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Dan Swano (Nightingale)

Interview with Dan Swano from Nightingale
by Yiannis Dafopoulos at 23 September 2007, 9:34 PM

After reviewing NIGHTINGALE's sixth incredible full-length release I thought it was about time for an interview with the high and mighty Dan Swano, the mastermind behind bands like EDGE OF SANITY, BLOODBATH and of course NIGHTINGALE.  The only negative thing was that Mr. Swano seemed so kind and warm person that I regret I interviewed him via mail. The Metal scene needs guys like him!

Hello and congratulations on your newest masterpiece. Really, how did you choose White Darkness as a title?

Thanx!! It means a lot to us that you like it!!! The title came to me when I tried to describe my state of mind for a friend one time. I said that I was in some kind of a white darkness where the real darkness was a brutal kind of depression with a possible suicide solution. My depression was more soft and easy and I decided to name the album this to give the whole album a vibe to follow. I like it when the album gets a title early, like when you name your baby before it is born… My son was either John or Kayleigh, and in the end a John!!

Can you give us a short bio of the band?

NIGHTINGALE started out as a one/off solo project of mine. After the first album the label wanted one more and I teamed up with my brother Dag, this time mainly as a producer. Years went by and before we knew it, we had a line up and live gigs booked. The rest is history!!

Without any offense, is NIGHTINGALE a normal band or one of your projects?

It is as close to a band I will ever come again. We rehearse and play live. Have a rehearsal room and all this. The fact that we don’t live in the same city take a way some of the band feel but we rehearse when there is a need to.

You have released all of your albums through Black Mark Productions. It seems you are really satisfied with your collaboration with them.

Black Mark is OK. It would be awesome to be on a bigger label that put more money into pushing you forward, but… the demands are higher and since we are not really give it a 100% (we all have families, day jobs, etc.) it’s not always possible for us to go on tour whenever a label think it would fit etc.

It has been three years since your last release. What happened during these three years in the NIGHTINGALE camp?

We recorded a best of and one new song album called Nightfall Overture. New versions of 2 songs from each of the first 4 records. A really great release that I hope you check out!! We did a tour of Germany/Holland/Denmark, played Russia, Sweden Rock Festival and Norway. And wrote songs.

Do you plan any live performances to promote your new album now?

We just did one at the Bollnasfestival. I hope the gig in Spain will happen and also one in Finland.

What are the differences between Invisible and White Darkness?

Production is better and bigger. The song writing is more even you don’t have the big jumps from AOR to Metal to AC/DC hard rock to grunge etc. Etc.

I think I sing one helluva lot better on this one too!!

Which bands did influence you?

 I think we all enjoy stuff like BLACK SABBATH, RUSH, GENESIS, and a whole bunch of obscure 70’s pomp bands like GAMMA, early FOREIGNER etc.

You always had to do with Death Metal bands. Do you remember how you took the decision to start a Progressive Metal band?

I played in pretty progressive bands since day 1. I formed a band called GHOST in 1983 and from that moment until I joined BREJN DEDD all I played was pretty normal music. It was after I got bit by the Thrash/Death bug in 1988 that the whole brutal metal thing took off. I never stopped performing and writing pomprock though.

Are there any news with your other bands?

SECOND SKY is right in the middle of recording the vocals for the first album. That is about it.

If you were not a musician, what would you do?

I am pretty sure I would be involved in the music scene anyway. I do work in a music shop from time to time. That is a great place to work. Also a record shop would be cool I guess…

Really, do you manage to live with your music or do you have a regular job?

I run a mixing and mastering studio and work three days a week in a music store.

I could make a living out of the music/mixing but then I would have to work so much all the time that the passion would be lost.

What music do you listen to lately?

Some stuff I listened to lately (apart from the albums I mixed, which I tend to hear a lot!!!) ALTER BRIDGE, DISTURBED and DAUGHTRY are my latest discoveries!

Everything in your new album is white, the cover, the CD, the clothes you used for the photoshoot. Does this has to do with the album’s title or does it represent something else?

 No. It’s just to join in with the whole white thing. I thought it would be cool to have us look a little bit more dreamy than before. I like the pics and the cover. Simply and stylish.

Are you planning to visit Greece for any live performances?

Would be nice, but nothing planned today. I guess we would all eat ourselves to death there!!

When will you say that it is your time to stop playing music?

When I die of course….

Really, how did you choose this name?

I am not sure. I think it stuck because it had the word Night in there, yet meaning something kind of nice and peaceful

Thank you for your time. I leave the last words to you…

Sorry for the enormous delay in replying and for the somewhat short answers…

It’s a lot going on right now !!!


See ya


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