I put it above everything. I hear it everywhere. It is music that makes me want to enjoy life not only inside the world created in my mind. And it is also because of it that I sometimes appear to be a totally unreal man.
It's a truly great instrument. Depending on the kind of music and the character of a track, it can be used in many different ways, for instance, to gain control of the situation :-)
I love rhythm. I love drums. But I prefer to play the bass. There are two essential reasons for my choice. Singing and playing the bass is much healthier for the spine and cervical vertebras than singing and playing the drums. Besides, bass is a much lighter instrument to carry off the stage after a concert.
Speaking of vocals - I like singing, I like vocal experiments. I've always paid close attention to melodic lines and the way they are structured. Maybe that's where, apart from the "rhythm matters," my love for progressive rock stems from.
All the good and bad moments in life. Films, literature, and, of course, music. My first inspiration to create my own tracks were the boring exercises at piano lessons. The time I should have spent on learning the assigned tasks was devoted mainly to pasting my own melodies, which led to my playing at home. The possibilities of my first synthesizer, or rather a woeful imitation of it, spurred by the artistic creation of such performers as Tangerine Dream, Vangelis or Mike Oldfield, eventually resulted in piles of tapes with my own ideas and compositions. I've always liked the music of the bands in which my favourite keyboardists, Banks, Wakeman, Jobson, played. It was thanks to them that the, so called, progressive rock entered my tape recorder/CD player/whatever else for good. There was also some heavy metal, or rather thrash metal to be more specific. There was a period in my life when I played in two bands at the same time. In one, I was doing metal music, singing and playing the bass, and in the other, I was playing the keyboards to create music inspired by bands like Genesis, Yes, UK or Marillion. And I'd already known back then that confining myself to just one style is simply unthinkable.
I have never been able to concentrate on one instrument. In a band, I would focus on composing rather than mastering the instrument I was playing. It surfaced with time that I felt most confident with the bass. I liked the style of Geddy Lee from Rush and John Wetton from King Crimson/UK. Both of them also sang, which inspired me to work on combining both functions. I'm glad that in Riverside I can come back to my favourite function of a bass player and singer :-)
I'm inspired by imaginative artists. The way they approach music, how they arrange their tracks, how they build up their melodic lines. It's hard to mention just a few names.
IMPORTANT IN LIFE
Love, friendship, being square with my conscience.
Creating audiovisual stuff - just a small obsession, which makes me feel alive.
have great trouble with finding some. When I do, I spend it in an active way with the people who are dear to me, or I sit for hours on end in the cinema eating the disgusting pop-corn, and I torment the "paper" with inditing my thoughts.
It's difficult to name but a few. My favourite albums are those that somehow influenced my life, my way of approaching music when creating my own sounds. Those are the albums that evoke pleasant memories, the albums I've listened to thousands of times on my stereo. The order has no importance.
The true band. The brain, the heart, the lungs, the arms and the legs. How would a body function without any of these?
...has always been around me, but it has all started seriously with the first listening to Iron Maiden's "The Seventh Son Of The Seventh Son." That was the beginning of my adventure, most of all with metal. I admit that I have never been attracted by its brutality, I have always been looking for melody, atmosphere, space, some kind of mystery, and then I found Anathema. Their every album is a trip through the wilderness of melancholy, every sound is overflowing with emotions... the honesty and the message is what matters for me most in music.
...appeared in my life by pure accident. My childhood dream was to become a sportsman and I'd been doing everything to achieve it, but we all know that dreams don't always come true. Suddenly, I had to finish my career, I got depressed and then, thanks to my parents and a borrowed guitar I realised that the world didn't come to an end. With time, it turned out that the new passion has become my whole life and I wouldn't change it for anything in the world.
...most of all, I look for it in music. I've never been fascinated by speed or technical perfection, though the latter is often quite useful. Anyway, I've always been looking for sounds that go straight to the heart. That's why I've always admired David Gilmour who always hits the nail on the head with just a few sounds. From the guitarists of the younger generation, I can name four men that impress me most, each of them coming basically from a different story. It is John Petrucci for the combination of phenomenal technique and heart, Daniel Gildenlow for individualism, Danny Cavanagh for the crying guitar, and Devin Townsend for his energy and madness. Apart from music, I'm looking for inspiration mostly in people and their lives. Sometimes I think of myself as of an observer or a hobby psychologist. Although science is pretty advanced now, human behaviour and reactions have been described in countless books, the man still remains a mystery.
IMPORTANT IN LIFE
...are, most of all, the values my parents have fostered in me. I believe in love and friendship, I believe people and in people, and I often get a hiding for it, but I don't think I can change it... I can only modify it sometimes. My parents showed me what partnership is, what it means to live together in a "pack", work together and rest together, what it means to respect each other and be honest with each other. I only start to acknowledge all the wise things that I have discussed with them now... as I grew up. But this is life and sometimes there is no other way but to learn from your own mistakes. I'm glad I'm getting to understand more and more right now, when it is still not too late for anything.
I'm trying to spend it in an active way, riding a bike, swimming, or playing volleyball. Also, I don't deny myself the pleasure of going out with friends at the weekends. Besides, I like experimenting in the kitchen, I like good films and Stephen King's books.
My favourite albums are usually those that have had a particular influence on my way of thinking, that have somehow changed me, that have helped me develop as a man and as a musician. There are also those that bring to mind some memories or those that simply got into my CD player at the right moment. There is quite a lot of them and the order has no importance.
RECENTLY LISTENED TO
... appeared in my life pretty unexpectedly, a few short conversations, the first rehearsals, and a moment later it has become one of the most important things in my life. I like it... I like it when things happen spontaneously, when they flow straight from the heart, when a few people are connected by one goal. All in all, we are quite a bunch... everyone has a different story, everyone has a character, all of us are teeming with musical and organizational ideas. I guess I'll stay here for a while. I'm in it for good...
Is very important for me, provided it is good, of course. It is the only thing that raises my spirits, that puts me in a good mood. My musical education started very early, in mid seventies (I don't remember exactly, 1974/77). My father, an ardent rockman, took me to my first concert - UFO at the Warsaw "Torwar." That's how it all began. Of course, I wasn't fully conscious then what it was all about, why the long-haired men were running, jumping and playing the guitars on stage, making quite a lot of noise, but I got interested.
A few years have passed, I was in the seventh grade of the Primary School (13-14 years old) and then, slowly, those sounds began to sink in. My first TRUE concert was Iron Maiden at "Torwar" in 1984. After some time, in 1988, I realised that I dig music and especially drums. It was all because of Slayer and my cousin. Slayer released "South Of Heaven" then and my cousin broke his arm and couldn't play drums. Without thinking, I cadged from him for next to nothing that ancient Polmuz and dragged it to my basement where I started to learn to play. I was doing surprisingly good.
Uncaring about anyone, I'd lock myself up in the basement and play. After a year I already had a band and after two I founded a group that has transformed into today's Hate. While playing in Hate, Domain and many other metal bands, I've always had a secret leader and a favourite group. It was Marillion. I didn't brag about it because nobody was interested and I liked it that way. I went to all their concerts they performed in Poland (even to that pathetic one in Sopot where they played from playback). Several years of playing death metal made me feel a bit tired and I was looking for people with whom I could play the kind of music Marillion did. I've finally found them.
IMPORTANT IN LIFE
I guess that for me the most important things in life are my family and health. From the moment I learned that I suffer from diabetes, I have slowed down my social life. No more loud parties with lots of alcohol. I've been through enough, it's time to stop. Besides, I have a wonderful son, Adrian, and I want to raise him to be a good man. Priorities change with time, still I don't think I'll ever be a typical daddy who comes back from work, sits in his armchair with slippers on and watches TV. It's just not like me. I've always been active and I don't think that will ever change.
I don't have too much of it. I work pretty long hours plus I have my own phonographic company, Apocalypse Production, which is also a time consuming enterprise. It really leaves not much free time for me. When I have a moment off, I spend it with my family at home.
There are a lot of them, but there is not a single one that I would place above the other, except for Marillion's "Brave" which is unrivalled. I like listening to old American thrash metal (Slayer, Nuclear Assault, Exodus, Dark Angel), I like Venom, Celtic Frost and Bathory, I love listening to things like Delerium or progmetal bands like Dream Theater, Pain Of Salvation or Porcupine Tree, and to quite different sounds of Tears For Fears, Seal or Pink Floyd. It would be hard to choose just 5 or 10 records. I can find something interesting in almost every kind of music, and this is my problem with favourite albums. There are too many of them. I will name just a few that first come to my mind.
RECENTLY LISTENED TO
Recently I have been listening to several albums over and over again. The following are some of them:
As you see, a lot of different music. That's the way I am. I'm not listening to only one kind of music. That would kill me. I guess ;-)
That's an endless topic. I could write hundreds of pages about it but you wouldn't read it anyway. This is the first group, in which I know that I'm alive. It has everything that I'd missed in the previous bands. Nice music, atmosphere, people, and not-only-my involvement. I finally play in a BAND, not a project. After the first car conversation with Grudzień, I already knew that it would be the only band I'd play for with total commitment. And it really is so. For nearly 8 years, Riverside has been almost everything for me and I guess it will stay this way. It is THE GROUP, not a group I'd played for in the past. This is my musical future, something I have always wanted to have.
It has lived in my heart for quite a time and I don't think eviction is about to happen. It's been with me in every second of my life. I wake up and fall asleep to the sound of music. I adore each and every side of it, regardless of the genre - whether it's classical romantic Brahms or devilish slaughter of some death metal band. But I'm most deeply rooted in the old, classic rock. My father has been feeding me that since I was a small child - maybe that's why it's stuck with me. I remember that when I got my first instrument, I played Deep Purple, and then Rainbow, etc. for hours on end. Getting to know new stuff gave me great satisfaction and, unwilling to confine myself to one genre, I tried to play a bit of everything. Going through the thicket of different sounds, artists, and ideas I've been learning the techniques I apply today.
...? I don't know why the keyboards. It all started from my mother's band. I guess I was four years old when, under the floor of our flat, there were their rehearsals. After they finished, I'd always go down there and get my hands on the keyboards. I remember that it was the keyboardist who, out of the whole band, modified his sound the most. Standing behind the keys, he had a whole range of tones, from pianos to strings, to organs, at his disposal (in those days, those sounds were bloody awesome).
In spite of that fascination, in 1995, I started to learn to play the flute in a musical school. I have fond memories of those days, still, I was more attracted to the keyboards and found my way to the Organists Training Institute. These days I'm studying in a private school of jazz music. I've been playing a lot of instruments in my life, but keyboards are most fulfilling for me. It is their variety and range of sounds that allow me to put my ideas into practice.
...is something I see in every moment of my life. Most of all, I'm inspired by the emotional state I'm in. I sit down at the instrument and let it flow onto the black and white keys. I get a lot of ideas when I have some interesting sound "at my fingers". And also when I practise, I tend to experiment with some new interpretations.
IMPORTANT IN LIFE
Most of all, love and friendship. I feel empty and lost without them. My family, who support me in every situation, are a priority for me. They are a point of reference, which is essential for everyone.
When I have it, I devote it to my beloved girlfried and to music. I realize what's on my mind. Creating something new and unconventional is what makes me feel satisfied. I'm glad to use it in the music.
I don't have one favourite album. The band I respect most is, of course, Deep Purple, and especially Jon Lord (he is sort of a God for me). But apart from the English rock, I love listening to classical music, or film music, which is very emotional and sometimes influences my frame of mind. This is the list of albums I tortured my family with:
When I got an offer to play and the CD from Grudzień, I thought "another project, another bunch of fellas with 'huge' ambitions and superb ideas for the future." But after I'd listened to their album I didn't even hesitate - I knew I had to be in their lineup. And it happened so already at my first rehearsal with them. The guys turned out to be great musicians and friends. I finally have a bloody brilliant Band!!!
Riverside is the aim of my agelong pursuit. It is a river of ideas from which I fish out sounds that make my soul happy. It is an escape from the commercial stuff I despise it is my place in music.