Helsingin Sanomat is reporting that this year's tax statistics provide a minor setback for the Finnish arts and entertainment fraternity, as only eight artists make it into the Top 1000 based on earned income. In the previous year there were fifteen of them.
No artists broke through the EUR 1 million barrier. The wealthiest in terms of earned income was the vocalist and front-man for rock group THE RASMUS, Lauri Ylönen, who collected EUR 580,332 (approx. $700,000) last year.
Ville Valo, vocalist with love-metal outfit H.I.M., dropped out of the Top 1000, but again could hardly be described as living in straitened circumstances with earnings of more than EUR 270,000 (approx. $325,000). Earnings in this field are usually directly related to the timing of an album, as royalties income provides the lion's share of earnings.
The two figures from symphonic metal band NIGHTWISH who have been in the news recently, namely composer and keyboards player Tuomas Holopainen and the group's sacked vocalist Tarja Turunen, show up at opposite ends of the list: Holopainen earned just over 150,000 euros (approx. $180,000) in 2004, while Turunen paid tax in Finland on earnings of just EUR 5,283 (approx. $6,400).
This last figure points up the fact that a good many prominent artists and others do not in fact pay taxes in Finland. From the world of classical music, for example, neither star soprano Karita Mattila nor conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen are to be found, as they are both resident abroad.