WHEN YOU LOOK FOR INDEPENDENCE AND YOU GET WHAT YOU WANT, HOW COME YOU LOOK BACK THINKING WHAT HAVE I DONE?
Name: Rolf Magnus Joakim Larsson (Joakim Larsson)
Petname: sjusovaren (sleapyhead)
Date of birth: 19.08.1963
Place of birth: Upplands Vasby, Sweden
Place of live: Since 2002 London, England. Before Dublin, Ireland
Family: father Rolf, mother Eva, sister Liselotta (1958), brother Thomas (1964)
Family status: since 29.09.2000 married with Lisa Worthinghton (1967)
Pets: Horses Duko & Dutchess, dog Prince
Instruments: guitar, piano, trumpet
First band: Roxanne
Favourite groups: Sweet, Elvis Presley, Elton John, Nazareth, Thin Lizzy, White Snake, Van Halen, Magnum, Slade, Led Zeppelin
Favourite actor/actress: Christopher Walken/Ingrid Bergman
Favourite writer: Stephen King
Favourite movies: Dead Zone, Back to the future
Favourite colors: blue & black
Favourite drinks: beer Guinness & tea
Favourite dishes: meatballs and chicken wings
Favourite clothes: jeans and sweaters
Sport: football, icehockey, tennis, yoga
Hobby: photography, painting, flying, horse riding, cooking
If he hasn’t became a musician, he became: Formula 1 driver
Inspiration: if talk about the name – Joey Tempest it was William Shakespeare’ s “Tempest”
Joey about Joey: bossy, workaholic, shy
Joey Tempest is world-known as the lead-singer and the front man of the mega successful hard rock band EUROPE. Starting his career in 1979 together with John Norum, Tempest achieved a nationwide success in Sweden in 1982 by recording the eponymous first album “Europe”.
The 1984 album Wings Of Tomorrow enabled Europe to tour the whole Scandinavia.
Joey Tempest is the author of the world-famous anthem of the 80’s – The Final Countdown, which reached the top of the Charts in 30 countries of the world.
The fame and recognition that he and Europe gained thanks to this song and through other albums (1988 Out Of This World, 1991 Prisoners In Paradise, plus massive touring around the world) endured until 1993 when Europe decided to split.
Tempest decided to start his own solo career as a songwriter and singer.His decent and more classic rock oriented albums A Place to Call Home (1995) and Azalea Place (1997) were released only in some European countries and their success was limited only to native Sweden and Norway.
The songs on this album is entirely written by Tempest and could be classified as pop / singer-songwriter. Backin band on the disc is composed by Sven Lindvall, Staffan Astner and Johan Norberg. Solo Album number two is recorded in Nashville.
This time it was written many of the songs in the studio for quite experimental forms with the disc’s producer Richard Dodd. On the third and latest solo album is heard clearly influenced by British pop.
The songs are rockier and often ösigare than in the previous solo albums.Before becoming the artist Joey Tempest, Joakim Larsson learned how to play the piano and the guitar. He played football, ice hockey and competed in go-cart racing; he once came in fourth place in the Junior Cart Race, a Swedish championship.
Like many of the other Europe members, he grew up in Stockholm suburb Upplands Väsby. His biggest idols were Thin Lizzy and Led Zeppelin. During his teens, he played in a number of bands such as Jet, Blazer, Made in Hong Kong and Roxanne. At that time he alternated between playing rhythm guitar and bass, in addition to lead vocal.
– JOEY TEMPEST -ORIGINS AND BEGINNINGS –
I write lyrics by a piano, because it’s a rich instrument; you don’t need a whole band with you ( Joey Tempest)
As for ” The Final Countdown” song, Joey said in an interview: “We actually called it The Final Breakdown at one point!”
Joey Tempest, with his real name Rolf Magnus Joakim Larsson, Joakim “Jocke” was born in Stockholm and raised in Upplands Väsby. He was born on 19 August 1963 and he is the vocalist and the main songwriter in the rock band Europe. He has written hits which include “The Final Countdown”, “Rock the Night”, “Cherokee” and “Superstitious”.
He liked to play soccer and ice hockey in his childhood. The first time he met John Levén was actually at a soccer match. At that time Joakim dreamed about becoming a soccer player or a gym instructor. Sports was his biggest interest at that time, but music would soon take over completely.
The first instrument he learnt to play was the piano, because his family had a piano at home. One day he stole tapes with “Top 10” radio shows from his sister, Lotta. There he found his first idol, Elton John, and “Crocodile Rock” became his favorite song. Another big idol was Elvis Presley, and Joakim became more and more interested in Elvis’ instrument, the guitar.
So he borrowed Lotta’s guitar and learnt to play, and a friend of his father taught him three of the most common rock chords. One day he heard the Nazareth song “Love Hurts” on the radio, and he liked the song so much that it became the first record he ever bought.
In fifth grade at the Odenslunda school, Joakim and a couple of class mates formed the band Made in Hong Kong. At that time he alternated between playing rhythm guitar and bass, in addition to lead vocals.They played concerts for the rest of the school, but the only had one song, “Keep A-Knockin’ (but You Can’t Come In),” made famous by Little Richard.
So their entire setlist was just that song being played over and over again. The drummer only had a snare drum, the guitarist didn’t have a guitar amplifier and Joakim sang through an old transistor radio.
The band was influenced by his new favorite bands, Sweet and Slade. Made in Hong Kong changed name twice: First to Jet, then to Blazer. At first Joakim played the rhythm guitar, but he switched to the bass after a while. Later he formed the more serious band Roxanne, who became quite well-known in Upplands Väsby.
In his early years, when he was just a kid, he played football, ice hockey and competed in go-cart racing. He even won the fourth place in the Junior Cart Race, a Swedish championship.
Like many of the other Europe members, he grew up in Stockholm suburb Upplands Väsby. His biggest idols were Thin Lizzy and Led Zeppelin.
In 1978 Joakim went to see a concert with another local band, WC. He was particularly impressed by their guitarist. “When I was 15 years old, I discovered a guitar player, one year younger than myself, who played his instrument with heart and soul, and with a blues feeling that I’d never heard from a Swedish musician.
His name was John Norum and after that day nothing would ever be the same again.” Joakim and John soon became good friends, much thanks to their shared interest for music and mopeds. And one day in 1979, Joakim was asked to join John’s band, WC.
Joakim accepted, and suggested that the band could change their name to FORCE, after the UFO albumForce It. In 1982 FORCE was entered into the national talent contest “Rock-SM”, and once again Joakim suggested a name change, this time to EUROPE, inspired by the Deep Purple live album Made in Europe.
After some consideration, the other band members agreed. EUROPE won “Rock-SM”, and the first prize was a recording contract with Hot Records. It was during “Rock-SM” that he decided to take the artist name Joey Tempest. Joey was inspired by a nick name he got when he was on vacation in the USA some years earlier.
“It was difficult for Americans to pronounce Joakim, so they called me Joe.” Tempest was taken from William Shakespeare’s play The Tempest. He spent many school lessons writing song lyrics and practicing on signing autographs. Needless to say, the teachers weren’t too happy about that. In 1985 producer Dieter Dierks asked Joey to write a song for the German rock band Scorpions. He wrote the song “One of a Kind” and sent it to them, but he never heard from them again. In the same year he also wrote the song “Give a Helpin’ Hand” for the project “Swedish Metal Aid”.
He was one of the lead singers on that single, which was produced by Kee Marcello. The money from the sale of the single was donated to the starving people of Ethiopia. The song “One of a Kind” was eventually included on Tone Norum’s debut album One of a Kind.
Joey produced the album in 1986, as well as writing the songs and playing most of the instruments. John Norum, Mic Michaeli and Ian Haugland also played on the album, which was the first album that Joey produced all by himself.
Joey Tempest with Europe is once again entered the studio with the press of making a better plate than “The Final Countdown”. Joey Tempest was just 17 years old when he wrote Europe’s biggest hit, The Final Countdown. The song, from the 1986 album of the same name, would go on to change his life dramatically, transforming the relatively unknown Swedish rockers into one of the hottest bands in the world.
Admittedly, it’s the kind of term that gets thrown around a fair bit in this day and age, but few others could say they were number 1 in 25 countries across the globe at one single moment. Their dreams had finally come true.
“It started with me borrowing a Korg Polysix keyboard from friend and not before long, bandmate Mic Michaeli, who went to the same school,” begins the Europe frontman, sat in the basement of Gibson’s London HQ on a warm summer’s day.
“I think it helped me write differently. I thought it could bring another dimension to our future. We only wanted one guitar player, but when the solos came in, it sometimes felt a bit empty, so we put pads in there, even on the first few albums.
“I write lyrics by a piano, because it’s a rich instrument; you don’t need a whole band with you. At the beginning of the ’80s, there was the big influx of keyboards, so I borrowed one and came up with it in a night.”
“Out of this World“ was recorded in London with producer Ron Nevison. While the album was mixed gave the band the summer of 1988 on a tour with Def Leppard. Although this tour is a success. Europe tested during this tour to run three new songs “Superstitious”, “Let the Good Times Rock” and “Ready or Not”.
They became increasingly popular in the United States and when the “Out of this World” was released sales began well, thanks to the tour with Def Leppard has been a success. The tour attracted an audience of over 500 000 people.
The album gets good reviews from critics and sells a million copies in the US, and reach high rankings on many charts worldwide. In November and December to play Europe in Asia, they visit the three countries; Japan, Taiwan and India.
In 1991 Joey got together with John Norum to collaborate on John’s second solo album, Face the Truth, which was released the following year. The two of them recorded the duet “We Will Be Strong” and Joey co-wrote the song “Counting on Your Love”.
In 1992, the year that EUROPE went on hiatus, Joey met an English girl at the Piccadilly Circus in London. Her name was Lisa Worthington. She’d lost her wallet and Joey helped her find it. Half a year later she became his girlfriend.
Joey released his first solo album, A Place to Call Home, on April 20, 1995. John Norum made a guest appearance on the song “Right to Respect”. The album was influenced by singer-songwriters like Jackson Browne and Van Morrison, marking quite a change in style compared to EUROPE. “I needed a change from the EUROPE sound.
I guess you could say that I had a reaction against the whole thing. I wanted to prove myself as a singer-songwriter for sure, but for me it was more of a journey to learn about making music. I went to see a lot of new young artists, got into stuff like Van Morrison and Bob Dylan, so I went completely the other way.
I wanted to know where everything came from and how things started, and so that’s what I did.” The album was a success in Sweden, peaking at number 7 on the Swedish album chart.
In 1996 Joey and Lisa moved to Dublin, Ireland. Joey’s second solo album, Azalea Place, was released on April 25, 1997, and it also peaked at number 7 on the Swedish album chart. It was recorded in Nashville, Tennessee, USA. “After my first solo album I went out to the States to work with Richard Dodd – who’s this English guy living out in Nashville – on the second one, which kept me away from home for a long time.
But it was something that I needed to do, I had to get it out of my system.” The style of “Azalea Place” was more experimental than the first one, using influences from Irish and Spanish folk music. Joey played most of the instruments himself on the album. In the same year he recorded the duet “Running With a Dream” with Canadian opera singer Anna Maria Kaufmann.
It was written by Mike Batt and was the official anthem for Germany’s national team in the Soccer World Cup in France 1998. Joey also sang on four other songs on Anna Maria’s album Blame It on the Moon, and “Running With a Dream” was included as a bonus track on the German edition of Azalea Place.
In 1998 Joey recorded a cover version of the Bruce Springsteen song “Born to Run”, which was included on the album Philharmania, a collection of classic rock songs performed by The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under conduction by Mike Batt.
On September 29, 2000, Joey and Lisa got married in Richmond, London. All the EUROPE members were invited, but John Levén couldn’t come. “It was a beautiful wedding,” John Norum said, “They had an orchestra there, playing Joey’s songs.
Joey laughed and was impressively calm the whole time. He made a cool speech.” Eventually Joey and Lisa moved to London. In 2001 Joey, Patrick Isaksson and Anders Glenmark recorded a cover of the Pugh Rogefeldt song “Här Kommer Natten” (Here comes the night).
It was the first time Joey officially recorded a song in Swedish, and the song was included on the compilation Osannolikt Svenskt. In 2002 he co-wrote the song “Change” for the British duo Bowes & Morley, both former members of the band Thunder. The song was included on their album Moving Swiftly Along.
The release date for Joey’s third solo album, Joey Tempest, was postponed many times, but it was finally released on October 21, 2002. This time Joey had gone back to rock, marking a heavier sound compared to his previous albums. “I’ve discovered the feeling of playing in a rock band again. The energy feels a bit like EUROPE.
I’ve also found my way back to the songwriting that I did during the EUROPE time. Several of the songs has a Tempest-spirit. Melodies, the heavy guitars….” Mic Michaeli co-wrote three songs on the album. The album peaked at number 12 on the Swedish album chart, but received mixed reviews from the music press.
Joey is currently living in London with his wife Lisa Worthington-Larsson. They have two children, James Joakim (born on 12 october, 2007) and Jack Johnston (born on 23 july, 2014).
He likes to wear dark sunglasses. His band, Europe, used to rehearse under the name “Le Baron Boys” in order to avoid fans. He loves the animals that’s why he has a sweet pet cat. The song “Hero” was written as a special tribute to Joey’s childhood hero, Phil Lynott from Thin Lizzy.
In between the disbanding of Europe in 1992 and the reunion of the band in 2003, he had a successful career as a solo artist with 3 CDs: A Place To Call Home (1995), Azalea Place (1997) and Joey Tempest (2002).
He has an older sister Lotta and a younger brother, Thomas. He wrote “Roll With You” for his friend, who is seriously ill and had been in a dark state of mind. Joey honors another of his heroes, Journey vocalist Steve Perry, with the song Forever Traveling.
In October 2003, the band Europe has reunited. A new album, world tour and a new DVD has been released in second half of 2004. On October 27th, 2006, Europe’s CD, called “Secret Society”, has been be released . The night before, Europe have begun a tour through Scandinavia.
On April 2006, Europe recorded a new CD in Stockholm and that it was produced by themselves!
He has been working on songs for the next Europe album and the band concluded the “Start From The Dark” tour in Brasov, Romania on September 2005. He was performing with Europe January 26th in Nalen, Stockholm, Sweden in 2008.
Europe’s new CD called “Start From The Dark” was released in September 2004. Joey was very busy back then and was doing promotions and interviews for the CD and putting together the “Start From The Dark” live show. In the same year, Joey with his band Europe, has been beginning a world tour on October 14th in Helsinki, Finland.
On 18th November 2005, Joey Tempest worked on the new CD continues. The new DVD “Live From The Dark” has been released in Europe in 2005 and Joey was appeared on SvT1 as a guest on a program called En granslos rapsodi in order to discuss the band Queen on Friday October 28, 22.30-23.00.
– SOME MAJORS EVENTS FROM HIS CARRER –
14.04.2005 In March Europe has visited Russia with concerts (19.03.05 – Snt-Petersburg, 20.03.05 – Moscow).
02.10.2003 Great news – Europe join together! In Summer 2004 they were planning to start a World Tour.
05.03.2003 Yahoo! Now Joey’s album was sailing in Russia
25.02.2003 Read about Joey in British magazines “Powerplay” and “Q”
15.02.2003 Release of album in some countries:
Norway – October 21st
Finland – November 4th
Denmark – November 25th
Holland – End of February 2003
Belgium – January 27th 2003
Portugal – February 10th 2003
Japan – February 19th 2003
Italy – January 27th 2003
31.10.2002 “Joey Tempest” was taken 12 place in the Swedish album hit list.
8.10.2002 Joey’s new single “Forgiven” has been out on october 14th and the new album has been released on october 21st (this dates was only for Scandinavian market).
17.9.2002 Soon the video for “Forgiven” has been out in TV, press and media.
16.9.2002 Joey’s new single “Forgiven” has been released in Sweden soon.
12.9.2002 Joey’s live show in “Bingolotto”, Sweden