Ballermann instead of football: Julian Schieber (34) is now a party hit singer. He recently came with me “Under the shower” released his first song. In an interview with SPOX and GOAL tells the long-time Bundesliga striker how it came about. Also: What Thailand and Ilkay Gündogan have to do with it – and what his perfect Ballermann day looks like.
Mr Schieber, please tell us the story behind your first song “Under the shower”!
Julian Schieber: It’s always been my dream to someday make a song. A few weeks ago I sat down with a friend who is a semi-professional DJ. I wrote a text just for fun, and he accompanied me on the guitar. We recorded it on our cell phones and sent it to a producer. He said: “Guys, let’s make a number out of this.” However, our version would have been more suitable for an 11am brunch or an evening around the campfire than for a party. The producer wanted more bass instead of guitar. The pros adjusted that.
What were the first reactions?
slider: The feedback was mostly positive. But of course, like in sports, there are also critics.
They sing together with the former regional league player Philip Roller. How do you know him?
slider: That’s a funny story. Philip comes from Bad Boll in my area, but is a Thai national player because of his Thai roots. Thailand is my great love. I really wanted to play football there one day. So a few years ago I started scouring the internet for German speaking guys signed in Thailand. That’s how I came across Philip. I just texted him. A close friendship grew out of this.
But he couldn’t place you in the Thai league?
slider: Yes, after my time at FC Augsburg I actually trained with his club Ratchaburi FC for eight weeks. Then the question arose: continue living this dream or go back to my family, to my three children. I chose family.
Instead of being on the pitch, you are at least standing with him in front of the microphone.
slider: When my plans for the song became concrete, he happened to be visiting Germany. Right before my first appointment with the producer we had a coffee, so I told him about it. Two hours later he was standing in front of the microphone with me. Then he couldn’t get out of the number.
Apart from him, two other footballers play in the music video with Fabian Giefer and Timo Gebhart.
slider: Both of them were immediately in the mood. Timo is up for any nonsense, and he also lives in the Memmingen area. He is the bouncer in the video, that is his prime discipline. During our time together in Augsburg, I allowed myself to have fun with Fabi. Since then we have been very good friends. He drove an extra four hours from the Palatinate for the shoot.
Were there any colleagues who canceled?
slider: Yes, for example Davie Selke. Unfortunately, he was getting married in Ibiza at the time and was accordingly unable to attend. If there’s a second song, I’ll get some new football strategists.
So the song wasn’t a one-time event?
slider: I haven’t written lyrics for a second song yet, but after the game is before the game and after the song is before the song. The apres ski season is just around the corner, or should I put it better: the demolition ski season. I need a new idea by December.
Back to the music video: you play a referee in it. Why?
slider: I really wanted something with these “slider, slider”- Make calls. That’s often said to the referee, but on the pitch I always referred it to my name. In my screenplay, I saw myself as the referee from the start. It was important to me that nothing went below the belt. Referees are very important people in football.
Once in the video you point to a jersey by Ilkay Gündogan. Didn’t he want to participate personally?
slider: The shoot was just before the Champions League final. I knew he wouldn’t have time. So I didn’t even ask him. He also doesn’t really fit into the party hit scene. At the line “When we celebrate, we are Champions League” but it made perfect sense to include it in the video anyway.
Did he know about this prior to publication?
slider: Yes, I showed him the video before the release and asked him if he was okay with it. Ilkay just smiled and said: “Shifter, you’re crazy!” He’s one of my best buddies in football. I enjoy the exchanges with him and will certainly visit him in Barcelona soon.
You could combine that with a live performance in one of the party locations there.
slider: Lloret or Calella, it has to be one of the two.
Seriously, do you have any live performances planned yet?
slider: In fact, we’ve already celebrated our live premiere. Last week I was in Thailand with Philip, we played in some bar. It wasn’t professional, but it was great fun. Should we be asked, we would of course like to perform live. After all, that’s what party hits are made for. But so far there is nothing concrete.
The party hit stronghold par excellence is known to be the Ballermann on Mallorca. Are you a regular there?
slider: It always takes me to this island to celebrate. I don’t have fun in a techno bar in Berlin. I feel most comfortable where party hits are played – like at Ballermann.
Were you with one of your former teams at Ballermann when you were a professional?
slider: Yes, after a difficult year we were there with Hertha. Actually, two weeks ago we wanted to celebrate the regional league promotion with Sonnenhof Großaspach am Ballermann. But then we unfortunately lost to TuS Koblenz in the relegation.
What does your perfect Ballermann day look like?
slider: Enjoy the first cold drinks during the day at the Playa. After that, there is no way around the Bierkönig. Late in the evening we go to Upper Bavaria before the night ends on the slide.
What is currently your favorite song?
slider: There is currently no way around Layla. That was the top burner last year and it still is for me this year. There can’t be a party without Layla. I recently met the interpreter DJ Robin, he comes from my region. After the release he wrote me a nice message. A few others from the industry like the district league legend, by the way.
Were party hits actually heard in the dressing room when you played professionally?
slider: For motivation before the games, mostly hip-hop was played. But if there was something to celebrate afterwards, the party pop group took over the dressing room. I’ve never been the booth DJ, but mostly happy with those in charge. Our DJ in Augsburg Marco Richter was a big fan of party hits, just like Martin Harnik, Christian Gentner and Georg Niedermeier used to be in Stuttgart.
You are currently training the U19s from Sonnenhof Großaspach. What taste in music do your players have?
slider: They tend to listen to German hip-hop, but I don’t even know the performers. I’ll probably have a hard time with my song with them. But I want to make sure it’s on in the dressing room at least once a week.
What are your future career plans as a coach?
slider: I don’t think about it too much, my current tasks are very good for me. U19 is still junior level, but actually the threshold to adults. I’m also on the coaching staff of the first team.
A post as head coach at a Bundesliga club or an appearance at the Bierkönig: which would you choose?
slider: Definitely the Bierkönig appearance. I only have one day of stress. As a Bundesliga coach, I have that every day.