With hits such as Činim pravu stvar, Mirakul and Ovo mi je škola, Zlatan Stipišić Gibonni has forged a reputation in his 27-year career as one Croatia’s most popular music stars – both in Croatia and in Croatian communities around the world. Gibonni, who has just released his latest album 20th Century Man entirely in English, is Croatia Week’s 60 Seconds With… guest.
Gibonni, when did you first start singing? In primary school. We had a concert at the cabinet of chemistry. I was 14. My first concert was a debacle. I was so disappointed.
Who was your favourite singer growing up? The first music I ever heard was the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar. Ian Gillan played the role of Jesus Christ. It was an amazing record.
Which concert is your most memorable you have played? I played in Spaladium Arena in Split, my hometown. It is probably the most memorable, in front of 14,000 people. The atmosphere was so familiar. My whole family was there, my hairdresser, my dentist, my urologist… It was so crazy….
Favourite concert venue you have played at? That’s the same arena in my hometown. It is however more an emotional thing than an expert choice.
Where would you love to sing at? Hammersmith Odeon. It is the temple of rock music. All my heroes have played there. My dream would be to promote my new album “20th Century Man” there.
Favourite place in Croatia? Dalmatia. As a region. Beautiful seacoast, amazing nature and historic sites. You have to see that. Not just once in your life.
Favourite restaurant in Croatia? It is Bata in Vela Luka on the island of Korcula. He does not have a menu. He’s got what he’s got that day. But one thing is for sure, his fish is not dead longer than half an hour. It goes directly from the sea to the barbecue.
What would you be doing if you were not a singer? I’d be a forester. All day alone with beautiful nature. You can’t quarrel with trees!
Gibonni also wrote the song “Cesarica” for Oliver Dragojević, which became a very big hit and became one of the most popular and well-known songs in Croatia.