“Orchestrations are drinking water …” – says John Porter in an honest conversation with Tomasz Krupa

Tom: What prompted you to come to our beautiful country anyway? John: I don’t remember anymore … It was so long ago (laughs). In fact, of course I remember. Those were similar times in some respects. It’s just that it was gray, there were repressions, but they were extremely cool people, Poles had a very rich interior, character and everything. I fell in love with that kind of temperament.

Tom: Dear John, you came to our country at a time when everyone was thinking about leaving this country. And you ran upstream into chaos-engulfed Poland.

John: It’s similar now (laughs)

Tom: What made you come to our country?

John: I don’t remember anymore …

It was so long ago (laughs). In fact, of course I remember. It was gray, there were repressions, but people were crazy cool. The Poles had a very rich interior, character and everything. I fell in love with that kind of temperament.

Volume. Did you fall in love with people or did you fall in love with a woman?

J. Women are also people (laughs)

Volume. Of course!

J. When I started to live here, I watched people carefully – how people live here, how they cope with difficulties, absurd situations and tried to live a normal life. As you say, “the Pole could”. It made me admire it. It was absolutely fascinating for me. By the way, so do women. I must admit, I love women.

Photo: Tomasz Krupa

This. That’s good, it means that we will understand each other. But back to the point, you really knew exactly where you were going, you studied political science.

J. In a sense, yes, but until you confront this reality, man has no idea what it means. Let me give you an example: when I was taking the train through West Germany towards Poland for the first time, I was passing through Berlin, which was divided in half. On the platform of East Berlin, armed soldiers stood outside the window. I already knew then that it was for real, that this is not a joke and it is not just a fairy tale, but it is happening for real. No words or newspapers will do it. It was a strong clash with reality. And, of course, martial law.

T. Were you a musician when you came to Poland?

J. Not really a musician. I could play the guitar, I could compose something. But my approach to music has only changed here in Poland. People started saying that I play fun. Then I met other people who led me to Maanam. I have very good memories of my time with Maanam. It was a very intense two years. Of course, after that, everyone went their own way, developing themselves, but it was a really good time. Due to political conditions, we were not welcome everywhere, but people wanted to see us everywhere and that was fantastic. I can only regret that at that time we did not record any album with the material that we presented in concert. Acoustic and punk atmosphere, detached from the mainstream – perfect, very cool and energetic playing.

T. Do you feel good in such playing? You actually did completely different things musically afterwards.

J. Yes, but that was the time when I was looking for my way. I had my English musical roots. Mostly English pop from the ’60s Hendrix, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and so on. It was a very interesting time, the time when the music scene changed into the so-called New Wave, let me mention Talking Heads. This musical time had a great influence on me. I wanted to do more than standard rock music.

T. Your music is saturated with a large dose of sadness, reflection and depression …

J. Yes, I am prone to depression sometimes, but I guess that’s like every artist. As the saying goes, “there’s always a song in depression.” I am reflective, maybe sometimes too much, I have the impression that I think too much and think too much about events, about what surrounds me. I experience everything intensely, this is how I am and I will not change it.

T. Love has a big influence on your creativity? I can sense in your music when it is good and when it is bad in your life.

J. It is like this all my life, sometimes downhill, uphill, very often uphill, very often downhill.

T. Have you met the woman of your life or are you still waiting for her?

J. I have met a few women in my life and I think so now, but for how long and how it will be, I do not know. I don’t really believe in the concept of a woman of life. Everything happens cyclically with me. There are changes every 10 years and I experience each stage with the same intensity, and even with age it gets worse. The older you get, the stupider you are in this respect. Although maybe not more dumb but sensitive and when something happens, I go for it. When I start something, I live it to the end. I love it!


Photo: Tomasz Krupa

T. You mentioned earlier in our casual car conversation that you are afraid of the crowd.

J. I hate it even, I don’t like mass rush, I feel uncomfortable in it.

T. So you like more intimate situations …

J. I like people when they’re away (laughs)

T. How does it relate to the fact that you are an artist and you should come into contact with these people, function on stage, surround yourself with them?

Source: Salon24.pl: Strona główna by www.salon24.pl.

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