- Mikko Innanen, saxophone
- Esa Onttonen, guitar
- Ilmari Pohjola, trombone
- Veli Kujala, accordion
- Petri Keskitalo, tuba
- Mika Kallio, drums
The origin of Gourmet can be traced back to 1996 when a group named Salad was formed by saxophonist Mikko Innanen and guitarist Esa Onttonen. Salad's journey to stardom ended somewhat prematurely as the group disbanded right after the first gig. The time wasn't yet ripe for a group featuring an accordion (already played by Veli Kujala) and an eclectic repertoire that included two Ennio Morricone compositions.
This failed attempt didn't discourage Innanen and Onttonen from giving the idea a second try, this time with the addition of slide trombone and some personnel changes. The first formation of Gourmet hit the stage in April 1998 and eventually went to record the critically acclaimed debut album "Glamour & Decadence" that was released by Fiasko Records in April 2001. Both the album and the group placed runners-up in the Critics Poll held by the Jazzrytmit magazine.
After the few gigs following the release of the album Gourmet went into a nearly two-year hiatus to come back in April 2004 with a completely new repertoire and more brassy sound as the double bass was replaced by tuba. Whereas the old material was "eccentric and intoxicating brew of blues, jazz, tango, rock, surf, noise and even Greek bouzouki music" (All About Jazz), the new material benefits from a more focused approach on the stylistical variety. Fourteen tracks representing the "new Gourmet sound" were released as "Six Acres of Broken Hearts" in November 2004.
A culinary parallel to the exciting and delightful new sound of Gourmet could be a meal consisting of at least the following dishes: some spoonfuls of bortsch, a dose of mamma's meatballs, a bowl of gumbo, chili beans wrapped up in tortillas and shaslik, served with all kinds of potatoes. It is highly recommended to flush it all down with a hefty cup of good old Tennessee bourbon. A cake as sweet as your true love's lips and of the size of the Lone Star State goes well as the dessert. The coffee should be thick, black and mean.
Gourmet albums on Fiasko Records
Six Acres of Broken Hearts
Back to the roots! Experience the new Gourmet sound: acoustic, earthy and highly dramatic. (Released: Nov 2004).
Glamour & Decadence
Sixteen unique tracks, as eclectic, multifaceted and eccentric as the band itself. (Released: April 2001).
- Gourmet page at FinnJazz
- Gourmet page at MySpace (contains audio)
- Press section for high quality images