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|Born||26 September 1976|
|Years active||1994–2008, 2016|
|Associated acts||Nightwish, Nattvindens Gråt, Root Remedy|
Vänskä started playing bass as a private study. He has played in a few bands which have been mostly from the metal genre.
Vänskä started his career in the band Nattvindens Gråt, with Tuomas Holopainen. He made 2 albums, A Bard's Tale (1995), Chaos Without Theory (1997) and a demo, Dar Svanar Flyger (1995), with them.
Vänskä joined Nightwish for their second studio album, Oceanborn. He played on the following tour, on Wishmaster and on the tour afterwards. He also played bass on Over the Hills and Far Away right before Tuomas Holopainen, band leader, song writer and keyboardist, asked the band's manager, Ewo Rytkönen, to tell Vänskä to leave Nightwish, when he felt that the musical differences between the two men were posing a threat to the band. He was soon replaced by session member Marco Hietala, the bassist and lead vocalist of Tarot and a former member of Sinergy, who also sings male vocals. Marco Hietala became a full-time member sometime during the recording of Century Child.
On August 20, 2016, he joined his former bandmates on stage to perform "Stargazers" on bass guitar.
Vänskä has played in the blues band Root Remedy after leaving Nightwish. He recorded three albums with them, Medication Time With, Root Remedy and The Crawler. He quit the band in 2008 and has not started a new project since.
During his time in Nightwish Vänskä used a natural finish Warwick Corvette (see Nightwish Sacrament of Wilderness music video) and a white Spector bass guitar (see From Wishes to Eternity show) – both four string. He has been seen with 4-string Warwick Fortress Masterman (single humbucker version) before he changed it to Corvette, and, considering the bass sound of the Oceanborn CD, it is most probably recorded on the Fortress bass. In contrast to Nightwish's current bass player, Marco Hietala, Sami has never used any overdrive or distortion, at least on recordings or recorded live shows available. Furthermore, he's a finger-style bass player (3 fingers technique) and has never been seen in Nightwish using a plectrum.
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