Singing is communication
A debut album of German singer and producer Marit Posch alias Damero - "Happy In Grey" - shows her great talent as a vocalist and a musician. We talked to her about her brilliant record.
- You are born in communist country - DDR. Have you any memories from childhood, whose inspired you in creation of music?
- Yes, of course. But this is not really related to growing up in a communist country. I remember my grandfather playing the piano. He played really well. A lot of jazz. And later on, from 9th to 12th grade I was in a really good youth choir where I learned a lot about music. I didn't really listen to a lot of DDR bands, but rather pop bands from Britain or the U.S. or West Germany.
- You traveled a lot - from Germany to USA. Does impressions from these countries make your music richer or more complexed?
- In the States I got to know a lot of the so-called indie rock. Bands like Yo La Tengo, Sparkle Horse, Pedro The Lion. I used to listen to that kind of music before already, but got to know more bands and singers when I was there. And I got interested in country music, which I didn't like before. Songwriters like Gillian Welch, who writes amazing songs. And of course just being in a foreign country changes you and how you see the world.
- You are classically trained musician and vocalist. How it is important for your present music?
- For me it's really important. I feel that it really helps me writing music. Knowing about harmonies and composition and understanding music from other centuries as well. And being a trained singer makes production easier - I don't have to waste a lot of time recording my vocals.
What did you interested in electronic music?
- When I got to know people who were into electronic music, went to techno clubs, I felt that this is something I definitely wanted to explore more. The possibility of creating new sounds, new structures. A new lifestyle.
How did you create tracks on your album "Happy In Grey"?
- I compose all of my songs at a little keyboard I have. I just come up with harmonies, sing along and try to find lyrics. Then I record that onto my computer and play around with different sounds, beats, and arrangements. For "Happy in Grey" I then finished most of the tracks with a friend of mine, Henri Hagenow. The other tracks I finished with Apparat, AGF, Zander VT and Nevis Peack.
- Why did you ask some other musicians for participation on your record?
- It's always more fun to work with other people. And I like to see what other people would do with my tracks. What gets them inspired, what direction they would go. And it's so much easier to finish a track with someone next to you, to play ping-pong with your ideas.
- The one part of the album is IDM-oriented and the second - more techno-oriented. Why did you decide on that partition?
- It wasn't a decision really. It's just what happened with the tracks. Most of the original songs were really slow and dark. And during production they changed. It seems like tracks get their own life while you produce them. It's like they say to you: "Hey, really, I am more of a dancy track, don't you hear?!"
- Some tracks from "Happy In Grey" with orchestral sounds have a strong soundtrack vibe. Do you think about them as an illustration to an imaginary film?
- Not illustration of a film, but more like an illustration of a feeling, a mood. Most tracks are kind of melancholic and have that feeling of longing. I like that. I like being melancholic. Feeling low without being dramatic.
- Nearly all compositions are songs. What did you create at first - melody line or instrumental base?
- Melody lines, definitely. I cannot come up with a melody without wanting to sing along. So there is always a sung melody at the beginning. Later on I produce the instrumental parts.
Did you ever think about completely instrumental album?
- No. As I just said, I cannot write melodies without singing along. Maybe I'll do some instrumental tracks in the future. But I am a singer. I gotta sing!
Your voice brings a very deep emotions to music - is it a way to thrill a listener?
- I hope so! Singing is communication. It brings something deep from inside of you out to the surface. Singing is your whole body and your soul. And this you share with other people. Voices I like get me thrilled, totally. And they comfort me when I feel shitty.
Do you feel a singer or a musician at the first place?
- A singer. But how you one divide that? As a singer you are a musician...!
- Why did you sing in German and English?
- I like the English language a lot. And it's easier to sing and to write lyrics in. But I am German so I wanted to have one or two songs in my mother tongue too.
- What is more exciting for you: working in studio or performing music on stage?
- Well, it's both exciting. Being on stage is more expressive, outgoing. You share things with people. Being in the studio is a very intimate thing, very personal and introvert.
- Where your artistic name - Damero - is from?
- Spelled with a "w" at the end (Damerow) it's an old family name of mine. I just cut out the "w" to have a more artistic name.
Author: Pawel Gzyl
Photo: Ragnar Schmuck
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WYWIADY / RELACJE
+ Laibach - relacja z koncertu w Palladium, Warszawa 10.12.2006
+ Singing is communication - wywiad z Marit Posch alias Damero
+ Something unique - wywiad z Mikael'em Stavostrandem (Bulgur Brothers)