| 53 complicatedforpeoplewholiveonthecontinent.An idea for asongcancomeanytime andanywhere; the trigger canbeanything. That’sthemostmagical thingabout thearts. When inspiration ebbs, how do you encourage yourself towards newvictories? - I sit at the piano and simple play and play. It’s like shing; you drop a hook and leaveittothesea,whichwillalwaysbringyou something, sometimes quickly and sometimes not. And the beauty is that you don’t knowwhat will come when and where. Withwhichmusicians would you like towork? - Sting is a musician with whom I’d really like to record something, and among singers that’s Céline Dion. Shehashugecharisma, a voice and the status of a true diva. When Iwasa teenager,mymusic idolswere The Beatles – it was because of them that I got intomusic. I listenedtoeverything, from Pink Floyd, Elton John and the Bee Gees, to Italian and jazz music. Whendidyoufeel thatyou’dsucceeded professionally? -OverthelastfewyearsI’vebeenexperiencingindescribablybeautiful concertsthat areattendedbypeople fromseveral generations. At themsomemothers sang to their children. That lls me with pride. Whathaspopularitybroughtyouand what has it taken away? - It brought me a lot more than it took, because I utilised it to my own bene t. I’ve met thousands of beautiful people, seen cities on almost all continents and awaited the dawn at taverns with extraordinary people andmusicians. I’ma bigwinner because popularity hasn’t caused me to lose the ground under my feet. I valuemy audience and don’t consider it to be in their interest for me tomistreat themwith various tabloid nonsense and pictures just so I can get apieceof front pages. I’mahappyman. Apart from music, which other arts do you love? -Theculinaryart isonethat Iadmireand which is connectedwithmusic. Inbothcases, artists create a work that brings people together and beauti es their life. The only di erence is that in gastronomic art food is prepared insteadof a song. In theend, peopleconsumethembothanddecidewhether ornot yourwork isgood. I adoregastronomy, althoughmusic has always been, and will remain, my rst job andmy rst love. You even took a break from your singing career to perfect your culinary skills? - I’ve been dedicated tomy restaurant inSplit for25years.Withmyparentsasowners of the restaurant, I used to spend most of my day there. I fell in love with the creativity and the cooking process, tasting, and everythingo eredbythatworld. Ihavebeen fortunate enough to have met – through my many travels and concerts around the world–many chefs andwinemakers,many of whom are now my good friends. I was Best Man at the wedding of Tomaž Kavčič, Slovenia’s top chef, who is very highly rated in Europe. I’ve toured virtually all major culinary festivalswithhim,whichwasan invaluable experience for me. Withwhichdishwouldyou introduce yourself? - Tuna tartar is a dish that I created. My restaurant presented itself at international presentations with that dish and received exceptional reviews. Whichareyourfavouritepointsonthe world’s gastronomymap? - I’ve tried most cuisines. Apart from Mediterraneancooking, I’mextremely fond of Japanese cusine, because of the culture of working with raw ingredients. How do you spend your time when you’re neither singing nor cooking? - I spendmy freetime inasmall circleof close friends. During summer I’musually at myweekendhouseinoneof thebaysbeside Trogir.At that time I shandlivewithout too muchglamour,noiseorpeople.Thatcleanses me and prepares me for the rest of the year,whichiseverythingbutrelaxed[laughs]. What’s your favourite part of Split? - Split has lots of beautiful corners whereyoucanenjoytheviews. I lovetostroll throughSplit’soldcobblestonestreets inthe spring,whiletherearestillnotourists, andto absorb the scents of food emanating from the little stone houses. Andwhat doyou like themost inSerbia? - I have lots of friends in Belgrade, it is di cult to defend oneself from such huge amounts of hospitality [laughs]. I always returnfromBelgradea fewkilogramsheavier. And to conclude, beside which sea would you like to growold? - If God favours me, he will enable me to growoldwhere I was born, and that is in Split. And beside my own sea. Ne zna se da li bolje peva ili bolje kuva It is hard to say whether he sings or cooks better