Getting through it nicely
(Video) Guardian compared him to Michael Jackson, Cliff Richard covers his songs, but these days Daniel Bedingfield can be found in southern Tel Aviv, performing with local bands and flexing his Hebrew. 'I feel so alive here,' he tells Ynet in his first interview in four years
But this is exactly where you can find Daniel Bedingfield these past few months.
The 31 year-old New Zealander made his breakthrough in 2001, when his debut hit "Gotta Get Thru This" was released. The Guardian said the track was "absurdly brilliant, as if Off the Wall-period Michael Jackson had been blasted forward 20 years, genius intact".
"The song was written in a room with bed bugs", Bedingfield now reveals to Ynet, while roaming the streets of Florentine.
With sister Natasha, who he plans to visit in Los Angeles (Photo: Getty Images Bank)
In his first interview in four years, the singer reveals his passion for Israel and the new direction he is taking in his musical affairs, trading the need for middle men and women ("yentas", in his words) for direct connections to his fan base, via his twitter and Facebook pages, as well as street teams he is creating with volunteers from around the world.
On Friday he was a guest at a Raw Men Empire Gig at the Levontin 7 club in Tel Aviv, and on Saturday he performed at Rothschild 12 with guests from local bands I've Got The Hotties, Boom Pam and 1, 2, Many.
His connection to the local music scene was organic, by meeting bartenders and waiters who play in bands. "Every single person in this neighborhood is a musician", he smiles. "It's unbelievable".
Bedingfield with Raw Men Empire (Photo: May Castelnuovo Galili)
On New Year's Eve 2004, Bedingfield was involved in a serious car injury, forcing him into months of physiotherapy. He agrees with the suggestion that his new outlook on his work has to do with that life-changing experience.
"I had convulsions every few hours, and my father had to hold me down so I wouldn't damage my spine. I could have died. These hours of staring at the ceiling made it clear that it's all about connection. Without that, there is no meaning".
What is the rest of 2011 going to be like for you?
"I'm filming a YouTube documentary for the "Stop The Traffik" campaign against human trafficking. After Israel, I'm flying to London, Amsterdam, then to my apartment in Los Angeles, where my sister Natasha lives (a No 1. charting pop star herself), then Kingston, Jamaica and Berlin. Everywhere I go, want to meet local musicians, sleep in their houses, connect with them, be affected by their mood and live with them."
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