Click here to [close]

Sunday, October 8, 2023

Rodrigo Amado - Sunday Interview

Photo (c) Cristina Marx/Photomusix.

  1. What is your greatest joy in improvised music?

    The truth. The fact that I can be myself, 100% exactly who I am at that precise moment, with no need to sound like anybody else.

  2. What quality do you most admire in the musicians you perform with?

    First of all, sound. The first impact. And then, Creativity. That's what blows my mind.

  3. Which historical musician/composer do you admire the most?

    I guess I would have to share this mention between these two – Ornette Coleman and Cecil Taylor. Ornette with a deep impact early in life, since my twenties, when I was playing the alto. And Cecil, later on, some twenty years ago, together with the feeling that although I was already listening to him for a long time, only then I was ready to fully understand his music. These two alone have left us an immense universe of sounds, thoughts and pure energy.

  4. If you could resurrect a musician to perform with, who would it be?

    Don Cherry

  5. What would you still like to achieve musically in your life?

    To be honest, all the things I achieved until now are far beyond what would have been my wildest dreams and I am deeply thankful for that. For the future, I would just like to keep going strong, into my 70’s and 80’s. I’m deeply inspired by musicians like Schlippenbach, McPhee, Sam Rivers, Anthony Braxton, Wayne Shorter, Marshall Allen, Peter Brotzmann, Cecil Taylor, Ornette Coleman, Bill Dixon, Evan Parker, Wadada Leo Smith, Lee Konitz… the list goes on and on. Musicians that keep their artistic relevance and play well until later in life, until the end.

  6. Are you interested in popular music and - if yes - what music/artist do you particularly like?

    Well, yes, I do listen to popular music, a lot. David Bowie, Brian Eno, J Dilla, Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa, Bill Calahan, Madlib, Fred Neil, Milton Nascimento, Bill Fay, King Crimson, The Meters, Joni Mitchell, Cat Power, Danny Brown, Pere Ubu, Can, Robert Wyatt, Scott Walker, Aretha Franklin… these are just a few from the many that feed my imagination.

  7. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

    To make a bigger effort to actively contribute to a new world paradigm. Capitalism is obsolete but thriving as never before.

  8. Which of your albums are you most proud of?

    This would be “Refraction Solo” (Trost), from 2022. When I first heard the recording that lead to the release, I was impressed by how well it translated who I was at the time. This meant that, alone, I was able to fully express myself through music. A personal milestone.

  9. Once an album of yours is released, do you still listen to it? And how often?

    Very rarely, and most of the times just to check how the music “survived” the years. I get great pleasure from listening to my music while in the process of producing the records. During this phase, I listen to the music intensely, over and over again, until I know if I want to release it, what songs and in what order. After the album is out, that mental space is filled with new music. Right now I’m producing three new albums.

  10. Which album (from any musician) have you listened to the most in your life?

    Maybe “Hunky Dory”, from David Bowie. This was in my teens.

  11. What are you listening to at the moment?

    A bunch of stuff - Anthony Braxton “New York, Fall 1974”, Tyshawn Sorey “The Off-Off Broadway Guide to Synergism (Live)”, Bill Calahan “Apocalypse”, Frank Wright “Unity”, Joe Henderson “Tetragon”, Miles Davis “Complete Live at The Plugged Nickel – 1965”, Zoh Amba “O Life, O Light – Vol.1”, Bill Orcutt “Music for Four Guitars”, James Brandon Lewis “Molecular Systematic Music (Live)", Sonny Rollins Quartet with Don Cherry “Complete Live at The Village Gate 1962”.

  12. What artist outside music inspires you?

    David Hockney, William Eggleston, Stephen Shore, Balthus, John Cassavetes, Georgia O’Keeffe, among thousands of others no less important than these. What would be life without art?

Reviews with Rodrigo Amado: