As some of you may have found out from my Facebook-page or elsewhere, I’ve recorded a Christmas album called Ave Maria – Joulun klassikot (Christmas classics). The idea came from Warner Music and even though I was a bit suspicious of the idea at first, I came to like it very much because of the classy production there was going to be. The idea was to do a christmas album that would sound majestic and grand, but yet still delicate and dynamic. It was clear that there would be no sample-based orchestrations, but a real symphony orchestra playing most of the songs. Even though sampled sound and midi programming can do pretty convincing results, the real thing just sounds like a…REAL THING! We also recorded a big sounding organ at church to make the package even more tangible.
The album was recorded in several locations, but my parts were done at Neomusic Studio in Helsinki with Janne Huttunen sitting behind the desk. Miikka Huttunen handled the mixing and Svante Försback did the mastering. The track list is as follows:
1. Ave Maria 4:35 (The one and only!) 2. Sylvian joululaulu 4:03 (The song you might have heard me singing before on last Christmas, but this time the arrangement is fully made for my voice.) 3. En etsi valtaa loistoa 3:18 (A Christmas carol from Jean Sibelius with a very pious mood.) 4. Mielenrauhaa 3:57 (A new song from Kassu Halonen – the man behind Sydämeeni Joulun Teen.) 5. Varpunen jouluaamuna 3:27 (A song written on a touching poem by Zacharias Topelius – we Finns love this one and I think this version worked out great.) 6. Sydämeeni joulun teen 3:46 (Maybe the last Finnish Xmas carol that has reached a classic status among the classics – and we spiced it up just a little bit.) 7. Nessun Dorma 3:14 (This is not a Christmas carol, but it surely fits here very well – I like this one one of the best tracks here.) 8. Tonttu 4:51 (A nice story of a Xmas elf and a cool arrangement with a rich athmosphere.) 9. Jouluyö, juhlayö 3:44 (One of the most known Christmas carols with a nice vibe in it.) 10. Adagio 3:03 (This one isn’t a Xmas carol either, but it ends this album with a grand tone and a BIG organ sound!)
Raskasta Joulua will hit the road again in November. It’s getting bigger year by year and we’ll be playing in Tampere-talo this time, for example. For more venues, please visit Dragonwhite.com.
AHOLA is going to do few gigs as well on November. It’s been a pleasure to get new fans by playing live. I know that many of you have heard us the first time in live situation. It’s hard work to win you over gig by gig but very rewarding as well. So thank you for the support. Go check AHOLA’s homepage.