Dennis Berghaus is a german singer/songwriter who has been working with The Online Recording Studio on his debut album. I was lucky enough to sit down with Dennis (over Skype) to find out a bit more about him.
JW: So Dennis, let's start at the beginning. What is your earliest memory relating to music?
DB: My family always tells the story about me aged two years’ old. I stood in front of the brass band where my father played the trombone and was trying to lead the band by copying what the bandleader was doing! My grandma said at the time “this guy will be a musician”! Oh and by the way I still like brass band music to this day!
JW: That's cool. So when did you start writing songs?
DB: I started writing songs around ten years ago, collaborating with a very good friend of mine called Leyla who is a very talented lyricist. We both went to the same vocal coach. She had been writing poetry from the age of about 13 or 14
JW: How did the first song you wrote with Leyla come to happen?
DB: Leyla shared some lyrics with me which she had already written and I started to create some melody and harmony ideas on those and made a song out of it. This is how we always worked then together.
JW: So, how do you write songs together nowadays?
DB: Well, one of us will get an idea about a topic or just get a line in our heads and and then we just start to create lyrics out of it. She's very good, very creative, very fast. I can just give her a topic and half an hour later she will have come up with some lyric ideas already. Once we have those I get the feeling, the mood, of the lyrics, and try to create some harmonies around that and then most of the time a melody follows
JW: Your first official single was Go For Gold. You worked with TORS Producer, Joe Garratt, on that. Tell me a little bit about the inspiration behind that song?
DB: The inspiration started around two years ago, when I was attending a workshop on motivation, energy and positivity I found myself with the unexpected opportunity of performing a song on stage to around 1000 people. When I had finished the coach running the workshop asked “When does your album come out?!” At the time I had not thought of making an album and didn’t have any material but I heard him saying “Your album will be ready in four weeks!”
The idea of Go for Gold was to create a song which delivers this energy and motivates the listener.
JW: Go For Gold is a high-energy, feel-good track. When is the perfect time for someone to listen to it?
DB: I think the ideal scenario would be when you wake up - a buzzer melody to get you going for the day and feel motivated to go that bit further.
JW: What’s it been like working with a TORS producer for the first time?
DB: It was a completely new experience for me to work with someone who can help me develop and grow my songs. It’s important to be open minded and that has helped us create something which has a new sound for me. At first I found it challenging to open up and someone else in to my thinking but I’m so happy I did that. I’ve learned so much about how to create a song and the production around it.
JW: What’s it been like making an album with TORS?
DB: Creating an album completely online is a very flexible way to work and the quality is amazing. It is a great experience. I would definitely recommend it to anyone else who is wanting to record their songs.
JW: Our readers are always looking for new music to listen to. So, aside from Go For Gold and your latest single Superhero, what music would you recommend to anyone wanting to discover someone new?
DB: I'm constantly listening to one of my greatest idols; Roger Cicero. He is a German artist who makes swing and jazz. He works with amazing musicians and the music is really high quality. You should definitely check him out.
JW: I'll be sure to do that! So now, to finish, what has this crazy year taught you?
For me the important lesson of 2020 is that everything is much easier if we stay together, if we stand together and, yeah, if we just support each other. That is how we will get through this.
JW: Well put. Thanks for your time, Dennis!