It was a dark night, I guess in 2012. I was fooling around with my little home studio equipment’s horn samples and I kept playing this strange horn melody. I never thought it would end up on a song some day but for some reason, I recorded a little demo all alone in the night and emptied abottle of good Italian red wine.
Then later at one of the song sessions at producer Jukka Immonen’s studio when we were thinking of the songs for “Unholy Ground”, I presented my silly horn riff idea. Jukka really liked it but none of us knew what to really do with it. We made a better demo with better horn sounds and decided to try it together with the band guys at the country side studio next time we’d be there.
One evening at the Petrax-studio at the farm far away from Helsinki, really late at night after a sauna session and one beer too many everyone, we decided just to play something for fun. Raul was actually still in sauna, so I took the bass, Riku his guitar and Sami was behind his drums. We were only wearing towels and well... I’m really happy in many ways nobody filmed this session. We started playing “Funkytown” together with the horn demo we had made with Jukka earlier in Helsinki. We still didn’t know what to do with it. We thought of maybe making it an intro for “Unholy Ground” album or to use the theme at the live shows in spring 2014 somehow. As a show opener maybe. Because of the horn riff / the theme, there is no real space for a traditional chorus. The song didn’t go on the album and we just decided to forget about it.
I must admit that when I played the new “Unholy ground” song ideas that summer for the Universal Music people, I also played this short drunken demo at some point. The biggest of the bosses in the room that night, Mr. Tom Bohne said he likes it really much, even though he didn’t know what we should do with it. These sessions are sometimes very creative and you actually get good and helpful feedback to make the songs better. I used to hate these sessions after some bad experiences back in the days. I thought the office folks know nothing about music. Now I know better.
So we had an idea everybody liked but nobody knew what to do with. Great.
As we were thinking of the 2-3 new tracks for the Best of album in the spring 2014, I decided one morning that no matter what it takes, this stupid song would be solved somehow. I drove to Jukka’s studio and told him we would not rest until we have it right. We agreed that the song would not have a chorus in a typical way and we’d let the horns lead the way. We tried it in the way it’s on the album now and it actually felt great. Then we played all the parts again with the band boys but something seemed to be missing still…
Already when we were recording our 2nd album PopGasm in 2010, I really tried to have Mr. Tommy Lindgren from Don Johnson Big Band feature on one of the songs. Then the collaboration was just forgotten and I guess Tommy was not that excited about the offered song either. Actually the song “Popgastic” never ended up on the album at all.
Anyways. I called him again now and asked if he’d be interested. He said he’d have a listen and he'd see if something comes out. A couple of days later I saw on my iPhone screen that there’s an email from Tommy. I was sure he’d write “Sorry, I’m too busy and bla bla bla…” Nope. He had written his parts, recorded them at home and DAMN it sounded cool!! The rest you can hear on the album.
I wrote the lyrics with producer Jukka and I have to say it was the hardest text writing session ever, but I try to describe what we were after there…
Funkytown is not a place for nice little girls and boys. It’s a place where people go to have a little break from their lives. For example, this nice lady works at the office wearing her nice dress from Monday to Friday. On Friday evening she puts her hottest high heels and stay-up socks on and just lets it all go. She does some things she doesn’t want to think about on Monday at the office. But she needs and wants to blow off some steam. What happens in Funkytown, stays in Funkytown. At Funkytown you’re at you own risk.
In other words I could have said Funkytown is THE party song.
I CAN’T WAIT TO PLAY FUNKYTOWN LIVE next summer. I can’t ! Ican’t ! I can’t !
So… be careful out there. Especially if you end up in Funkytown… Muahaha…
Have a cool & Funky weekend everyone!
PS: Check out the Funkytown lyric video on our Facebook video player athttps://www.facebook.com/sunriseavenue/app_1477485535854823?app_data=6