GUESTHALL. American singer, composer Daniel Decker

-How did you learn about Armenia?
-I first heard through the music of Ara Gevorgyan in his song “Mush”. A melody, that really impacted me greatly and from hearing that song I contacted him and we began our friendship and cooperation, began writing songs together. From there I began to learn all about Armenia.

-So what was that much enchanting in Armenian songs, in Armenian?
-Well, it’s very different than what you hear in western music. I can’t explain it, you know, specifically, but it just really had an impact on me – on my heart, on my soul and I knew I had to learn more about this.

-We know, that you offer trainings in vocal, piano and composing music. So you really think, that it’s possible to teach how to compose music?
-Of course. I’ve been doing it for many years and that’s the history of western and eastern music. You know, we pass along, but we learn from others.

-So it’s not just from nature. It’s possible to learn how to create music.
-Of course. It’s helpful to have talent , but even the greatest musicians and composers had teachers – Mozart had a teacher, Beethoven had a teacher…

-Is it your first arrival to Armenia?
-No, I’ve been here 14 times.

-Oh, great. When was your first trip to Armenia?
-First visit, I believe, was in 2001.

-Did your interest to Armenia and Armenian went deeper or it just stayed on the level of music?
-Well, it started with curiosity, than turned into interest, than love and passion for the people of Armenia and I really love the Armenian people and Armenian culture in fact so much, so that last week I’ve become a citizen of Armenia.

-Great. How long time (this time) you were in Armenia?
-I was here for about 2 weeks this time.

-In general did you meet your expectations?
-It surpassed my expectations. The Armenian people are just wonderful, they really accepted and showed great appreciation for my work – the songs, that I’ve written with Ara Gevorgyan, the Armenian songs, that I’ve recorded, my becoming an Armenian citizen and their hospitality has been amasing.

-Do you only sing Armenian or you also speak Armenian?
-I speak just a little bit of Armenian. It’s kind of a work in progress. I still have a lot to learn. I’ve learnt to sing in Armenian with great effort and difficulty and practice, but I’m beginning to learn the language.

-What other languages you know?
-At the moment just English.

-And what other interests do you have in life, except music?
-Well, music is a large part of what I do. Almost every job, that I ever had, had something to do with music. I think I would be incomplete without it. So I spend a lot of my time and energy devote to that. But I love travel, I love good films, love meeting people, I love being introduced to different cultures around the world, which I guess kind of sparks my interest in Armenia, but also my experience with Armenia has spread my horizons. You know, I feel fascinated by different cultures.

-I hope you will visit Armenia again and discover new things every time and I wish you good luck in your career and success in your life.
-Thank you very much. In fact I’m working on organizing a concert in Yerevan later this year, so I do plan to be back this year.

-Great. So thank you for accepting our invitation and thank you for interesting interview.
-Thank you so much.

Kira Schwarz

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