The original interview in finnish by Kari Hynninen was made in May of 2009 for the web-site Umami.fi
Translation by Sanni Leksis
Eicca Toppinen has taken it peacefully this year, and that's good, because the last two years he's been traveling all around the world with Apocalyptica. Umami discussed about summer with him.
What is your best summer memory from childhood?
Eicca Toppinen: Best summer memories are of my grandparent's summer house at Juojärvi lake near Outokumpu. We spent most of summer vacation there every year because the chances to travel abroad were non-existent. There were after all 5 kids in our family. From my teenager-years I remember the best music camps at Riistavesi (at Savo) and Kuhmo. For me summer and being Finnish concretes in backwater-villages' nightless night.
What must be done on summer?
Eicca Toppinen: On summer you must swim in nature, eat new potatoes, go to sauna and have sex. And listen to loons near the water at night.
How would you spend your ideal summer?
Eicca Toppinen: At some nice shore-place, and make trips (by car) for example to Eastern Finland or Lapland. A bit of festivals (both rock and classic) and meeting friends in summer cottages and homes. Part of the time with kids, parts without.
Is there summer left? (Note: Finnish version of this question is quote from finnish song)
Eicca Toppinen: That song sucks. But yes, there's summer left. Fortunately.
Does summer feel summer abroad?
Eicca Toppinen: It does. Always, when it's sunny and warm, its summer. In Finland people relate also to summer somehow through pain. "Summer is really summer only when you have suffered enough. Otherwise you don't 'deserve' it." The more I travel, the less I understand this thought. I mean that for every pleasure you must first suffer, so you can enjoy?
The best summer food?
Eicca Toppinen: Greek salad. (And fresh potatoes and tenderloin steak.)
The best summer music?
Eicca Toppinen: Depends on the feeling. For some reason dance hall romanticism works for me, so wistful, birch-smelling all time favorites are the hardest cash. I don't know why, but Finnish people seems to feel great amount of longing for connection with the nature especially at summertime and then works music that reminds of the time when nature still was close in every way.
The best summer movie?
Eicca Toppinen: Well... I guess anything with Tauno Palo and Ansa Ikonen.
The best summer book?
Eicca Toppinen: Hard to say but Paulo Coelho's "Alchemist" could work as a waking of thoughts related to relaxing.
The best summer city?
Eicca Toppinen: Ohhoh... Helsinki, Turku, Savonlinna, Kuopio, Lappeenranta, Naantali, Kuhmo etc... mainly, if there's water nearby, it works.
Expectations for summer 2009?
Eicca Toppinen: Work and vacation in good combo. As a family we've planned everything like that there's lots of moving space in summer to every direction. Really new situation, which I'm really waiting for to happen.
Name 3 finest/loveliest things that have happened to you during last year?
Eicca Toppinen: I've understood many priorities of my own life and how to live according to them. Though there are still things to learn. Hmmmm.... the last year has been very challenging, so I cannot name public the actual highlights. They are mainly connected to my personal life anyway.
Three things you hope that will happen during next year?
Eicca Toppinen: To get the dominating almost impossible equation - all the time harder work and family-life, to better balance and from that more creativity and daring with skills to enjoy things that exist and possibilities deserved.