NAME: Andre Christophe Bollier
BORN: June 10, 1971
BIRTHPLACE: Münsterlingen, Switzerland
INSTRUMENTS: Drums, Guitars, some Piano, Recorder and Mandolin
JOBS PAST AND PRESENT: Now mainly teaching languages at college; in the past different temporary office and factory jobs; first job ever was cashier and kitchen help in a canteen. First money received for playing music came quite unexpectedly from an old man, who decided to give me 2 Swiss Francs (yes, two, still have the coin!) when he heard me practise the guitar on a train!
MUSICAL TRAINING: Recorder and snare drum while in primary school; drums, guitar and piano lessons during college years; 1993-1997 drums, some mallets and music theory at the Conservatory in Zurich.
OTHER BANDS: THE DUDES (1989-1995)
MUSICAL INFLUENCES: Hard to say, as I'm into many, sometimes radically different styles and artists. The most notable influences on BEYOND THE FIELDS seem to have been Irish folk, folk rock bands like THE POGUES or THE MEN THEY COULDN'T HANG and the American singer/songwriter tradition. That said, I'm quite sure that to a certain extent, my lifelong love for powerful drums and heavy guitars comes through in my music as well.
FIRST PUBLIC PERFORMANCE: Playing snare drum in a brass band while still in primary school. My first concert as a drummer with a rock band, however, was at a school party in college, where we played mostly Stones covers.
FIRST CONCERT ATTENDED: Should have been KISS in 1981, as a gift for my 10th birthday, but the tour was cancelled, and shortly after the original line-up was history (for about 20 years at least!). So my first concert eventually became IRON MAIDEN and WASP in 1986.
MOST MEMORABLE CONCERT EXPERIENCE: Has to be ALICE COOPER in 1988. Sort of a childhood dream come true. I even managed to get me a photo pass for the press pit. So, when the show started I stood way up front, right between the audience and the stage, with my borrowed camera ready to take some pictures. Yet when the man I had known from Kindergarten days on (thanks to Kermit!) got on stage, my jaw dropped like Sebastian's in Disney's Little Mermaid, my respect for the old man turned me into stone and I couldn't take a single picture for ages. And yes, of course me and my borrowed(!) camera were soaked in stage blood by the end of the show . . .
FAVOURITE MUSICIANS: Oh, there are so many I like. As far as drummers go, I have to say Nick Menza, Steve Wacholz, and Charlie Benante . . . my favourite bass player is definitely Flea . . . I admire the vocal talents of Rob Halford, Eric Adams, David DeFeis, Jon Oliva, Joey Belladonna and Parramore McCarty; Dee Snider is a show of his own anyway . . . and I simply love folk songwriters Dar Williams, Richard Shindell, Ellis Paul, Alistair Hulett, Richard Meyer and Hugh Blumenfeld. Did I forget anyone? Tori Amos maybe, Manu Chao, Billy Corgan, Dave Mustaine, Dave Wyndorf, Roger Waters, Jerry Goldsmith, . . .
FIRST RECORD BOUGHT: The first record I ever received was Alive II by KISS, a birthday wish of mine when I was still in Kindergarten. The first record I actually bought myself was certainly a KISS album as well.
ALL TIME FAVOURITE ALBUMS: Too many to list. Here's a small selection, in no particular order: PINK FLOYD - The Wall; BATHORY - Twilight of the Gods; ALISTAIR HULETT - Dance of the Underclass; RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS - Blood Sugar Sex Magic; THE POGUES- If I Should Fall from Grace with God; MEGADETH - Youthanasia; COLIN RUDD - The Songs of JRR Tolkien; JAMES HORNER - Braveheart (Motion Picture Soundtrack).
FAVOURITE MOVIES: Again, too many to list. Different ones for each genre and decade. Among them certainly When Harry Met Sally, Jacob's Ladder, Braveheart, The Game, Fight Club, Martin Rosen's Plague Dogs, early John Carpenter films, Corman's Poe adaptations with Vincent Price, . . .
FAVOURITE ACTORS: Billy Crystal, Michael Douglas, John Candy, Vincent Price, Edward Norton, Gene Hackman, Ed Harris, Gary Sinise, . . .
FAVOURITE ACTRESS: Meg Ryan
FAVOURITE WRITERS: Kafka, Hoffmann, Meyrink, Poe
FAVOURITE WORKS OF LITERATURE: Poe's short stories, Shelley's Frankenstein, Conrad's Heart of Darkness, Huxley's Brave New World, Tieck's Der gestiefelte Kater, Meyrink's Der violette Tod, . . .
FAVOURITE STAND-UP COMEDIANS: George Carlin, Denis Leary, Robin Williams, Eddie Murphy, Damon Wayans, Chris Rock, Steven Wright, . . .
FAVOURITE MEAL: Italian food is never wrong with me. I don't mind Indian or Chinese food either, not to mention Swiss specialities like fondue. Mmmh!
LIKES: Smart people, sensitive people, honesty, creativity, inspired discussions, art in all shapes and forms, reading, writing, meeting friends, watching movies, going to concerts, sports when I can spare the time, stand-up comedy, Disney animation from past decades, The Simpsons, Mad About You . . . and lots of music.
DISLIKES: Selfish, dishonest and superficial people
HAPPIEST MOMENT IN LIFE: Whenever I'm with a true friend or completely absorbed by writing or playing music.
SADDEST MOMENT IN LIFE: The day my best friend decided to give up her mortal existence.
THE FIELDS SONG: As
I wrote them all, there are many that mean a lot to me on a personal
level. However, The Falcon Lives
is certainly the most important one to me. Not only was it my final
thank you and goodbye to the one person I loved the most in this world,
but it also marked my return to songwriting after a painfully long and
dark period in my life, in which I was perfectly unable to finish a
single piece of music. The song's guitar riff and vocals are rather
intense and sometimes quite aggressive. Because of that, playing The
Falcon always has a strong cleansing and
soothing effect on my soul, an effect I am truly grateful for.