|As I understand it Bad little Duck started in 1992
first under the name The Messengers. Then it changed it's name to Bad Little Duck when you
joined. Can you tell some about that early period?
They were searching for a singer. So they tried a few guys but it wasn't working. At that
time there was an American band. A jazz-band, a Christian jazz-band that was called The
Messengers. So we decided to change the name also because it was a bit too serious. We
wanted something funny. We sat around the table and put some words down on a paper and
finally....Basically it was Ugly Duckling. You know, the story of the ugly duckling.
That's why we call ourselves Bad Little Duck. We found that is was not so easy to
pronounce (Ugly Duckling) especially in our French part of Switzerland. We decided then to
call it Bad Little Duck
Because it sounds more funny and not as serious as The
Yeah. You know, the story of this little Duck: He was born in a
family. He was so different! He had a different color, a different way of speaking. And he
grew up apart. We thought we were the same in the Christian world because we play hard
rock, hard music. And in the world when we talk about Jesus guys are looking with big
eyes. So, we felt that we were this kind of a little duck. At the end of the story the
duck is finally a swan! He's all white and pure. That's what I think we're gonna be with
Jesus in eternity.
I read in the pressbook of Bad Little Duck that you once were a
deejay like me too. Where does that exactly fit in with the history of Bad Little Duck?
It was earlier. I was twenty. A friend of mine with whom I was
deejaying at little disco parties with friends, started a local radio station in
Switzerland. He called me to do a hard rock radioshow. So we started it as kind of a joke.
Little by little I learned. At that time I met a guy who came with some Christian hard
rock records with him: Bloodgood, Stryper, things like that. And that was for me the first
connection with the Christian world. Actually, he's know the manager of the band. He was
the bassplayer at the beginning. And his father is my pastor now. So, everything began
with the radioshow.
And that bass-player you mentioned is Jean-Michel?
Yes, he is.
And the current bass-player is PeP?
Yeah, we changed the bass-player. He's the third one, PeP.
Because Jean-Michel was also managing the band. At that time doing the managing and
playing bass took a lot of time. He got married, got a little boy -a very nice boy- and it
was too hard to do everything. So he decided with his wife to quite playing bass and he
got more involved with management. So he created a record-company, Ugly Records, and we
are working with him. And we have an other bass-player now.
Okay, I understand. Bad Little Duck is from Switzerland, like you
said. I'm not familiar with Christian bands from Switzerland at all. Can you tell me more
about the scene in Switzerland?
There are not many bands, especially on the metal scene. We're
from the French part which is a little part of Switzerland. The German part is the
biggest. And there are not so many bands. The Christian scene is moving now. There are a
lot of little bands but there's not a big audience. I think it's a fight. Bands don't stay
together long enough to do something.
You mean, to come with a CD?
Yeah, to make CD's, to go playing abroad and things like that. In
general, there are so many bands in Switzerland and I think the guys are discouraged. But
Okay. Something else now. In 1998 you played a festival in
Belgium alongside bands like Laberinto and Gorefest. Last year you did a gig with
Mortification. With those concerts in mind, what do you see as the highlights in the
history of Bad Little Duck?
The highlights in the history of Bad Little Duck. It's more in
the breaks we did between those great concerts. To get closer between the members of the
band and to get closer with God. You know, it was very hard with Mortification. There was
a non-Christian band between us and Mortif. We fighted that night spiritually. It was very
hard. It's not a good souvenir for me. We go and play around Europe and I'm happy for this
to show the gospel. That's what's important. Not whether you play with this band or that
band. It's fun.
You don't mention that festival. Why wasn't that festival in
Belgium not a good experience then?
Well, it was a 30 minutes who in the middle of the afternoon.
Very hot, very warm. The audience was about fifty persons maximum. No many people. We came
by and played and that was all. The highlight was that we met two guys at the concert and
they came for the headliners and they really enjoyed our music. One was from Belgium and
the other was an American guy. He was there for one year. We gave these guys the other
dates we had. And the next Friday we played near their home so they said: "Oh yeah!
We're gonna come by, we're gonna see you again." In fact, they came and we took more
with these guys. It was cool, you know.
You "took more with these guys". What do you mean with
We could testimony and that was important to us. To share
something more than just five guys playing loud music on stage. We wanted to share with
these guys. For me the highlight of all the concerts we did in Belgium was an unplugged
set we did in a prison. With 30 guys. No light show. You look them in the eyes. They guys
came in to shake the hands of all the musicians, saying "hi". That was great
because we shared something and not only music. That was the highlight for me.
Okay. I understand that you were once in prison too for some
time. Is that right?
Yeah, before I was Christian. After I did the radioshow -because
the radiostation was sold to another guy and I lost that job- I was very depressed. I was
living with my family and my parents were upset that I didn't work and ate everything in
the fridge, you know (laughs). Hanging out at night, drinking alcohol, smoke and all these
things. So, I left home and I was in the streets in squads and things like that. We stole
for drugs and alcohol and so I finished in prison. At that time one of my friends who
became Christian bought me a Bible. And I started to read the Bible in prison. Jean-Michel
came to see me. From all the friends that I had -if I can call them friends- no one came
to see me. But this Christian guy came and that was a great testimony for me. And now when
I look back it's a great experience because it helped me meet God.
Yeah. And did that experience contribute to that unplugged set
you did in a prison? That you could relate to these people and share more with them?
Yeah! Sure! 'Cause my testimony was the same story: A divorced
family; a stepfather who is beating me and things like that. It's everytime the same
story. These guys have the same story. So, they meet someone who says: "I understand
you because I lived these things". And after the show we talked with these guys and I
did so with several of them and I could encourage them. "There's an open door,
there's a solution, an answer to all the questions." It was very great! This was the
first time I came in a prison (after my imprisonment) so when they closed the door I had
to say to myself: "Hey, cool now guy, you're gonna get out now. Today. You're gonna
get out this time. Stay cool." I was tripping inside (laughs) while buying souvenirs.
And how was the feedback of the prisoners to your testimony and
to what the band had to say?
Uh, I think they were encouraged. We didn't have a lot of
feedback later like guys writing us and things like that. But I remember, I saw lights in
the eyes of these guys after the show. I think something happened. There were in fact two
pastors who were working in that jail who made this concert possible. Two guys were
converted in prison through the work of these pastors. For these guys, I think, it was
very encouraging to have people from outside praying with them and things like that.
Over the years you did more that 80 concerts. During this period
the music changed fast. In the early years of Bad Little Duck it was all metal/hard rock
and now there's a lot alternative stuff. So, how do you look at that?
It's changed because the line-up changed. New guys, younger guys
came and that became part of the new songs. At first I tried to sing like Bruce Dickinson
or Jon Bon Jovi -for ten years- and one day I realized that I can't do that. I don't have
their voices! So, I heard other guys like Rage Against The Machine. "Oh, rap! I don't
have to scream so much." And, what we want is to talk to young people so we have to
stay in musically. And also changing. Keep moving on. Don't do the same thing for 20
years, you know. And finally, we don't really say "we're gonna do this" or
"we're gonna do that, one-two-three." No. We play and things happened and
sometimes it sounds like rapcore and other times it sounds like worship. It depends on the
mood. The musicians bring in different influences. So, a melting of all this is Bad Little
Duck. I don't want to define our kind of music. It's Bad Little Duck!
Yeah, I hear that on Full Color Inside. There are all kinds of
styles: Metal, hardcore, funkrock and that remix version of Like The 3 Monkeys is just an
other style again. You're working on a new CD. How's that gonna develop? What kind of
musical styles can we expect on that?
It's evolution from Full Color Inside. We have the same musicians
except for the bass-player. Actually, we worked with a professional bass-player during the
recording of Full Color Inside because Jean-Michel left the band for management. We didn't
find a new bass-player at that time. Things changed. At that time, as it comes to lyrics,
we were testifying a lot. Also we had an evolution in our spiritual lives. We're gonna do
more worship-time lyrics. So, first we decided to put the different topics we need for a
worship-time together and we work around this. So, the guys compose music and after that
we listen to the mood, the ambience, and decide what the music says and put the
words on it. So, it's gonna be a bit different compared to Full Color Inside. It's gonna
be the same patchwork of different styles. Perhaps more rapcore and more samples,
machine-sounds. Because it's an evolution in music and we started to use them with Full
Color Inside and we've learned to work with these machines now. So, perhaps, we're gonna
have more machines.
When is that album coming out?
Well, I don't know. We're gonna record it in June, in Belgium,
and perhaps in the Autumn it will come out. We can't give a date now.
And the title?
(whispering) It's a secret.
(joking) Cool title! It's A Secret!
It's not a title! The title is a secret! (laughs) It was a joke!
Actually, I really don't know. I really don't know! The concept, the cover: I don't know.
I'm not involved in these decisions. I have decided I have a different point of view in
these things than the other guys. Once I found out my point of view was perhaps no the
best. Our drummer is a good designer. So, I let him decide for all these things. But we
don't have any ideas for the cover or the title. We have about 15 songs. Fifteen great new
songs and let us see what happens.
I'm looking forward! Thank you for this interview.