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Graham Russell: Taking Air Supply from Dreams to Stardom (附译文)

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发表于 2014-3-10 21:54 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
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Paul McCartney once sang, "You'd think that people would have had enough of silly love songs." Like McCartney, Graham Russell can say that he looks around and sees it isn't so. Thirty years after forming Air Supply with his partner Russell Hitchcock, fans are far from being "All Out of Love." As the group prepares a charity concert and international tour, we stole a few moments from Graham Russell's time in the studio to reminisce on the past and compare it to today.

First off, I want to personally thank you for creating the music that made it possible for even geeky nerds like me in high school to have a chance with the ladies.
(laughs) You're very kind! Thank you.

Air Supply became the musical face, so to speak, of romantic music for a generation. Did you intentionally set out to be soft rock balladeers, or did it just veer that way naturally?
Well, we kind of got that handle, if you like, by default. It wasn't by design at all. We just played the music that I wrote and that Russell and I really liked to sing. So we just did what we felt was right for us at the time, and consequently we became the romantic band of the world. Fortunately for us, it's something that stuck with us, because we liked that kind of music, and we still do. There are still millions of people who like it as well, so we're in good shape at the moment.

As big a concept as it is, I would think there are only so many ways you can write about love. What do you draw inspiration from without getting burned out?
My inspiration comes from everything. I'm a big people watcher -- I always watch. I spend a lot of time on the road, just taking walks and looking at people, seeing what they're doing, and that is very inspiring for me. It really is.
But I challenge myself, and try to write different songs -- and I do! I write a lot of different things, different projects -- but it's usually Air Supply that everyone refers to. When they talk about my songs, it's always Air Supply and not anything else.

Well let's direct a bit of attention that way, then, so people know what other projects you have out there.
Well, I just finished a play for New York. It's like a musical, but it's really a play with songs; just wrote eleven songs for that. I wrote a rock opera about ten years ago, and I have my solo albums. I'm always writing something, and they're all different.
Funnily enough, I'm really into dance music, and I have been for a number of years. I'm really into techno and dance, so I'm writing a lot of that now.

How do you find the music industry today versus the way it was in the 80s and 90s? Have you had to change style and message?
It's a very different world now. With the almost disappearance of the record companies, things are very different. I think it's easier and it's harder. I think it's easier for young new artists to create a record or make some tracks, but it's very hard to get noticed. So it's a double-edged sword. In the old days, you had a record company, and they did all the marketing plans; they pretty much did everything -- and they took all your money, or they tried to. (laughs)
These days you could make a record in your laundry room if you wanted to. It's very good, because there are a lot of artists who would never have got heard before. We've got Justin Bieber and a whole slew of people who've been discovered on YouTube and Facebook. It's great! I think it's wonderful, I really do. There's more to choose from. But I think you have to sift through the stuff to find out what you like and what you don't like, as far as a consumer goes.

With artists using the Internet for self-promotion and even distribution, have you developed an online presence for yourself? Do you have a YouTube channel or Facebook page?
We do, but our record company actually handles it for us, because... to be quite honest, I don't have the time to get online all the time and be looking at Facebook and YouTube. I wish I did, but I don't. I work every day. If I'm at home, I'm in the studio working on a project; then, of course, I'm on the road, and that's another story all together. But our record company manages that for us, so I don't have to spend time on that, because I'd rather be creating something, or writing a song or some lyrics -- and there's always that to be done.

I'm always curious about band name origins. Do you recall how you settled on the name Air Supply?
Absolutely! It's quite strange, because we were in "Jesus Christ Superstar," and we had a record coming out, and we didn't have a name. And we said, the next morning whoever had the best name we would go with. So that night -- this is true -- I had a dream. I dreamt there was this massive billboard, like in Times Square, and the lights were flashing all around. And in the middle were just two words, and it said "Air Supply." It just kept going on and off, like a neon. And I told Russell in the morning, "I wonder what that is? I wonder what it means?" And we said, we didn't have any other name so let's go with it. And that's exactly what we did. It's a strange, you know? But then it's become synonymous now with our music, which is what we wanted.

I would imagine that at some point in your career you may have actually seen that billboard in real life, touring, once the band took off and gained so much attention.
I have seen it, yes! I've seen it several times. I'll never forget: In '83 we had our Greatest Hits come out, and we thought it was a little early -- we'd only had two albums come out -- and Clive Davis said, "No, we need to put it out." And he had a billboard on Sunset Boulevard, and it had the total sales every week, and somebody would cross it out and put more up. I used to watch it, week after week, and it was so bizarre to see that up there, because I used to think, "God! That's me up there!" There was this big picture of me, and I just thought, "Wow, that's so weird," because I don't consider myself a celebrity or a pop star or anything like that, so to see something like that to me was really weird.

You're coming to Belleville, Illinois for "Paint the Town" this October 17th.
Right, with Delilah.

Other than that you were available and someone asked, what drew you to this event?
We did something similar to this in Orange County, California, about three months ago. We did a little acoustic thing, just with Russell and I. There were some invited guests and people came for dinner at this restaurant, and it had a showroom, and we thought, "Wouldn't it be nice just to do something with the two of us, with no amplifiers or anything, just one guitar?" And everybody loved it. We played for like an hour, and we said we'd love to do it again. Then we got this opportunity at the venue you're speaking of, and Delilah was involved. We said we'd love to do it, and make it a radio show. We don't get a lot of opportunities to do that with just the two of us -- we travel with the band and the crew and all that. But it's nice just to do that with Russell and I. The songs have to stand on their own, and we have to stand on our own -- we can't hide anything. We're really looking forward to it. We do an hour, and we do all the hits. A lot of people would say, "Well, you can't do that, because you don't have the orchestra, and all the drums and everything." But we do -- we just do it, and it always sounds great, because there's a great energy between Russell and I and the audience. They really pick it up. If they're not hearing a certain instrument, I think in their mind they hear it. But playing the songs as they were written is a great thing for us, and we like to still do that and know that we can do it if all else fails.

Any upcoming touring or studio work you're involved in right now that we can look forward to?
I just finished the play for New York, which is called "Once Removed." The next thing for us is, after the "Paint the Town" date, we go to Argentina and Columbia. In November we tour China -- we're doing four cities in China. And Malaysia -- we're going out east to play until... I think about February.

So you'll be traveling the world for the next few months.
Yeah. We just had two weeks off, which is very rare for us. It's been nice to stay at home and just potter around. I've been in the studio, of course, but it's been nice not to have any schedule, and to just be able to create when I feel like it.

 楼主| 发表于 2014-3-15 21:02 | 显示全部楼层
【译文大意】:

Paul McCartney 曾经说过,"You'd think that people would have had enough of silly love songs." 像McCartney一样,Graham Russell认为这不是这样的。和他的伙伴Russell Hitchcock一起建立乐队30多年后,歌迷们没有“迷失在爱中”。乐队准备进行慈善演出和全球巡演,我们在录音室中占用了Graham Russell的一些时间来追忆了过去。

首先, 我个人想要感谢你创造了那些美妙的音乐,甚至是像我这样的书呆子让我在高中时有机会接近女生。
(大笑) 谢谢你。

Air Supply的情歌影响了一代人。你是否有意成为这样,还是一切都自然而然的产生了?
哦,这完全不是设计产生的。我写歌,Russell和我都喜欢唱。所以我们只是在正确的时间里做了正确的事,所以我们成为了一支浪漫乐队。幸运的是,因为我们喜欢这样的音乐,所以我们依然在这样做。世界上依然有无数人喜欢,所以我们现在正在状态。

这是一个大概念,我认为这只有有限的素材可以写情歌。而什么可以让你的灵感源源不断呢?
我的灵感来自任何东西。我时刻在观察人们。我会花很多时间来观察人,看他们在做什么,那会对我很有启发。的确是这样的。但是我会挑战自己,试着写一些不同风格的歌曲, 而我也的确写了很多不一样的东西,完全不同于Air Supply的东西。当人们讨论我的歌曲的时候,心中总是只有Air Supply而没有别的。

好吧,让我们把注意力放远一些,那样人们可以知道你在业余时间里都做了些什么。
我刚刚为纽约做了点新的东西。10年前我写了一个摇滚音乐剧,我也有我自己的个人专辑。我总是在写歌,都是完全不同的。有趣的是,我真的很喜欢舞曲,所以我现在也写了一些这样的歌。

80年代和90年代的音乐有什么不同?你是不是被迫改变音乐风格?
世界现在是瞬息万变。唱片公司消失了很快。我想现在做音乐极容易又困难。对于年轻人是更容易制作一张唱片和歌曲了,但是却更难引起人们的注意。所以这是一把双刃剑。而在过去,一旦你签约了唱片公司,他们会帮你做所有的市场计划,一切东西 - 包括拿你的钱,或者试着去拿。(大笑)
而如今,你可以在你的房间里做一张唱片。这很棒。包括Justin Bieber,许多人会在YouTube和Facebook上被发掘。这太棒了!有了更多的选择。但我认为你不得不对此进行更多的筛选。

艺人开始用互联网进行自我宣传甚至发行专辑,你们是否也有此的方法?你们有没有Youtube频道或者Facebook的主页呢?
我们有这样做,但是我们的唱片公司会帮我们搞定一切,因为。。。老实说,我没有时间经常上网看Facebook或者Youtube。我希望我可以,但是事实不允许。我每天都要工作。假如我在家,我会去录音室进行录音。当然,当我们在巡演路上时候,这又是完全一个不同的故事了。但是我们的唱片公司会帮我们大理一切,所以我不必花时间去关注这方面的事情,因为我宁可创作,或者写歌或者一些歌词。

我总是好奇关于乐队名字Air Supply的来源。你能否再说一下这个故事吗?
当然!这的确很奇异,因为当我们在"Jesus Christ Superstar" 的时候,我们有准备发型一张专辑,但是需要一个乐队名字,我们没有名字。我们决定不管谁在下周一想出来的名字都将会使用。而就在那个晚上 -- 前阵完全 -- 我做了个梦。我梦到有个巨大的公告牌,像在时代广场上的那样,不停的在闪光。中间写了两个大字"Air Supply"。早上我告诉了Russell,"我想知道那是什么?我想知道那是什么意思?" 我们说既然没有别的选择那就用这个名字吧。而那也正是我们所做的。太神奇了不是嘛,而这现在已经成为了我们音乐的代名词。

我想象在乐队走红之后,是否在你生涯中真的看到过那个公告牌,在你的生活,巡演中。
我的确看到过,是的!我看到过好几次。无法忘怀:在83年我们的精选专辑发行之后,当时我们觉得有些早 --- 因为我们当时只有发型了两张专辑 -- Clive Davis说,"不早,我们需要这样做。" 他在日落大道有一块公告牌,我经常会看到,而当我看到巨幅我的照片在上面时候,感觉太奇怪了,因为我从来不认为自己是个名人或者流行明星,所以看到像这样的东西对我来说真是觉得很奇怪。

有没有任何接下去我们期待的演出或者录音室安排?
我刚刚在纽约演出,名字叫 "Once Removed." 接下去的事情是在 "Paint the Town" 之后,我们要去阿根廷和哥伦比亚。在11月我们将会在中国的4个城市作演出。而一直到2月,我们会在马来西亚东部演出。

所以你将会在接下去的几个月时间内周游世界。
是的。我们只有2个星期空闲时间,对我们来说很罕见。呆在家里很舒服。当然有任何演出安排也是很棒的。

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