The Hard Rocking World of Tuple
The Hard Rocking World of Tuple
Tommi ‘Tuple’ Salmela is a heavy metal singer best known for working with bands such as Tarot, Lazy Bonez and Raskasta Joulua (Ragnarok Juletide). Recently, Tuple presented Wooden Box to the world, his debut solo album on AOR Heaven. A concept album telling stories of his life, Wooden Box by Tuple is filled with dynamic rockers and vibrantly heartfelt lyrics. Guest musicians on Wooden Box include Erkka Korhonen (Dark Sarah), Pepe Sedergren (Reckless Love), Sande Kallio (Amorphis), Tony Kakko (Sonata Arctica) as well as his Tarot band mate and mentor Marco Hietala. Highwire Daze recently interviewed Tommi ‘Tuple’ Salmela to find out more about the stories behind Wooden Box and his brilliant life and career in music. Read on…
At this point, what made you decide it was time to do a solo project?
I was sitting at my terrace and drinking Whiskey at a nice midsummer night 2018 and thinking about my past life and those things that have happened to me. Lots of stories, bad and good. Lots of pain and sorrow but of course good and happy memories. So I thought that when I am 50 years old, I have a good storyline to make a solo album. I called my old friend and super composer and I told my stories, every song, and he said instantly of course.
Where are you based out of and what is the local music scene like there?
I’m from Finland and my home town is Kuopio. Kuopio is the middle way in Finland. Nice town. The local music scene is Heavy metal music in Finland. I think that in Finland we have like 9 months dark not a chip of daylight like only 2 hours and people are still kind of melancholic. Lots of my foreign friends say that Finland is a kind of the Land of Heavy metal music.
Is there any overall story or concept behind the Wooden Box album and title?
Yes, the concept is the stories of my life. The first song starts telling a story of my father and me as a 6 years old boy who doesn´t understand why his father is at the coffin and doesn’t answer. The last song is about my mother. After my dad died, she did take care of me and my brother. It was hard times for my mother. all the songs have their own stories.
Has Tuple played live yet or do you plan to do so after these pandemic days come to an end?
We did talk about going live but we do not decide that yet.
If Tuple could open for any band either now or from the past, who would it be and why?
Hmmm, have to say there are lots of good bands. I love Survivor, Loverboy and so on. I love AOR music. To make music is so fun, so I hope lot’s of good bands never stop making a piece of good music 🙂
Prior to Tuple, you were in the band Tarot with Marco Hietala of Nightwish. How did you become involved with Tarot and what was it like working with him and the band?
The first time I saw Tarot play at the local youth center in 1986 and I got to know Marco and Saku. I was a young metalhead and became a fan :-). I asked the guys if I could be the roadie 🙂 Saku said that yes of course. So first I was a roadie but the years have gone by and I did found my own band. In 1990, Marco said that if you want I can come to Tarot gigs to sing parts of Tarot songs. I was like, OF COURSE. In 1994, I signed to be a second singer of Tarot. We are not decided to end the Tarot after our drummer died but we still pause of making new music or going to gigs. We are still grieving. Tarot is still and forever like Family. We all feel that we are kind of brothers.
What did Marco Hietala contribute on the Tuple album?
Marco played bass and acoustic guitar on the Fucking Beautiful song.
Of course Amorphis is famous all over the world. Who have you worked with in Amorphis and what was that experience like?
I have been doing lots of background vocals on many bands. I was worked with Tomi Joutsen and did background vocals two different Amorphis albums. It was fun. First time I was so ill that I did eat about 10 painkillers to make vocals 🙂
In your other band Lazy Bonez, you did a duet with Bernie Shaw of the legendary Uriah Heep on the song Devils Dice from the album Alive. How did that come about and what was it like working with Bernie Shaw?
Bernie is an amazing guy. It went so easy, we send an email to him and he answers to next day that yes let’s do this. So simple.
And since we are on the subject of Lazy Bonez, what is currently going on with the band?
Lazy Bonez is composing new material and doing one festival gig this summer. I hope we can do some demos this summer and some gigs in autumn.
What’s up next for Tuple?
Hahaha, do I tell you? Hmmmmmm. maybe doing new songs. Yes, I love to do some new demos and new songs. It´s fun. maybe new album 🙂 next year 🙂
Any final words of wisdom?
Wisdom 🙂 ? Ok People take care of your fellow men and nature. Let´s show the middle finger to Covid-19 and shoot it to the moon!!! We want to keep on Rockin and Play !!!
Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions! Take care and be safe in these crazy times!
Thank you it was a pleasure. Be safe and good health to all of the American people and of course stay up heavy!!!
(Interview by Ken Morton)