Harri Kentala (Guitar/Vocals), Juha-Matti Rautiainen (Bass/Back Vocals), Tomi Havinen (Drums/Percussion)
Where In Finland Are You From?
The place that unites us is a small town at Ostrobotnia called Kaustinen. We all went to same college of music there (by the way, so did Juho!). That’s where Wee People was founded in 1996 by Tomi, Harri & the former bassplayer Kai Pajukangas. Nowdays we all live in different places; Harri has his own studio in Helsinki, Tomi lives with his family at Virrat and I’m staying at Jyväskylä, although I’m planning to move back to Kaustinen…
How Would You Describe Your Band For Those Who Don’t Know You?
Wee People is a rather tight package of rock with strong funky flavors… Some people have referred us with such bands as Red Hot Chili Peppers, Prince or Rage Against Machine.
When Did You Form As A Group?
Wee People was founded in 1996 with a different bass player, as I mentioned above. I joined the band in 1999 when I was 17.
What Was The Inspiration For Your Recent Album?
I can’t just name one, because it took so long to make, but I’d say that one very important thing is to make music without any compromise towards commerciality. It’s very hard to say in my point of view, what Harri had in his mind when he wrote the lyrics, but as you might have noticed, usually there’s some message included in them…
What Other Releases Do You Have?
Wee People have released two EPs: ‘Tsunami’ in 1997 and ‘This Thing We Do’ in 1999. We have also very much unreleased recorded material from a perioid, when we had a DJ in the band (2000-2003).
What Is Your Favorite Song On Your Most Recent Album?
Hmm… That’s a hard one. If I had to choose only one, I’d propably pick ‘Finally’, because it’s pure energy. Originally it was very different tune, but when we went to record it, it changed totally in a more aggressive direction and we decided to record it very rawly in means of keeping the energy on the final mix that we had by that time.
Then of course there’s the oldest recording on the album called ‘Put Me in the Ground’ which I really love. We recorded it in 2000 and it survived on the album because it also sounded very organic and it had a very, very intensive feeling. I thing Harri has a best vocal performance on that one; not technically, but emotionally it’s straight from the heart, like he’s singing for his life…
Do You Have Any Gigs Coming Up?
This year we’re planning to get active again and we have about 4-6 gigs coming up before the end of the year.
What’s Your Favorite Type Of Venue To Play?
For Wee People I think the best places are small venues, because the line up is restricted. The best gigs have been in some rock/funk clubs, where it is possible to create an intimate feeling with the audience and us playing. The improvisational parts will rise to high-energy-level when people are standing and dancing in front of us… God, I miss it; luckily we have the gigs coming…
If You Could Play Anywhere In The World This Week, Where Would It Be?
I’d love to play in some totally different galaxy, like M81… On earth, I think it would be some cool rock/funk club just anywhere OUTSIDE of Finland.
Do You Have A Website, Trig, MySpace, Facebook Etc.?
Official website is: Wee People. We don’t have a MySpace yet, but I’m planning to make one during this summer.
What Are Your Influences As A Band?
Just to name few, I’d say the following artists have had an influence someway or another: Averige White Band, Funkadelic, De La Soul, Fun Loving Criminals, Jimi Hendrix, Isaac Hayes, King Crimson, Kingston Wall (=an excellent finnish rock band!), George Clinton… The list is endless.
People Who Enjoy Your Music Tend To Like What Other Bands?
I think the above mentioned bands are the answer.
Are You Signed To A Label?
Comrade Publishing. I guess you already know it quite well…
Where Do You Think You’ll Be As A Band In 5 Years?
I hope we’ll still be making music – FRESH music. I’m quite sure, we’re not gonna break, but I hope we have some new international audience by that time. I also hope, that we’re publishing our 3rd album by that time…