Autor: Richard Constantinidi
Etichete: Austria, Beate Baumgartner, Electronica Jazz, Faithless, Falco, Lilja Bloom, Michael Jackson, Mike Riegler, Parov Stelar, Peninsula Festival, The Beatles, Wolfgang Mitter
Parov Stelar can no longer be considered an up and coming artist/DJ.
He’s coming from the heartland of Austria with a unique spin of jazz and electronica, played with a live band. He is visiting our country, Romania, for about the 6th time this year … (Austria is not too far away).
So, we exchanged a few e-mails and came up with this Interview.
CZB: Where does the name Parov Stelar come from?
Parov Stelar: I had this idea while doing a bank-robbery. I always have the best ideas in extreme situations ;)
CZB: How did you find Beate Baumgartner? Why did you have to change the voice?
Parov Stelar: Our manager, Wolfgang Mitter, came up with the idea to ask Beate – he knew her from former projects and was thrilled by her voice and charisma. And so was I when I heard her first. At this time we all felt like it was time for a change. Eva wanted to go her own way and Beate brought great new ideas – and what is most important – a really good feeling into the band.
CZB: How do you explain Falco's international success?
Parov Stelar: He made the excess to his profession and at the same time stayed authentic and was professional... Additionally there was a lot of charisma – which a person has or has not.
I think there is nothing like luck. If you are good in the thing you do, it´s just a matter of time, until you are successful. Quality always finds its way.
CZB: Austria is basically a classic and jazz country. How did your interest for this style of music develop?
Parov Stelar: If parents are hippie-artists, it is statistically very probable that their children become dentists, accountants or brokers. You always want to go your own way and not follow the paths of others. You start searching for new ways - and electronic music is of course interesting in this case. I first got in contact with electronic music around some art exhibitions and something like that. I used to paint myself. And it has always been interesting for me to combine things that seem not to be compatible. 15 years ago nobody thought about combining swing and electronic.
CZB: When you started out 12 years ago, the boyband phenomenon was in full swing. Did you have a favorite boyband?
Parov Stelar:The only ever acceptable boyband was The Beatles.
CZB: Who did you appreciate more? Faithless, Robert Miles or Sash! and why?
Parov Stelar: Faithless ... without a doubt. Sometimes – if the evening is really loooooong – I even play Faithless in a DJ-set. It does not matter which kind of audience you have, even if they hated this track back then, they will dance :-)
CZB: How do you explain your success in East Europe and Asia?
Parov Stelar: There is always a place, where a wave has to start. East was hot and open for new – not as jaded as the west. People were open-minded for experiments and ready to party.
Now France, Germany and other countries are also getting on the train. It´s like riffling a game of cards.
CZB: In Cluj you will be playing in a mall. Have you done this before?
Parov Stelar: No, I do not remember anything of the sort. On the one hand, I think it does not really matter “where” you perform as long as people are willing to make a good party. But, on the other hand, this place will of course be very special! We will make the shop windows jingle!
CZB: How do you see the mall concept in Europe? This is not part of our culture.
Parov Stelar: They are great, because, you see, you can make Clubs out of them!
CZB: How do you consider Europe as a whole, being influenced by American culture and consumerism?
Parov Stelar: I think Europe is a beautiful melting pot of cultures. It´s not just the American culture, there is so much from ancient culture to very modern culture from the West and the East. I really love to travel but there is no area on Earth where you can see so many different cultures on so little space as in Europe.
CZB: Do you feel that as a European it is harder to penetrate the American market than it is for Americans to succeed in crossing the Atlantic?
Parov Stelar: To be honest: I don´t know. We are very lucky, because there is a lot of attention for our music in the United States and it gets played there more and more. Every country has its own heroes and it´s difficult to cross borders. Sometimes it´s just luck.
CZB: How did Michael Jackson's death affect you? What were you doing when you found out?
Parov Stelar: I was sitting in my studio when I got a text message from Lilja Bloom. It was about 4 in the morning. I was shocked. With him, a part of my youth died.
CZB: This is the 13th question. Are you a superstitious person?
Parov Stelar: Yes, I am...but no. 13 is a good number :-)
CZB: DJ Mike Riegler - is he your discovery?
Parov Stelar: I wouldn´t say “discovery”... We met some time ago at a festival. His stage was open-air and it rained. But we came along very well and so I invited him to play a ping-pong DJ set with me. When I heard his own tracks I immediately decided to support him.
CZB: How will these club shows differ from your last appearance in Romania at the Coke Live Peninsula Festival?
Parov Stelar: The show changed. We have new tracks. You will see!
Intervew conceived by: RiCo
Very special thanks going out to MSA Events Cluj who made this interview possible.
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