Happy March, fellow travelers!
How is everything?
I am reaching out to you from the Paramount Hotel Dubai, where the air conditioner won’t surpass 17 degrees Celsius. It may sound hilarious but it’s true: I caught my first cold this year in freaking Dubai. Amazing! Nevertheless, I had a wonderful time exploring the city, attending the Vienna Ball, and playing a live show with Austrian-Jewish legend Timna Brauer. Although I can’t visualize myself living in a place like Dubai, there are no words to describe how good it feels to get out of the fascinating yet dusty museum Europe again. It’s been three and a half years since my last overseas trip. I can’t even describe that feeling. Maybe you know what I am talking about … The feeling of being far away, walking alone through streets you have never seen before, watching your head getting out of your sweaty ass, observing your thoughts changing and making space for … inspiration. Something I rarely get when I am not moving constantly. Well.
Maybe I don’t need to explain anything to anybody. Maybe my upcoming record TRAVELER is exactly how I expressed those feelings and how you can be part of this constant inner turmoil and adventure. Sounds fun, doesn’t it?
So, what does it mean to turn your passion into a business? Most of us know this by now and there are plenty of ways to learn how that works nowadays. By the way: it’s super hard as an entrepreneur, but it’s especially hard as a musician with an industry that has made complete changes over the past 20 years more than once. In my case there was even one more step I had to take care of, before business could become serious. The question: Who am I?
And it’s a tough question, frankly, cause some of us are many things. In my case it is not even clear where my home is! Being a third culture kid is complicated, though super rewarding if you choose so. But business-wise I had many personalities as well. A German product for fantasy enthusiasts, a Greek product for Austrian Hellenophiles, and now an international product in English for people around the globe – TRAVELER.
I played classical guitar, studied jazz guitar, studied all kinds of folklore styles and at the same time wrote fantasy novels in German, was a guitar teacher and a hired gun guitarist for all matters. So, how the hell could I find what my brand was? This, I think, was the biggest challenge for me and right now I think I have answered all those questions for me. I separated my projects and found inner peace. Or at least moved a step forward in that direction.
Currently I am doing a lot of inner work. Therapy definitely helps, healthy routines help A LOT, and meditation of course is a proven superpower. But I am still building those foundations, my bad habits are following me throughout the day.
I think most people can’t imagine what it is like to be 1) a professional musician, 2) a perfectionist and maniac and 3) a workaholic with imposter syndrome and fear. Well, let me tell you that: it’s exhausting, but at the end of the day it’s rewarding. I would never deliver something mediocre to you guys! Ever. Period. It’s okay if you don’t like what I am doing, but I assure you: what I did I did with love, passion, highest aims, and fear of failure (which may sound like a bad thing, and I guess it is, but at the end of the day it is fuel).
Listening now to how TRAVELER has evolved over the course of 2022 makes me proud. It started with the Demos I did on my own, singing and playing the guitar along with the MIDI tracks from the MuseScore exports. The next step was recording with real instruments and real people. I managed to get the exact people I had in mind to play on that record. We started working remotly, recording some electric guitars, synths, and keys, before I spent 16 days in the studio in Athens, recording drums, all kinds of percussions, all kinds of acoustic guitars, brass, strings etc, only electric bass missing, still using a MIDI bass. A couple of months later the first real mix followed, including real bass and children’s choir. I went back to Athens in December to re-record some phrases and lines, make corrections and play one hell of a guitar solo.
And the rest is history, as some may say lol. No, but seriously. This is one HELL of a job to do, both for me and for the producer who makes ends meet and magic happen. Can’t wait for the final master tape and can’t wait to share the first song with you in April! OMG
It looks as though the first Single („Traveler“) will drop on April 20th with a Single Release Concert on April 19th in Vienna. But there is still A LOT to do …
Let’s see how this month goes! I will do my best to stay on track. My health is priority number one and I promised myself that I will never burn out again. Ever.
See you soon!