Imagine a gig with just one person on stage, with his guitar and keyboards. Singing so beautifully and clearly. The whole audience is just quiet, astonished by his voice, by the sounds they hear. With his debut 'My Beautiful Demon', singer/songwriter Ben Christophers from Wolverhampton really moved a lot of people, and his live shows had the same effect. KindaMuzik asked him about the things 'My Beautiful Demon' did to him. And also some news about the new album he's working on at the moment...
Publicatiedatum: 24 oktober 2000
When did you actually write the songs for the 'My Beatiful Demon' album?
"I started writing the songs for the album around the time of recording it, apart from about three or four which were
written about a year before."
How did you get in contact with a producer and record company to make an album?
"I Just kept sending my demos out to record companies until some one noticed. I was lucky - I was signed from a demo I
had recorded at home. I hadn't played live. After I while I met David (producer) through a friend in a cafe in London, and
that was it - although it wasn't all as simple as that!"
What did you think 'My Beautiful Demon' would do sales-wise in Great Britain and Europe?
"I really didn't know what to expect, to be honest! All I had to go on was that I really believed in it."
Isn't it sometimes hard to perform your fragile songs live?
"No, not at all. It's the best thing to do live, because of the dynamics. It is a challenge, and in the first
rehearsals with the musicians I use, we spent long hours placing it together, so that the gentleness is actually the most
IDo you think you fit on a big festival bill?
"Well I have been touring around Europe all Summer and played at some major festivals. There is so much variety in
these concerts, there's room for everyone."
When you write your songs, do you write about fictive people or about people you really know?
"All of my songs are about real people and events, or even things that have moved me. It makes writing very easy when
something has moved you in some way. Anyway, it beats therapy!"
In Holland a lot of people picked you up after a broadcast of the programme 'Loladamusica' [VPRO television -Ed.]. Did you see the programme, and what did you think of it?
"I loved the way they filmed the documentary. It was done in a way that didn't hide me in cool pop videos and
distorted images. It was artistic and very honest. Unfortunately, I don't like watching or listening to myself, so I've
only seen it twice!"
What's your relation to Holland ever since?
"My God, I love playing in Holland. It's one of my favourite places to play."
At the moment you're recording a new album. Is everything going alright?
"Yes, thank you! I've written a lot of new songs for it and have so many things I want to achieve with this. There's
still work to be done, but all is well."
Is the new album going to sound different compared to 'My Beatiful Demon'?
"What I want to do on this album is to keep moving on. I'll write very much as I always have done, but I want to test
myself a little and bring up the tempo with some things and have some gloriously heavy sounds as well. There will also be
some very stripped-down songs, I'm hoping to have a few songs on the piano as well."
Was it hard to write new songs (second album syndrome)?
"There were moments - I have to admit - of sheer hell!"
What are your influences at the moment? What are your favourite albums of the year copyright?
"I really like the Flaming Lips' new record 'The Soft Bulletin'. And Joni Mitchell's 'Both Sides Now' - She does a
beautiful version of 'A Case of You'. I'm Listening to Scott Walker at the moment. I wish I'd written "Boy Child"."
What are your expectations of the new album?
"I want to finish it knowing I've done my best. That's it really."
What do you think is the highest thing you can reach through music?
"It's got to be spiritual, It's an amazing feeling to play a gig, and the room is full of faces singing back at you!"
Meer Ben Christophers op KindaMuzik: http://www.kindamuzik.net/artiest/ben-christophers