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vlada wants to reassure you, “i’ve never planned any of this.” Not that you’d ever believe otherwise.
After all, how could anyone even put this musical scenario together: a Swiss citizen of Serbian de-
scent composing powerful black gospel tunes? vlada insists that God has placed something different
in his heart and, upon hearing the results, you’re inclined to believe him.
“it’s not that there’s a big marketing plan behind it,” says vlada. “it’s just something that fell into
my lap. i was born and raised in Switzerland, but i was of Serbian descent. i’ve lived in england and
i’ve lived in Germany, so i have a lot of roots, many different roots and i try to keep them strong.”
vlada’s love of contemporary urban gospel came later in life, his early years marked by the great
musical icons of old.
“i was raised on elvis and The Beatles,” explains vlada. “in my teenage years, i listened to a lot of
pop and then soul crept in. i started to listen to a lot of Motown and Jazz, just a lot of African-Ameri-
can musical forms. i got into Prince, Michael Jackson, The Temptations, earth, Wind & Fire. Something
in my heart got stirred there.
“Something also changed when i joined a gospel choir at 21,” he continues. “That was the first
choir in Switzerland to introduce contemporary black gospel music to the country. We sang a lot of
stuff by Kirk Franklin and Fred Hammond and The Winans and Donnie McClurkin. A whole new world
opened up and i realized it was something i really loved.”
No one’s more aware of the oddity of vlada’s musical set-up than the songwriter himself. He
laughs when discussing the descriptions of his music and background, realizing the journey he’s been
on doesn’t make a lot of sense. Yet it’s in that juxtaposition that he sees the hand of God and the
beauty of the unexpected.
“it really doesn’t make any sense for a white european guy to play African-American music. it
doesn’t. But music transcends color. it’s not white music or black music. it’s just great music. i also
think it does attract people because it can be extravagant and eclectic. There are so many different
influences combining to hopefully make a unique sound. That’s not a marketing plan. it’s just what
naturally comes out of me.”
— Matt Conner
full name: vladimir Tajsic
Born: Aarau, Switzerland
first public performance:
Age 17 at a big high school concert/
contest in a packed hall in my
hometown Aarau, Switzerland. He won
favorite childhood album: The Beatles,
1962-1966 (The Red Album)
Languages Spoken: Swiss-German,
German, english, Serbian, French,