Tarja Turunen: (Female) Rock Wolf in sheep's clothing

With her debut CD "My Winter Storm" Tarja could establish herself successfully as solo artist 2007 after her time with Nightwish. In the beginning of September the new CD "What Lies Beneath" was released (see review on left side). Reason enough for us to do an interview with the beautiful Finnish woman.

- After "MWS" now your new album was released here. In which way is it different from your debut?

- First of all WLB is a very personal CD for me. It was a long journey into myself. The album tells the story about how I see the life around me, as artist as well as woman. The album is "more direct", the songwriting was simpler and that also counts for the production. Some people may be surprised by the CD being "harder" than MWS. Also the first album was about my view on things, but this time it feels like a natural step forward...

- which one also notices when listening to the CD. Please tell us more about the recording. Was it difficult to record it or was it fairly easy to be done?

- Recording started in February in Hollaa, Finland, in a studio called Petrax, where first bass (Doug Wimbish), drums (Mike Terrana) and the guitars (Alex Scholpp) were recorded. This time I took care of the whole production, which was a huge step. But when I finished writing all the songs, I knew that this was exactly what I wanted and so I decided to do it all alone. I recorded the vocals at home in Finland and in Buenos Aires. The orchestra and the choir were recorded with the National Choir and Orchestra of Slovakia in their country.. Other instruments like cello, keyboards and more were recorded in accordance with the musicians, I only gave same orders from the distance. Max Lilja (Cello), Christian Kretschmer (Keyboards) Melli Wessem (Ambient Design) and the mixing was done in 3 different locations: London, UK (Colin Richardson, famous for his metal background), Austin, Texas (Tim Palmer, who has a very broad musical range) and Slam Andrews in L.A. who is rooted deeply in film music. It was so far the biggest production of my career, but it was lots of fun. There were several decisions that had to be taken, but it was a pleasure to work with those people.

- What was so far the funniest thing that happened to you in your career as professional musician? Is there a little story?

- Once during a show my pants tore. I was wearing black trousers that were very tight and I had yellow underwear under it. I felt it very well when it ripped/tore, so I turned into the direction of the drummers and ran into the backstage area to find some black tape to put over it. In the meantime the show countinued and sometime I got back on stage with a towel around my hips. I also then finished the show in this "dress"...

- What was your worst job so far?

- I suppose when I was a waitress on one of those cruise ships. The job was supposed to be for 3 months, but ended after 1 and a half months after the captain touched my butt, because I was the only girl in the crew. I slapped him and left the ship as soon as possible.

- What would you consider your personal career highligh so far?

- The fact that I can live my dreams is a continous highlight of my life. There is not just a single moment, there are so many that I am thankful for each day.

- Ever forgot in which hotel or which city you were when you woke up?

- Very often and especially when I leave for breakfast, I never know the number of my room.

- A rock singer simply needs to be asked this: Ever destroyed your hotel room?

- NO! I've already seen that though, but my hotel room is my home and I wouldn't destroy my home.

- What can the fans expect when they come to visit you on your tour?

- It's gonna be really amazing, thanks to the musicians taking part in it, we are really looking forward to being on tour again and play the music live that we have prepared for so long. It'll be strong concerts with lots of emotions. We will rock you!!

As game magazine of course we have to ask that: Do you sometimes play computer or other virtual games?

- To be honest: No. I am really bad in such games and only play occasionally with my iPhone. I own a PS3, but unfortunately I never have the time to play.

English Translation: Christine