Hubert von Goisern
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INTERVIEW

Miscellaneous: 2007

"Mountains are walls"

Brigitte Woman 05/07 | Text: Stephan Handel | Photo: Walter Oczlon / Lawine

Hubert von Goisern, the revolutionary of folk music, on life in and with mountains

Hubert von GoisernBRIGITTE WOMAN: What is it like for a child to grow up in the mountains?

Hubert von Goisern: I have always it good fortune to be at home in the mountains. They were my first avenue to nature, to life as a whole with all its superhuman characteristics, as well as its cruelty. I don't know what would have been if I had grown up somewhere else.

However you have also lived many years in cities.

Yes, about a dozen years. And I have always felt happy in an urban environment. You can find biotopes there as well as wild animals - but it is not comparable.

Do mountains soothe? Or can they also oppress?

Mountains certainly don't unsettle me. On the contrary: despite all the danger and incalculability, they signify comfort to me, which has to do with protection. Mountains are walls - why are fortresses built with walls up on hills? Because they offer protection.

Is there a perfect time for the mountains?

Of course it is the break of day more than anywhere else - you automatically become an early riser in the mountains. The world lies at your feet, life is open for you - that's the special thing about early morning, in the mountains and elsewhere.

Does the mountain change your own perception?

The great natural world - mountains, desert, the sea, a large forest - they are all generally wonderfully suited for reflection. It also means that the way you call into the forest is the way it comes back. All the more so in the mountains.

When are you happiest in the mountains?

There is no "wrong" time for the mountains. I have been richly rewarded each time I have spent time on and with them. With coming upon a cold spring after a long, sweat-inducing mountain hike; with letting my thoughts drift off into the distance with the moving clouds.

What do mountains mean for your music?

They don't have a direct significance for the music, only for my attitude towards life. I never have a longing to play or compose in nature. Everything is perfect as it is. I would rather listen to the birds, the insects, the wind, the water...