[intro] Q. ...all the journalists were convinced that she's as sad and mysterious as her songs. Nothing like that! Besides, I know it best: I was lying - well, I was sitting with her on the same bed.

Q. Hello, welcome you to Poland and Atomic TV, is it your first time in Poland?
T. Yes, the first time.
Q. What did you hear about Poland, did you hear anything about Polish music or Polish movies?

T. I just know Krzysztof Kieslowski and - Lech Walesa (laughter). And also where I live there are a lot of Polish coffee shops, I don't know why but we have two on one street.
Q. Don't you regret now that you started your career so young, you may have lost something from your youth and you didn't experience what most young people do?
T. When I was starting to sing my brother was at university and I went to visit him, so I don't think I missed anything. I think I wanted to study English literature but in fact I wanted to read books, but I can still do this. So I didn't feel I missed anything. Perhaps I missed all the adolescent things you do when you're at university, like falling in love with the wrong people and you know, getting drunk and all that stuff. Maybe I missed that but...
Q. Yes, but actually show business is all about getting drunk or falling in love with the wrong people. Didn't you do that?
T. I didn't do that, I was so shy. I didn't even think about it.
Q. I wanted to ask you if you're joyful as a private person but I don't have to do it know. Still, your music is sometimes very mysterious and very dark.
T. I think it's my voice that creates a very particular atmosphere as soon as I start to sing, so there is some kind of darkness in my music. So maybe it's a part of me or maybe it's in the songs, but I don't know because I'm not really very dark.
Q. So don't you want to make a video on the beach, very funny, etc.
T. I do want to make a video on the beach - in bikini!
Q. So why don't you do this?
T. My record company doesn't want to agree. Next video - my next video will be on the beach, who knows.
Q. Are you a fan of Madonna?
T. Yes, I am. I am.
Q. So it must be a great feeling when you hear that somebody like Madonna says she listens to your songs.
T. Yea, but I don't know if she does listen to me, I don't know if it's true. But I know that Madonna is very, very supportive for other artists.
Q. Have you ever met her?
T. No, I've never met her.
Q. Where do you find inspiration for your songs?
T. Everywhere, everywhere. Now I like Brazilian music, because it seems to me - even if they have very melancholic songs, their percussion is very physical, very sensual. There's a lot to learn from the way they layer their songs. The Scandinavian music was just from the record I heard called 'Global Celebration' where there was an amazing string line which sounded to me like The Velvet Underground or something, and that's why I sampled that. But everything, I just listen to everything.
Q. The first single from your album is called 'Stop Listening'. You've said it's about two people who are in love but are unable to communicate. Have you experienced anything like that?
T. No, never. If I couldn't communicate with the person I love, I would go. But I see a lot of people in relationships for a long time, and they seem to be there because they don't know what else they can do, and I think that's very scary. But not me, I'm such a young woman.
Q. So how would you describe your last album, are there a few words that would describe it?
T. Very light, very frothy and a bit dark - just like cappuccino. (laughter)
Q. You've said this album is a new beginning for you. Why are you saying so, aren't you proud of your previous achievements?
T. No, I do - there's just a Chinese calendar, I know it sounds freaky, but when you look at the Chinese calendar: when you're 18 it's one cycle, and when you're 28, there is a new cycle for a woman.
Q. And for a man?
T. And for a man - who cares! (laughter) No, for men I don't know but I think it's a bit later.
Q. I think it's 30.
T. Yea, but for a woman it's 28, then 30, then it's probably 35. And it all means that you're life is changing and changing...
Q. We'll probably see Tanita Tikaram during the Sopot festival this year - I just can't wait.

Thanks to Krzysztof Migdalski for this tapescript.

Updated: 4th October 1999, Boleslaw Januszko


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