By José Oliveira and Rosine Alleva, Rock At Night Journalist/Photographers–Colmar, France
Venue: Woodstock Guitares Live – Ensisheim-Doors of Perception– April 28th
The Doors of Perception are from Germany, more precisely from Berlin and are THE European tribute to the Doors. It is after one of their many great performances that I had the opportunity to interview those awesome musicians. Everyone in the audience was excited…it was a really beautiful tribute!
The musicians are: Marko Scholz (singer), Torsten Weber (guitar) , Dirk Bewig (keyboards), Robert Cummings (drums).
RAN– How did the band start ?
DOP– Marko Scholz- We actually started out 15 years ago, we were a bunch of musicians hanging out in Berlin and knowing each other from different projects. Then we had the idea to get together to form this band.
RAN– Why did you choose the Doors?
DOP– Robert Cummings- It was Marko’s idea. He had a few Doors projects in Austria. It wasn’t permanent. When he came to Berlin, he met our previous guitarist, Dirk and started with another drummer before me. This for 7 years. Then I joined in the middle, I was his substitute to finally join the band. The first guitarist left last year and we have a new guitar player since one year now.
RAN– I saw you in Freiburg at the Jazz House, it was really a great concert in your country. Are you making an European tour?
DOP– Marko Scholz- We play a lot in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Poland. In Holland occasionally too, in Belgium we played as well. But it’s our first time in France. We’re looking forward to playing more in France, yeah!
RAN- People may react strange when you are a stranger ….How do you feel about this French audience?
DOP– Marko Scholz- I think people are great, having a good time, not shy, they are showing their emotions, they’re are dancing, having fun and celebrate the Doors together with us. Yeah, we liked it a lot! And everyone here is very friendly too.
RAN- Which is the period of the Doors that you really like?
DOP– Robert Cummings- Which period? I think I liked the first albums a lot and then the final two. Those were the best albums, the Doors, Strange days, Morrison hotel, L.A Woman, they’re different but they’re the best ones. Mark Scholz- I used to like the two first ones but today I’m more into the last one, because of the awareness and the spontaneity of this album, L.A woman is my favorite now.
RAN- What do you think about this movement? Everywhere we see tribute bands, how do you explain this?
DOP– Robert Cummings- That’s a good question. I think what happens is that the sixties were a revolution, pop music revolution. Basically, there was so much energy, it was so creative, so many ideas coming out. Every year was a different phase, the music kept changing. There were so intensive, creative, iconic music styles, sort of all established now. There aren’t so many new ideas unfortunately, I think the music kept changing up until the nineties. Those ideas are so strong, that people want to hear it and be able to experience it. So…
RAN– I used to say that Rock’n’Roll would stay forever, but for me, the magic of R’n’R is finished!
DOP– Robert Cummings– Definitely, there was a period, it has to have a beginning and an end. It can’t be continuous. Even with classical music, same thing! Bach came and while he was writing his best, he was already considered out of style and replaced. Now we’re still celebrating Bach… I think that always happens, yeah.
RAN- You play the Doors, but do you know that Jim Morrison was a great poet. Do you read some of his poetry sometimes?
DOP– Robert Cummings- Yeah, yeah, I have some of his books, we actually write music we didn’t play tonight that’s in the same style. I take inspiration of his ideas, I’ve written some lyrics, Mark has written lyrics, we definitely like to stay in the same esthetic.
RAN- Did you have problems in Germany with the Doors management in the United States?
DOP- Robert Cummings- No, no, not at all! We were just about to have contact with them a few times, but different things happened…Ray died, it took energy out of the things he was doing with Robby…We were sort of on the edge, we contacted the manager a few times. We didn’t meet them unfortunately.
Mark Scholz– We are doing a very big show this year for the Doors 50th anniversary. We will be playing together with a symphonic orchestra in WUPPERTAL, Germany on October 28th. It’s near Cologne, you’re invited! It’s the American Brent Havens who will be the conductor and he actually works with Robby Krieger…
RAN- A difficult question…After this project are you intending to make something different or not?
DOP– We do different things, different music all the time! We have several projects. I am a producer, I have a studio in Berlin, recording and producing music with all different artists (R.Cummings). I am a vocal coach actually (M. Scholz), and Julian, our guitar player is a studio musician, Dirk also and they play with other bands.
RAN– You’re all stupendous musicians!! Let me now present you a very special lady! Anne Salch. She met Jim Morrison and his girlfriend Pamela in Paris in 1971! She doesn’t speak English too well so I will translate this for you…
«I met them in Saint Germain, where Jim Morrison was living at the time, on the terrace of a café. We tried to discuss with the few English words I knew. Pamela was very kind, friendly and very charismatic. Jim Morrison was really cool, very pleasant. It’s a marvelous memory…And you, Marko (the singer), you look a lot like him, as handsome, with the same charisma and the voice».
RAN- We were at your concert in Freiburg last year and Anne was at the very front of the stage! As soon as she knew about your concert tonight, she had to see you of course! She is a big fan of the Doors, she has the same age as Jim Morrison (laughs). Now, with a band like yours she will carry on and follow you!
Thank you very much and we won’t miss this big event in Wuppertal in October!
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I was born in Portugal and lived the Sixties exploring the great UK Rock magazines: "The New Musical Express" and "Melody Maker". Ray Charles and Pat Boone were my father’s fav. I became “The Great Pretender”. Cliff Richard was our Elvis Presley. As a beach boy, with my first guitar, I met a beautiful French girl on the beach! It was the Summer of 69!! We got married and rock music was our dowry. In France, I became a Wine Genetic Research Scientist. One of my works contributed to the decoding of the genome of the vine! As a rock journalist, I’ve worked twenty years for the Portuguese and Brazilian Rock Press. I ‘ve interviewed so many great artists. Then, one day I met FRANK ZAPPA! I got into trouble for introducing my wife to "Uncle Meat"!