Robert Owens - God Is In The House
Friday, 17 August 2007
There isn’t much to say about the legendary Robert Owens that hasn’t been said already, but I’ll certainly be willing to spend a moment trying. A career that spans decades, a charisma and general demeanor that is almost angelic and a mind that is as superbly creative today as it was years ago, Robert Owens is the quintessential gentleman if nothing else. He is softly spoken; he is worldly and considered and above all respectful, feverishly polite and completely intriguing and compelling.
“Well, thank you for calling” are his first words. So what do you say to a musical god- I start by asking how he does what he does.
“Perseverance and passion and love for what you like doing in life,” he answers. “That’s my main emphasis; having a purpose and a reason. A love of the music and love of the people. I love seeing people removed from their problems and having the chance to experience a little time with me. That’s a really gratifying and rewarding feeling.”
And if all of that isn’t enough, he is a calculated and courageous character as well. Almost preaching, but in a most pleasant way, he ascribes to the notion of the music business being dodgy.
“Sure, you have to be cautious – even in a Biblical sense – you don’t feed your pearls to the swine. There are a lot of unsavory people in this business but there’s also a lot of loyalty. And then there’s house music! Or really any form of entertainment. I’ve just seen it all and had a ball. From a global perspective I must be one of the luckiest people alive to see music unify people; it brings them together beyond a lot of restraints that we deal with through the system and bureaucracy.”
Interestingly, as I was preparing for this I came across a scribe that claimed Owens had retired from the music business some time ago and opened a Christian bookstore! His softly spoken voice chuckles with laughter as he admits to being an internet virgin.
“I’m like a baby with the whole internet thing!” he admits, smirking. “It’s a whole world out there! Just this week I’ve realized that there’s this whole legion of people out there with their own imagery of what Robert Owens is about. They’ve created me; made me visible in ways that I wasn’t really aware! It’s actually completely false. I would never retire from music – it is my whole life!”
Rather, a new album is on the cards for the man with one of the most amazing voices in electronic music.
“I’ve spent a lot of time guesting on a lot of other peoples’ albums and now what I’ve done is had a whole bunch of people appear on mine. I hope it’s going to be cool! I’m aware of the whole minimal and electro thing so it’s got elements of my origins in early house to deep moodiness – actually the whole thing is deep with fusions of other things. It’s with people who fell into the same vibe rather than big names and egos. I try to stay abreast and aware of what is going on and be aware of what the younger generation wants. My first objective is to get people to trust me. Once I get you to trust me, then maybe you’ll allow me to take you on a musical journey! I just want to make people have a good time!”
WHO: Robert Owens
WHAT: Plays SHE at Industrie
WHEN: Saturday 25 August