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Anneke van Giersbergen (Agua De Annique)

Interview with Anneke van Giersbergen from Agua De Annique
by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos at 20 December 2007, 7:29 PM

A few hours before the special acoustic show, METAL TEMPLE had a very nice chat with sweet Anneke about almost everything. I can assure you that she is an open-hearted person and really nice to talk with. I hope that you'll enjoy reading the interview as much as I did doing it.

When did you decide to from your own band?

About a year ago, I think, I wanted to release an album with my songs that actually were a lot of them. My first plan was to form a side-project while I was with THE GATHERING. As time went by, I realized that I wanted to do something else and be more with my family and eventually make music with my husband; I also felt that I needed to be a boss of my self.

So, these thoughts were building up inside your mind and one day you said that’s it; I wanna change.

Yeah, in fact this happened pretty fast and, sometime during March, I told the guys from THE GATHERING my decision to go solo.

How did they react to this?

They didn’t like it and, actually this is logical, since they did not share the same thoughts with me about having this kind of changes. It was extremely difficult.

How is your relation with them?

It’s definitely not like it was; I think in the future things will get better.

OK, let’s move on; how did you choose the rest of AGUA DE ANNIQUE?

As I said, I wanted to work with my husband who is the drummer Rob Snijders while Joris Dirks and Jacques De Haard are friend of ours, apart from the fact that they are very good musicians.

 Are all the songs in the Air album ’freshly’ written?

The fact is that I am writing a lot of songs and I have been doing this from the time I was with THE GATHERING. So, I went through all this material, compiled it and made a really personal album out of them.

How do you write music? Do you follow a standard procedure?

No, I play the piano or the guitar and try some ideas and when something good happens then all the vocal melodies come into my mind. Sometimes, I have some lyrics in my mind that lead me to a certain melody, but generally they all come together.

 While I was listening to your album I got the feeling that the lyrics where based on your personal experiences and feelings; so, is this album an emotional outlet for you?

Yes, you got it right; I was also writing lyrics that were based on my experiences and feelings when I was with THE GATHERING with one difference; I had to think for all the band and kind of express a general feeling and not what I had in my heart. Don’t get me wrong, those lyrics were honest and it was a really great and beautiful task for me to be the voice of the band. With the Air album I never thought like this; I mean, I wrote whatever was in my mind and heart without thinking anything else.

 Where did you get the idea of the stewardess concept?

(with a real big smile on her face) She is kind of my personal hero and I can say that I am obsessed with her. Of course I have romanticized her of course… you know, yesterday we were flying and the stewardesses were really cranky and they were not nice at all and this was disappointing for me. Of course, they are humans and can have bad days like you and me but in my mind they are so beautiful and perfect; when you are in the sky you are in their hands and it’s very good to have a nice and friendly atmosphere.

You have the same concept with the photos inside the booklet of your album.

Yes, I wanted to be like one for a while! This album is like an ode to them. Of course, it’s also nice to have something to talk about; people are asking questions about it and it’s really to answer them. But when they asked whether I want to be a stewardess then my answer is No; I think that it is a difficult job and most of us underestimate it. They are like the rock stars since they have to act and behave with a certain way just like performing on stage. Sometimes they have to pretend that they are feeling good but they are also human beings like us.

Have you ever felt like this during your artistic life because in every concert I watched you have this big smile on your face.

This is because I really loved doing this. Especially here in Greece, I can only smile. Of course, one out of the hundred the audience is not that nice but you still have to go on-stage and perform; after that you are feeling dead. You need to get the positive energy from the audience to charge the batteries and move on.

So, what are your personal goals with AGUA DE ANNIQUE

Mmm, good question. The most important thing was to express musically myself; I want to do what I like and not to push things and sell a million records…(laughs)

 How is the tour so far?

It’s good. We did some shows in Holland, twelve in one month and they were in a good level.

 You worked for a second time with Arjen Lucassen in his new album with AYREON. How did it go?

It went really good. It’s great to be with someone that is really enthusiastic with music.

 You have a wonderful voice. Have ever done something with it?

Thank you, I did some vocal lessons 14 years ago when I was younger. I think that I am still growing and actually learning my voice.


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