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Interview: Blackmore´s Night

mit Candice Night vom 6. Juli 2013 via Mail
Jeder, der sich für Hard Rock oder die Anfänge des Heavy Metals interessiert, wird schon mal über den Namen Ritchie Blackmore gestolpert sein. Vor allem durch seine Tätigkeit als Gitarrist für Bands wie Deep Purple oder Rainbow, die bis heute zu den einflussreichsten Bands des Genres gezählt werden, konnte sich der Ausnahmemusiker einen Namen machen. Aber auch durch seine Launen und den etwas spezielleren Charakter, den er in die beiden Musikgruppen einbrachte, ließen ihn zu einem Unikat der Szene werden.
Doch wie so viele Musiker da draußen, packte auch ihn mit der Zeit die Lust, etwas völlig Neues auszuprobieren. Nachdem er sowohl bei Deep Purple als auch bei Rainbow nach mehrmaligem Ausstieg endgültig aufhörte, bzw. Rainbow aufgelöst wurde, wand er sich der folkloristischen Spielart des Rocks zu. Zusammen mit seiner heutigen Frau Candice Night gründete er die Band Blackmore's Nigth, welche nun seit 1997 sein musikalischer Spielplatz ist.
Das aktuelle Album der Truppe heißt "Dancer and the Moon". Was es mit der Scheibe auf sich hat, wie ihre Produktion aussah und was die Musik zu einem besonderen Erlebnis macht, berichtet uns Candice Night im unten stehenden Interview.
Viel Spaß beim Lesen!

The Interview:

Alex: Hi Candice! How are you doing?
Candice Night: I'm well. Writing this after a show we did in Newcastle in England. Back at the hotel and a little tired from performing, but still glowing in the love from the fans.
Alex: Your son Rory Dartanyan was born in 2012. What can you tell us about him?
Candice: He is 14 months old now and was the sweetest baby. I called him my Zen Baby from the time he was born because he was so spiritual and peaceful. He has light curly blond hair and ocean blue eyes. He just started walking and ever since he discovered he can get around by himself he has been becoming very mischievous and is into everything! He loves the ladies too and will often try to pick up waitresses and hand feed them and they all fall in love with him instantly. It's pretty funny to watch.
Alex: Do this kinds of events, like the birth of a child, influence your music?
Candice: I think all events influence your music and your writing. You're constantly channeling the world around you. Your hopes, dreams, fears and experiences ... so they are all reflected in your writings.
Alex: Let's talk about Blackmore’s Night. Do you see it as a band? Or is it just you and Ritchie with guest musicians for each new recording and tour?
Candice: I see it as a band. But Ritchie and I do the writing. Some people never write a song but are able to tour and make CDs constantly. So Ritchie and I write the music and the lyrics and then we have the band members come in for sessions if we need them to play on certain songs and then we all get together for the tours.
Alex: You latest album „Dancer and the Moon“ has been been released on June 11th. What can you tell us about it?
Candice: It's got the same variety that all our CDs have. If you're a fan of the band or simply like melodic music you will love this CD. There Are rock songs, ballads, traditional songs, instrumentals ... a lot to choose from.
Alex: And how is your songwriting process done? Did you come with finish songs or was it more like having rough ideas and working them out in a jamming session?
Candice: We usually collect ideas all around and write the songs in a very basic way. Then when it's time to record we review the ideas and write some new ones and add our arrangements, lyrics and instrumentation.
Alex: What is the most difficult part of the songwriting process?
Candice: There are ideas that we did through a few times and we had a hard time with narrowing down how it should sound. We tried some songs in different keys and different tempos before deciding on the final versions. A few songs didn't even make it onto the CD.
Alex: And what can you tell us about the production of „Dancer and the Moon“?
Candice: We used the same producer as we usually do, Pat Regan. He flies In from L.A. and stays in our home and we have a recording studio in the dungeon bar room of our house. After sixteen years together the three of us work pretty well together.
Alex: Do you plan to release a music video for one of the new songs?
Candice: We released two music videos: "Dancer And The Moon" and "The Moon Is Shining".
Alex: What can you tell us about the production of this video? What makes it special?
Candice: We decided to concentrate more on band performance for these two videos. Usually we have a whole worked out story line and we have to pretend we're actors or actresses, but with these songs we just brought it back to the basics and just show us all in the true light that we are: musicians.
Alex: Which track from the new album do you like most and why?
Candice: I really like "The Last Leaf" and "The Spinners Tale" for introspective songs or story sings that will make you think or just let you float to another time or place. But for upbeat songs I love "The Moon Is Shining".
Alex: What’s the intention behind your music? Do you want to transport a certain message – or different ones in different songs? Or is it more like pure entertainment?
Candice: The intention begins as a selfish one. It's great outlet and escape from the modern day stress and pressures that we all have to face during day to day life. I love crafting songs, lyrics, melodies. It takes me away from all the negativity of life. It's Also a bit of a therapy session in which I can write away thoughts and feelings. But once the songs are complete and the CD is out there then of course everyone is welcome on the journey as it's a personal journey for all of us and we all perceive music in different ways.
Alex: You got a lot of quite good criticisms for "Dance and the Moon". What’s more useful for you: Praise or critics?
Candice: Neither. I tend not to listen to either. I follow my own heart and I know if I like something or not. It's my own art. Some will like it some wont. Why is their opinion more or less important than my own about what I created?
Alex: In general, how important are the critics of fans and press for you personally?
Candice: I really don't read reviews so in general, it's not important enough for me to change a direction I am going in. Half the people will love what you do and half won't. I would be running in circles if I tried to listen and accommodate what they all say.
Alex: What do you think about vinyl and it's current comeback?
Candice: I think it's great. I think there is something comforting and warm in the sound of vinyl. Whereas CDs are a bit too clinical. It's great to see the artwork big again also.
Alex: What can you tell us about the artwork of your latest album?
Candice: We love it. The record company got it done by a local artist in Italy and we instantly fell in love with it.
Alex: You'll play some German Show dates, soon. What are your expectations for those gigs?
Candice: We've been going to Germany for sixteen years now and the venues or historical places and castles are always amazing. The fans are so great, too. At this point it's always like a family reunion when we play there, we know them so well.
Alex: Has there ever been a moment in your musical career where you felt like having lost the energy to go with the touring? What did you do?
Candice: Of course, on the road it's easy to have jet lag, homesickness, catch a cold or other illness, be exhausted or nervous ... All these things affect your state of mind. You just get on that stage and when you see those people, and they're on they're feet or watching and listening so intently to your songs it infuses you with a new found energy. I also close my eyes and just channel the song and let it take me away. It's like a spiritual healing. That works wonders also.
Alex: Especially in the last decade there seems to have been a wave of reunions. Black Sabbath with Ozzy in 2012, Led Zeppelin in 2007, Judas Priest with Rob Halford in 2004. They are all giants of the rock scene. Where do you think did this reunion wave come from?
Candice: Nostalgia. And the fact that the bands that are being played on the radio now won't be around in 40 years time, and for good reason. No one has that longevity because no one has the identity and the quality of the music that was erupting in the 70s. And even if they did the radio probably wouldn't play them because they only play Rihanna and Taylor swift these days. The music scene is very fleeting at this point.
Alex: Let's talk about your future! What can the fans expect from you?
Candice: Touring throughout the year for the CD "Dancer And The Moon" and doing interviews to promo the CD. I also recorded a lullaby CD that hopefully will be released later in the year.
Alex: Do you have any final greetings for all the fans out there?
Candice: Thanks for all your support and hope you like the new CD. See you on the road!
Moderation: Alexander Kipke

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