LP – o „Heart to Mouth”, pisaniu piosenek i byciu wzorem do naśladowania [WYWIAD]


Wywiad z LP to jeden z tych, które widnieją na naszej bucket list. Czekałyśmy na taką możliwość prawie dwa lata, jednak do tej pory zawsze pojawiało się coś, co krzyżowało nasze plany. Z artystką udało nam się w końcu spotkać podczas jej ostatniej wizyty w Polsce – z okazji promocji najnowszej płyty, pt. „Heart to Mouth”, która ukaże się 7 grudnia. I to właśnie nowy krążek LP był głównym tematem naszej rozmowy.

[Magda Rogóż/Katarzyna Janik/TDGM]


Heidrik – about being an artist and his newest record [INTERVIEW]


There are many forms of self-expression. And there are many artists for whom one form is just not enough. Heidrik, a very talented artist from Faroe Islands is one of them. He’s already known as a painter, director and a musician. Quite recently he has signed a contract with Polish label – Fonobo Records, which will release his newest album „Funeral” in October this year. Heidrik intrigued us with his sensitivity, consequence and… playing ukulele. I couldn’t resist asking him couple of questions about his work.

TDGM: You’re a very talented person. People are thrilled by your works – as a painter, director and a musician. Is doing so many things at once related to some kind of life hunger? Like you’d love to do and try as much as possible in your life? Or maybe you’re simply a workaholic?

Heidrik: Well it’s just a form of expression for me. If I don’t express myself I feel very repressed and I get depressed. So I need to get everything out to feel free. There is so much stuff going on in my head that if I didn’t do it, I would explode.

TDGM: Everyone has a day when everything goes wrong or gets unproductive or uncreative. How do you manage with such days?

Heidrik: I feel bad if I haven’t done something whole day. Feel I wasted a whole day away. But that’s when I do absolutely nothing. I consider having a good time being productive too – it’s good for the soul.

TDGM: Being an artist is not easy. It’s a very tough business. Are there any moments that you wish to throw everything away and start with completely different carrer?

Heidrik: Yes, it’s really hard to pay your bills, because there is never enough money. I thought about getting a 9-5 job but I think I would just die. I need to work with my stuff all the time – as I said I get depressed and feel horrible if I don’t get to work with art. It keeps me sane. I just hope one day it pays off.

TDGM: What had the biggest impact on you as an artist, then? What made you take this path in your life?

Heidrik: There never was a moment when I woke up and said „I want to be an artist”. I always knew I was going to be an artist – even before I could pronounce the word „artist” properly. I was sort of born that way. It’s such a natural thing for me. Like eating, sleeping – necessary things we do to be alive. That’s how it is for me too.

TDGM: I’ve read somewhere that Ralph Kaminski presented your material to his manager and Fonobo Records. How did you meet?

Heidrik: We meet through an old friend of mine. We became good friends right away and I sent him my record and he loved it.

TDGM: Do you plan to do something together?

Heidrik: I helped him out with his next music video which we shot in April. I think it’s going to be really beautiful. He’s a very talented guy!

TDGM: What are your expectations of working with Polish record label?

Heidrik: Well, the best of course! I just hope we can get the music out to every corner of Poland and have a lot of gigs, and become rich, and famous, and buy myself a private jet plane, and a yacht, and a villa, and… joke! I just want to write and perform.

TDGM: The title „Funeral” doesn’t sound very optimistic. Why have you decided to name the record this way?

Heidrik: I was thinking about calling the album „Closure” but I didn’t think it was respectable enough. I said goodbye to a lot of things in my life on this album to be able to have more room for good things. It’s an album about letting go. Letting go of things that don’t do you good and letting go of insecurities – so you can move on with your life. About my past – and I wanted to say goodbye in the most respectable and beautiful way. And I find funerals very beautiful. A beautiful way to get closure.

TDGM: I’ve been listening to the „Funeral” lately. The melodies are quite simple, bit severe which makes
the lyrics more naked. You can’t hide behind the melody. Was it intentional?

Heidrik: Well in my past I have worked a lot with big productions with endless tracks and a whole bunch of electronic stuff. But more and more I learned to write songs I found out that better you get at writing a song (which is the core – or skeleton of a song) less production is needed. I just went back to basic and just saw the beauty in simplicity. And as you say – then the words become a big part of the music as well which was important for this album. I think lyrics are very important. If we say that the melody is the physical appearance of someone and the lyrics are the personality. Then a pretty person is not very interesting to talk to if the personality is not so exciting.

[Magda Rogóż/TDGM]

Sara Hartman – about her music life in Berlin [INTERVIEW]

Sara Hartman

Sara Hartman

Following your dreams requires a very big courage and determination. It’s even harder when you need to leave all your life behind. Sara Hartman – American artist knows what it’s like. She took her chance and decided to move to Berlin where she’s making her music dreams come true. She creates and records her music. This is what she told us about during our phone call. Read the interview below to learn more.

TDGM: I can’t not start with this subject. You’re American and you moved to Berlin. Most of the time we hear about artists moving to the USA – New York and Los Angeles. You did the opposite.

Sara Hartman: I’m not gonna say that’s always kind of way me doing things, but for me it was just an opportunity. I was playing in a restaurant in Sag Harbor one night and I happened to play in front of the right person who introduced me to Toby Kuhn, who just happened to be based in Berlin. And I fell in love with the city and also musically with Toby. I think it really wasn’t even a choice for me. It was kind of the next chapter of life creativity. I’m very happy that I did it. I didn’t even think it was kind of the opposite of what a lot of people do. Whatever gets you to the finnish line there’s no reason to think about it.

TDGM: Was the opportunity to record with Toby the only reason why you decided to come to Europe?

Sara Hartman: To be honest, there was nothing for me at home. I mean, it was comfortable but I felt like there must be something more up there. And I think Toby allowed me to start a life on my own in Berlin. And to follow my dreams, to be honest. I don’t want to be get cheesy on it but I’ve always wanted to play music and I can play music in Berlin. And it’s a very inspiring city. I really love it. It’s becoming a second home. It’s becoming home which is really, really beautiful. And there’s a lot of stuff going on!

TDGM: Yes, Berlin is a very good place for artists.

Sara Hartman: And it’s got some legacy, you know. Many artists were there. And it’s a place that harbors creativity and that’s what I want to be surounded by right now.

TDGM: Has living in Berlin and creating there taught you something new when it comes to the music and the process of creation?

Sara Hartman: Absolutely! At home it was beautiful and I loved it. My family was there and I love them, and I miss them but Berlin is so exciting. And for me personally, I learned probably too much (haha!) about myself and maybe about life and I think I would never have learned such things or even been able to begin a lot of those thoughts if I haven’t moved to Berlin. I think I was able to put it right back into the music which is quite incredible. The songs became a diary in a way. It’s how I like to put it. Cause when I felt really sad I would put it into a song. When I missed my sister I would put it into a song. When I felt so overwhelming great cause someone liked the song that I wrote I would put that into a music. Now, looking back, it’s actually incredible. I’m really proud of myself but I think it’s just a beginning.

TDGM: You should be proud of yourself. You decided to leave everything to follow your dreams. I wouldn’t believe if you said that it was an easy decission to make.

Sara Hartman: I don’t think I really realized what I was doing until I was right in the middle of it. But I think it paid off. Seeing how people respond to what I’ve done is really rewarding and deeply fulfilling.

TDGM: Having this perspective of the time you’ve spent in Berlin so far, does recording your songs is mostly releated to your experience from moving from USA to Europe?

Sara Hartman: Yes, and all of the expected things that come from that and all of the unexpected things. It’s just whole contradiction. Like I’ve never felt so lonely but I’ve never felt so connected to something. I’ve never felt like I’m fighting for something. It’s everything. And it makes you feel alive, I guess. But this is what emotions are. This is what the record („Satellite” EP) is about for me. It was written from very away so there are different images so people hopefully don’t get bored with my music. It’s like being young and living the nest. Going to college for example. It’s discovering yourself. It was a lot o things. But yeah, it was about the move and the things I’ve learnt.

TDGM: This way, with your songs you let your audience to come very close to you. You let them into your world.

Sara Hartman: Yes, I’ve put everything into them. They’re very close to my heart so they’re very personal. But sometimes getting so personal isn’t that bad. It’s about my experience but I can see it as a basic, primal human emotions as well. And people are responding like I’m not alone which is great.

TDGM: And people can find some values and emotions in the songs for them. Your songs become very universal in a way.

Sara Hartman: Yes, and that’s all that I hope for these songs. It’s the exact thing. It’s for people to interpret and to kind of fit it into their own lifes. Help them with their experiences. That is the ultimate goal.

TDGM: And what is it like to work with Toby?

Sara Hartman: His production world is so fascinating. It’s what I would like to do lyrically I suppose. It’s so very organic like rock but doing kind of modern electronic things. I’m very inspired by him.

TDGM: And You can play a lot of instruments. Does it mean that you are kind of self-sufficient? Are you gonna record everything on your own?

Sara Hartman: Yeah, maybe. But you know, I think people have different voices on their instruments and I’m very happy to have my live drummer – Sebastian. He’s on my record as well. I love the way he plays. But yeah, it technically may be, maybe I’ll do it one day but I love to collaborate. I love to listen to creative people and know what they’re thinking and make something new.

TDGM: So who would you like to collaborate with, then?

Sara Hartman: I would die if I was even near Patti Smith, I think. She’s a legend, you know. Lately, I’ve been listening a lot to Jack Garret. I think he’s really cool and I think he’s doing lots of interesting stuff. I would really love to make something with him. But Patti would be my real dream.

TDGM: Is there anything you consider as a breakthrough in your career?

Sara Hartman: 
I don’t know. For me it’s not really about that. It’s about sharing what I felt. That’s what keep me going. Playing an opening for Ellie Goulding was an absolute ridiculous dream but for me it was about sharing the stuff that I made and having people feel it with me. If I can do that maybe all over the world that would make me break.

TDGM: How do you find yourself in a place where you are now? You were playing before Ellie Goulding on her tour, earlier before MS MR. People could see you in Poznań at Spring Break Festival. Sounds like a dream came true.

Sara Hartman: Honsetly, I think it is. I’m attempting not to think to much and enjoy this amazing thing I’m able to go through in my life. I’m just glad music is taking me to those places. It’s living a dream.

[Magda Rogóż/TDGM]

John Grant – about collaboration with other artists [INTERVIEW]

John Grant

John Grant

John Grant seems to be a very interesting and life experienced man. Having such impressions revealed just by reading the articles and interviews in the internet, we even more regret we couldn’t talk to him in person. Our questions were sent to John by e-mail and you’ll find the answers below.

TDGM: You have worked with many musicians. I am wondering if you’d consider yourself a fulfilled artist or is this fulfillment still ahead?

John Grant: No, I think fulfillment is still ahead for me or perhaps never. But if I had to quit tomorrow or couldn’t do this anymore, I would be very grateful and happy with what I’ve achieved so far.

TDGM: Speaking of other artists – who would you like to perform or record a song with?

John Grant: Susanne Sundfør is someone I’d really like to sing with. And Neko Case for sure.

TDGM: What is your favorite part in making music?

John Grant: I enjoy the mixing process when you get to put on all the bells and whistles, the decorating part, so to speak. But I really enjoy writing lyrics as well.

TDGM: Are you able to point out the most exciting moment in your career?

John Grant: There have been several. Meeting Yello a few nights ago was a life highlight for me. Singing with Sinead O’Connor and Alison Goldfrapp also amazing. Getting to know Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti has also been an incredible experience.

TDGM: You are the experienced musician but most of all very experienced man. You went through a lot, you fought different problems and you have survived. Where do you find your strenght?

John Grant: I have amazing people around me who have helped me pull through the difficult times. It’s all about reaching out for help and not hiding.

TDGM: Has music helped you get through tough times? Was it any kind of motivation or escape?

John Grant: Definitely!!! I would say it has always been motivational for me as well as an escape.

TDGM: What are you aiming for in your life at the moment?

John Grant: Not really sure. Just want to continue to grow as an artist and continue to nurture my relationship with my partner and my friends and family. I also want to continue improving my skills in the various languages I speak.

TDGM: You performed in Poland at OFF Festival in 2013. I’m not gonna ask if you remember this concert, if you liked it etc. I’m more interested in the fact if Polish audience got your attention somehow? I’m asking about it because foreign artists very often talk about Polish audience and consider it as a great one which in most cases makes me smile. I think they say it in every single country they play.

John Grant: I suppose what I have noticed is that the Polish audience seems open to me and that’s all I need to want to come back. Plus, it’s a beautiful country with very interesting history to say the least. I quite like the language as well. Although I’m not sure I’ll tackle it anytime soon. I have enough problems with Icelandic at the moment.

[Magda Rogóż/Katarzyna Janik/TDGM]

Oh Wonder – about live shows, humanity and a new album [INTERVIEW]

Oh Wonder

Oh Wonder

Oh Wonder is a London-based duo. Quite suddenly they won the hearts of listeners and critics around the world. How did they do it? Well, Oh Wonder found an unconventional way to promote their music. For over the year, before they released their debut album, they were sharing one song in a month. This way they caught the attention but also fed the emotions. Right now Josephine and Anthony have their record released and they’re playing around the world. How does it feel from their perspective? You can learn it by reading the interview. A month before their first Polish show the duo answered a few our questions.

TDGM: For quite a while writing songs and putting them on SoundCloud was the only way you connected with people. You were releasing songs but not playing them live. What was the first time you played your songs in front of the people? How do you remember your first performance?

Oh Wonder: Our first ever show was terrifying but hugely rewarding. It was a relief to know that the songs translated into a live setting, having lived with them in our studio for a year. We performed two nights at a venue in London, and were seriously humbled and surprised by the reaction. It gave us confidence to continue performing, and now here we are playing around the world.

TDGM: How do you feel on stage right now? Is it something that excites you or you’d rather stick to writing songs in your bedroom?

Oh Wonder: We adore performing. It’s the most magical hour of our day when we get to sing in a room full of thousands of people singing along with us. It feels so communal and free. That said, we’re super excited to get back into the studio and start work on the second album. We’ve missed being creative.

TDGM: In the interviews you mention different stories about how you’ve helped people with your music. Is it something that you’ve been dreaming or thinking of when you started to share your music in the internet?

Oh Wonder: To be honest, it was never our intention to make music for anyone else but ourselves. It was only when we realised the amazing potential and power of music to truly shape and enhance other people’s lives that we realised what we were part of. Music is truly a force for good in the world, and knowing that we’re able to make a positive difference in someone else’s life is remarkable. It’s something that drives us now.

TDGM: I know that making money on music was not your goal. What was it, then?

Oh Wonder: Like anyone with a passion, there isn’t necessarily anything external that drives you. Or rather, it’s just your passion that drives you. For us, it’s more than we can’t not make music. We’d be so unhappy if we weren’t making music, to the point where we’d still be writing songs and performing even if no one listened or came to our shows.

TDGM: In one of the interviews you said that „you’re two songwriters who’ve written a handbook about how to be a human”. What does it mean? Do you think there’s too less humanity in people?

Oh Wonder: All we meant by that comment was that our album explores what we feel like is the most important thing to cherish as humans – each other. Humanity is all about co-existence. None of us could exist or survive on our own. We all need each other for a myriad of different things. But for us, what seems to be slipping is companionship and support. With the influx of social media in the last ten years, though we are more „connected”, we are less in tune with each other. Our album celebrates and asserts the importance of being there for other people – whether that’s your friend, an acquaintance or a stranger. We are nothing without each other.

TDGM: I feel like you are very self-sufficient in your music. Is it true? If so, was it your conscious choice or a matter of coincidence?

Oh Wonder: We write, record, produce and mix all of our music, and it was probably both. We chose not to work with anyone else for the first record because we wanted the freedom and challenge of doing it all ourselves. We wanted to progress and get better at every aspect of making music.

TDGM: You’ve started to record your next album? What this one is going to be about?

Oh Wonder: We went to New York last month to start writing and we’ll be recording it later in the year. We don’t want to say to much about the new album, but we’re obviously writing it in the middle of touring when our emotions are heightened and we’re missing everyone around us. So there is a little more „loss” in some of these songs. But we’ll see how it turns out.

TDGM: Are you gonna release one song in a month as it was with the first record?

Oh Wonder: We’re not sure how we’re gonna release it yet. Probably not one a month just because it’s quite time-consuming and we’re keen to get back on the road. So maybe we’ll just surprise drop it. Maybe we’ll release little snippets of it here and there. We’re not sure. We’ll see what feels right once we have the finished record in our hands. It will tell us what to do with it. Always listen and trust the music.