Fine wines and various streetfood, extremely warm and cool wind, celestial phenomenon with drones, varied atmospheres conveyed by the performers on 4 stages, 2 full houses, 6 international performers, 36 domestic performers and a record number of more than 23,000 picnickers were present at the 10th Paloznak JazzPiknik in 2022. The closing performer of the main stage, Dawn Joseph, founder and singer of MF Robots, answered our questions about her life and the JazzPiknik.
You were born in Jersey, Channel Islands and moved to London in 2000. What was the main reason for the big move?
My father is a bass player and singer and when his band played at my 19th birthday party, I got up on stage and sang a song and I was hooked from that moment on! After several months of singing in the pubs and clubs in Jersey I realised I had to move away from the island in order to progress in the music businesses and London seemed like the most obvious place.
I read on bbemusic.com that you are a multi-instrumentalist, can you play many instruments? You played bass in Phil Collins' band, you worked with Kylie Minogue, Rick Astley, CeeLo Green, Craig David, Rod Stewart, how do you remember for those times?
I was introduced to a music agent after I had been writing with Louise Rednapp (former member of the girl group Eternal). She had asked me if I would go “on the road” with her as her bass player one summer. But I had no clue that that was even a “thing”! I didn’t know what a session musician was at the time. After very little convincing, we played some festivals and radio shows and the guitarist passed on my contact details to his agent. I got a phone call within a week saying that Phil Collins wanted me to play bass for him! I’ve since played bass for Adam Lambert, Cee Lo Green, guitar for Craig David, and provided backing vocals for both live and studio recordings for major artists. I remember those times fondly. They were so much fun, a lot has changed for better and for worse I guess. I still do the occasional session for those artists now.
Some of my past favourite artists, Salt'N'Pepa, EN Vogue influenced your style. Is there any detail what you still use from them? You wrote to Instagram that you are an amateur clothes designer and I read that you design and make your attire. What inspires you as a designer? What kind of material do you use mostly for dresses, how long does it take to make a dress?
I had several influences growing up. Vocally and stylistically. I can definitely say I learned the most from Ella Fitzgerald Particularly her phrasing. I’m also hugely influenced by the soul greats like Anita Baker, Gladys Knight, Aretha Franklin, Luther Vandross, Michael Mcdonald, Sister Sledge, Chic, and the more contemporary singers and artists such as Whitney Houston, En Vogue, Mary J Blige. My love of fashion comes from Rick James, Michael Jackson, Bananarama, Cameo. Basically anybody from the 80’s!! My style is very eclectic. I love exaggerated shapes. Colour. I try to make as many of my stage outfits as possible. It usually starts with the fabric. I’m very much an amateur so I’m not the quickest sewer. But I love the process.
How many music formations are you in? What kind of styles you play with them?
When I’m not being a “Robot” I am performing as a solo artist in London and the UK and Denmark. I see it as an extension to the Robots project. Performing Motown, Soul and R n B. I have recorded an EP also.
What kind of music, which artists do you listen nowadays? Where did the name Music For Robots come from?
I listen to all kinds of music to suit different moods. Anything from Country to Pop to Indie. I think that is definitely heard in the music MFR makes. And the name Music For Robots is just very tongue and cheek! There’s a lot of really great and inspiring new music out there but the business is also very saturated and now it is easier than ever to make a record. You don’t have to think about or care very much about what you are listening too or where you get your music from anymore. Music For Robots!
In the summer, during the performance of MF Robots, there was a strong wind on Lake Balaton, at the JazzPiknik. Was it very unpleasant on stage?
Yes that wind oh my goodness. It was very scary I won’t lie. It would have been very sad to have cancelled the show after such a long wait. We got thru it and the audience stayed and partied so we did what we came to do!
A szellősen elhelyezett büfékocsik és pavilonok, néhány terelő kordon és biztonsági őr segített az eligazodásban, továbbá a látogatók, akik már nyitáskor szép számmal jelen voltak már a kis utcákban is, hiszen a rendezvény helyszíne is taglalt, a több színpad és udvar egymástól elszórtan helyezke...
Délután fűben ülős a Nagyszínpadunk, sok-sok pokróc a mezőn, rohangászó gyerekek, jó hangulat. Aztán este 9-től itt az igazi koncerthangulat, általában felállnak a pokrócokról táncolni! A Balaton-parti domboldalon, unikális helyen szólnak a világsztárok dallamai a csillagfényes éjszakában.