|Birth name||Marko Tapani Hietala|
|Born||January 14, 1966|
|Genres||Heavy metal, symphonic metal, power metal|
|Occupations||Musician, songwriter, producer|
|Instruments||Bass, guitar, synthesizers, vocals, drums|
|Associated acts||Nightwish, Tarot, Northern Kings, Sapattivuosi, Sinergy, Ayreon, Dreamtale, Altaria,|
Marko Tapani "Marco" Hietala (born January 14, 1966 in Tervo, Finland) is a heavy metal vocalist, bass guitarist and songwriter. Internationally, he is most known as the current bass guitarist, male vocalist and secondary composer to Tuomas Holopainen, of the symphonic metal band Nightwish. He is also the vocalist and bassist as well as composer and lyricist for the heavy metal band Tarot.
Marco Hietala was born January 14, 1966, and is the youngest child of the Hietala family. Hietala lived in Tervo until the age of 15, after which he moved to Kuopio to study classical guitar, vocals and musical theory in high school. In 1984, he and his brother, Zachary Hietala, formed heavy metal band Tarot (band) under the name Purgatory. In 1986, Tarot received a deal for their first album and went on tour.
Hietala joined Nightwish for their 2002 album Century Child, following the departure of previous bassist Sami Vänskä. He was a prominent guest musician in Delain, a project involving many members of the gothic and symphonic metal community. He also participated in the recording of Invitation, by Altaria, providing backing vocals. Hietala has also been part of the bands Sinergy and Northern Kings.
Upon his arrival to Nightwish, several songs were written to contain duets with the then Nightwish vocalist Tarja Turunen, allowing songwriter and band leader Tuomas Holopainen to take advantage of Hietala's distinctive raucous voice to add a new dimension to the band. A famous example is Nightwish's cover of "The Phantom of the Opera", from the album "Century Child".
During Nightwish's shows, Turunen would take a break halfway through the set. Before Hietala joined the band, the band would perform an instrumental song during this time. Since Hietala joined the band however, they have performed covers of well-known songs, with Hietala singing the lead vocal part in this break. The band has performed Ozzy Osbourne's "Crazy Train", W.A.S.P.'s "Wild Child", Dio's "Don't Talk to Strangers", Megadeth's "Symphony of Destruction" and most recently, Pink Floyd's "High Hopes". Some of these songs have been put up for sale as well on various Nightwish album releases. Following Turunen's departure from Nightwish, Hietala was much more involved with the production of Dark Passion Play, which was released in September 2007. He sang some songs, completely, and wrote the music for the song "The Islander", on which he also plays acoustic guitar instead of bass. Hietala is also credited alongside Holopainen for co-writing the song "The Crow, the Owl and the Dove" from Nightwish's 2011 album, Imaginaerum.
On April 1, 2010, it was said that Hietala would leave the band to concentrate on a choir career. This was identified as an April Fool's joke, but was also a reference to his participation in Kuorosota (the localized Finnish version of Clash of the Choirs) in 2010. Hietala was the master of the Kuopio choir in the program's second season. He came second in the contest, losing in the finals to the Joensuu choir, headed by pop rock singer Ilkka Alanko. Tarot's single "I Walk Forever," from the Gravity of Light album, was performed for the first time by Marco, Tomi Salmela and the Kuopio choir during Kuorosota 2010; other songs performed included "The Phantom Of The Opera," which Hietala has covered with Nightwish as well.
In June 2010, Hietala joined the heavy metal supergroup HAIL! on two occasions, performing Black Sabbath's Neon Knights with Ripper Owens, Andreas Kisser, James LoMenzo and Paul Bostaph at two of their shows in Finland.
Marco uses Warwick basses, particularly Infinity NT and Vampyre NT 4-string models tuned D Standard (DGCF) and Drop C (CGCF). He also owns a Warwick Buzzard JE with a rusty finish, and a Kramer bass. He uses Warwick's Hellborg amplifier and cabs.
Marco has stated that the biggest influence on him as a bassist is Geezer Butler, while Ronnie James Dio is his biggest influence as a vocalist. He has also stated that he listens to wide array of music ranging from "really sensitive stuff to a lot of really hard stuff", saying that he "tend[s] to soak up almost everything" which "somehow ends up being used" when he writes his own music.
Hietala is married to his wife Manki and has two children, twin boys Antto and Miro. He and his family currently live in Kuopio, Finland. When he is not touring he enjoys reading books, playing video games and watching movies. He especially likes fantasy, horror and science fiction books as mentioned in the official Nightwish website.
- Spell of Iron - 1986
- Follow Me Into Madness - 1988
- To Live Forever - 1993
- Stigmata - 1995
- For the Glory of Nothing - 1998
- Suffer Our Pleasures - 2003
- Crows Fly Black - 2006
- Gravity of Light - 2010
- The Spell of Iron MMXI - 2011
With Northern Kings:
As guest/session member:
- Amorphis - backing vocals (2006, 2007, 2009)
- Delain - Lucidity (2006)
- Delain - April Rain (2009)
- Delain - We Are the Others (featured on two bonus live tracks on the Digipak version) (2012)
- Ayreon - The Theory of Everything (2013)
- Delain - The Human Contradiction (2014)
- "Nightwish: Video Interview With Marco Hietala Posted Online". Blabbermouth. July 16, 2009. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "Tarot's New Album Lands On Finnish Chart". Blabbermouth. March 18, 2010. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "Nightwish - The Official Website". Nightwish. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
- "Sinergy Singer, Former Bassist Issue Separate Statements Regarding Split". Blabbermouth. May 7, 2002. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "Delain Announces New Bassist". Blabbermouth. March 11, 2010. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "Altaria Complete Recording, Begin Mixing Full-Length Debut". Blabbermouth. January 9, 2003. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "Northern Kings Performs At Finnish 'Eurovision Song Contest' Finals". Blabbermouth. February 10, 2009. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "Marco Hietala's Black Sabbath Tribute Band To Play In Poland". Blabbermouth. June 25, 2009. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
- "HAIL! Performs With NIGHTWISH's MARCO HIETALA At Finland's SAUNA OPEN AIR". BlabberMouth.
- "Marco Hietala interview". Youtube. July 5, 2009. Retrieved 27 February 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Marco Hietala.|
- Nightwish Official Site
- Marco's profile on Nightwish.com
- Marco Hietala's page on Tarot's official website
- Ragnarok Radio Interview with Northern Kings including Marco Hietala