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I started making music with my brother, Pekka, at a quite early stage. We had a band called Finnforest back in Finland playing in Mahavishnu Orchestra/Weather Report vein in early 70's. Miles Davis, Charlie Parker, Duke Ellington, Frank Zappa etc were our early influences growing up. Recorded 3 albums, "Finnforest", "Lahto Matkalle" and "Demonnights" for a Finnish label Love Records. As the guy in the band always asking questions and recording the demos, bugging the recording engineers, I wound up being the producer/engineer down tha line. One of them being Petri Pettersson's record "Nuoruus" for the same label. Pekka and I also played on it and it eventually got the "Record of the Year" award from Finnish Broadcasting Company.


I studied orchestral percussion and theory, played occasionally with top 40 bands, a swing band and sometimes with big bands in the area. Later I joined a group of guys who built a studio in a small town of Kuopio, Finland. Totally doomed financial concept, especially for  small city like that, but we needed a studio, right?


While playing and forming other groups (for example Tori, a reggae influenced rock group) I started producing local bands ranging from early punk to whatever. Started doing sound for live concerts. Later wound up doing tours as FOH engineer for Finnish bands like Sielun Veljet, Jukka Karjalainen (whose live CD I co-produced), Smack, Backsliders, Piirpauke, Havana Black, Melrose (whose record "Rock My World", I recorded and produced a few years later in Los Angeles and Helsinki) and tons of others including, major summer festivals and clubs (Irish Music Festival at Tavastia Club, where I was lucky to work with The Chieftains once).


Mixed for music for live TV concert broadcasts (Sielun Veljet in Moscow, Helsinki Festival), radio and multimedia festivals, concert films. Toured all over Scandinavia and Europe (including the old Soviet Union) with different groups. Found myself playing drums for a Finnish jazz/world music group, Piirpauke, touring Finland and Europe. Same thing happened with Havana Black later on. Havana Black got signed by Capitol Records and with them I moved to Los Angeles, California in 1990. We shared the management with Guns 'N Roses and Great White. We toured opening for Great White and I also did a stint as a rehearsal drummer for G'N’R.


After that mess I decided to concentrate on studio work and composing. Co-wrote a record with Roxy Stone (who got later signed and dropped by Rocket Records). Produced Baby and the Tongue, Dazed Pigs and other local bands. Baby and the Tongue leader Carl Marrelli  wrote music with me and some the tracks got placed in indie movies.


Mark "Muddy" Dutton with his band, Loaded, came and went. One of the cool memories from those times is a band from India, Indus Creed, whose record I engineered. Produced by dear late friend of ours, John Bogosian. At one point I played with Cellmates, a group with 2 singers, Paula and Pamela Mattioli. We did a short tour up in the northeast of US.There's a ton of artists (from David Hasselhoff and Peter Criss to Boxing Gandhis) I worked with during that time and those are listed in my composer resume elsewhere.


Around mid 90's I started working in film post, which started as a sound editor, dialogue, fx, design etc. Somewhere along that time I was able to convince a film producer friend of mine to let me score a couple of Chinese action movies, Jet Li's "The Contract Killer" and Jackie Chan's "Jackie Chan is The Prisoner". I found the dready deadlines interesting, I guess... and the fact that I didn’t have to deal with a band, group of guys, anymore, well... exciting and great.


Those led to scoring other features, “Alex In Wonder”, “Highlander-Search for Vengeance”, “Follow The Prophet”, “World Full of Nothing”.

JUSSI MUSIC HISTORY 101