First of all, I’d like to MILK the fact that I got the CHANCE to meet Milky Chance. It was very enjoyable. As was making that pun…
The annual ‘one week of British summer’ decided to fall on the week of which I met up with Clemens Rehbein (rehbein not rayban) and Phillip Dausch from Milky Chance to discuss the wonderful medium of music and why they’re so damn good at it.
Making an impact on the English market must seem an uphill task when coming from a country with a different first language, but Phillip doesn’t seem to think so.
“It [attracting attention] was never shocking, it was constant progress for us since five years ago when we started putting out some music.
“But without a plan it was surprising how fast it spread and how it spread at the beginning without being super active.”
During their odd rise to stardom; joining only a handful of bands from their home of Kassel, Germany, who have really made it in the UK, Milky Chance seem to have found the secret to keeping sane while living the crazy lifestyle they find themselves living on the road.
“Our hometown is a small town, it’s very calm and everyone knows each other so it doesn’t matter if you’re a celebrity or famous,” seems like a perfect way to get away from it all in my opinion.
Talking of time of home and tour, they say, “We’ve balanced these two poles and tried to drive into both of them, don’t get stuck in one of them, don’t get stuck in the tour life and all the habits you can create or can get on tour. Enjoy it, but get back.”
Home is where the heart is for these boys; they spoke so passionately about it in our conversation, it seems like they have a perfect setup. A band from the UK or America might not be able to find a safe haven back in their hometown like these guys can, where they can head home to a small humble town and be treated like they weren’t just on several main stages, here, there and everywhere.
It seems a lot of what Milky Chance are comes from Clemens and Phillip’s close proximity to each other at a very early age, they both had a chance to explore music together, and therefore, had a very similar style when they came to make music.
“We went to high school together, we chose music class, we were singing in a choir together we listened to and played a lot of jazz and blues, we listened to a lot of African music. We went clubbing, we were into electronic music, all of the different genres even the old vinyl of our parents like Jimi Hendrix and Bob Dylan.”
The boys had a lust for every kind of music, they both said they were ‘open’ to most experiences, and this clearly filters into their own unique style that has taken the world by storm over the past few years. However, the lads don’t discourage the approach of some people, where they focus purely on one genre they know and love.
“It depends on what kind of person you are, I feel we’re both open people and if you are that person it means you are open to a lot of music. But people are very extreme in what they do, but that can be nice and it can be inspiring to create something that is really strong for what they stand for.”
Friendship was a recurring theme of our conversation, “our friendship came before the music,” as Phillip said. It’s clear that the quality music that comes from Milky Chance is forged due to the pair’s great bond.
I’ll leave you with this cute lil’ quote from Clemens…
“We hang out, that’s the lucky thing, were friends so there’s always a little bit of home on tour.”
Words by Alex Slater