Interview mit Playing Savage

Noa Ben-Gur stammt ursprünglich aus Israel, lebt momentan in Wien – mit einem Abstecher unter anderem nach New York. pressplay hat mit Playing Savage gesprochen. Das spannende, funky Bluesprojekt namens “Playing Savage” wird nicht nur bald sehr oft live zu sehen sein, sondern wir dürfen uns gleichzeitig auf das Debütalbum Wild freuen, das am 21. Oktober erscheinen wird. Im Vorfeld haben wir uns über die Vorteile der Wiener Musikszene, die Albumproduktion und Hirnwichserei unterhalten.

pressplay: Hi liebe Savage, gleich mal zu Beginn: anfangs Savage, jetzt Playing Savage. Was macht für dich den Unterschied aus?

Playing Savage: Savage is my name. Playing Savage is the name of the Band. The band is called “Playing Savage”, because if performs my (savage’s) music. We all are “playing savage” in that sense. Just like in a jam session we would say “let’s play some Steve (Wonder)”. Maybe it’s a presumptuous way of thinking. But it would be cool seeing these songs becoming canonic standards.

Du hast eine klassische Musikausbildung genossen, richtig?

Playing Savage: That is super duper correct. I have been studying classical singing since I was in middle school. It influences my harmonic style of composition one the one hand, where lots of ideas are stuffed into each song. I also use some classical vocal techniques in my performance. Luckily Paul (Gallister – Wanda) had a similar background, and could compliment these ideas nicely with his great arrangements.

Du bist ja musikalisch wie privat ein Weltenbummler, richtig?

Playing Savage: I have lived in New York, Boston (USA) as well as in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv (Israel). I played in different band projects in both countries, took improve classes in the Upright citizen’s Brigade in NY, and I guess I am a big-city kid. My music is energetic and explorative for a reason.

Solo oder in Bands?

Playing Savage: I tried the solo thing. Also some crazy band experiences. If you find the right kind of musical/artistic family – then together is much better than alone. I am very lucky to have the boys in the band – David, Sebastian, Max & Moritz.


Jetzt wieder zurück in Wien – wo liegt hier, wenn man die Szene, die Musikproduktion und die Möglichkeiten vergleicht, der größte Unterschied?

Playing Savage:  It is much more intimate and the pace is slower. Which can be good and bad. The hustler mentality does not exist – but that makes me stand out I guess. And even though I am not originally form here and did not grow up into the scene; I have the hunger as a better starting point for myself. On the other hand- patience pays off to get a project to it’s natural end-state – to where it belongs.

Weil wir ja hier in Wien sitzen: ein paar Vorteile pro Vienna?

Playing Savage: It is a city with a great quality of life. I love being able to cycle/walk everywhere. The art scene is also very cool. I have been experiencing  supportive relationships and willing to collaborate rather than be competitive; which is refreshing.

Planst du, nun hier zu bleiben?

Playing Savage: I definitely see Vienna as a home base for creation. I have my friends here and people I call a kind of second family. I am eingebürgert.

Wie läuft oder lief die Zusammenarbeit mit Paul Gallister? Wie habt ihr euch kennengelernt?

Playing Savage: We met behind the scenes at ORF, exchanging three words. Then the Amadeus Awards after party, we exchanged three words again. Then we connected on Facebook and met up. Had a two hour chat. I decided to try and convince him to work with me. It worked.

Deine Single „Bigger“ ist vor einigen Wochen erschienen – nun warten wir gespannt auf dein Debutalbum. Was würdest du sagen, sollte oder kann man sich erwarten?

Playing Savage: It’s gonna be bigger than bigger. It’s fresh, new, unique, but still inspired from Funk, soul rock and pop. A lot of 70s related sound with a modern twist.

Leider habe ich dich bzw. euch noch nie live gesehen – was sich ja denke ich nach dem Release des Albums rasch ändern wird. Zu wievielt werdet ihr auf der Bühne stehen?

Playing Savage: We are now a band of five musicians: Max Legat (drums), Moritz Holy (Bass), David Dolezel (Keyboard) and Sebastian Antosch (guitar) with myself included. I see a brass section joining at some point, and I have started to work with a group of urban dancers. There is lots in store and lots to look forward to!

Bist du die Art von Künstlerin, der man das Album dann gegen Ende schon aus der Hand reißen muss, damit nichts mehr geändert – und vielleicht endlich veröffentlicht wird? Perfektionistisch, also?

Playing Savage: Yes. I am a perfectionist-  But done is better than perfect. In my humble opinion- art is a craft – therefore it must be practiced, rather than talked about. The term Hirnwixerei comes to my mind often. No body needs that. Actually, if you keep sticking to the same old tricks – you never get better. I also had to learn that- that and the fact that imperfections are what makes each and one of us unique.

Wie sehen deine Pläne für den Herbst, für das kommende Jahr aus?

Playing Savage: The – much awaited – album is coming out. We will be doing lots of promotion and of course- concerts. We have a Mimamush Performance on the 15th of October, as well as an “invite only” album release party. (If you want in, you will have to write our page). Other than that- we will probably be performing more outside Vienna- the boys and I are very excited to travel around for a while!