Musician of the Month: Magdalena Jacob | Cassandra Voices

Musician of the Month: Magdalena Jacob


My musical journey started with a lot of Church organ and Bohemian brass music in a tiny village in Bavaria –  and when I say village I really mean it.

At the age of five I developed a desperate desire to learn the guitar, because my mum had one (for her kindergarten group and she knew about four chords). At the age of five I wanted to be exactly like my mum, a genius.

After three years I hated the guitar because after too many odd versions of Beatles covers I was just really bored and annoyed. I quit because, in the mean time, I desperately wanted to learn a random brass instrument, which I never actually managed to do.

This tiny village where I grew up in had an unwritten rule that every kid had to learn a brass instrument to later play in the local youth brass band, in order to be part of the game. I learned the guitar and later the bass, because my dad was desperately looking for a bass player for his church band, so I was rather out of the game (and it’s nice to be able to blame the string instruments for it instead of myself).

As a child I didn’t really think about becoming a musician. I didn’t think it was a real job anyway. I wanted to become a vet, then a kindergarten teacher, then a writer – which somehow I considered a real job.

That one person at the party nobody gets…

As long as I can remember, I have always been that one person at the party nobody gets. According to certain rumours, some believed I was a genius. Others were convinced that I was just really high (yes, even as a child).

Once I came dressed up to a costume party as a tasteless dressmaker. It was supposed to be funny, but in the end people just thought I was mental.

If a costume is too close to reality, people tend to confuse it for reality. And then the costume fails and protects me at the same time. The perfect illusion is to create a mask that looks exactly like your real face. It’s still a mask then. But it’s also a protective shield. And it’s still you, right?

At the age of eleven I re-discovered the guitar because we randomly founded a band at some children’s birthday party of a friend in order to be cool or something, and I started to compose a couple of love songs about a guy I was pretending to be in love with at the time.

Ten years later I moved to Berlin to become a full-time musician. I married my band mate at the time and we moved into a tiny room in a flat share together. I was actually more like a half-time busker, half-time film student and the weekends we spent touring (mostly hitchhiking) around Germany, busking and playing in bars as a guitar-duo that played sad, experimental guitar music for two guitars.

After three years we broke up and I became a full-time film student and started to produce electronic pop music with weird spoken word elements. I was twenty-five and I felt like starting a completely new life.

The gay clown on the moon…

I recently came out as a clown which is due to the fact that I can’t take myself seriously any longer. How could I write sad, dramatic poems and scream them into the world when everything my white privileged ass can possibly emotionally understand are luxury problems?

I made myself comfortable with being ridiculous and it was quite a liberation to be stupid, and not to expect anyone to take myself seriously anymore.

My music now is sad, but funny. It’s cute. Still a lot of people don’t get it and sometimes they leave the room during concerts because I’m making fun about stuff that isn’t funny to them.

Sometimes they insult me because in their ears, I’m not doing music. Which is true, because what I’m actually doing is theatre, or some kind of performance art that people would watch at night time on Arte, and be like “what the hell made her become like that?”.

I sometimes ask myself the same question. But I realized people are mostly not really interested in honest answers.


Music is therapy and I will make the audience my therapists as long as someone is willing to listen to my random brainfarts. Sometimes I’m scared that if too many people start listening to me I will never shut the fuck up ever again. And I’m also scared they would all just stop listening completely at some point.

Sometimes living in Berlin is scary. The city is so loud because everyone is trying to find someone to listen to them.  And nobody is possibly getting enough of the attention they deserve. And unlike the village: most people are not trying to hide their problems from anyone. I mean, why should they do so?

Life makes no sense in a city like that and is beautiful and liberating (in summer), but it’s also random and scary (in winter).

I’ve recently become a half-time film maker, a half-time musician and a babysitter and a cat and a dog sitter, and a clown.

Sometimes I’m not sure if I can ever go back to a serious approach to making music. Parts of me just always want to remain a clown on a tiny stage that creates something weird and funny and magical in the moment.

Parts of me want to be an accordion-playing clown with an orchestra on their back, performing slutty lyrics in a church and crying all the time on stage. Parts of me also just want to become insta-famous or a tik-tok-star or this weird actress that is doing kind of everything and nothing at the same time and no-one knows what she’s actually famous for.

What I want to achieve next is to move to space and live-stream arthouse cinema from the moon. Make friends with many more cats. Grow my own potatoes and save the world by growing potatoes.

Generally saving the world would be great actually. Maybe that’s also possible from my treehouse on the moon.


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