As a teen grown up in the era of hit parade, disco, “Rockpalast” (a German live music television show) & Co, I listened to songs of Abba to Zappa until the age of twelve, when I started making music myself by playing the violin. During this time I had the opportunity to learn about the advantages of the guitar while being in a camp, whereupon I retired my “sweet” violin playing after three years. Douglas Adams would probably have dedicated the following lines to me: “His violin playing reminds of a cacophonous continental drift made audible by extremely fast playback, interwoven with arpeggios of calving glaciers and coloraturas of torturously and vociferously perishing creatures”.
When we parted, Mrs. Weiß, my violin teacher, confirmed to me that the guitar likely suited me more. And indeed, substantial progress was perceptible on the acoustic and electric guitar, so that I instantly founded the NDW (Neue Deutsche Welle - German New Wave) band “Neutral” and postulated profound as well as socially critical lyrics à la “wir sind neutral, Gott-Sei-Dank sind wir normal” (“we are neutral, thank God that we are normal”) into the microphone.
By chance it happened that in another band (where I had actually applied for the guitarist’s job) the role of the bassist was assigned to me, which got me some joyless years as an uninspired bass plucker (see photo), among other things because the instrument was absolute cheap crap and our music on the bass hardly needed more than eighths on the key note … - Cut! -
By chance it happened some years later in the same band (where I initially applied for the guitarist’s job) that the position of the drummer got vacant and was immediately occupied by me – off the bass was the main thing :-). The initial prowess was only enough for some untight grooves, but thanks to drumming lessons I made it to almost ten years behind the drum kit. The fascination for odd meters surely developed during this time.
Since I always loved to write own songs, but the drums were not really suitable for songwriting, I got me the Yamaha DX21 (the “little brother” of the DX7) for composing. As usual, some piano lessons followed and the well-dilettante circle of instruments closed around me well-led and seamlessly. With the synthesizer, however, it was suddenly possible for me to let my acquired half-knowledge of the instruments flow into the composition and arrangement and cast it into quasi complete songs by means of MIDI and computer. My job in the multimedia industry at that time gave me the chance to produce some royalty-free music for multimedia works. And very gradually … the music gave way to self-employment, job, family etc. and I fell into a deep sleep …
… from which I awoke in my early forties, personal crises and full-time employment in my bag, and the desire to finally make the music that fascinated me all my life: Prog! Unfortunately, it is unexpectedly difficult (and it’s not getting easier with increasing age) to find fellow musicians that match personally and musically – all the more I am pleased to have found exactly such a person in Tom.
Musically I’m significantly impressed by Dream Theater, Circus Maximus, Haken, Seventh Wonder, Symphony X, Rush, Yes, Genesis, Opeth, Animals as Leaders and many more. Notable stopovers on my musical journey were, amongst others, Jean Michel Jarre, Billy Cobham, Toto, Adiemus and various New Wave Bands. If I had to name a song that should serve as a blueprint for my musical work, it would be the song “Music” by John Miles. “Music was my first love and it will be my last …”