20. Carly Rae Jepsen, "Call Me Maybe" When people defend pop as a genre,…
- Posted on Aug 23rd 2010 2:00PM by Steve Baltin
"It's pretty tough, just technically, on both the piano and the voice," Wainwright tells Spinner. The tour will end in December at New York's famed Carnegie Hall, and although Wainwright has played the venue before, he says the gig is making him nervous. "Just the thought of having to do this there is pretty nerve-wracking," he says. "For any classical music fan and pianist, or even singer for that matter, to go and do a whole show alone on that stage is pretty much the apex of the musical existence in a sense. There's no bigger than that in so many worlds, whether it's jazz, whether it's classical, if you're a solo performer. So it's got a lot of baggage -- good baggage, full of gold and silver and diamonds and so forth, but heavy."
At Carnegie Hall, as he's doing at the rest of the tour, he'll likely do the album as a full song cycle, one that is so intense he asks the audience to refrain from clapping until the whole record is done. Are fans following his directions? "It might take one or two songs at the beginning to get used to it cause people just naturally applaud whatever I do," he says, laughing. "But after the third track they're all going with me and what I'm hoping occurs only because it occurs for me, I sense it and I'm hoping the audience does too, is that there are spaces in between the songs."
He's finding great joy in those spaces, an idea that for him goes back centuries. "Even Mozart I think said that the most important part of music is where the silences are, that those are the most important part and I tried to do a little bit of that as well," he says. "For me, in all of this in terms of timing, silences, piano and voice is, of course, Nina Simone," he says. "Nobody has ever quite mastered, to the degree she has, the sense of kind of drama in between the music she has and her sense of timing, so I would say she's probably the high priestess of that concept."