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07/2008     Jens Pohl   Majk Moti     (German Version)

Hello, Majk. Let's start with a point that probably everyone wants to know. What are you doing at the moment, and what are your plans for the near future?

During the last few years I have been pretty much occupied with software development, and I'm still doing that today. Apart from that, I'm very fond of medieval re-enactment and horses and such things. At the moment I'm also busy forming a new band. Basically, the band is complete, but we still have to write many songs and realize several ideas. At present, our musical style is Symphonic Metal, roughly like NIGHTWISH, our name is D'ORCA, and there is a bunch of songs, but we are still working on them.

Many fans only know you by the name Majk Moti, although it is only a stage name. Can you explain the background of it?

Not only, I really have a personal relation to that name. Back then, on "Gates to Purgatory" and also "Branded and Exiled", when I joined the band, Rolf and the other guys only used their first names. I found Mike too boring, and Maik existed already. So I replaced the "i" with a "j", resulting in Majk. Later I found that only "Majk" was boring, too. My girlfriend's name back then was Moti, and so the name was perfect. :-) Originally, Moti is a name from India.

You just said that you are forming a new band. Do you still play the guitar or any other instrument?

I love playing the guitar passionately, and I practice every day. During the last years, I even took some lessons in Jazz and Swing to broaden my horizon. Apart from that I enjoy playing the classical guitar, especially Bach, and I'm also tinkering with medieval sounds like the lute and the mandolin. And I even play some drums and keyboards, the latter quite amateurishly, though.

While there was always a vivid coming and going in the RUNNING WILD line-ups, you used to be a solid constant in the band for a relatively long period of time. Did you have any kind of special status, e.g. regarding important decisions, studio work or song-writing, or did you always feel like a "quite normal" member?

I always felt like a normal band member. During the time with Jens and Stefan, only Rolf and I belonged to the GbR [German term for civil law association] and so I had a voice in official or legal matters. As far as song-writing was concerned, that was quite difficult with Rolf, because he had the monopoly of the typical RUNNING WILD style. But that never really was a problem for me. I didn't perceive anything like a special status, we were simply four guys who played music together.

Was there anything like a friendship between you and other members that went beyond the band itself? Or were there also some fellow musicians that you just couldn't get along with? And are you still in contact with any ex-members?

Rolf and I were quite close friends for some time, yes that's what you can call it. We haven't been in touch for a long time, but I really like him. With Stephan Boriss, the bass-player from the old days, I also had a closer contact for a short while, but this vanished when he left the band. Which is a pity, because he really was a cool guy. I also liked Hasche quite much, and we are still in touch every once in a while. Stefan Schwarzmann is someone I was very fond of, and I've just corresponded with him again, which I'm very happy about. I was so disappointed when he left us after such a short time to join U.D.O. I had some problems with Jens Becker, which was probably a mutual thing, but those are forgotten today. I really like him, and we have just started mailing to each other via MySpace. With Iain Finlay being the only exception, I actually felt a sense of friendship towards all RUNNING WILD members, sometimes more, sometimes less. All in all, we were rather good ol' buddies back then and not just project-based colleagues. At least that's what I felt.

The whole pirate-theme starting with "Under Jolly Roger" was mainly Rolf's idea and personal passion. To what extent could you actually identify with this theme? I mean, it didn't only influence the lyrics but also the artwork (e.g. the band pictures on "Under Jolly Roger" and "Port Royal") and the stage settings. Were you also inspired with fascination and did you get interested in the topic yourself? Or did you believe that the whole thing was rather pathetic and you had to participate only because it was a part your job?

Well, I could absolutely identify with it. On the one hand, I enjoyed the element of acting which boy does not dream to be a pirate ;-) on the other hand, I liked it much better than death and demons, which I found quite morbid, honestly. It was a vast field and had a lot of potential regarding staging and outfits. So I found it cool and not pathetic at all. But neither did I take it so seriously that it became my purpose in life.

In the mid- or late 80s there was a rumour that RUNNING WILD were supposed to contribute a song or even a complete soundtrack to a pirate film. Is this true? If so, which film was it?

I don't know anything about that. At least I can't remember, let alone a particular title. So: No idea at all.

Considering your time in RUNNING WILD, is there a moment that you love to remember, thinking "Boy, THAT was great back then"? And which moment would you rather erase from history?

The first months were truly awesome. I came from a small backwoods band and had my first show at the Loreley festival in front of 12.000 people, which was absolutely cool. The tour with MÖTLEY CRÜE was very exciting, and also the USA-tour that followed, despite all the problems. I wouldn't erase anything at all, everything belongs to my experience of life, the good things as well as the bad things, and without them I would be a different person today. Which I don't want to be, because I am just happy the way I am.

Imagine, in 2009 (marking the 25th anniversary of the debut-album "Gates to Purgatory") Rolf gets the idea to set up a kind of history-show (e.g. for a summer festival or a small tour). Songs from each period of the band's history are supposed to be performed by the original line-up, respectively. Would you participate in such an event? And are your guitar-skills still so fresh that you could perform a handful of classics ("Port Royal", "Riding the Storm", "Raise your Fist", "Wild Animal") just like that, or would you have to practise a while?

Of course, I would do that, why not! Technically I am fit, because I play actively and rehearse regularly. For the RUNNING WILD style I might have to practise a bit, but not very much. Rather to acquire the songs again.

Is there maybe a song (maybe one of your own compositions) that was seldom or never performed live, but that you definitely would like to include in the setlist?

Sure, "Death or Glory", for example. That is one of my songs, and we never played it live. But apart from some exceptions, I actually like all songs, so I wouldn't really care which ones we play, as long as we kick some ass.

Let's continue with some more general questions. If you had the possibility, what kind of film would you like to act in, and in which role?

"Pirates of the Caribbean" would be great, I'd be happy with an ordinary crew member. Or an evil Goa'Uld in "Stargate".

Who is or was a paragon or even an idol for you?

I don't have any idols or particular paragons. But I believe that Ghandi was very courageous and Siddharta Gautama was very wise. These are indeed people who inspire me.

So you are interested in history and politics?

Yes, very much, in fact. Although I'm not interested in historical dates, like precise days and years, but rather trends, developments and so on...

Which historic person would you like to talk to, and about what?

To Hildegard von Bingen and to Edgar Cayce about alternative medicine, to Octavian (Augustus) about leadership, to Cicero about literature and poetry, and to Mozart about music.

Ok, let's talk a little bit more about music: What do you associate with the following musicians?

Alice Cooper - old

Ludwig van Beethoven - ingenious

James Hetfield - tired

Lenny Kravitz - cool

Ozzy Osbourne - total madman

Rolf Kasparek - alien

Rob Halford - loud and cool

Jim Morrison - dead

Dave Mustaine - more dead

Timo Tolkki - STRATOVARIUS, AVANTASIA - cool guitarist

Doro Pesch - sings

Marylin Manson - sick

Chris Boltendahl - GRAVE DIGGER, don't know them too well

Now I would like to get back to RUNNING WILD. Please rate the following RUNNING WILD albums on a scale from 1 to 10 (1 = lousy, 10 = perfect):

Gates To Purgatory - 8

Branded And Exiled -5

Under Jolly Roger - 6

Port Royal - 8

Death Or Glory -10 :-)

Unfortunately, I don't know the other ones, sorry...

What is your favourite RUNNING WILD song, and why?

"Riding The Storm". I like the chorus very much, and playing it has always been a lot of fun for me.

Is there a RUNNING WILD song that you don't like at all?

In two words: "Black Demon".

Thanks a lot for your time!

It was a pleasure. And best regards to everyone! / Copyright © 1996-2013 by Running Wild / Design:
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