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  • Writer's pictureMary Ann

"Thirsty Thursday" Featuring Willie and the Goodsouls

Thank you for chatting with us! For newer fans, how did your passion for music and career come about? First time I heard rock music was Elvis when I was three years old. I loved it. I I also liked a Finnish band Hurriganes which sounded like Elvis to me, only with more aggression.

Did you always want to be a musician or was there a specific moment that something happened that made you think "this is what I want to do with my life." If so, what was it? I remember listening to Twisted Sisters on my Walkman and headphones (Yes I'm an 80's kid) at my grandparents house in the middle of the night rocking with a tennis racquet in front of a mirror. My grandma came upstairs and couldn't quite understand what I was doing. Later I realized I will be a rocker and that was just rehearsing :)

How was it filming the video for "Future?" You don't see it in the video, but as the sun went down and we started shooting, it was COLD! In some takes you could see the steam coming out of our mouths. But we managed to get it done in our normal gig clothing and not wear any winter jackets.

If you could only perform one of your songs for someone who has never heard of you, what song would that be? Probably "Always n' Endless" from our first album. It has become the last number of our set and the live version just rocks, bringing out the best in all of us.

Aside from singing do you play any instruments? Actually, I recorded almost every instrument myself on the first Willie & The Goodsouls record, guitars, bass, drums, keys.. singing was what I was most uncertain about at that time.

At the end of the day, what do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people take away from your songs? It's funny how it goes. First you write music, then people come and thank you and tell you how and what they felt about your record. Then your mind starts maybe seeing it too, and next thing you know you're writing music that gives exactly the message you were told you made :).

Was there ever music playing in the kitchen growing up? Yes there was, I remember seeing Jimi Hendrix perform for the first time from our kitchen TV. It was a strong experience.

What is an example of a menu you would prepare if I came over? I would get cognac marinated steak from the shop near me, salad and shrimp mayonnaise (sounds weird but it works) as a sider, with naturally the Sweet Baby Ray's Honey chipotle sauce.

Favorite music to listen to while you cook? When cooking I prefer Bob Marley and The Wailers.

How do you drink your coffee? I've been told I'm weird because I can drink my coffee in any way. Cold, hot, cream, sugar, milk, iced...

Finally, if you could be sponsored by one food/drink brand who would it be? Sweet Baby Ray's. I love the sauces! Especially the Honey Chipotle one!

Following the success of Willie & The Good Souls' third album; (self-titled Willie & The Good Souls), the band is back from extensive European touring to solidify their place in your Rock n’ Roll playlist. Incorporating a vast, extensive range of instrumentation, this five member Rock band has channeled the sounds and emotions of the greats to create a unique dynamic all their own. Hailing from Finland, Willie & The Good Souls incorporate Classic American funk and roots with Slavic melodies and themes.

Founding member Ville Vesalainen, (guitar and vocals), was once known in his circle as the Finnish E-Street band, as he played most of all the instruments on the debut album; fortunate Son. A clever, a mature interpretation of classic rock anthems, Fortunate Son garnered the attention of Petra Wahlsten (vocals, violin) who convinced Ville to enlist an entire band for their second album; Free Willie.

With an impressive catalog of material under V.R. Label Finland, including an array of videos on YouTube, Willie & The Good Souls look now to the future, a fourth album and a broader tour focus. Reviews for Willie & The Good Souls have been favorable; “Not much is done in this style of rock, and especially not so well” (SOUNDI 12/14), “Singer-guitarist Ville Vesalainen directs his band in a stylish and nuanced way. The soulful-sounding band blows fresh flame into the traditional fireplace and causes heat and vibration. ” (Aamulehti 11/16), “The best thing about this record is its relaxation and obvious love of doing. Fortunate Son contains wickedly warm-hearted blues rock with bow to the old masters. " (Jussi Mäntysaari 10/14), and "Glow warning given!" (Mesta 10/14) Current line-up for Willie & The Good Souls: Ville Vesalainen - vocals, guitar, Petra Wahlsten - vocals, violin, Tuomas Riihimäki – keyboards, Jukka Lehto - bass, vocals, Jussi Vuola - drums, vocals.

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