Lutz Rode

Lutz Rode, known from the German band Pickers, has recently started working solo.
We’ve met him in Berlin to find out more about his plans…

Check out his german tune ‘USA’ right here, as well as his collaboration with producer & DJ Pedro, ‘Do You Remember’.

His new undertaking is a joint project with Pedro, a DJ from Berlin. We wanted to know more about his motive to make this decision.

“I wanted to do something independent and different, something that is completely isolated from Pickers. Everything I had ever written or produced up to this point belonged to the band Pickers, and I wanted to create something that had absolutely nothing to do with it. Something that is detached from my old work, concerning the style as well as the label.
When I wrote songs for Pickers, after a certain amount of time I always knew what it was going to sound like once it was finished. The difference to the music I create now – and one of the main reasons why I started this project – is that the final product is a lot more surprising now. It’s still the same process. I write the song and give it to Pedro. But what he makes out of it is completely different than what I am used to. I hear my own song and I’m really surprised to find out which nuances and details he has added, which decisions he has made. That is exactly what I wanted. To find out what else you could make out of the songs, to see what they could become under different circumstances.”

Originally it was all about producing a few of Lutz’ songs. But while they were working on them, a second cooperation came into existence. The DJ had a few raw original tracks, Lutz wrote the lyrics, and that’s how they started a new simultaneous project. On the one hand Pedro is producing Lutz’ songs, on the other hand the two of them are creating new songs together. At the moment they are producing an English single as well as a German one.

“The two of them are quite different. The German one still sounds a lot like Pickers, obviously, since I wrote the songs for Pickers. The project with Pedro is completely different, it’s not even the kind of music I would necessarily listen to at home. Yet I don’t feel like I’m selling myself.
I think pop music is the best sort of music. Personally, I don’t care whether it’s played on an electric guitar or a synthesizer or a piano with an orchestra. A good song is a good song. That’s exactly what I was trying to create with Pickers. The sound was different, but it’s still the same concept. It’s still pop music.
I’m not trying to create something incredibly artsy or high-class, nothing particularly deep or ambivalent. I just want to make music that’s easy to listen to.
When you’re writing a song, you realise that quite quickly. You can play a song on a guitar or any other instrument, you might even just sing the melody. Once you do that and it sounds good, then you know it will work out in every other way as well, whether you’re going to play it on the guitar or the piano or whatever. However, if you have to explain yourself, telling everyone that the song will become really great once you add more instruments and edit it, then most of the time it simply won’t work out.”

Lutz Rode is not only working on two different projects simultaneously, he’s using two different languages as well.

“I prefer German when it’s about the language and the content. It feels less shallow to me. If it’s just about the sound, English has obviously got an advantage. It just sounds beautiful. To use English is almost like using another instrument, it sounds more fluent. German sounds very hard and clipped. But if you want to make something clear, German is a bit more direct and insistent.
The project we’re both working on together is very exciting as well. I’ve never worked with anyone but Pickers before, so now I get a completely new creative input and I’m going in another direction. It’s all about letting yourself in for something new and just being curious to find out what it sounds like at the end.”

The German EP produced by Pedro is the centre of Lutz Rode’s solo project. They have already shot a music video for the first single which will be released in March.
By contrast, the English songs that have come about with Pedro were rather created by coincidence.

“The songs will be relased additionally and we’ll see what happens. We don’t have a concrete plan as to what we will do with them, we’re having a lot of fun with this project and that’s why we want to release the songs. Since the German EP was the original plan, we will focus on that. I’ve already played a few acoustic shows last year, and midyear a band will join me and we’ll see how it works out.”

Many thanks to Lutz for the interview! We are very excited to find out what is expecting us. One thing’s for sure – we’re going to hear a lot more from Lutz Rode.