Interview by Si Smith
Intro by Miriam C.
It’s the second time that we give space to Candice Night, the first time it was for promote her debut solo album “Reflections” now it’s time for a new Blackmore’s Night record and precisely is the DVD “A Night in York”. Let’s see hear (or better read) the details straight away from the enchanting and dreamy Candice.
First of all congratulations on the DVD and more importantly the birth of your new musketeer Rory Dartanyan! It must be a great time for the family.
It really is. He is my spiritual, peaceful child. When all else is chaotic in the world, he just grabs your face and looks into your soul and you breathe him in and all is well. I’ve been calling him my zen baby since the 1st day in the hospital. And Autumn LOVES her baby brother. They have an amazing relationship.
The last time we spoke to you was for your solo album. As a metal based webzine we enjoy supporting related genres as well. Blackmore’s Night has always seemed to defy genre definition, crossing several genres. How would you describe Blackmore’s Night music to a newcomer?
It is a variety of fantasy music that incorporates rock, regional ethnic, tavern/gypsy music with ballads, instrumentals and Renaissance music.
This was your first trip back to England for a while. Why did you choose to film the DVD in England?
Our first DVD, “Castles and Dreams”, was shot in a medieval castle in Germany in 2004; the next one was in the Olympia Theater in Paris in 2007. Since then we have put out 2 more CDs and we do a lot of the songs in concert that have different arrangements than what is on CD. So, a haunted opera house in a medieval city seemed like the perfect venue to record and show these newer songs on DVD.
Your set contains a great mixture of slow tracks and upbeat dance numbers. How did the audience respond?
Great. They were an amazing audience. People think that the English audiences will be more reserved, but more people dress up in costume and garb in England than anywhere else. Ritchie amends the set list per night based on the audience’s energy so he’s constantly reading them.
You describe this as a “trip through the ages”. Have you a favourite historical era you would like to have lived in?
I think the greatest thing about living now is that you can choose from the eras that have come before to see what feels right to you and then incorporate that into your life today. I love the romantic visuals and castles from the Renaissance time; the costume and garb of the Victorian era; and the creativity of the 1960’s. And I bring a bit of each of these things into my life now.
As always your outfit is beautiful and really compliments the performance. Is it your own work?
Thank you. I guess it is. I tend to collect things as I go along whether it is from vintage shops, Renaissance faire vendors or gothic shops and piece everything together to make it my own look. It’s like a patchwork outfit from lots of different fabrics.
Despite the grandiose setting you manage to create that intimacy even from the beginning as you tell us about Autumn and how she sleeps and drinks. We almost feel part of the family! Is that intimacy with the audience important to you?
Yes, it is, because our audiences are more than just audiences. I feel as if when they understand us though our music, its as if they understand us deeply- more so than someone who would just have a chance meeting in the street or even who have known us for years. The music level is a deeper level than conversation, so I feel comfortable sharing things with them. I used to say that fans are just the friends we haven’t met yet, and I still feel that way.
You sing some songs form “Autumn Sky” and some from older releases. How do you decide on a set list? Is it set in stone?
Never set in stone. Ritchie changes the set list as we go along and no one ever knows what he is going to play next. He does it based on the audience, on the venue, on how the songs ring in the hall, on his mood. It all depends.
For “World of Stone” you speak of your love for Renaissance music. What is it about this music that captivates you?
It is an honest music. In my mind, it was from when people played for the pure love and passion of the melody. Not to get on MTV or be played on the radio. It’s this passion and mystery that makes it so enthralling.
A magical moment is when Autumn joins you on stage. How has she taken to the minstrel’s life? What did she really think about it?
She absolutely loves it. Loves meeting new people. Stands on the side of the stage and each time Ritchie changes a guitar she says “Now? Dada? Now?”, she always wants to be on the stage! She sings every word to every song, dances and spins in circles and pretends to be the band members or play their instruments months after we are back home. She is a true performer. Perfect tempo, perfect pitch- it’s a little scary.
At one point you duet with a rather male Lady Gaga. Are there any real life collaborations you would like to pursue in the future?
The people I am fans of are the people I’d be afraid to meet in case they weren’t what I thought they were in my mind. I love Don Henley, but I can’t imagine ever recording anything with him. I’m a big fan of the 80’s rock and metal bands too but I think we’re in different world musically – though it did work with Helloween so who knows?
Finally, one theme of the show seems to be “magic is here”. How important is it to find our place in nature and the world? Can music help?
Music can help everything. Help you heal, help you celebrate, help you make it through and help you to dream. Our place in the world helps you to find yourself too and in turn help to heal the world. So it’s all cyclical.
It has been a pleasure talking to you. Thanks so much for this interview.
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