Lindemann has a powerful onstage presence. One of his signature moves is to partially squat and pound his fist onto his thigh to the beat of the riff, in the manner of a deranged blacksmith. It has been said that one of his distinguishing characteristics is his tendency to roll his “R”s.
Lindemann is a qualified pyrotechnician. After an accident at the Treptow arena in Berlin on September 27, 1996, where a burning stage prop fell into the audience, Rammstein began employing a professional pyrotechnical crew and Lindemann has learned and trained with them. Each band member is specially instructed on the pieces of pyrotechnical equipment they use on stage.
According to Lindemann, he likes Christopher Joseph “Chris” Isaak, Marilyn Manson, Jean-Michel André Jarre, Tangerine Dream, Michael Gordon “Mike” Oldfield, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Type O Negative, Placebo, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, KMFDM and jazz music in the park on a Sunday afternoon. He says, “for me Kraftwerk was the first real German band.”
At one time, he did have his left ear pierced, twice, but has worn no earring for a long time. You can see the two holes in his ear in most videos and pictures. Lindemann also has his left eyebrow pierced. He has no known tattoos. Lindemann has stated that he is an atheist.
As of October 2004 he has four children: two girls and two boys.
Lindemann is also able to play the harmonica and drums
Lindemann was born in Leipzig, but he grew up in the village of Wendisch-Rambow in Schwerin (East Germany). His father, Werner Lindemann, was a poet, and his mother, Brigitte “Gitta” Lindemann, is an artist and writer who has co-written at least one book with her husband. Lindemann has one sister, six years younger than himself. At age 11 he went to a sports school at the Rostock Sports Club, and from 1977-1980 attended a boarding school. His parents divorced in 1975, when he was age 12.
In the years 1976-1979, Lindemann was a good swimmer who became junior vice-European champion. He finally left sports school in 1979. It is possible that he was thrown out of sports school due to his sneaking out, unaccompanied, of a hotel in Italy on a swimming tour. But he also suffered an injury, a torn abdominal muscle - so either reason could be valid. According to Lindemann, “I never liked the sport school actually, it was very intense. But as a child you don’t object.”
His first job was at a peat cutting company, but he was fired after three days. He worked as an apprentice carpenter, a gallery technician, and was most well-known as a basket weaver.
In 1981, Lindemann apparently refused to do his 18 months’ compulsory military service and was almost imprisoned because of the refusal. Many young men used to do “Ersatzdienst” or “substitute or reserve service”, so he may have done this.
In 1985, when Lindemann was 22, his first daughter, Nele, was born. Lindemann and Nele’s mother married after she was born, but they separated and he has raised Nele alone. Lindemann says, “I used to play drums in a punk band and we had our studio in the house where I lived. Seven years I had been a father raising his daughter, but nowadays I’m sharing the upbringing with her mother, because I’m gone for six months of the year with the band.”
In 1988, Lindemann was to be a swimmer in the Olympics, but suffered a torn abdominal muscle, so was unable to participate.
The Berlin Wall came down November 9, 1989, and Germany started its path to reunification. On this, Lindemann says, “After the wall had been opened, I drove to West Germany and bought gummy bears and yogurt for my salutation money. But there wasn’t anything else.”
His father died in November of 1992, of the effects of alcohol. He was buried in the grounds of a church near Wendisch-Rambow.
Lindemann had a second daughter with Anja Köseling, his former partner/wife. Köseling claimed Lindemann abused her physically during their relationship and that he refused to pay child support for their daughter, Marie-Louise (b. ca. 1993). Lindemann has never commented on her claim. In an interview with Richard Bernstein, He stated that Rammstein will keep playing until one of them dies. Paul stated in a 2005 interview that Till has a girlfriend who speaks Spanish and helped him write “Te quiero puta!”.
And in a 2005 interview with the German Playboy, Lindemann stated that he had finally found “a woman he could spend the rest of his life with.”
In 1988, he started to play drums for First Arsch, often confused as “First Art” but in literal translation means “First Ass”: a play on words perhaps meant to distract the authorities. It was a Schwerin-based punk band. They made one album titled Saddle Up.
Till Lindemann also played in a band called Feeling B. A song called Lied von der unruhevollen Jugend (Song of the restless youth) is credited on the album called Hea Hoa Hoa Hea Hea Hoa (1990). Till, Paul H. Landers and Christian “Flake” Lorenz all played on the song Lied von der unruhevollen Jugend.
Later in the 1990’s, Lindemann began to write lyrics, possibly based on phrases and words from poems that he was beginning to write. He says he “used to drum in a punk band that consisted of bass and drums. We used to work with guest-guitarists, usually Paul and Richard. We did a short tour where I changed instruments with the bassist in the encore, that was such a success, that Richard insisted on starting a project in which I would sing. Other people joined the band but only when I left Schwerin for Berlin did it take serious form.”
In 1994, they entered and won a contest in Berlin that allowed them to record a four track demo professionally. Lindemann moved to Berlin. Paul H. Landers formally joined the band, followed by the last member to join, Christian “Flake” Lorenz.
On June 5, 1999 in Worcester, Massachusetts (USA) Lindemann and Flake Lorenz were arrested and charged with lewd and lascivious behavior. A statement from Sgt. Thomas Radula of the Worcester Police Department stated that Lindemann was simulating sex with Flake onstage “using a phallic object that shot custard over the crowd.” They were held and released the following day on $25 bail. After months of legal debate, they were eventually fined $100.
Subsequently, in November 2002 Lindemann’s own project, the poetry book Messer, was published. It consists of 54 poems compiled by Gert Hof, who is author of the book Rammstein and has been the band’s pyrodesigner for the last seven years . This book was due to be re-printed in 2005 due to a campaign by a fansite.