Interview with Sami from Free Spirit by Ove

Hello Sami, thank you so much for giving Blizz Of Rock this interview

Sami: Thanks for having me! The pleasure is all mine.

First of all Sami, I’m honored to talk to the lead singer behind the great rock band Free Spirit.

Sami: Thanks! It’s a privilege to get noticed in the rock media.

When was the band Free Spirit formed? What is the story behind the name?

Sami: Free Spirit story starts actually from the 90’s. Me and Pasi are the original founding members. Nasu our bass player joined the band few months after the band was founded. At first this band was just a project and we gathered together playing what ever we felt like. At that time we all had our first priority bands elsewhere playing totally different kind of music, so this was like a therapy to all of us.
First few years things were quite slow because we had our military services, studies etc. Things started to happen in early 2000 when we released few promo CD-EPs and filmed couple of videos These unofficial CD-EPs were critically acclaimed in many magazines around the world and that gave us the courage to start working with our music more actively again.  
This current line up formed in 2006 when Vesa joined the band. After a few rehearsals it was obvious that now we had the line up, attitude and skills to make the album we’ve been all dreamed of for so many years. In January 2007 we started to record the “Pale Sister of Light” album. Markku joined the band a few months later. Unfortunately Markku had to leave the band just before the album was released, but we were lucky to find Marko to replace him in fall 2008. Timo has made music with us for many years. He’s been like a special guest in our recordings with his keyboards. At first we thought that there is a song or two on the album that needs keyboards, but eventually every song on the album ended up having keyboards. After that it was obvious that we need Timo and his keyboards on stage, too.
The name of the band is originally from Friedrich Nietzsche’s classic book “Antichrist”, where he writes, in chapter 13, about free spirits.  According to Nietzsche, a free spirit is a person who doesn’t let any religious, political or any other –isms guide him/her. We thought that Nietzsche’s statement describes us as persons, our music and the attitude of the band quite well.
After we checked out what other things 'free spirit' stands for, we thought that this would be the perfect name for a rock band because it means so many different things and sounds mystic.

If I’ve done my homework you released your first album in 2009 named “Pale sister of light” How did that come about?

Sami: That’s true. We started to record the album in early 2007 and we gave ourselves a promise that we would use all the time needed to make this album sound just like we wanted. We wrote new songs and rearranged and even rewrote older Free Spirit material for the album. Finally after hundreds of hours of work and dozens of versions later the album was finished in summer 2008 and released in 2009.

How many albums have Free Spirit released?

Sami: “Pale Sister of Light” is our first official full length album. We have released earlier some demos and unofficial CD-EPs, one official single in 2005 and then we have participated in some compilations with our music and music videos during the years.

It took over ten years before this album was released, does Free Spirit have more material for another album in the near future or must we wait another ten years for another kick ass album?

Sami: We are already writing new songs for the second album. When it will be released, it’s way too early to say. We don’t want to rush with the second album either, because I think one of the reasons why ‘Pale Sister of Light’ is so highly acclaimed, is the fact that we used all the time necessary to make this album sound like we wanted. I think that’s a good working method for us, but it won’t surely take another ten years.

Where may we find the albums, where could we buy the music from Free Spirit?

Sami: The album is officially released only in Finland, but soon there will be other official releases, which will be announced in the near future, but before that the best place is to check out those online import / mail order shops. Most of these shops are shipping worldwide. The digital version of the album can be downloaded from places like iTunes, Rhapsody, and many more. At our homepage there is a list of places where the album can be bought physically or digitally, so that is probably the best place to find out your nearest dealer. 

(You can buy it right here)

Two of my favorite tracks is “Pale sister of light” and “Shadow of a man”. Two killing songs. Really awesome. Who wrote these songs?

Sami: Thanks! Pale Sister of Light is originally written by me, but we rewrote some parts together with Vesa during the recording sessions. For example the chorus of the song is totally new and Vesa rewrote all the guitar riffs. Lyrics are mostly by me also, but there are also parts that I co-wrote with our former guitar player.
Shadow of a Man has quite a similar history. The original version was written by me and our former guitar player, but during the recording sessions Vesa rewrote all the guitar riffs and he also composed the bridge between the verse and the chorus. I wrote the lyrics and lead melodies for the song.


Is there anything you would have done different with this album?

Actually no. Now that a little time has passed and I can hear the album more objectively, I must say that I’m quite pleased with the results. Of course there are some technical points you can always speculate with, but after all the positive reviews and feedback from the audience and critics, I’m glad we did things the way we did.

Is it possible to see Free Spirit live on tour?

We are looking forward to play these songs live as much as possible. After some gigs in Finland it’s obvious that songs from the ‘Pale Sister of Light’ album work also very well in front of live audience and it would be so cool to tour with this material! There have been talks about tours in Europe and even in the US, but unfortunately we can’t confirm anything yet.

Any bands or artists you would love to have with you on your tour?

Sami: I’d love to tour with all of them. Of course it’s very important to have good chemistry within the bands and between bands when you are spending practically 24/7 surrounded by your tour mates. Mostly musicians are very easy going people, so I believe it would one great adventure to tour with any of them.

We are going to have an interview with “Brother Firetribe” and a few month ago we spoke to “Tears of Magdalena” do you know these bands?

Sami: I don’t know these bands in person, but I know both bands’ music and I think they are doing a great job. It would be nice to get to know those guys. Maybe someday we are together on a same tour…

What a show it would have been

If there was one place in the wide world that you could play Sami where would that be?

Sami: Perhaps legendary the Madison Square Garden would be the place. Of course the show would be sold out and everything…

Madison Square Garden

Free Spirit is a rock band. Where do you get your influence? Do you feel that Free Spirit got their own style? In an interview with Bob flash you said bands like Wasp, Iron Maiden and Twisted Sister

Sami: Besides those bands our main musical influences come from our childhood heroes. When we were kids and started to listen to rock music, bands like The Scorpions, Van Halen, Def Leppard and Bon Jovi ruled the charts and melodic hard rock was mainstream music and those bands were godlike to us. Then there are also bands from the 70’s and even 60’s that have influenced us quite a lot. For example Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, The Doors, Deep Purple, Judas Priest, Queen, Pink Floyd etc. I guess all those classic rock bands are our main influences. We share a lot musically, but there are also these groups that a part of the band hates and the rest of band loves.

What does Myspace mean to Free Spirit?

Sami: Obviously Myspace is our main promotion tool. With Myspace we can reach our fans and network with media and music industry. When new artists don’t have a big promotion budget and major label resources to support them, social medias on the internet are the best place to get your music heard.  

If Free Spirit received 100.000 dollar, and had to give it to a good cause. What or who would that be?

Sami: We would try to help those who can’t stand for themselves in this cruel world.

A helping hand

What’s your opinion about the Rock ‘n’ roll coming back?

Sami: I think it’s about bloody time!

What sort of age group are you attracting with your music?

Sami: It seems that our music appeals to many different age groups. We have fans from teens to adults and from kids to grannies. It’s so great to notice that our music doesn’t seem to have barriers between genres or age groups.

Would you like Blizz Of Rock Radio to play your music?

Sami: Of course! We’d really appreciate all your support because every minute on the air is so precious nowadays. Besides your listeners might like our music…

If you got the chance to have a concert in Norway, what could we expect from Free Spirit?

Sami: You can expect energetic stage appearance and a good time. Our mission is to bring melodies, big emotions and stadium-size choruses back to rock music and we want to do that in the studio and live on the stage.

When did you get your first instrument?

Sami: I was 13 years old when I got my first guitar for Christmas present. It was an acoustic Landola (a Finnish guitar manufacturer) and I still have it hanging on my wall. She is now mostly retired, but I still play something with her every now and then just to “talk with an old friend.”

Any instruments you would love to learn how to play, that you don’t?

Sami: I would love to play the keyboards and the piano. Sometimes those instruments gives you tones and chords you can’t find from a guitar. Then it would be great if I could play the flute. Especially those ethnic flutes have such a great sound, like those flute licks Markku recorded on ‘Easy Days.’

Is there a funny story you could share with us?

Sami: They’re all so embarrassing... well, there is actually one… no, no I can’t, sorry…

If you could turn back the time and choose a new date to start a band, when would that be? And why this year/decade?

Sami: I would start a band in 50’s so I could live all those great decades of rock music.

What is the highlight of your career as rock musician?

Sami: I believe it’s still ahead, but this far ‘Pale Sister of Light’ album and everything around it has been my highlight as a musician.

Anyone you would love to meet, that you have not met yet?

Sami: I would love to meet so many people, but to mention just one… Robert Plant is definitely one I want to meet.

What is your opinion about Blizz Of Rock? (

Sami: I think Blizz of Rock is just what artists and fans of rock music needs. Keep up the good work!

Who would you like Blizz Of Rock to make an interview with?

Sami: I think you should make an interview with a great melodic rock band from Finland called Reckless Love. A friend of mine is playing guitar in that band and they are about release their first album soon.

Recless Love

Thank you so much Sami and Free Spirit for using time to answer these questions. Blizz of rock wishes Free Spirit all the best, take care Sami

Sami: Thanks and take care!