FRITZ HELDER IS A FORCE OF NATURE AND SO ARE YOU :: In London, England recently, GGN publisher Shaun Proulx caught up with Canadian provocateur Fritz Helder, known from Azari & III, and of course, Fritz Helder & The Phantoms, the first act Nelly Furtado signed to her record label.
Helder shared the smart ideas within his astonishing new solo single, ‘Force Of Nature‘, and why he thinks many of us are slaves, while at the same time also forces of nature.
Shaun Proulx: You made the decision to get on a plane with no game plan, and come to London. Many would say, “Don’t do that – not without having something to go to.”
Fritz Helder: I think if I had a plan, I wouldn’t have left. I like not having a plan. I’m intrinsically lazy, being a Leo. I like to lay around. So not having a plan made me kind of light the fire under my ass, because here, especially if you live in London, if you don’t do something, you’re dead. I really needed that kind of 19-year-old energy, when the world’s your oyster, and you think everything is possible..
SP: When I left finance, I knew I had no plan except I wanted to be a creative person. So I think everybody would benefit from just getting on a plane and coming to London as you have, metaphorically speaking.
FH: You have to know inside that you are a fighter, because not everyone likes to fight. I like to fight. I like the hard way around things. My parents used to say that I never take the easy route around. I just like to learn that way, so I feel that knowing that about myself, and whatever did happen here, I would make something happen. I’m lucky that way that I know that about myself, but yeah, I think it’s important for everyone to shake it up.
SP: ‘Force of Nature’ is your solo single. You consider yourself one, obviously.
FH: I guess. I never did before though. I think the kind of cool thing about this single is that it’s just cool to be comfortable in my skin, enough to make that kind of claim. Although before, in the past, wearing the heels and the big outfits, I think a lot of that was a disguise, a lot of insecurity, so now I’ve been able to actually vocalize how I was visually expressing myself, and it’s a new thing for me, so yeah, maybe I am a force of nature.
SP: I’ve interviewed you a few times. You always had a wig on, shoes…something. Now you’re sitting here in jeans, and nice blazer, sneakers, and a chapeau. There’s more you coming out of the ‘nothing’ of that, for me. Vulnerability is endearing, yes?
FH: Yes. It’s endearing but it’s scary as hell, you know? When you’re used to covering up, stripping that all away is the scariest thing. But I knew I had to do it, in order to move forward as a creative person. I’ve done all that other stuff already. This is pre-Gaga. We were doing that years ago, so it’s just old and tired.
SP: When you’re an artist, and you are a visionary, which I think you are, and a force of nature, which I think you are: it is a lonely life – yes or no?
FH: Extremely, but don’t feel sad for me. I like being lonely, and I get my energy from myself, you know? I’m self-contained that way. I mean I fill up the battery, and then I express it to everybody, and retreat away again. I don’t know where it comes from, but it doesn’t come from external sources, really. It’s this fire inside of me that just needs to build it up again and push it out.
SP: Themes in ‘Force Of Nature’ seem anti-establishment and anti-money, yet I know you. So what are you doing?
FH: I love luxurious things. I love beauty. I think that what I don’t love is money. I think money as a concept is complete bullshit, but we all know that. I think we’re the only creatures in general, that have to pay to live on this planet. That bothers me, a lot. We have to pay to live here, but who are we paying? That bothers me a lot.
I’m trying to ask a question, like how come you can have these different systems that are set up to, I guess, to help us live, but we don’t get anything out of them? We can always create beautiful things without money. I don’t think that part of it should ever go away, but ‘Force of Nature’ is just realizing the we’re all on this earth, and I feel like we’ve gotten to this point where we think we’re bigger than, or above our natural state, which is troublesome to me as well.
SP: I saw something on social media that said, “The planet is X-trillions of dollars in debt…” and then it asked: “To who?”
FH: How can the planet be in debt? Who is it paying, and why is it in debt? It’s all make-believe.
SP: I’m living at the home of a long-time girlfriend while here. We worked together at a brokerage house in the 90’s. I left finance for a lot of the reasons you’re talking about. She’s still in finance and will say the following: “I’m in the game, but I know that it’s a game.”
FH: It is slavery. I can’t say anything more than that. It is slavery. But the thing is, there are more of us than there are of them. We don’t have to do anything, nothing is going to happen. An asteroid is not going to fall from space and kill us if we don’t. If we just stop doing it, it’s over. That’s the joke. If we just stopped, what are they going to do, kill us all? That’s the part that no one seems to realize. We ultimately are the most powerful, we’re the force of nature, but we’re in this prison, this imaginary cell. Look at what’s happening in Syria, we abide by imaginary borders; these lines on this earth that don’t exist. You can’t come over here because this is Canada, and this is the US.
SP: This is a very evolved point of view.
FH: It’s only because I’ve been in the music industry for so long! Talk about false situation. Having so many pies thrown in my face, after working so hard, and having a great time. I’ve had an amazing time, but always realizing that I’m working for somebody else all the time.
SP: Tell us about your worst pie.
FH: The worst pie when I was with Fritz and the Phantoms and we were doing our thing, we thought we were going to change the world, break out, and become this huge thing. We realized that we were just lining a lot of people’s pockets, and we were just a number in a long queue of people, a long queue of clients, and no matter what we did, unless they wanted us to succeed, we weren’t going to succeed, no matter how hard we tried, no matter what we did to prove that we were worthy of it, it wasn’t on the agenda for those people, and it wasn’t going to happen, and that was a huge thing to realize.
SP: The reason why I’m about a #ThoughtRevolution is I have come to understand is that the key to happiness is to re think all the ideas that you have that hold you back. The ideas you have held all your life and the idea you just had that made you feel awful thinking it. You, me, everyone, are HERE to find happiness on your terms. That is how to not feel like a slave or better how to not be a slave. To anything or anyone.
FH: The universe has been watching my back since the beginning, and that’s a lesson to realize. I’ve had such an amazing life, so to focus on all the bad things, and all the things that didn’t go well is the wrong thing to do. You look at the bigger picture of things that did go well. I’m incredibly successful in that regard, so I can’t complain. You forget that you have so much.
SP: We forget that we are forces of nature, all of us. I didn’t hear that in the song, and it makes me love the song even more. You say, I’m a force of nature, but what you’re saying is we all are.
FH: You sing it to yourself. You sing “I”. You don’t sing “You”. I hope when you sing it to yourself, it becomes your mantra for yourself, when you’re walking down the street for your job interview, or wherever it is. If I’m going to do this, I need to help people out.
SP: This is the intention.
FH: Yeah, for sure, because that’s the music that I listen to, and I feel like we’re at a pivotal time right now, where if you’re going to be an entertainer, or the entertainment industry, I feel like you have to choose a side; you can choose to be an enslaver or you can free people.
SP: That’s own why I own my work now, and have for six years, and why I am picky about working anywhere else. It’s about having control of your output, control of your message, control of what you say. What do you mean in the song when you sing, “my enemies have fallen before”?
FH: People who are out to kick over the crap bucket, out to keep blowing you down, they always fall. They always do – you don’t have to worry about it. You don’t actually have to make any plans to destroy anybody, or go back and be vengeful, they’ll just take care of themselves.
SP: There have been times I have made this joke: I wish I was a type of person who knew somebody with a baseball bat: “I wish I was the guy who knew truly nasty characters, because I’m so mad right now about so and so.” But what I always know is that the universe is going to sort them out, that they are already their own worst karma.
FH: For sure, and you don’t have to waste your time on it at all.
SP: I’m so proud of you and adore you. I love watching your success. I respect that you moved continents, and you inspire people, you inspire me.
FH: Don’t you stop. I adore you too.
This interview was condensed and edited. All images are copyright and used with permission.