So much has been discussed and written about Linda’s new CD, NOW, by the press and by the fans on her official Web site and Facebook page. It’s always great to talk to Linda and to hear about the exciting things happening in her life and career from her perspective. As the EDER-tors of THE VOICE, we are continually in awe of Linda’s openness and willingness give of her time to share her thoughts with her loyal fans. Linda Eder fans are very lucky fans!
VOICE: Congratulations on your new CD, NOW! As you were choosing and recording the songs for this CD, were you confident that it would be received with such critical acclaim from every direction?
LINDA: Well, I guess I knew that it would make the old Eder/Wildhorn fans happy. In the process of making a CD, I think I’m just fixed on the actual music. If you are “trying” to make music for a reaction, then you are going about it all wrong. It has to be first and foremost about the love of creating.
VOICE: Please give us as many adjectives as you can to describe your feelings as you read and heard such positive feedback about NOW?
LINDA: Relieved, happy, excited, curious.
VOICE: What do you mean when you describes yourself as being curious?
LINDA: Curious because I am not my own fan, so part of me never understands why anyone wants to hear me sing and likes it.
VOICE: Were you ever concerned that you might lose some of your newer fans who came on board because of THE OTHER SIDE OF ME? Will you continue to keep songs from this CD in your shows?
LINDA: I never stopped singing these types of songs, so I don’t think I thought about losing fans. I thought more about that when THE OTHER SIDE OF ME came out. But that CD allowed me to reach a wider audience by broadening my musical style, and it has now given me the freedom to have a show that is more varied. I don’t feel worried about putting a song like “Waiting For The Fall” next to a Broadway ballad or a big band piece.
VOICE: Now that you have a number of shows under your belt since the release, do you have a favorite song or two to perform live?
LINDA: My reasons for calling certain songs my favorites in the live show will be a little different from the audience. Since I have the physical feeling of performing the song, it also sways my opinion. “Is a song physically fun to sing… is it comfortable?” It’s always a tough question because it changes day to day. I do know that every time I have performed “More Than Heaven,” it has felt special. Maybe it’s in part because we have been dedicating it to the people of Japan, but there had been a magical feeling going on. The band plays it so well. Allison sings with me. I love the arrangement. Overall, I am still settling into the show. It takes a while before you get that total comfort factor where everything just flows out and I’m not worrying about lyrics and tempos. We are all still gelling.
VOICE: In the midst of your solo shows, you took time out to spend a few days in Fort Lauderdale, Florida rehearsing and performing as part of the world premiere of CIRQUE DREAMS BROADWAY. Did this show bring with it extra stress, or was it a welcome change to be “part” of a show instead of being the “whole” show?
LINDA: It was fun. I really liked the people involved and it was something different from my normal routine. It felt like doing theater again. I do miss that experience. There were also young kids in the show and they were so cute. When I was rehearsing the songs, they were sitting in the front row. They had been scolded a few times by the director, but they were unable to keep themselves from whispering up compliments to me. Stuff like “I LOVE you! You’re my idol!” I laughed and said thank you and then reminded them that whispering is louder than talking sometimes. They were all theater kids who are itching to make it to the Great White Way. I did feel stress, however, because I had to learn two new songs and there was only one show, so only one shot to get it right. New lyrics always make me nervous. It was great to get out of the NY cold for a few days. The winter was so brutal and it still seems like it will never be warm again, so to be on the water in Florida in the warm sunshine was really great.
VOICE: Your duet from PHANTOM with Marc Kudisch was just beautiful! Do you enjoy performing duets?
LINDA: I do. I love harmony. I also like working with people. Marc is great. We had met before but never worked together. He is a busy guy. I would have been totally exhausted on the schedule he was on. We sang “Music Of The Night,” which works surprisingly well as a duet. Even though we had very little rehearsal time, the song went well. Since it was the show opener, that was obviously important.
VOICE: Did you find it distracting to have a dancer and an aerialist performing during your duet with Marc?
LINDA: Not really. We saw them do the routine a few times during rehearsal, so some of the shock and awe wears off and it just becomes something beautiful that flows with the music. Of course, I was concentrating so hard on remembering the lyrics that I don’t think I really saw much during the actual show.
VOICE: Which of the circus acts of the talented performers did you enjoy the most?
LINDA: I liked so many but the one that stands out in my mind for different reasons is the father and the little daughter. I was just amazed watching him throw that little girl into the air and how incredibly flexible and perfect she was. Like a doll. In general, I am just in awe of the physical strength of the acrobats.
VOICE: Did you learn any new tricks from the circus performers during your time with them? [smiles]
LINDA: Just that they put resin on the ropes so that they don’t slide out of them… [smiles]
VOICE: Those who were part of the audience have said you stole the show with your spot-on performance of each song. How did it make you feel to experience the energy of the crowd and the wonderful reception they gave you each time you took the stage?
LINDA: I was very humbled when I walked out at the top of the show. This wasn’t “my” show so I had no idea what to expect. It’s a wonderful venue and the audience was great.
VOICE: Do you know if sheet music will be available for NOW anytime soon?
LINDA: I don’t know. Cherry Lane always did our sheet music, and the man who ran the company all these years has retired.
VOICE: How about Karaoke for NOW or for any of your most recent albums (especially TOSOM, so much fun to sing!)?
LINDA: I really have no idea who makes the Karaoke CDs. They seem to just happen.
VOICE: Your life was one huge whirlwind since March 1st! The first three weeks of April have brought with it some time at home. Have you been able to get some rest and relaxation?
LINDA: I have. My idea of rest and relaxation is to do manual labor, so someone else might not think I am “resting” but I am. Traveling is stressful so just being home is great. I just wish spring would stop teasing us and bring us some warmth.
VOICE: Will you get back to work on “Metaphor House” this month?
LINDA: Yes, I will start working on it again soon. Right now it’s all about spring cleanup. I need the warm weather because I need to work outside. I tried to work inside in the basement, but it is too dusty and not good for my lungs/voice. It’s alright though. I think I needed a break. I was starting to feel like a carpenter who does singing gigs on the side!
VOICE: What project will be your first priority to complete?
LINDA: I usually have a few projects going at the same time. I seem to like to jump around. But I want to finish trimming Jake’s room and also get the tile down in the front entry. I want my brother to fly out from Minnesota. He has done all the tile work and also I need him to get me motivated. He works like “a son of a gun”… [smiles]
VOICE: With your personal happiness and your career going stronger than ever, are you starting to think “the best is yet to come?”
LINDA: I really don’t think that way anymore. The world seems like such a precarious place right now, teetering on the edge of some major world changes. As you get older, you realize how fragile everything is and how true the old saying “everything changes” is. I only look for peace and the ability to continue on. It seems wrong to ask for too much when so many have nothing. I know I’m going a little “Ghandi” here, but I’m being sincere. I’ve already been given a lot. I would be happy just to keep it for as long as I am able.