Can't Stop Loving You (by Toto) That's my sunny Sunday-morning song
Can you teach me some interesting words in finnish?: - villasukka means a wool sock. We use that word sometimes as a adjective describing a performer, music or just a person being very soft tempered. It has a neutral describing meaning, but also it has a negative meaning if some one is not able to speak out or act when needed.
Tell me some of your bad habits: - I tend to collect too many projects going on at the same time, and then I regret being unable to concentrate on them as peacefully as I'd like to.
When did you start singing?: - I have started to sing around 10. In high-school I was singing pretty much, but then there was almost 10 years between when I was more a bass player that singer.
I have recently started singing again and studying it pretty seriously. I'm suppose to become a voice teacher in few years.
If you were me what would you ask to Ilari? and tell me your answer.
Q: What made you choose Finnish language for your Eurovision contest song?
A: I was browsing through the Finnish music catalogue and noticed that AOR style is missing there. I happen to love that genre and decided to make an album in Finnish into that style. So this song is kind of a pilot episode to my album although it's a bit more into style of "Mötley Crue meets Van Halen" than "Toto meets Journey".

How do you feel right now?
- I'm feeling pretty good. I feel like my day has been pretty effective.
How would you describe yourself?
- I am decathlete of music who was born 20 years too late compared to musical tastes.

I saw on facebook that you are part of a lot bands, what can you tell me about that? 
-  I'm a front-man of a band called Siberian Jay. We have released one album internationally in a digital format. That's my international priority of all the bands I have. More of that you'll find from Spotify link here.
I also play bass in several bands, Naked, Blake, Kengurumeininki, Rock & Roll Sensation and peform in Finnish musical every now and then. I have composed four musicals myself too.
My website is a good place to start browsing the bands, but I tell shortly about them.
Naked is a show-rock band that is recently on a break after trying hard in NYC. We eventually run out of money while playing about 40 gigs on Manhattan.

Blake is a stoner-rock band that's pretty famous in Finland among the motorcyclists and people with old-school metal attitude.
Kengurumeininki is a children oriented band. It's pretty famous in Finland and we play between 100-200 gigs in Finland per year. That's also the band where I get to hang out with my oldest and dearest "drummer-match as a bass player". He is Mikko Sirén who's more well known as a drummer of Apocalyptica - that cello-metal band.
Rock & Roll Sensation is cover band playing the best of 80's hard rock. The band has a big following compared that it's a cover-band.

To be part of the Naked band did you have to get naked first?
- naturally yes :D Didn't you know that when musicians are in the studio - it almost always leads to taking all the clothes of at some point. That's when you get in to the right move achieving the best takes.
I think it has something to do with humiliating yourself - LOL!!! This must be a global thing, not just crazy Finns...
You are one of the 12 finalists in the Finnish selection. How did it all begin? what made you participate as a solo artist?
- I like to run things myself, and as a solo artist I get to rule everything. I'm not a big fan of negotiating when it comes to making music. I also didn't feel like any of the bands that I have would suite into Eurovision style of doing things. That was one of the reasons why I carefully selected the players behind me - just for this certain thing.
Photo: (Tom Hakala)
Sytytä mut vaan is the title of your song. What is the song about? and what made you write it?
- Here are the English version lyrics of the same song. The message is approximately the same in Finnish. I started to feel that we people need more twinkle in the corner of the eye these days. Everything doesn't have to be so serious. Here is the spotify link of the song:
Spotify link:

verse 1:
A hot sizzling summer night, I feel your body babe this is right
Tonight I’ll make you mine, It’s time to draw the line

I feel your body, you own my soul, I want you girl all alone
Tonight I’ll make you mine, You make me see the light

No time to speculate
Make no mistake just ate the bait

Give me what you’ve got - I’m a shot full of rock
Give me what you’ve got - And I’ll love you a lot
Help me baby please relieve my stress
I am shaking when I'm waiting just to see you undress

Show me what you’ve got - I’m a shot full of rock
Show me what you’ve got - Cause I’m burning hot
Give me legs and thies and all the rest
I am hungry for your love - I know you'll make me impressed

verse 2:
You know that lovely move, And I feel like I'm your groove
Yeah I would sacrifice, Everything in sight

So step up to the plate, Can’t take it I'm about to faint
I’m gonna make you mine, Let your love light shine

I’m all done  holding back
Just give me one more heart attack

Give me what you’ve got...

Give me a taste - skin and lace


Describe your song with 4 words
- fast, energetic, 80's, hard-rock

What can you tell me about the performance? did you start preparing it? do you know what you're going to wear for the performance?
- I am going to stay true to my natural style and I selected the band members so that their characters and style over all fit mine. We are not going to do anything special until the Finnish finals. I'm counting on the song and our natural performance and charisma. I have spoken with the stylists of the show and we both agreed that we will wear the clothes that we usually do, because we look the best that way.

Did you listen to the songs that are going to compete with you in the selection? what do you think about them?
- I have listened the most of them. I think my favorite is Mikael Saari's song. It's very fragile and dynamic, but I also like a lot of Krista's and Iina's songs - I'm not sure if I like the girls or the songs better, but I certainly like them.
What do you like about Eurovision?
- I have watched Eurovision song contest since I was a kid. 
I composed my first song for the Finnish contest when I was 12 and have been part of Finnish finals two times as a background singer or singer-dancer.

What do you dislike about Eurovision?
- sometimes it feels like the neighbor countries etc. are just voting for each other - no matter how the songs are.
Do you like any of the Eurovision songs from Finland?
- Yes I do. I think some of them have been great songs, but sometimes the performances have not been that good.

Do you have a message for the Eurovision fans?
- Hope you don't mind if try to bring some rock n' roll into the Eurovision contest. It'll make your blood flow faster and make you sweat, but it feels good. Don't be shy - Show me what you got! ;) 

Thank you very much Ilari! The answers were great! Good luck on the selection!!

I know you want to get more of him so here is his facebook page:
his official website:
and his page on the UMK website:

Go to his UMK page to watch his performance for the juries. (I love it)

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