How did you get into playing the guitar?
It was the late 70s early 80s rockabilly and rock´n´roll revival that first got me interested in playing guitar.
What was your first good guitar and how did you get it?
My first good guitar was Aria Pro II which my parents bought me. I bought my first Fender Stratocaster in 1986.
What were your early musical influences?
There are so many. At first Elvis, Crazy Cavan and Stray Cats, later Jimi Hendrix, Rory Gallagher, Mark Knopfler, Peter Green etc. Naturally bands like Deep Purple, Uriah Heep and Black Sabbath are still among my favourites.
Favourite piece of gear?
All good tube amplifiers, Stratocasters and Telecasters, Amtech delays, Mad Professor Dual Blue Delay, Roland RE-201, Analogman and Keeley pedals.
What gear that you still use today has been with you the longest?
I;ve had my Fender Stratocaster Plus for 26 years now. It’s been modified with Fender ’69 pickups. The my Vox AC30 which I’ve had for 25 years although currently I´m using more Vox AC15 on live gigs.
What are your top 3 guitar albums (or songs)?
This is really hard to say…Stray Cats debut album, Fleetwood Mac Live at BBC and The Doors debut album.
What’s your latest release/recording?
Pekka Tiilikainen & Beatmakers: Guitar Town
Any upcoming live/streaming gigs?
No streaming but looking one year ahead it looks pretty good for live gigs. Hopefully Covid-19 doesn´t chance that like this year.
What’s your scene?
It has to be the touring. It´s always great to perform live. Especially now after everything was closed for 5,5 months.
About The Beatmakers
Juha Heinonen is the guitarist with premier Finnish guitar group Pekka Tiilikainen & Beatmakers. They celebrated their 30th anniversary in April 2018 which was celebrated with a tour that included gigs in the UK, The Netherlands, Sweden, Germany and Finland.
“The country of Finland continues to produce some of the finest guitar-based instrumental rock coming out of Europe today. One of the best group’s are the Beatmakers.” – MWE3.com
“They swing effortlessly from delicious slow themes to raucous, rocking guitars.” – New Gandy Dancer #127 (UK)
Juha Heinonen: lead guitar
Pekka Tiilikainen: rhythm guitar
Jori Venemies: bass guitar
Mikko Lund: drums