After the embrace

Photo by Peter Tümmers

Christina Lux is a German musician, singer, guitarist and composer born in Karlsruhe. Since 1983 she has played in different rock and jazz bands. In 1998 she released her debut EP called She is me and in 1999 her debut album Little luxuries. Since then she has released four more studio albums: Pure Love (2001), Believe (2004), Coming home at last (2006) and Playground (2012) featuring Reentko; and three live albums: Live aus dem Stadtgarten Köln (2003), Lux pure&live (2007) and Embrace (2015) featuring Bodek Janke, her most recent release. She writes mainly in English although there are always some songs in German. Now she works in a new album which is supposed to be released in Summer 2017. Her beautiful and warming voice singing her poetic lyrics will keep us company hopefully for a long time.

What does music mean to you?

Music is like a tool to me. I need it to bring order into my thoughts. I rarely practice. It's more like searching for a connection through sounds and notes that feels light and easy. I stop trying to grasp it with my mind, and start feeling it through my heart. Mostly that happens when inspiration, sounds and words and motor skills of my fingers come together. Words are the engine that will start the whole thing. Without these sentences that go around in my head, I wouldn't be making music. I was never really interested in mere mastery of the instrument.

Which are your references in music and literature?

There are so many. I am open for various kinds of music. If it comes close and moves me or inspires me, then it's good. I went from Rock to Soul and Jazz to Singer Songwriter. I like anything that's heartfelt. I started playing with all these different elements on my own. And then there is the wonderful opportunity of improvisation.

The same with literature: it always came to me without actively looking for it. There was always an element of approach to a deep truth and honesty, that I found very impressive. There was Rilke and Hesse and Erich Fromm. I like to quote but I wouldn't necessarily call myself well-read. There are little fragments that stayed with me and remind me of some inner truth.

When you compose, do you think mainly of your own experiences or do you resort to fiction too?

My music comes from the process of trying to comprehend or see something. A lot of times there are inner dialogs that move me. Music and words give me courage, make unspoken things visible and they stir up old habits and patterns. I have woken myself up that way many times. When I manage to write in a flow, without thinking, it often feels like something is writing through me. The mastery is not to interrupt this flow. There are observations of people and movements around me. Poetry is a great tool to express feelings through images and pictures. It creates a room that a listener can enter. Ultimately he enters his own story. When that succeeds, I am very happy.

In "Stell dir vor" you sing "Ich weiß, die Zeit heilt keine Wunden dieser Art" (I know time doesn't heal wounds of this kind). How do you live the passing of time?

There are things that never heal. I have learned to deal with that and see my scars differently. Leonard Cohen says in one of his songs "There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in". I would strongly agree with that. As long as I'm denying or fighting off what is bubbling up inside me, there is no peace within me. The Name of my last Album was "Embrace". Embrace what you are and what is. All of it. Songs make light fall onto weird and dark sides of life. I believe it's a part of our task as a human in this world to keep looking at things anew over and over again, and to choose a gentle path instead of a hard and bitter one. The evolution of our conscience seems to be very slow. I see way too many actions against each other and too many people feeling like victims. The fact that right-wing populism is gaining strength feels like things go backwards before going forward again. I strongly hope people will realize one day that we have to work with each other. Freedom is a very precious good. Sometimes I fear that many people actually can't handle it. There is a book by Erich Fromm called "The Fear of Freedom" and it keeps coming to my mind.

In your Song "Forget you" you sing: „ Seems like I lost my faith when losing you”. Does love always lead us to the extremes?

Love can bring up our most beautiful side and our ugliest. It is great when love helps to clear false concepts. Like old script books that need to be rewritten. We all learn some kind of love through how we first get in contact with it. Often it has nothing to do with love. Later we seek for someone to make us happy and complete in the same way. We use conditions, manipulations and we are afraid to become vulnerable. But love doesn't grow while we use protection shields. We are longing to be seen and to be fully accepted. In the end it becomes our own job. The love that has been missed in early years cannot be brought back by anyone from the outside. They can help but we need to learn to be very sweet with our scars and needs ourselves. When we do that we start seeing the beauty in others more than the ugly sides. Faith and deep trust lands safely. In my song "Forget you" I am talking about letting the old parts of life go even though it may feel like a total loss. Then you can start putting new seeds in the soil.

And in Playground „ Become a lover and you will be loved”. Is it a spiritual vision of love? Sometimes love is not returned, is it?

I am talking about all kinds of love. I do not want to give up in believing that a loving and respectful life opens the door towards meeting each other. If we don't have any points of contact it is very easy to be prejudiced. Many people who never have had contact with other cultures and folks tend to develop a strange fear of strangers. This fear comes from thoughts only since they have hardly met anybody who is different from them. They start believing all they hear from populists and stop checking facts. This development makes me very sad. A little smile is worth so much. Just keep doing it. Talk to people, get in touch. Sometimes it may remain unanswered. That's ok. Keep doing it. Become the change you would like to see. Take your responsibility. Once one feels like a victim they give up being active. It is easy to find a scapegoat, stop moving and start spreading hatred. As long as I can move I will do what I can. A child in Aleppo couldn't choose.

Can you tell us about your new album?

I am in the middle of writing and recording. I take my time this time. German language kept knocking at my door since 2006 and now I decided to take the whole step and make a complete German album. I love singing in English but I am also at a point where I enjoy so much that the words don't get lost in the music when I sing in German. It is very direct now. I produce the album with my long term friend Oliver George. He and I already played in a rock band together in the 80's.

I started a crowdfunding campaign again which worked out very well. It is great to be independent and able to choose how and when I release my albums. We are planning on releasing in summer.

Have you ever thought about publishing some of your lyrics without music, like poetry?

Honestly, no. But it is a nice idea.

Apart music, what's the most important in your life?

Oh, yes, it is wonderfully romantic. Love and being a mother. To have an open heart that let love in and out and being calm with what I do most of the times and sharing life with people I really appreciate.

Could you tell me a dream of yours?

From time to time I have dreams where I can't seem to set up my equipment and people leave before I even start playing. Can't find the cables or the instrument. That is a good sign for having lost my earthing a little. Time to slip back into my living room which is music. A place that puts roots back into the ground, makes me calm and offers a room to tell my stories. I love resonance with people who listen. It feels good to open rooms and share thoughts. It is a place where I can recharge very well. I believe these kind of places are very important. I must not be huge. Just a place to exchange and become real. I find it very important to learn to take good care of oneself. If you are around people who keep belittling you, you have to leave. And when you watch yourself doing that too, change it.

Christina Lux live at Song of my life in full view HERE

An interview by Juan Carlos Romero
Christina Lux website
Photo by Peter Tümmers
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