Tell us about yourself.
I’m Wolfgang Michael, an Indie Artist from the little German city Würzburg in Bavaria. I’ve quit my job as an Engineer 2 years ago to focus on making music for a while and currently, I’m traveling & busking around Australia which was always a dream of mine.
Tell us about yourself as an artist.
I’ve started to play the guitar as an autodidactic 9 years ago and since I started I was always dreaming of someday writing and playing my own music. I slowly developed a feeling for my voice and my songwriting over the years but it took me some time to feel comfortable with what I’m doing. During dry difficult times in 2016, I wrote my first EP “My River Down the Lane” very spontaneously without thinking much. Since then it was more like a finding process where I was developing my attitude towards music as a professional musician & the music industry while preserving my music to be close to myself as authentic as possible.
Tell us about the genre of your music.
My music genre is somewhere near Indie Folk but it is really hard for me to define it as I’m always trying new things and really try to keep my musical mind open for new stuff. I still like to keep things simple… especially my live performances.
Tell us about the story behind your song.
I wrote the song after the Manchester terror attack last year. So many terrible things have happened and still are happening and the song is about how it affects my way (our way) of thinking & feeling. It describes fears and the wish for humankind to be different and to stop hurting each other but also nature and all living things. In the end, we are all the same!
Tell us about the problems you are facing as a musician.
My biggest problem as a musician is to have a stable income. As an independent artist, the expenses you have for making and promoting music are very high, and still, you are always limited in what you can do. I have so many songs that people love to hear on the streets and they keep asking me where they can find the music… Also, I would like to make more music and live the music but I feel consumed by social media, promotion, and booking with very little “return of investment”. I think the times are just not very easy for independent artists even though new technology helps to do everything on your own.
Tell us about the recording and production of the song.
I recorded most parts of the song at home with very basic equipment but lots of passion :). The cello has been played by the very talented Kaitlyn Raitz (New York/Nashville) and the drums have been tracked by Chris Brush (Nashville). I recorded and produced the song completely alone with a 2-signal interface and a tablet. For the mixing process, I asked Blake Eiseman from Florida to do it because I simply lacked the experience and technology to do it. Feral Davis from Dublin in Ireland did the mastering.
List the names of blogs, radio, or TV stations that have supported you so far.
The guys from Indiemono and Spingrey greatly supported my first EP and I’m very thankful for what they have done for me!
Tell us more about your music career, experience, and future goals.
My music career so far has been very calm and I would love to get an independent label to work with me on new music. For me it is more about the music and the songs… not so much about myself. Currently, I’m traveling in Australia promoting my music on the streets, and trying to earn a living while traveling.
Brief us what inspires you to write, compose and sing.
My inspiration is almost always connected to true emotions. That’s why every song has a real story in the background. My popular song “Rustling Trees” for example described my wish for getting over Lyme-disease and being bed-ridden for 3 years… I wrote this song sitting near my favorite spot in Berlin and the trees they were whispering to me and giving me new hope for the future. I have a month where I cannot write a single line and then again during times where I feel the music… the lyrics and the music find their way to me and my songs are being created spontaneously. My vocal lines are very limited as I have an untrained voice but I just try to stay comfortable and still testing some limits now and then… for me it is important to stop pushing the voice and keep it natural.
Brief us the top-secret behind making a hit song.
I never had a hit song haha.. but I think in a world of more and more digitalization and industrialization (also in regards to music) the people will feel an ever-growing need for real and authentic music from people who just want to express their emotions. At least I feel this way.
Tell us the piece of advice you will give to an upcoming artist.
Never give up and always stay close to your music in the most natural form possible. (I tend to tell this myself 😄)
Discuss at length your music careers, albums, songs, tours, recognition, or awards you might have obtained.
I haven’t been awarded anything except some local stuff… but my biggest digital reward is that one of my songs “Rustling Trees” has crossed borders of nearly 60 countries and had over 174,000 listeners worldwide in 2017. It made me feel so happy that people are enjoying my music and identify themselves with my lyrics/music. Then again what also makes me happy is to perform events and on the streets and getting feedback from the audience. Some people tell me that they almost cried after some songs… and it makes me happy to share emotions… I think feeling emotions is what keeps us going.
Tell us how you write your lyrics, compose, sing and record in the studio.
As a non-native and an autodidact in singing/music theory, I have my limitations in songwriting but I sometimes think that people enjoying my simple lyrical structure and progression. Still, I always try to be creative and to invent things… maybe it is easier to find new stuff if your mind has no theoretical limitations. But I have to agree that one of my goals is to broaden my horizon as well by learning not only by trying. So far every recording has been different but was more like DIY. I would like to find a reliable indie label to record my next stuff in a studio with a producer to share some thoughts and gain new insights.
Name the artists you are willing to collaborate with.
I’m not sure if anyone would collaborate with me, haha but I’m open for anyone. There’s an awesome local band from Germany called “A Tale of Golden Keys”… I love their music!
State the links to your social networks and stores for the purchase of your songs.
Tell us about your happiest day and saddest day.
The happiest day in my life: there are many happy days in my life… most of them are connected with being in nature with someone you love… so… being with my girlfriend traveling the mountains of Costa Rica (Monte Verde) ❤️
The saddest day of my life: losing my grandmother…
Tell us how you will spend a million dollars.
Honestly, I would invest most of it in music and make a dream of building my own studio reality. I would love to get to know more about music engineering & production and help others to record & produce their music. I also would invest some of it in people I believe in, my close ones, and people who make a difference in helping other people.
Discuss music promotion and how to boost a fan base.
Music promotion is very time and cost expensive… I cannot reach my Facebook followers without paying Facebook and recently I stopped paying for it because I can’t afford to do it in the long run. We need more people like you… thank you guys for making a difference!
Tell us how you manage other activities with your music career.
I try to organize myself effectively and I always remind myself that your close ones are more important than anything else.
State your artist’s name and elaborate on it.
Wolfgang Michael… it is basically my real name. 🙂
State the title of the song and the meaning.
The song is called “House by the Shore” and it is about how we are changing as a society and how I feel about it. It is about fears of losing someone and the wish for a change as we are all related to one another.