British singer Bonnie Tyler can look back on a long career. She wrote music history decades ago with hits like “Holding Out for a Hero”. She is currently working on her autobiography. And has a lot to tell.

In the FOCUS online interview, the singer speaks with the distinctive voice about how it all began. And what, from their point of view, was the price of success. Tyler was born in June 1951.

How would you summarize your professional career?

Bonnie Tyler: I’m blessed! I never thought that I would be so successful for so long. I just feel blessed.

You had your international breakthrough with songs like “It’s a Heartache”. How did you experience the music business back then?

Tyler: Well, I always wanted to be a singer from the very beginning. Even back when I left school. So after that I spent seven years in the various clubs of South Wales. After these seven years, I was discovered by a talent scout. That was my first big breakthrough.

I started singing in 1969, my breakthrough came in 1976 with “Lost in France”. Already playing in the clubs made me happy. But the record deal with RCA was the icing on the cake.

What are your weirdest memories from that time?

Tyler: We had a couple of glitches on stage. Like in Hamburg, for example: the hall stage fell apart in a storm. That was pretty frightening!

Another crazy memory was my first time at Top of the Pops in the UK. It was the greatest show! Everyone was there! It seemed as if greats like the Beatles or the Stones had taken off with this show format! And then suddenly I’m on this stage! It was fantastic!

What would you say was the price of success?

Tyler: Well, I got married in 1973. It was only after we had been married for seven years that we started to think about having children. Then suddenly the next year came and then the next and so on. It wasn’t until I was 39 that I felt really ready for it. When we stopped recording back then, I immediately felt pregnant. But it wasn’t meant to be.

Can you be more specific?

Tyler: I would say my sacrifice was not having kids when I was younger. But to be honest: I’m happy without my own children. I have sixteen nieces and nephews. And one of my nephews lives with us anyway. He’s lived with me since he was twenty. And today he is 58.

Are there any mistakes you regret today?

Tyler: No, not really. I was offered a James Bond theme song. That was in the 90s. I was so excited when I heard I was getting cast in a James Bond song. Until the moment I heard the song and thought it was just awful. I couldn’t do that. Even if it was a James Bond song. I couldn’t believe how bad the song was. Therefore I declined.

But I don’t think I have to regret that. After all, the person who made the song afterwards didn’t land a hit with it either. It was just one of those songs that never make it.

What was the best piece of advice you received in your career?

Tyler: Believing in myself and going for it! My mother always taught me to believe in myself.

The musical song “Totale Finsternis” is based on your hit “Total Eclipse of the Heart”. What does the musical “Tanz der Vampire” and this song interpretation mean to you?

Tyler: It’s Jim Steinman’s ‘baby’ and I’ve always loved him. Twenty years ago I was here in Stuttgart at the opening of “Tanz der Vampire”. Jim was here then too. Unfortunately, today it passed from us.

That makes it quite emotional to be here at the 25th anniversary in Stuttgart, because I’m sure Jim would have liked to have been here today. He always told me that when he first wrote this song he kind of had vampires in mind. I never really imagined it back then, but it’s great that it turned into a musical. Because he only finished writing the song after he told me he wanted to produce it with me. He finished the song and gave it to me.

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