It all began at the age of five as I sat
in front of my parents' Bang & Olufsen sound system in the
living room and listened to the sound of the voices in the radio.
I was filled with awe and wonder – of course, at that time
the music being played still was decent… That was when
I made up my mind that I wanted the sound of my own voice to
come from those speakers someday. The seeds of my future career
as a singer were sown.
When I had reached a certain age, my mother began to view my
career plans as potentially profitable. And I was therefore taken
to Martti Föhr, who holds a degree in vocal training. He
tested my natural feel for music. He was impressed and immediately
enrolled me in his class at the Franz Schubert School of Music
and Performing Arts. I attended his classes there from 1989 to
1994. At the same time I pursued my high school education at
the Musikgymnasium and obtained the Austrian “Matura” graduation
diploma, specializing among other things on musical modulation – a
technique I like using to this day.
In 1989/90, I further strengthened my commitment to music when
I started going to MOVE
a dance school, where I got lessons in step, ballet, modern,
and jazz dance as well as in bodywork and stretching. It was
not a lack of talent but a lack of time that led me to give up
these activities a year later. My private jazz piano lessons
came to an end for the same reason. After high school graduation
I also gave up my singing lessons, causing my mother considerable
grief in the process. But this was only to begin afresh some
As can be expected, my teenage years were also spent on musical
experimentation. But this never really led to any promising
results. My first actual band was called Scarecrowes. I performed
as the band?s keyboardist and backing vocalist. Two demo CDs,
recorded at the Black Lagoon Studios, were the result. This
must roughly have been 1993…
I got a job working for the Austrian radio station Ö3,
but my time there turned out to be short (1994-1998) since
my voice was deemed unsuitable for the radio. My responsibilities
included audio production and off-air operations. I was also
involved in the production of Joe Rappolt?s Joe’s Nachtclub,
appeared as the “Biest” (= engl. beast) in a show
called Pleiten-, Pech- und
Pannendienst (PPP), and MC'd Ö3 disco events.
In 1995, an upcoming ball of Boy Scouts Troop 80 Enzian prompted
me to join forces with Matthias Melber and Walter Heginger
in order to found a band for the occasion: ELF-11 (the
debut date, 11 November, providing the name). We performed
two years in a row and are still remembered as the troop?s
loudest ball band ever... My time as the band’s lead
vocalist lasted until 1998. For various reasons I then left
the band, not least among these reasons was that I fell ill
with laryngitis right before an appearance at a wedding and
was suffering from a general feeling of dissatisfaction regarding
myself, God and the world!
Around 1996/97 I joined a group called Target as lead vocalist.
This was a hard rock band that wrote its own songs and rarely
resorted to covering – our cover version of the Beatles? “Eleanor
Rigby”, nevertheless, became legendary!
I then spent the period from September 1998 to March 1999
travelling in America and Australia to regain perspective and
a clear head.