Debbie Gibson Interview

When she was only 16 years old, Debbie Gibson was signed to Atlantic Records. Her first album "Out Of The Blue" went triple platinum, with four singles - "Only In My Dreams," "Shake Your Love," "Out of the Blue," and "Foolish Beat" - going Top 5. "Foolish Beat" went all the way to number one, making Debbie, at 17, the youngest artist in history to write, produce, and perform a number one single.
"Electric Youth," Debbie's second album, went all the way to number one on the charts, producing two gold singles - "Electric Youth" and "Lost In Your Eyes."
Debbie Gibson's third album "Anything Is Possible" (Atlantic Records) is out, and Debbie has taken to the road in support of that album. Debbie will perform, (as part of her "One Step Ahead" World Tour) here in Syracuse, at the Landmark Theatre on Saturday, August 10.
We spoke with Debbie Gibson about her musical career to date.

Q. Debbie, tell me a little about this tour you're on. Where will it take you? How long does it last?
A. O.K. Well, we've just gotten back from doing six weeks overseas. I was in Japan and Southeast Asia. This part of the tour will be six weeks in the U.S.

Q. I would think it's a rather strange time to be out on the road. Ticket sales are off, for everybody, including the headliners.
A. Yeah, it's a weird time for the economy, and touring.

Q. Your tour is going fine then?
A. It's going fine. So far, everything’s been sold out, at this point. I just got a call to add another show in Atlantic City. So, it's going pretty good for me. But, I'm playing smaller venues, than a lot of people. I think a lot of people are trying to go into arenas right now and it's not working out, because like you said, it's a real strange time for touring. I want to be out on the road, so I'm just gonna do, whatever I can do.

Q. Are you the only one in the family in show biz?
A. Well, in the one stage part. My two older sisters are working with my mom in the management company, and the music publishing co. My youngest sister Denise wants to be a fashion designer. Actually, she just came out today. She's gonna start helping with wardrobe on the tour. So, they're more into the behind-the-scenes stuff. That's just what they chose to do.

Q. When you get right down to it, your success or failure, rests squarely on your shoulders. Would you ever like to be part of a group?
A. No. I don't think I ever could be part of a group. I could be, in terms of theatre, and film, but when it comes to my music I need to be able to do it the way I want to do it. It's definitely a bigger responsibility being a solo artist, because I always look at groups and say wow, they divide up the interviews, and stuff like that, and my thing is my thing. The only way I would ever have been part of a group is with my sisters. We used to sing together. Sometimes I kid around with my mom and say, we could've been like Wilson-Phillips, but they just didn't want to do that. But, I never felt enough of a strong musical bond with anyone to even have considered starting a group.

Q. You were still in high school, when you had a number one record in the charts. Your teachers must've been looking at you a little funny, because you're in their classroom.
A. Yeah, some of them went out of their way to make life difficult for me.

Q. How did they do that?
A. How they did that was, I never wanted to get a tutor. I always wanted to stay in regular school. I was very used to juggling school work and a career, 'cause I'd been doing it forever. I would go to them early, and say can I have the work for the next week. And they'd say, O.K. but there's a test on Friday, on this, this and this. So, I would take my work home, read the chapters, do it all. I would come in on Friday and I'd take the test, and I would get, let's say a 90. But then, they would say, it's great that you got a 90, but you have to take another test on all the things you missed in classroom discussions this week. I said, wait a minute, so you're telling me I have to do more, work than everybody else?

Q. The more success you have, of course, more is expected of you.
A. Right.

Q. Is it hard to live up to that? Every record has to be as big, if not bigger than the next one.
A. Well, I don't think of it that way. I don't put that kind of pressure on myself. For me, every record has to be a personal growth. If I start writing songs, and I feel I'm taking steps backwards, instead of forward, then I'd feel really depressed. Everytime I write, I feel my writing gets stronger,'" so it's really more of a personal thing , for me. And, it's the same thing with live shows. My whole goal when I'm on tour, is to make every show better than the last.

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