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Happy New Year 2014 for all!

I was very happy to return back to Finland for my traditional Christmas concert tour. It has become very important to me to make this tour happen and to prepare myself into Christmas mood with the help of the music. This time all the concerts were in churches so it was quite special tour.

First of all I had the honour to sing in Turku Cathedral in a very important event, which is held every year in Finland. The city of Turku invited me to be the only soloist in the event where the Christmas peace is declared and where also our President Sauli Niinistö was present. What made me extremely happy was that I got to perform my own Ave Maria with an orchestra in the national TV!! Thank you Turku for this opportunity and for letting me to be a part of your Christmas tradition.

Next day my own Christmas tour started from Orimattila where I had also a chance to meet my long time friends who I had been missing like crazy. It was an exciting beginning for the tour and I felt very comfortable to face my Finnish audience again.

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I had 5 concerts as Tarja Turunen & Harus line up. It had been some time since we played together, but as always everybody of us had been busy. Nevertheless, making music together seemed only becoming easier and better. I had missed the feeling of singing with musicians that are improvising, which means that I never really knew what was going to happen during the concerts musically speaking.

I talked with some of my fans after the last concert of the tour and for them it had been nice to follow the whole tour, to see all the concerts and to realize that even though we played the same songs night after night, the arrangements and feelings/moods in the songs really could change radically. That is what I love about Harus. The musicians are so talented that the music is our instrument to create a great feeling that at the same time is making us to give the best out of us. It is rather incredible!

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In Kokkola church I had the pleasure to sing with organist Ilpo Laspas for the first time. There we also performed with Max and Mervi who had been playing in my concert tours before. It was exciting to make a concert with someone that we had only one rehearsal of an hour or so! But it all went really great! I read somewhere that the concert was selected as the event of the year 2013 in Kokkola, so cannot make me happier :)

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In Kemi I had my dream come true, since I got to make a concert alone with organist Kalevi Kiviniemi. We have done many concerts together, but the first time just the two of us.

He is just an amazing artist and I don’t have words to describe his way of being also as a person. It’s just magic what happens between two musicians when everything is in the correct place. I am sure we are going to repeat this experience with Kalevi in the future too ;) ! Oh, what a night…

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So all in this entire concert tour was an incredible experience to me once again. The concerts were truly a success, even though it has been like that in the earlier years, it felt different this time. The churches were packed with happy, relaxed people and I got great feedback from them about my singing.

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I said goodbye to my family in Finland and nearly spent my Christmas in the plane.

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We had several hours delay at the airport due to flooding and power loss at the terminal, but we managed to get just in time for the toast.

Thank you for 2013 and see you very soon in my rock concerts in Europe. Next stop, Lisbon :) !

Now I have few days of rest before I hit the studio again to record few more songs for my “Outlanders” project.

I want to wish you all a happy year 2014!

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With love, Tarja

Ps: Thanks to Eleonora, Tatyana, Arina and Tommi for the photos

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End of the first part

Z7 in Pratteln is a very familiar place for me already, since I have played there several times. Anyway, every time it seems that my shows are getting better and better and people more excited. This makes me of course very happy. It was a lovely atmosphere inside the hall during the concert and everybody in the band was delighted about the show.

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Next day we played Nurnberg for the first time in my career. I would have loved to see some of the city, but unfortunately there was no time as usual in show days. I heard that there is a beautiful castle just around the corner, so that must wait for my next visit.

Martin, who filmed my first live DVD Act I, came to see us and we talked about our future DVD “Beauty and the Beat”. That is something we have already started working with. I will tell you more about it s o o n. ;)

The location for the venue in Nurnberg was quite strange since we were basically playing the “zoo”. It was lovely to be surrounded by the nature though.

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I had been waiting patiently for the off day in Leipzig since I love to wander around this old city. For our surprise all the shops were closed, due to the holidays, but we managed to take many lovely pictures and enjoy the streets of the city anyways. I showed Naomi the tomb of J.S. Bach and told her about his importance in our music history. Again the sun was up for us so we were very lucky.

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The show in Leipzig was amazing! The people were really excited and loud during the concert that it was just mind blowing!

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Next morning we had to leave our buses far away from the venue, since there was no parking around the place. My daughter enjoyed anyways being inside of the venue for many hours, listening the sound check and playing with my guys. I feel that everybody in the crew and band are in love with my daughter. She is just a happy creature and having magical powers in making everybody in a better mood.

We managed to do some shopping on the rainy day in Cologne and in the evening had a sold out show for very passionate Germans. I have to tell you that this time the German shows have been so far the best shows ever I have had in Germany. The people were really amazing and supportive, so I cannot wait for the next round seriously. Thank you!

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What about having a day off in Paris? AAAAAAAAhhhhh…. :) I just loooooove Paris. I have been dreaming of spending some more time in Paris and getting to know the city better. Hopefully that could happen one day. We enjoyed the city and it’s sights for some hours though and just when we finished the day, it started raining, so we were lucky.

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The last show on a tour is always very special. It felt incredible to end this tour in Paris. The show was wonderful and the reception of the audience really warm. Everybody in the band and crew felt that this tour ended sooner than expected, so the time passed by really fast this time. That only tells how lucky I am to have these beautiful people to work with. Everybody is enjoying my tour and that means a world to me.

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Thank you Cedric, Xavier, Jacopo, Lutz, Tommi, Pete, Mino and Titi for taking care of us every day. Without you guys nothing would be the same. I also want to thank the musicians that are sharing their talent with me almost every night. Chris, Mike, Alex, Max and Anna, you are amazing people! I owe you a lot.

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Next time we will rock together with the same people in February in Europe. Before that there are plenty of other things to do. Now I am enjoying my few days of holidays under the sun and soon letting you know what’s next including vocal recordings, DVD’s etc, etc.

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With love, Tarja

 

 

 

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Fun goes on!

Hamburg has always been an outstanding audience, and this time it was no exception. We enjoyed the show as much as the city. I discovered important things happened in music on my birthday :)

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Dortmund show was a lovely, intimate (the smallest in the tour) show to me. It was my first headliner concert in Dortmund after the support gig I did with Alice Cooper. Floor Jansen came to see my show, which was very kind of her. This time we had a chance to talk a bit more than on the MFVF so it was nice.

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I really enjoy the touring with my family, since now I have a bus just for us. There is a luxury kind of silence and privacy around during our journey. Mino, our driver is taking care of all of us and nanny Liliana is taking care of our baby girl Naomi during sound checks and shows. Is really important to feel good while being on the road, because this type of travelling could get very exhausting if you cannot feel happy. I have found amazing people around me.

Here you can see how we travel.

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I loved visiting Karlsruhe, my old school town again. We were lucky to spend an off day there and the sun was up for us. We went to zoo with Naomi and did some shopping as well. In the evening we had a dinner with my dear and talented pianist friend Izumi, so the day was just perfect.

Next night the show was another perfection. I really have to say that Karlsruhe received us so warmly that it brought tears in my eyes. I felt like singing to my home audience, which was a very special feeling. I will never forget that night. So once again I have new wonderful memories from Karlsruhe, cannot wait for the next time.

And the Phantom returned for this concert in the voice of Fabio Lione.

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We travelled to Munich and couldn’t believe how beautiful the weather in this part of Europe still is. Guys were taking sunbath at the venue terrace and I was showing my daughter how Germans are growing vegetables in their gardens. She loved the huge pumpkins we found!

The concert was again amazing!!!!!!! I thought at some point that I might faint because of the heat inside of the venue, but somehow the adrenaline and the great audience kept me going until the end. What an audience in Munich. These last couple of shows in Germany reminded me a little bit of my performances in southern countries where usually the public is wilder than in Central Europe. I have to say that Germans can get wild as well if they want!!!!! Wowowowow.

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Vienna is one of my favourite cities in Europe. It’s been a while since I really got to have some time off in there, so this time I made the time. Before our sound check I wanted to have a long walk in the old part of the city and it was worth it. God I love the old buildings, the history and the feeling of this city. No matter I am still not sleeping well in the moving bus during the nights and my body was telling me that “you need to sleeeeeeeep”, I don’t regret having that beautiful walk through Vienna.

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In the evening the concert was really good, even though I had my doubts earlier about my singing condition since usually I don’t like to sing three shows in a row while being on the road. This time I felt great and my band really rocked together with our warm Austrian public.

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The journey to Zurich was long since we needed to stop on the boarder for some time. It really didn’t matter that much because we all enjoyed watching the landscapes from the bus windows, even my little daughter :)

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We really love the mountains so much! There is something really magical in them. We spent our off day in Zurich, just because we like the city. Again, the weather was like a dream…just perfect for a stroll in the city.

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This morning just one hour drive to Pratteln. It is also a laundry day today…. not that I enjoy it too much, but mommy needs to keep on doing her “home work” even while being on the road :)

 

With love, Tarja

 

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The Colours are finally on the road!

How fun it has been to rock again with my band and fans; I had missed this very much.

To be honest, I really didn’t know what to expect from the tour. My doubts were about how my daughter would accept the fact that we are travelling again and how I will adapt to the situation of being on the road again myself. Am I ready for it? Would it be the same than before having a baby?

All my doubts got washed away since the first day.  It has been truly wonderful to be able to sing new songs for my lovely fans.

We rehearsed three days in Zlin, Czech Republic from where we headed to Olomouc for the first concert. Everybody in my crew, including me, were nervous about the beginning since there were so many things to take in consideration during the show.

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All seemed to be new again! I have some new crewmembers and a new bass player, Anna, in my band as well.

The concert in Olomouc was wonderful, just like a dream come true to me. I really appreciate the fact how the Czech audience had accepted me as an artist. I feel every time more and more welcomed, which of course makes me happy. The audience was really loud at times, so we got a great kick for the start of the tour. Lovely energy around :)

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Next day I got to see a little bit the beautiful old town of Olomouc with the Mayer of the city and I had a signing session where I met lots of happy people.

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I really enjoyed being in Kreuzberg, Berlin again for a day. We even got some time for shopping :) before the show.

The day was nice despite of few drops of rain. I was not that nervous anymore like during the first show and we had fun with our Berlin audience. Apparently there were lots of people from different countries as well present and I saw many familiar faces in the first row ;)

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Julia, the designer from Nordenfeldt came to say hello after the show. You will hear some awesome news from our collaboration in the near future!

Other friend of mine, Sirja who has been tailoring my performing clothes ever since I started singing with Nightwish, has been on the road with us since the beginning, but leaving back home already in two days :(

Sirja has been fixing my clothes during these few days and she has done great!

After Berlin we travelled to Wieze in Belgium that is a familiar place already. Always a pleasure to perform in Metal Female Voices Festival. As I promised, we did a duet with Floor Jansen there and had a blast with our fans!

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It was very nice to sing with Floor and to see how she has been growing as a singer. I wish her just the best for her future.

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Another personal delight of that day was to meet Sharon and Robert from Within Temptation, who came to the festival just to enjoy the wine together that we didn’t have the time to share before. I am so happy to realize that there is still good people, humble and down to earth existing in this world. I am grateful to have new friends in my life :)

Today we are ready to rock Hamburg after I finally had a good night sleep! Just finished sound check now. Good vibes!

 

With love, Tarja

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Tim Palmer interview

Tim Palmer has produced and mixed albums for a huge selection of classic and alternative artists, from Robert Plant, David Bowie and Tears For Fears to Ozzy Osbourne, Goo Goo Dolls and U2.

In 2001 Palmer was nominated for a Grammy for his mixing work on U2′s All That You Can’t Leave Behind. Now living in Austin, Texas, he has built his own mix room and continued producing and mixing for Jason Mraz, Blue October, David Cook and many others. Tim has been moderator for 2 years at SXSW, and a guest speaker for the Recording Academy.

Tim Palmer started his career at Utopia Studios in London during the early 80′s where he mixed the number one single ‘Died in your arms tonight’ for Cutting Crew. In the latter half of the ’80s, Palmer became a producer, and his keen ears and technical knowledge contributed to groups such as the Mighty Lemon Drops, the Mission, Texas, and Tears for Fears.

Tim produced ‘Now and Zen’ for rock icon Robert Plant, a US top10 album, and David Bowie’s debut LP with Tin Machine. To close the 80′s Palmer mixed ‘TEN’ for Pearl Jam, which went on to sell over 14 million albums, and got in the top 50 best album sellers in US history.

You can read here a short interview that Tim kindly answered for this web page.

 

1) Name your favourite Tarja song from “Colours in the Dark “, if you have any and why.

It’s tough to pick just one favorite song from the album, so I’ll pick two. The first is the song ‘Never enough’, it’s classic Tarja, great vocal, strong chorus and yet it rocks hard without losing all the 3 dimensional textures that are such an important element to her sound.

Secondly I choose ‘Lucid Dreamer’ as I am a sucker for the dramatic and melancholy side to her songs. This song is a real journey and is the perfect late night headphone experience.

2) How has it been to work with Tarja?

This is the second time that I have mixed an album for Tarja, I also mix most of the recent live albums and 5:1 mixes.

I always enjoy the process, which is basically in 2 parts.

The first part I work alone in my studio here in Texas getting the songs into shape ready for the arrival of Tarja and Marcelo, her co-producer. At this stage the mixes are about 75% completed.

The second part is more fun, now that Tarja is at the studio, we can work on all the fine-tuning and final details to the mixes. We work hard, eat, mix and generally have a great time.

These days most albums are mixed without ever meeting the artists. I miss that one on one, social side. I am glad that with Tarja we are able to achieve this.

 

3) You have been working with several amazing singers and charismatic figures like Robert Plant, Ozzy Osbourne, Bono to name just few. How do you see Tarja as a singer?

Tarja is without question a fabulous vocalist. I am so glad she has taken from her classical roots and created such an eclectic style to her recorded music. I think many rock fans would never have experienced a soprano like Tarja if she was brave with her music choices. The combination of her vocal style with the heavily textured rock sound is unique.

 

4) How would you describe Tarja’s music?

Tarja’s music is Cinematic, orchestrated rock.

 
5) Could you tell us something about the technical side of mixing Tarja’s album?

The biggest challenge with her music is to make it all count. Every thing must be heard. The vocals are obviously super important, but so are the big guitars, loud drums, and driving bass, then lets not forget the subtle percussion, loops, and keyboard textures. It takes a while to get it right, but when the story unfolds correctly, it’s very rewarding. I like the challenge.

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Back home

The tour with Beauty and the Beat is over for now, but we have plans to continue the tour in places that we haven’t been able to visit yet in 2015.

The concert in Mexico City was very nice. We played in a beautiful, old theatre and the Mexicans seemingly enjoyed the program. I received lots of gifts once again, majority of them for my little daughter, obviously! :)


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Again I had some trouble in bringing all the presents back home after this long tour, but managed somehow. It was nice to spend few days in Mexico City after a really stressful promotional tour for “Colours in the Dark” in Europe, even though the sun didn’t appear too many times :(

After Mexico we flew to Lima, Peru where I had been only once before with my band. This time we got to spend a week in Lima and got to do some sightseeing and shopping ;) I was really considering going to visit Machu Picchu, but I felt that the last months of travel with the baby has been enough and wanted just to stay quiet in our comfortable hotel with her. Hopefully I’ll get to visit the place one day.

It was very humid and foggy weather in Lima for several days until the concert morning when I woke up and finally saw the sun!

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The concert was held in an open amphitheatre so the weather was perfect for the day. Anyway it was cold, so I had to find warm clothes in the last minute for the performance. And since we were in Peru, I found a beautiful poncho!

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Many people came to see us from far away, even from different neighbourhood countries, so it was a pleasure to perform in Lima this time a totally different kind of concert than the last time.

I want to thank Mike, Pete and Tommi for a beautiful tour! We had a great time.

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There is no better place than home, right? We were all very happy to return and specially Naomi to see her homeland :)

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With love, Tarja

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Hola from Mexico City!

In the last couple of weeks I have been extremely busy making interviews and promoting my new album. The days have been really long, but I received excellent feedback from the media. For the first time I see that people are starting to understand where I am going with my music and that makes me really happy.

I was recently in London and Paris. All I saw was the hotel room and the restaurant and got out only for some photo shootings. I just love both of these cities very much. It felt odd not to have even time to make any shopping! :)


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We also filmed a new music video in Berlin for my single “Victim of Ritual”. Yesterday I received the final version for approval and I must say that I am really happy with it.

There were around 40 people working in the production and here you can see some of us having our lunch break.

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The video is a 5:50 minutes story, but it doesn’t feel that long at all ;)

We will already show you a trailer of the video on Wednesday June 26th, but here are few more images until then.

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Today we will start rehearsing with the orchestra and choir for the upcoming Beauty and The Beat show in Mexico DF. I hope it all goes fine.

Even though we arrived to Mexico few days ago, the jet lag is still bothering us. It has been fun to wake up every morning at 05:00 am…

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With love, Tarja

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Greetings from Poland!

After the last Beauty and The Beat concert in Europe, I directly flew to Berlin, Germany to do some promotion for my new album. I have been making interviews several days there and as well in Milan, Italy.

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It has been nice and interesting to talk with many journalists and to hear their opinions about my new album, as they have been the ones to hear it already! The feedback has been amazing. I am for the first time really getting anxious about the release and what is really going to happen.

Today we flew over to Warsaw to continue this promotional tour. Next stops are Paris and London. I guess I will be talking and repeating the same things over and over again in these next days, but it has to be done  :)

Yesterday we also filmed the music video for my first single ”Victim of Ritual” in Berlin. The day was veeeeeryyyyyyy long. We started at 9 am and finished 4 am next morning! I had fun though!

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With love, Tarja

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“Colours In The Dark” promotion in Berlin, Germany

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The tour goes on

Dear friends!

Greetings from Saint Petersburg. Here the Beauty and The Beat concert was held in a really beautiful venue and was sold out.

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It has been amazing to perform these cross over shows again with Mike. We have been having such a great time with the orchestras and choirs! The atmospheres in all the concerts have been very special. Thank you for all those “bravos” Saint Petersburg!

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We started our journey from Bucharest where we tried to do the show some weeks ago, but unfortunately needed to postpone it due to my illness. This time I was still recovering, but we managed to do the show and saw how the place was packed with enthusiastic Romanians. This definitely was the biggest show I have ever done in Romania, so it makes me very happy. And the love was definitely in the air!

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After Romania we travelled to Wroclaw, Poland. I was happy to visit this city for the first time ever. We performed with the academy orchestra and they played very well. It was fun to perform with young and talented people. We really had a great time with these lovely people and the Polish audience. I felt very welcome in Wroclaw and the concert made me realize that I have to make more shows in Poland in the future. Very nice feeling!

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Poland was left behind and after another a couple of flights we arrived to Moscow, Russia.

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Russians really play music with emotions, wow! The orchestra conductor is not speaking English, but we manage with German! Hehehe.

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Great, great concert in Moscow and again I received hundreds of flowers from the lovely audience. Russians, you are crazy with the flowers!  :)

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Today we’ll travel to Tallinn, Estonia where we are going to play tomorrow. It is going to be my third time in Estonia, so cannot wait to see what happens.

Tomorrow, Monday 20th, we are going to disclose you the second album cover for the Special Edition of “Colours in the dark”, so come back to check it at www.tarja2013.com

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With love, Tarja

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