Question Time

  

Peter Stengaard

 

 

Born in Denmark. Born to make music. Born to produce the most mysterious and anticipated single in Donna's career... He's Peter Stengaard, the young, talented producer/writer/arranger who's given us I GOT YOUR LOVE.

 

First of all, the most obvious question: how did this "Summer connection" come about?

I met Bruce Roberts here in LA a couple of years ago. We started working together right away and he played me the early stages of IGYL. I started working up the track for it and when I had a good sense of where it was going we started recording more vocals with Donna.

Were you intimidated by the perspective of working with a living legend?

Oh yeah (smiles) but she's so sweet and down to earth...

Were you in the studio when Donna was laying her vocals?

Yeah... We did most of the vocals in London actually.

Were you a Donna fan before you knew her?

Isn't everybody a fan of Donna? (smiles)

I GOT YOUR LOVE sounds fresh and dynamic without being too aggressive: it's the perfect dance track that sounds great on the radio. I guess that's a quality you felt was right for the song...

Yeah, and it's what Donna is really - great songs that make you wanna dance... It's very simple.

The track previewed on SEX & THE CITY was heavier on the drums, if I'm not mistaken. Was that a demo?

You're right, it had more percussion stuff on it I think...

As a producer, how often do you have to ask yourself: "who's going to buy this, who's going to play it"?

I try not to think about that when I actually work in the studio. I know what I like and it usually translates to everybody else if I'm really into it myself. I perform instruments and arrange at the same time and I have to keep an artistic flow. I still think most people want the music they buy to be more "art" than "product" - if you know what I mean...

Is it easier for you to produce your own songs or other people's?

Good question... I know I'd go crazy if another producer messed up my song. (laughs)

So is your approach any different?

Actually when I produce a song that I didn't write I try to look for something the writer didn't anticipate. Sometimes there's a not obvious way to do a song that is brilliant - there are soo many good songs but they have to sound a little different to become hits and get noticed. When I write and produce my own songs I usually get the whole concept for lyric/melody/production at the same time... When I get that I wanna finish writing it asap, so I can get to producing it the way I heard it and see if it all works together.

Did you listen to some Donna music before - or perhaps after - working with her?

Of course... She's a part of music history and everybody should know her music. There's so much to learn from her... I wish every singer I work with would study her vocals. I saw her live for the first time here in LA last week... I thought I knew how good she is but I didn't - she's just SO amazing live... And when I talked to her after the show she actually said she felt a little ruff that day... I was like "ummm...ok".

Most Donna fans, including myself, hope this is just the beginning of a fruitful collaboration between you and The Diva. Any plans to work together again in the future?

Thanks... That's a great compliment. Can I just say that I think there will be more...

 

 

Question Time: Peter Stengaard  1995 Sebastiano Lionti
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