Tokio Hotel Talk Beer & Hasselhoff
Bill, Tom, Gustav & Georg of TOKIO HOTEL were back in the MuchMusic building today, and so naturally, since it worked so well last time, I had to pull them aside for a couple of minutes to ask them a few of your fan questions. The guys were in good spirits and once again I was amazed at how relaxed, grounded and fun they were. Here's how it all went down with the German rockers...
First off, welcome back to Canada! You just performed at the Bamboozle Festival in New Jersey. How was it?
Bill: It was really, really cool. It was the first time really performing after my surgery. We played three songs and there were a lot of fans and then after that we traveled to LA and in LA we had one concert and now we are here in Toronto.
So what do you prefer? Playing in festivals or your own concerts?
Bill: I prefer doing our own concerts.
Tom: Yeah, doing your own concerts are great. You have your own production team and your own crew and your own stage and stuff. It's great.
Bill: You know, festivals are always hard because there are so many bands and then it's just crazy backstage. Everyone is talking and there are so many people.
Georg: And you don't really get a sound check.
Tom: You always have sound problems in festivals, but I think at Bamboozle it was cool.
Bill: Yeah, it was good.
Did you get a chance to see any of the other bands perform?
Bill: Unfortunately, no. We had a really, really tight schedule.
Tom: Yeah, we had a lot of interviews to do and stuff like that and yeah, not much time.
What are some of your most embarrassing 'guilty pleasures'?
Tom: [laughs] I wouldn't admit to them. But Georg, he's a David Hasselhoff fan.
How "German" of you...
Georg: Oh, come on - not again. He's told this joke, like, 10 times now.
Tom: It's not a joke. It's the truth, but it's embarrassing.
Georg: [rolls eyes]
Bill: I love dogs, but that's not embarrassing. I just really love dogs. You know, if I see a dog I just go crazy.
Any kind in particular?
Bill: No, any dog. When I see a dog, it's like, "Oh my God, come here, come here!"
Tom: And Georg really likes to surf videos on YouPorn, and that's also embarassing. [Laughs] I'm joking.
Georg, is it true that you like Nickelback?
Georg: Yeah, I love Nickelback.
Tom: I really like the video for Rockstar because there's Kendra and, uh, from the Playboy Mansion - the three Bunnies. So that's a great video.
Are there any other Canadian bands that you know of and like?
Gustav: Is King's X from Canada?
No, don't think so.
Bill: Billy Talent are cool.
Nice. Hey Georg, does it bother you when people call you "George"?
Georg: Um, people can call me whatever they want - Georg or George.
Tom: Or you know, on his case where he stores his bass, he wrote "David Listing." [laughs] He likes the name David because of Hasselhoff. George Hasslehoff!
So last time you were in Toronto, you went up the CN Tower and went shopping at the Eaton Centre and went a bit unnoticed. Do you like that? Was it refreshing not to be attacked by throngs of fans for once?
Bill: That's always the goal, to go into a city and at first no one recognizes you, but we really want people to see us and to have fans. And now it's really cool that we have Canadian fans and that we're playing a concert tomorrow night. So I think it's better when people recognize you. That's good for a band.
Tom: It's always the goal that people recognize you on the street.
Bill: But of course, sometimes when you have free time, it's nice when no one recognizes you and you can just chill.
Tom: But that's boring.
Well, your fanbase is growing in Canada and now people know you are here for the night - they'll be looking for you.
Bill: Yeah, I think there will be some fans at the hotel tonight, but our schedule is so tight so that we are doing a lot of photoshoots and interviews during the day, so we don't have as much time this time to go out and check out things in the city.
Well, is there anything about fame that you find annoying?
Bill: I hate paparazzi, I really hate paparazzi.
Tom: Especially when we're on holidays.
Bill: Yeah, especially on holidays, it's just terrible. I hate them in Europe. In America there are also paparazzi, but not as as bad as in Europe. It's very terrible, I hate it.
So are you constantly on edge when you're walking around? Do you always notice them? Are they hiding behind corners or in bushes...?
Tom: Well, yeah, it depends. Sometimes on holidays, they hide. But, you know, on the street they just attack us.
Bill: Yeah, you know, it's OK to, I dunno, when it's at a concert or whatever, but in free time or when you're in private, I think it's just annoying.
So we all know how you got your name, but how did you come up with your band's symbol/logo?
Tom: You know, the idea was that in this logo we had a lot of T's and a lot of H's. And, yeah, that's what it is - it wasn't meant to be a big deal.
Bill: We just wanted something that was very simple. And, like, everyone can draw it and that was the idea so you can paint it on walls --
Tom: -- or windows --
Bill: -- or my neck. [laughs]
Who designed it?
Bill: We did it together with a guy --
Tom: I think it was my idea.
Have you ever actually worn traditional German clothing like lederhosen for Oktoberfest?
Tom: No, never. Sometimes Georg does, when he's dancing to David Hasselhoff.
Bill: We've never even been to Oktoberfest so far.
Tom: No, I hate Oktoberfest.
Do you drink beer?
Tom: Yeah, we drink a lot of beer, but not at Oktoberfest.
Well, I read this study that states the average German drinks 120 liters of beer per year.
Tom: We drink that in one month.
Bill: No, we drink a lot of beer, but in America it's really hard because you have to be 21 to drink alcohol.
Tom: But not in Canada, right?
No, here in Ontario it's 19.
Gustav: [throws hands up into the air] YES!
But in Montreal, it's 18.
Georg: We LOVE Montreal!
Bill: It's hard, because in Germany you have to be 18 and we were always, like, "Oh, c'mon - 18, 18, 18..." and now we are 18 and we come to America.
Tom: And you have to be 21.
Do you have any favourite kinds of beer?
Bill: Um, Heineken. Heineken is a nice beer.
Tom: I don't care.
Georg: I prefer German beer.
Gustav: I like the Czech Budweiser.
Nice, I'll have to try it. Enough about beer - back to the music. Do you have any plans to do any future collaborations with any other bands?
Tom: There's nothing planned yet, but we would love to do some collaborations.
Is there anyone in particular you'd love to work with?
Bill: Yeah, I dunno - I think there are some dreams for every band to do something with, like, the Rolling Stones or whatever, but I think, yeah, let's see.
Tom: In the summer we go back into the studio to record some songs, and I say, let's see what happens.
Bill: And then we can talk to other people, but I'm not sure, I don't have anyone in mind yet.
Tom: Yeah, David Hasselhoff! That would be great for Georg. Maybe a dancing project with Georg and David Hasselhoff. [laughs]
Speaking of dancing, a fan wanted to know if you, Tom, knew the Soulja Boy dance.
Tom: Yeah, I know the Soulja Boy dance, but I'm not a good dancer. No, Georg can do it, he's a very good dancer.
Can we video you doing it and put it up on YouTube?
Tom: Yeah, Georg can. He was doing the dance in the hotel room [laughs]. Yeah, Georg can do it. [laughs] No, I'm not a dancer. I'm a shy guy.
Georg: Oh, c'mon. You showed it to me this morning!
Tom: No, that was you!
Bill: I don't know this dance.
Tom: I've seen the video and the personal videos that people have uploaded to YouTube who do the dance, but you know, I'm not a dancer - I'm more a sexy guitar player [laughs].
Tomorrow night at the concert, we want to see the dance.
Tom: Yeah, maybe at the show. Together with David Hasselhoff and Georg.
Tokio Hotel a hit in two languages
Growing in popularity, German rock band Tokio Hotel is new to North American fans but all the rage back home.
So when the foursome decided to break into the difficult North American market with its English debut album Scream, the group translated and then performed all of its German songs in English, something that took some time but was worth the work.
"The biggest challenge was to sing for the first time in English because as you can tell my English is not so good," singer Bill Kaulitz says inside a Toronto restaurant. "This is really the first trip that we've spoken English in interviews because we just know some words."
Tokio Hotel, playing the Sound Academy tonight, says translating each song "word by word" was trying.
"I'm a perfectionist, I really wanted to sound natural like I was a native speaker," he says. "That was really, really hard but I hope the fans like it."
"And then they (the words) have to rhyme and still have the same meaning," twin brother and guitarist Tom Kaulitz adds. "We wanted everyone to have a chance to understand what we are saying which was really important."
The band, rounded out by drummer Gustav Schafer and bassist Georg Listing, has made a lot of inroads in a short period of time with singles such as Monsoon and Don't Jump, which deals with suicide, a topic mentioned in some of the fan letters the band received from teens.
But both brothers say the single Ready Set Go! describes how the band members, who got together in 2001, found success at the mere age of 15.
"It was our first single in Germany and it was during our vacation in the summer holidays," Bill says. "It went directly to Number One and after that our whole life changed completely. It was a new life and that was our dream, our dream come true."
The resulting success caused a frenzy that some concert promoters in Germany weren't quite prepared for.
"We were playing a village party, a small festival and there were only 100 or 200 people expected," Tom Kaulitz says. "It was booked six months in advance and we released our first single Monsoon in Germany and we came to that festival."
"There were so many fans and thousands of people, the security was absolutely not ready for that," Bill says. "It was then we knew we had fans. Before it was always five or 10 people in a club just drinking beer and not looking at us."
The toughest thing a new band often has to do is learn how to say no to growing demands. A grueling touring schedule earlier this year left Bill Kaulitz unable to speak for 10 days following surgery to remove a cyst from a vocal chord.
"I was really afraid," he says. "We only played 10 concerts and had to cancel 16 (including a Toronto gig). I was in my hotel room and I looked (at the clock) and I was thinking at this time normally I'm on stage so it was really, really hard."
However, like so many identical twins, Bill had Tom nearby to act as his almost telepathic speaker.
"It's a very cool connection and a very special connection," Bill says of being a twin. "I think nobody else has a connection like that. I had a book and wrote things down (after surgery) but there were some things where I just looked at Tom."
"I always know what Bill is thinking in different situations because I think the same," Tom says without missing a beat. "I had to speak for him for 10 days, it wasn't a great time."
Having an affinity for the cosmopolitan Japanese city, German quartet Tokio Hotel would love to find itself in a Tokyo hotel sometime in the near future.
"We've never been there," guitarist Tom Kaulitz says. "They have a Jacuzzi in the room and you can just lie there."
"And they have the flat screen televisions over your head," bassist Georg Listing adds. "We really want to go but haven't yet."
"I have heard so much about the hotels in Tokyo and how nice they are," Bill Kaulitz says. "So I think that town is really, really crazy and we would love to go there."
While a Japanese tour is still in the works, Tokio Hotel is surprised by their North American fans.
"What we saw the last time is that our fans are so energetic, they are screaming and waiting for us," Bill says.
By JASON MacNEIL - Special to Sun Media
Tokio Hotel are spending for a children-project
The german Teenie-Band Tokio Hotel are supporting a musican promotion at Leipzig for social discrimiate children. The donation citizen for Leipzig was informing, that the Band was 20 000 € spending for the project. 8000 Euro are in this and the next year for the project "music makes clever". At least can 20 children learn to play an instrument one year becaus of that. The other 12 000 € are for some other things, for the furnishing in Leipzig.
TRANSLATED BY US
Tokio Hotel in L.A at the Avalon
»1-Ready,Set,Go! »2-Totgeliebt»3-Rescue me»4-Don't jump»5-Scream»6 - Black
Tokio Hotel - Scream
Listening to Tokio Hotels scream, a compilation of songs from their first two albums (which were apperently gigantic hits in Europe), one can't help but feel a quiet storm of smug American pride welling within. For all the things we may do wrong on the world stage, rarely do we manufacture rock this jawdroppingly lame. Apperently, German taste has gone to the dogs since the Scorpions: Scream is composed mostly of overwrought clunkers that sounds like Jared Leto rewriting Skid Row ballads at a gooey half-tempo, and Tokio Hotel's twin brothers Bill (vocals) and Tom (guitar) Kaulitz are a hamfisted Teutonic version of Nelson, only slathered in mall-punk eyeliner and lacking earnestness or a sense of kitsch. Almost too stiff to be funny, this might have been a surreal payday in the boardrooms of Berlin, but one presumes the buck stops here.
Resource: TH Fanclub