May 23, 2024

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Interview with Dario Iscaro: The spirit of music is the spirit of any musician: Video

Jazz interview with jazz guitarist Dario Iscaro. An interview by email in writing. 

JazzBluesNews.Space: – First let’s start with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music?

Dario Iscaro: – I was born in Córdoba city, Argentina. When I was young my sister used to teach me songs and I played them on my guitar. She and my oldest brother usually brought home classical and other interesting vinyls which I loved to listen.

JBN.S: – What got you interested in picking up your musical instrument? What teacher or teachers helped you progress to the level of playing you have today? What made you choose your musical instrument?

DI: – I was born in Córdoba city, Argentina, acoustic guitars are popular instruments, everybody has one at home sowe had one whichused to play when I was a kid. I studied atLa Colmena, a musical school in Cordoba. My teachers were Daniel Corzoin guitar and Luis Lewin inimprovisation and harmony. Later, I also worked as a teacher there.Then, I started listening and got inspired with the great masters of electric and acoustic guitar, such as Keith Richards, David Gilmore,Larry Carlton; the most important argentinian musicians such as CharlyGarcía and Spinetta. Also Gino Vanelli, Walt Disney film soundtracks, Dvorjak, etc. When I grew up the following masters appeared in my life:  Metheny, John Abercrombie, Allan Holdsworth, Bill Frisell, John McLaughlin, Robert Fripp, King Crimson, John Scofield and classics Ravel and Debussy. These masters made me love the electric guitar and I adopted it as my instrument.

JBN.S: – How did your sound evolve over time?

DI: – Recognizing and listening to the different sonorous electric guitar languages ​​from theartists mentioned opened my mind when I realized that I was able to create my own signature music on an instrument such as the electric guitar. Meanwhile, I discovered what a good instrument can offer to you comparing to a not so good or a bad one. During this process, dedication and daily study made me evolveinto something deeper, a voyage inside myself.

JBN.S: – What practice routine or exercise have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical ability especially pertaining to rhythm?

DI: – The rhythmiccoordination exercises between left and right hand, which I’m constantly changing and creating new, and different practices with the metronome on different speeds help me a lot. Now I’m designing them according to the degree of difficulty I want to incorporate to my playing.

JBN.S: – Which harmonies and harmonic patterns do you prefer now?

DI: – I use all kinds of chords, lately I have a predilection for opened, suspended chords and also for clusters. I use progressions of 4 or 5 chords in my compositions, for example:

(G7bB / Db75B / C796 / E756 /Bo7). Generally, I like the harmony of four voices in the chords.

JBN.S: – Which are the best jazz albums for you of 2017 year?

DI: – There are a lot, I usually don´t listen to records on the same year in which they are released but from all decades (records should not be divided by years or eras).

Now I´m listening to Asteroidea from Borderline trio and I’m really enjoying it; I also discovered Ogre Plasticofrom Maria Joao and I’mhearing it often.

I would be lying if I tell I can choose only one record.

JBN.S: – What´s the balance in music between intellect and soul?

DI: – For me, the ideal ratio is 50/50.

JBN.S: – Please any memories from gigs, jams, open acts and studio sessions which you´d like to share with us?

DI: – Once with the Desatanudos band, drummer Fernando Caballero abandoned us very angry after placing his instruments on the stagefor the show, because we had arrived fifteen minutes late to the sound test prior to the concert. Another story happened when I worked in the Cordoba Provincial Orchestra of Citizen Music (tango). We were on the mainstage of the Del LibertadorTheater in Cordoba city, when all of the sudden our bassist fall down the stairs that led to the pit. Fortunately, it was not serious for him but funny for us.

JBN.S: – Which collaboration have been the most important experiences for you?

DI: – Together with the Cordoba tango orchestra, Iplayed with Horacio Ferrer, the great lyricist and poet who worked with Astor Piazzolla. Also with Ruben Juarez, famous bandoneonist and composer of modern tango and Susana Rinaldi, a superb tango singer. I had the pleasure to share a concert with the well known pianist Horacio Salgan on his tango duet withUbaldo De Lio (guitar). I also played with Lalo Schifrin and Manu Codjia.

Ishared a Jam session with bassist Henri Texierat the International Jazz Festival of Córdoba; andonce Desatanudoswas invitedto opena Dave Holland Quintet concert at Teatro Comedia de Cordoba.

JBN.S: – How can we get young people interested in jazz when most of the standard tunes are half a century old?

DI: – Opening to new music standards. I also believe that classic standards can be rearranged and played in different ways.

JBN.S: – John Coltrane said that music was his spirit. How do you understand the spirit and the meaning of life?

DI: – The spirit of music is the spirit of any musician who honors it, who plays it, who creates it. For me, the meaning of life is being able to create and play music.

JBN.S: – What are your expectations of the future? What brings you fear or anxiety?

DI: – Progressive disappearance of CD´s as vehicle and object of music has created a sense of uncertainty in many musicians, making them difficult to get used to the new order imposed by Internet and virtual platforms. Honestly, I do not know where all this will finally be ending.

JBN.S: – If you could change one thing in the musical world and it would become a reality, what would that be?

DI: – I would discourage musiccreated with the exclusive purpose of generating money, without any artistic or conceptual development.

JBN.S: – What´s the next musical frontier for you?

DI: – For me, if the technology would be able to create a system to translate our thoughts or feelings directly to sound controllers on real time, it wouldbe definitely a “before and after”.

JBN.S: – Are there any similarities between jazz and world music, including folk music?

DI: – Jazz covers everything,under its invisible blanket all styles can be mixed up and the world musicians contribute and propose new adventures for jazz, enriching each other.

JBN.S: – Who do you find yourself listening to these days?

DI: – I try to listento the music thatexpands my mind. I have a vinyl’s collection from various eras, I’ve discovered the Serenade opus 24 from Arnold Schonberg, very interesting music for a septet of clarinet, bassoon, violin, viola, cello, guitar, mandolin, and baritone.

JBN.S: – Let´s take a trip with a time machine, so where and why would you really wanna go?

DI: – I would like to go to the 60s and see the explosion of creativity and expansion that was experienced at that time under the psychedeliaera, but the real challenge is the present and thinking of what have to be done in order to continue writing the history of the music.

JBN.S: – I have been asking you so far, now may I have a question from yourself…

DI: – Are you happy?

JBN.S: – Thank you for answers. Yes, of course …

Interview by Simon Sargsyan


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