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ROME Interview by Christian Lamitschka for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show

ROME Interview by Christian Lamitschka for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show

Lamitschka:  Music has many new fans throughout Europe who may be
hearing about you for the first time. How would you describe yourself
and the music you play to someone who has never seen or heard you?

Answer: I’d like to think it’s like Leonard Cohen on a bad hair day – with a temper, that is.

Lamitschka:  How was the last year for you? What were your highlights?

Answer: It’s been one long cluttered trail of half-read books and boarding passes. I’m not sure I remember it all.

Lamitschka:  What is your latest CD and how’s it doing?

Answer: It’s called LE CENERI DI HELIODORO and I think it’s doing rather well.

Lamitschka:  How did you choose the title for the CD?  Is there a story behind the name?

Answer: There’s a particularly instinctive randomness involved.

Lamitschka:  Do you write the songs yourself? If not, how do you go about finding the songs for your CD?

Answer: I write my own songs.

Lamitschka:  Please tell us about the songs on your album (influences, etc).

Answer: It’s a punky form of folk music combined with ambiant collages.

Lamitschka:  What is the difference between your last CD and your current one?

Answer: The cover is a little brighter.

Lamitschka:  Your current single is being played by radio. What do you
feel is special about this song that makes people want to hear it?

Answer: I guess it’s related to the perfidious catchiness of the chorus.

Lamitschka:  What will your next single be?

Answer: I still haven’t decided yet, to be honest.

Lamitschka:  What kind of songs do you like to record the most?

Answer: There’s no real difference at the get-go. I’m only starting things I’m passionate about.

Lamitschka:  You did a duet with Joakim Thåström. How did that happen to come about?

Answer: The world is a small place once you start moving about. Our
paths crossed and we got along very well. It was a natural thing to
collaborate.

Lamitschka:  What is your favorite song among all the songs you have recorded and what’s the story behind it?

Answer: “My traitor’s heart”. Mostly because it was basically just a random piece I threw out at first.

Lamitschka:  How much creative control do you have over your music?

Answer: Slightly over 100%.

 

Lamitschka:  Do you have any interesting stories about how fans have been affected by your music?

Answer: Well, I’ve seen an awful lot of tattoos related to ROME, so I guess it really means something to some people.

Lamitschka:  Who inspires you musically and how deep do your musical roots run?

Answer: I like songwriters like Townes van Zandt and such.

Lamitschka:  What do you think about today’s music scene versus its past and where do you see it going in the future?

Answer: I believe it will all be swept clean in the next bigger war.

Lamitschka:  What do you think about today’s music industry?

Answer: It’s war.

Lamitschka:  If you had the chance to change something about the music industry, what would it be?

Answer: I’d see to it that musicians get paid.

Lamitschka:  As an artist, you so many tasks such as recording, touring,
interviews. What do you like best, what’s your favorite activity?

Answer: Touring, recording,… I like it all. Except interviews, really.

Lamitschka:  Are you doing anything to take music beyond its current borders or are you happy where it is?

Answer: I’m not a happy person.

 

Lamitschka:  What inspired you to become an artist?

Answer: I can’t think of any other activity that would give my life anything even remotely resembling sense.

Lamitschka:  What inspired you to become a songwriter?

Answer: Other songwriters. I just wanted to be that guy spreading all that dark wisdom. Or at least look like that guy.

Lamitschka:  What drives you?

Answer: The sheer necessity of escaping the void.
Lamitschka:  What’s unique about you that will differentiate you from other artists?

Answer: I care just a little less.

Lamitschka:  What has been your greatest challenge in music business?

Answer: Staying outside of it.

Lamitschka:  What moments in your career stand out in your memory as highlights and achievements which you are proud of?

Answer: Recording at Hansa Studios, sharing the stage with musicians I deeply respect, making it through every tour.

 

Lamitschka:  Who is your biggest critic, yourself or others?

Answer: I think I can manage that by myself, too.

Lamitschka:  When you get time off, how do you like to relax?

Answer: Reading, certainly.

Lamitschka:  Is there anything in your life that you would change if you could?

Answer: Have more time to read. Seriously.

Lamitschka:  What hopes and desires do you have?

Answer: I desire lots of things but I have no hope whatsoever.

Lamitschka:  What has been the biggest disappointment in your life?

Answer: I don’t think in those terms really. There’s no disappointment. People are people.

 

Lamitschka:  Is there any place you haven’t played that you would like to?

Answer: Japan.

Lamitschka:  What can your fans expect to see when they see you in concert?

Answer: It’s just some guys with instruments. It’s about sharing a moment in song.

Lamitschka:  When you’re on tour, do you have time to play tourist?

Answer: Sometimes, yes. For a few hours. But there’s never enough time to really take in a city.

Lamitschka:  Do fans mob you everywhere you go or do they respect your privacy?

Answer: It happens that some people are a bit too thrilled to see me. I
still think it’s flattering, but it can be really annoying sometimes.
I’d never complain, though: it’s the life I chose.

Lamitschka:  Many music fans today get their information about artists
online. Do you have your own website and what will fans find there?

Answer: I do, of course, but I guess social media gets you more actual info.

 

Lamitschka:  What’s the best compliment a fan has ever given you?

Answer: You smell good.

Lamitschka:  What’s your favorite song that you wish you could have recorded?

Answer: Ace of Spades

Lamitschka:  What message would you like to send your European fans?

Answer: I am with you in spirit, always.

Lamitschka:  How do you feel about being winning the Export Artist of the Year?  What has it done for your career?

Answer: Well it’s put us on the map just a little more at home. It’s a weird yet flattering thing.

 

Lamitschka:  Fans are always hungry for good road stories. Do you have one you can share with us (come on don’t be shy)?

Answer: There are just so many. We just got back from a tour with lots
of good stories, like all the band and crew getting free tattoos at
Hamburg harbour at 3 in the morning, cause someone thought it was a
great idea.

Lamitschka:  Describe what a perfect day is like for you.

Answer: Not getting up, reading while still in bed, getting up at some
point to go to the studio to record new songs and have a quiet meal
after with people close to my heart. And do the same thing the next day
in a different town.
Christian Lamitschka ( Ch.Lamitschka@t-online.de ) for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show

Photo (c)  Torsten Geyer

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