Monday, May 4, 2015

{INTERVIEW} milky chance

Krista had a chance to sit down with Clemens Rehbein and Philipp Dausch of Milky Chance before their recent show at the 9:30 Club. Read ahead as the German duo shares the history of the band, what Americans always yell at them, and obliges us in a goofy round of selfies.

Listen while you read:

Tell us about yourselves! How did you come to be Milky Chance?
Philipp: We met in high school, nearly six years ago and we started another band; we had this band for two years. Then we quit the band and I had some songs finished and we started to record them but we didn’t have the idea of starting a band, it was just recording an album for fun. And then it became a band more and more after a year.

How would you describe your music? What song should new listeners start with?
P: Basically its house music -- it’s electronic beats with singer-songwriter in it. The singer-songwriter is a very different style in every song; it can be very folk, it can be reggae. It’s always a beat, or some kind of electronic percussion, and then a singer on it.

What's your songwriting process like?
P: He writes the songs and I produce it. So it’s like a singer-songwriter and a producer.

Click ahead for more questions and goofy pictures!

When you’re on tour do you find that you continue to write music?
Clemens: I do it everywhere. I just finished a new song recently on tour.
P: It’s a very basic thing for him. It’s like eating. You eat everywhere in the world and you just eat, where you are. So he just writes, where he is.

You guys are classically-trained musicians -- is Milky Chance's form of music what you've always intended to do or did you sort of stumble upon it?
P: I don’t think we had specific ideas of what we are. We just loved doing music at that time and we probably both were kind of sure that we wanted to do something with music because it was always something we did. But there was not a specific plan behind how that turns into something like this, for example.
C: The only aim that we had was to get experience in music, not to get experience in being famous.

Being from Germany, what’s it been like to be away from home?
P: It’s double-faced. It’s nice to be on a tour, it’s nice to travel but on the other side, you miss your people at home, you miss being in a comfortable environment.
C: But it’s also good to move on, see different places, get impressions, meet people.

Is there anything that surprised you about the U.S. or American culture?
P: There are lot of weird things in America going on. I mean, it’s a beautiful country. It’s crazy how diverse it is, what you can see. It’s also interesting and scary at times what the culture is -- because it’s so new, it’s the most modern or youngest culture that you can find so it’s interesting how things get created in such a new society and how the way of creating and the way of thinking is. Very small things like saying “Hello” -- in Germany, you only say hello but here you say “Hey, how’s your day? How’s it going?” It’s interesting to see small things in daily life that can be different.

obliging this american in a round of selfies
Is there anything that you made sure to bring with you on your tour?
P: It’s good that we have each other.
C: Good crew, nice people around that you can worth with but you can also be yourself. And a book.
P: He’s reading the Jimi Hendrix biography right now.

What artists would you recommend to us? Any other German acts we need to add to our radar?
P: Beatsteaks -- they’re really good if you like it a little more rocky, but it’s a little electronic too.
C: We've got a lot of electronic, house DJ artists like Paul Kalkbrenner. If you want to check out good, old German music, you should check out singer-songwriters like Reinhard Mey. That’s what our parents listened to. They have German, old school lyrics.
C: It’s like a German Bob Dylan.

What’s the most unique gift you’ve received from a fan?
P: I got a bracelet!
C: We’ve had paintings, a lot of cool paintings.

What’s been the craziest thing an audience has yelled at you guys on stage?
C: Here in America, a lot of people try to say “DANKE SCHOEN!”
{Editors Note: Morgan counted at least three shouts in German from audience members during the show that evening.}

Good luck tonight! Is there anything you do before a show to pump you up?
C: High fives.

Thanks again to Milky Chance for chatting with me, humoring me with selfies, and not judging me for my crazy stares at their cupcakesIf you missed the band the last time they were in town -- NEVER FEAR -- they're coming back to DC and playing Echostage on July 27. Grab your tickets pronto here

(Plus -- Concert Correspondent Ewee will be covering their show in Louisville tonight!)

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