[EN] Keeping grounded - Evanescence singer Amy Lee on writing cool music and security guards from hell (TODAYOnline.com)
ONSTAGE, Amy Lee, the singer of American rock band Evanescence, is a sexy siren when she belts out the band's hits. On the telephone, Lee is chatty and warm as she talks about what happened in the years between Evanescence's previous album, The Open Door (2006), and their 2011 self-titled album, as well as their current tour. The band is scheduled to perform here on Feb 27 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
"I absolutely loved The Open Door. To me, it was such a great step forward," she said over the phone from Osaka, where they were touring. "And it took a while to do the next one partially because I was so happy with The Open Door, like, 'You know what, I don't know how to make Evanescence better than that'. And after all, I'd gotten married and I just wanted to be normal, and not be a rock star. (I wanted to) do normal stuff like work on my house, just be in New York, watch other people's shows."
She added: "But then, I don't know, I guess I can't be satisfied if I'm not creating stuff. And I was writing more and more and I started to get all sorts of new ideas and inspiration and we ended writing some of my favourite songs (for the new album)."
And it's not just the new album she loves. Lee also said she loves the current incarnation of the band, which includes Terry Balsamo and Troy McLawhorn on guitars, Tim McCord (bass) and Will Hunt (drums). (Lee is the only original member since the band formed back in 1995, when she was 14 years old.) But she said they didn't expect such a positive reaction from their fans, especially since their last album came out over five years ago.
"We knew we'd been gone for a long time, and you know, I think that in a lot of ways, the mainstream is constantly changing," she said. "I know that we sound vastly different from a lot of the stuff that's on the radio. We did not have big expectations for (the album), and when it went to No 1, we were all beyond happy. To us it still meant something, you know? You work your heart out for two years and you're like, 'wow, I hope that was worth it', and it's really cool that people appreciate it."
And it appears that people appreciate more than just the music. Lee was recently voted Hottest Chick In Hard Rock by Revolver Magazine, and graced the cover. "When that happens, I usually think, 'Yeah, more people are going to know about our album and buy it!'" she laughed. "I mean you have to look at all of that as just press. I'm not the hottest chick in whatever. I'm a normal girl and it takes a lot of makeup and retouching to make that cover look good."
Still, she conceded that sort of media attention had its plus points. "There are plenty of girls who are hotter than me. I think as far as the American standard of the skinny model chick - I don't look like that. (But) I thought that it was cool that they were listing somebody that doesn't weigh you know 100 pounds and looks like she's dying of starvation. So it makes sense, and I think as long as people are pointed in the direction of our music, I'm happy."
Unfortunately, one of the perks of being a rock star doesn't include not needing a security pass to get into places - such as, say, concert venues where Evanescence is playing. "The one time I tried to get into the venue from the bus without my security pass - and the security guard saw me walk out from the bus - but he was like, 'Nope, you gotta have your pass'," she laughed. "I was like, 'Come on man, I'm the lead singer of the band'... And he was like, 'Nope'. So I went back to the bus, and the bus has a keypad where you have to type the code to open the doors, and I forgot the code! And I couldn't get on the bus either! And my cell phone (was) on the bus so I couldn't call anybody! I was like, 'Well, I guess I'm not cool enough to be in my own show'."
Such "Spinal Tap moments" happen "all the time", said Lee. "But it's good, because it keeps you grounded."
*Note: Read full interview HERE
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