A Conversation with Iggy & The German Kids

Iggy is a 25 year old singer-songwriter from New York City. At the age of ten he became a member of the Metropolitan children’s chorus, where he sang in over thirty different operas along with performing solo pieces in Tosca, Magic Flute and Billy Bud. When his voice changed at 14 he started writing pop-songs influenced by his love of the Beatles. A self taught guitarist, bassist and pianist, Iggy also took two years of classical voice training after leaving the MET. Throughout college he played and toured with a number of rock bands.

After struggling as a indie-solo artist he began sending demos back in forth with two friends (Hubertus D and Frederic T) from Germany whom he had met In college. The three sparked an immediate chemistry that resulted in a prolific output of songs, undeniably the best work of his young career. Over the past year the three of them have been working on what is going to be Iggy’s debut album as a solo artist. The new sound, characterized by elements of Brit-pop, electronica and classic Rock, infuses methodic and anthemic arrangements with strong melodies and clever lyrics.

We had the pleasure of speaking with Iggy about his music, childhood, and much more.

What made you first realize you wanted to pursue a career in music?

My mother brought me to audition for the MET children’s chorus when I was nine or ten. After I was accepted and started performing and singing in opera’s I decided that I wanted to be a singer.

Thinking back to your childhood, what was your first experience with music? What song do you remember most as a child?

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Before my mother had me audition for the opera, I had taught myself to play the piano…very basic stuff like simple versions of ode to joy, things like that. I remember hearing the Gypsy Kings, Andrew Lloyd Weber and Billy Joel a lot as a child.

What was the first song you ever sung?

I don’t remember the first song I sung, but the first song I properly performed was “I am the King and this is my dominion” during a fourth grade elementary school play. It was a performance of a bunch of different short stories, one of them being “King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub.”

How would you describe your music for the public audience if they have never seen or heard you before?

I would tell them it sounds like hardcore-death metal…then probably tell them I was just kidding!

Does your family carry on the same musical interest?

Everyone in my family loves music, my father was a good artist, my brother is a really talented actor but no one apart from my great aunt on my mothers side can actually play or sing music properly.

What can people expect to see at your live shows?

A live performance that also incorporates the complexities of our production. I’ll also definitely be there, I don’t know if the Germans will be though. We are currently in the process of putting together our backing band.

How do you feel about reality competition shows like The Voice, X Factor and American Idol? Do you think it’s necessary or it has changed the industry?

I don’t really like watching them, but they are a great way for people to gain exposure I suppose. I’m sure it has changed the industry, but thats all I know about that.

What do you think your biggest break or greatest opportunity has been so far in your musical career?

still waiting for it…

How did it feel to have your song featured on Don’t Trust the B in apt 23?

I was surprised! We found out after some people who work on the show commented on our unpublished Facebook page after the show had aired.

What has been the biggest challenge for you?

Being able to only concentrate on music without having to work a side job.

What are your immediate music career goals?

I’d like to be a professional musician

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You have heard of starving artist before, how do you cope with major obstacles?

I am a starving artist, and I’m still figuring out how to deal with major obstacles, so I don’t really have an answer yet. Hopefully I will have one soon though!

Where has been your favorite place to record and why?

With the German Kids in Sulden, Italy. I’d known Freddy (one of the german kids) for years, but I had never actually met Hubi, wed only spoken on Skype and email. I bought a ticket to Munich and the three of us drove to Sulden, its a small town in the Italian Alps. The house is kind of like a log cabin, and we stayed there in the mountains for two weeks recording and writing songs.

There is a lot of bootlegging in the music business, do you have some tips to help support your music or music in general?

Embrace it. Don’t hate appreciate!

Do you have other interest or talent?

Id like to get into acting. I know that already sounds like a terrible cliche, but initially I told my mother I wanted to be an actor, she took me for an audition at the MET instead..

Who are you musically influenced by?

Too many to name. But at first I was inspired and influenced by The Beatles, Elvis and Oasis.

If given the opportunity, who would you like to collaborate with?

Noel Gallagher

If you were not in the music business, what would you be doing?

Acting for sure.

What advice do you have for someone trying to break into the music business?

Practice with a metronome

Special thanks to Iggy for speaking with us. Catch up with Iggy & The German Kids on the web via Facebook and Twitter. Check out their latest single “So Hard”: