10 COMMANDMENTS: ALEX KAPRANOS

Franz Fer­di­nand’s front­man re­veals his mu­si­cal code of hon­our.

Q (UK) - - Contents -

Wise words from the Franz Fer­di­nand man.

1 WHAT GOES ON TOUR, STAYS ON­LINE

It used to be What Goes On Tour, Stays On Tour. Some guys in bands still act as if it is still the case. Then they see the pic­tures on In­sta­gram, Face­book, Twit­ter etc. Then their wife sees them. Then they can’t tour any more. Or they get a di­vorce.

2 FROM INDOLENCE COMES INGENUITY

Em­brace your lazi­ness. Cast off all guilt. When you are not work­ing or wor­ry­ing about work­ing, your imag­i­na­tion is free to go for a wan­der. Then it will take you some­where you weren’t ex­pect­ing to go.

3 FROM RE­HEARSAL COMES EMANCIPATION

It’s only when you know a song in­stinc­tively, with­out think­ing about it in the for­ward part of the brain, that you can be to­tally free in your per­for­mance. How can you ex­press the emo­tional essence of a lyric if you’re try­ing to re­mem­ber the next line?

4 LOOK OUT­SIDE YOUR OWN MEDIUM FOR IN­SPI­RA­TION

If you look to other mu­si­cians for in­spi­ra­tion, chances are you’re go­ing to sound like them. If you look to see how a di­rec­tor, au­thor or artist you love works, learn from their tech­niques and method­olo­gies, you’re more likely to come up with some­thing orig­i­nal.

5 WHERE’S THE “WHAT THE FUCK?” MO­MENT?

Ev­ery song needs one. Ev­ery life needs one! That mo­ment where you have es­tab­lished a world, but some­thing hap­pens and the lis­tener is left ask­ing, “What the fuck was that?” It could be sub­tle, even sub­lim­i­nal, or it can be bru­tally in the face. It’s my favourite part of any song.

6 POS­SESS THE STAGE

As soon as you walk on, find the fur­thest cor­ners of the room. En­gage with them. Lock eyes. Take in the whole room, then rest your eyes on those in the front row. Now you are ready to per­form.

7 NEVER TALK ABOUT A SIN­GLE – IT MAKES THE OTHER SONGS JEALOUS

I learned this from Philippe Zdar, our pro­ducer. It is so true. When you make an al­bum, you’re mak­ing a body of work, not con­cen­trat­ing on one song. The sin­gle can of­ten be a sur­prise. I thought Tell Her Tonight was go­ing to be the big sin­gle off our first al­bum. It wasn’t.

8 NEVER FUCK YOUR FRIENDS

Fig­u­ra­tively, not phys­i­cally. Imag­ine a friend. A close one that you trust. Now imag­ine them fuck­ing you over. Re­ally do­ing the dirty. How does that make you feel? Make sure they never feel like that about you. That feel­ing doesn’t go away.

9 THE ONLY ONES WHO EN­JOY A JAM ARE THOSE WHO JAM

You know that shady guy hang­ing out round the fringes of the park? The one with his hands down his jog­gers? Fu­ri­ous in his self-plea­sure? He’s re­ally en­joy­ing what he’s do­ing. No­body else in the park is. It’s ex­actly the same for jam­ming.

10 SWING YOUR ARMS LIKE PRINCE NASEEM

I loved the way he used to walk into the ring. It was the op­po­site of ev­ery other boxer. In­stead of hold­ing his arms up in a de­fen­sive pose, he let them swing by his side, re­veal­ing the soft, vul­ner­a­ble parts of his body. The con­fi­dence to do that? To­tally in­tim­i­dat­ing. As an artist, you have to ac­cept and be un­afraid of your vul­ner­a­bil­ity.

Prince Naseem: “to­tally in­tim­i­dat­ing.”

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