Former Stratovarius guitarist Timo Tolkki releases public apology towards band’s current frontman Timo Kotipelto

Author Arto Mäenpää - 8.7.2021

It is not a big secret what happened to Stratovarius in 2008 when founding guitarist Timo Tolkki left the band. For a long time there was bad blood between the members of the band but now apparently the years have healed the wounds at least from Timo Tolkki’s side. The guitarist has released a public apology to the band’s current vocalist Timo Kotipelto where he admits he has done terrible things to Kotipelto and hopes them to make peace together. You can read the entire public apology below:

“My Public Apology to Timo Kotipelto.

have been thinking long and hard of my motives to make this.I have spent many sleepless nights in thinking about this apology and making it publicly too.I am aware of the risks and implications it might cause me. And still the only thing that is left is that my heart and consciousness is asking me to follow what I believe is the right thing to do.So here it finally is.

Timo, A lot of water under the bridge has run already after I left your band. Yes, I consider it to be true that I passed it on to you. And possibly Jens.By now you have been in Stratovarius more years than I ever was in it.Maybe you don’ t believe me when I say here now that you were always the one in Stratovarius that I admired the most.I just never could express that to you.

I remember the first time I saw you when you opened that door to me 27 years ago and played your song “Another time, Another day” to me. I knew already you were the one when I saw you at the door. I still remember that song. The high part reaches d flat. And the song was in B Minor.

You have always been the most serious one in Stratovarius and most professional too.I remember the lengths you took to secure the shows in our too long International Tours.Many fans took your way to do things as arrogance. Knowing and observing you for so many years, I of course know, you have never been that guy.

I have always been jealous to you somehow. I guess I was very jealous when I saw how down to earth man you always have been. That your value system has always been intact and good. I never had those kind of things, until maybe 1 year now.I saw how great family you have. Your brother and your parents are really excellent, Intelligent and Kind People. Just like you.

I was always jealous of the attention you got too. My ego could somehow never had enough of attention anyway. You made my dreams come true by singing even the most insane ideas I had musically. As a composer, that is gold. That is what every composer wants to have.

I still listen to your voice almost every day. That voice that I know so well will for sure accompany me to my grave.I love the way you end notes, there is something really cool. For example in the fantastic song of Matias “Unbreakable”, the line:” we follow how it flies by”. How you sing and phrase the word “by”, is really really cool. I really love those things.“If the Story is Over”, that I listened to just today, your expression is truly amazing, soft yet powerfully articulate.

I love the way you sang your song “Uncertainty” on Episode. Those high notes in the end gives me goosebumps every time.Even in the case of me digging my own grave here, I can honestly tell that despite of what I might have said in the interviews, I never wrote those high vocal lines to offend you. I just thought when I have a vocalist like that next to me, why not go all the way. And you sang all those songs with grace and beauty.You Timo, sang Stratovarius to the World Map of Music. And you did it with such a conviction and love, that all those albums are still very relevant today and I think they will always be part of history.You have been, you are and you will always be the best vocalist I had an honor to work with. Nobody even comes close. Nobody else could ever sing those songs the way you did.

I am sorry for all the bad things I have said about you in various interviews. None of them are true and they were said really out of my own insecurity.When I gave you, Jens and Jörg the name, I was not prepared for the emotions it caused in me. It must have been looking really weird to you, my words and behaviour. It was hard to let that band go.I am aware of now, of all my behavioral patterns. Yes I became a conscious being and I cannot escape that and I don¨t want to.You opened the door into your world and with my behaviour I slammed it close.My sense of humour has always led me into many troubles. I am telling you, hand on my heart, that I never meant to hurt you with those.

I cannot blame my family conditions or my illness, I cannot hide behind those.

I have been taking full responsibility of all my actions in my whole life in the last 2 years.It has been a heavy trip, but a necessary one.Once you wrote a song called “Dream With Me” to me I believe because you were so closely seeing my pain. I love that song. Your honesty shines through. Once again.You saw. You knew. You wrote a song.I am so proud of the where you and the guys have been taking Stratovarius. I think you have been and are doing the right thing. I support that 100% all the way.

There was a time when we were like brothers and nothing could stop us. We were that good.I regret with all my heart that I could never stop and sit down and look around, that I had You, Jens, Jörg and Jari by my side. We were invincible and nothing could stop that team and those times will never come back. I would with 100% certainty act differently now, but life doesn´t work that way. I am so proud of what we did together.I can think of so many things to tell you, but they are too private. I just offer my sincere apologies about my behaviour to you in all those years.I hope you, somehow somewhere, let me make amends to you.I want nothing from you. I do this apology because my heart is telling me to do so and you do things like this when you have hurt someone, especially of that happens to be your brother.

Thank you for coming into my life back in 1994 and showing me with your actions, how great a character can be. Thank you for being that role model for me. I just could never take it in, until two years now.I have my reasons to write this in English and those reasons are very honest and real. Nothing to do with any personal gain.I don¨t want a reunion. Things don’t work that way. I am sure you do not miss those days when bass player was fired with a text message.But there has been so much water under the bridge now, enough to make this apology.I just want that you are happy there, where ever you are.

Timo, karhuveljesi Koda”

– Timo Tolkki