It´s been over a year that musician and artist AMANDA PALMER released her third solo album Theatre is Evil, making for spectacular news by crowdfunding its production and accumulating approx. 1.2 million dollars on kickstarter. This sensational success provoked a lot of reactions – ranging from excitement to critical remarks – from fans, artists and other people involved in the music business. Now there is something more intimate to look forward to: together with husband and writer Neil Gaiman, AMANDA PALMER will be releasing a 3-disc set called „An evening with Neil Gaiman & Amanda Palmer“ on Nov 18th. The disc set covers unreleased live recordings from the tour the two did together in 2011, as well as an all Amanda and an all Gaiman CD. While the presale for the disc set has already launched via the official Amanda Palmer website, there´ll also be a couple of shows in central Europe together with the GRAND THEFT ORCHESTRA. We took the opportunity to ask Amanda a few questions about performing.
There´ll be a series of shows in Europe shortly, all within quite a short period of time. Do these shows ever feel like an ordinary job to you?
Just because tour can feel repetitive doesn’t mean it feels ordinary. If everybody in the world also made their living playing rock shows every night, maybe then I’d feel ordinary. It’s a job I know how to do, so it doesn’t have the terrifying excitement that it did when I was young and just starting out. But that’s also why I push myself to try things I’m uncomfortable with or unprepared for. Otherwise I’d get bored.
You’ve also been doing a lot of private concerts for fans supporting your very successful kickstarter campaign. How do these concerts compare to the bigger ones?
I love the sweaty and loud frenzy of rock shows. And I love the small, honest intimacy of house parties. It’s like the difference between attending a giant dinner party with 100 people versus sharing a romantic
dinner with your lover. They’re both great, but one or the other would get boring. And I like switching back and forth between the two, because I don’t get bored of one or the other. I tend to crave variety.
Also, you are performing with the GRAND THEFT ORCHESTRA. What´s it like to perform with such a big group of musicians compared to performing solo?
Again, it’s apples and oranges and I need both to survive without getting bored. When I play solo I can stop and start and interrupt myself and tell stories and do spontaneous covers that I learn in the dressing room right before the show and I own the stage. But the band provides me a giant machine from which I can launch – the band is loud, and powerful, and also affords me the opportunity to get out from behind an instrument and run around and crowdsurf and mosh with the fans. I’ve fallen in love with the guys in my band – they’re all incredible artists and musicians in their own projects and I feel extraordinarily lucky that I managed to all gather them on tour with me.
Your upcoming shows will be supported by The Simple Pleasure & Jherek Bischoff. I can imagine there´d be a lot of musicians desperate to support you on your shows – how did you decide on these two?
They’re both in my band. Jherek is my bassist and Chad Raines is my guitar and synthesizer player.
Generally speaking, what is it like performing in Europe compared to the U.S.?
It really depends and changes city to city. Certain cities like Berlin have a really wonderful frenetic energy to them and the shows are always packed and glorious, but certain other cities, like Luxembourg, can be like shouting into a vacuum. But this happens in the states. Every city has it’s own energy, it isn’t possible to classify nationally.