week 16 February 2003
third degree with Walter Micallef
If someone were to hand you Lm10,000, how would you spend them?
In a recording studio most probably. This has been my dream for
a long while now: Id love to have the equipment to take
care of the recording and the producing aspect of music myself.
The question is: would Lm10,000 be enough? I doubt it, seeing
that I would want to get the very best equipment. And of course,
with a recording studio constant upgrading is a must.
How do you want people to remember you?
Well, Ive never thought about my own death and how people
will think of me afterwards. (Pause for thought) Probably as a
contributor to Maltese language through my songs. Maltese is not
given the importance it deserves when it comes to the arts and
I hope this forthcoming CD will make a bit of a difference. Its
true that the market is limited and that it is difficult to make
a living out of it, but the real reason Maltese is not given the
respect it deserves is that many people are still influenced by
the Colonial mentality that foreign is better than Maltese. I
want to be remembered as having helped change that a bit.
Describe yourself in as few words as possible.
Im a positive and a happy person, a romantic who believes
that everyone has a contribution to make to society even
if they need a push to make this contribution.
How would you go about impressing a woman?
I would write a song for her. Although having said that, I know
from experience that the technique does not work as whenever Ive
written a song for a lady the relationship always ended up not
working. Or perhaps Im taking the easy way out, blaming
it on the song!
Which movie best describes your life?
I love Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks and theyve done an excellent
movie together: Sleepless in Seattle. More than describing my
life, I feel that this film says a lot about a lot of people.
We all have our dreams
If you were food, what would you be?
A Chinese or Thai meal, a combination of sweet, sour, spicy, tangy
the full array of flavours. And not just one course, but the whole
meal including dessert!
Are you a coffee or a tea drinker?
I love tea, but only the way I make it. Which means that if Im
at a bar or coffee-shop I will order coffee.
Whats been the highlight of you career so far?
Getting the award for the best lyrics in Maltese during the very
first edition of the awards. And launching this CD, of course,
which Ive wanted to do for a long time. The CD is called
Ma Jien Xejn (I am nothing), and this is not only because one
of the songs is called that. It is to denote that the CD is not
just my work but a joint effort with invaluable contributions
from a lot of people, whom I thank with all my heart.
If money were no option, what would you be doing?
Well, I love my present job, which is connected to air freight.
And music is not a love, its my whole life. So Id
probably be doing pretty much the same things. However I love
travelling and if money were no option I would definitely spend
more time away from these shores. Not that I can complain: thanks
to my work I already travel a lot.
How old do you feel?
In my late twenties. I would say I feel nineteen, but I dont
want to stretch it. But its true that Im still a child
Whats the most bizarre thing youve ever eaten?
Recently in China I got given duck interiors, when what I really
wanted was normal duck. I did try them but I sent them back. They
werent exactly what I was after.
Are you good at keeping secrets?
Im good at keeping the serious ones, that are normally related
to problems or serious situations. But not the silly ones, such
as who has a crush on whom! Those dont count.
If you had a time-machine, where would you go?
I love science fiction, so it would be the future. In fact one
of the songs on my CD is called 2020 and it portrays quite a doomsday
scenario. Why the future? Ive read about and visualised
the past more than once, everyone knows what happened in history.
But the future is a completely different matter.
What is your biggest fear?
Growing old and not being able to live alone. I am not sure that
I will manage this and I would hate to lose my independence. However,
it is a reality that must be faced. And it is also true that as
we grow older we crave the company of other people more.
Do you play the lotto?
We play Super 5 at work and I take tickets in the national lottery.
That way Im in there with a small chance!
If you were stranded on a desert island with strangers and food
were running out, what would you do?
Food should never be a problem on a desert island that is surrounded
by sea. The sea can provide ample food. Its just a question
of being inventive.
Do you believe in extraterrestrials?
Absolutely. And Id love to be the one who makes first contact.
Are you a workaholic?
Definitely not. I love my free time! One of my songs speaks about
this, a feeling of nostalgia for deserted beaches and swinging
palm trees. Who would bother thinking about work in a place such
Are you superstitious?
No. When I had just got married, a black cat crossed our path
just as we were going out of the church. And despite the fact
that after fourteen years we separated, the years in between were
good. So we proved the superstition wrong.
Do you believe in love at first sight?
Definitely.Walter Micallefs CD, Ma Jien Xejn, is on sale
from music stores. It contains fifteen tracks dealing with subjects
that range from love to violence and domestic abuse.