May 18, 2024

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Interview with Antonio Adolfo: Passion is the key word! Video, new CD cover, Photos

Jazz interview with jazz pianist, arranger and composer Antonio Adolfo. He is a Brazilian jazz master. An interview by email in writing. 

JazzBluesNews.com: – Please explain your creative process…

Antonio Adolfo: – Normally, for composing I use the piano as the starting point. I start to play and play chords. Then melodies come to my mind or, better, to my fingers. But singing melodies is also very important. That applies for any type of creation process (composing, arranging, etc). After a while the ideas start to form and I like to write (or record) them. The process includes checking whatever I have created also in the following days. Then ideas can mature into something. That process is something that can take minutes or days.

JBN: – What are your main impulses to write music?

AA: – Passion!

JBN: – What do you personally consider to be the incisive moments and pieces in your work and/or career?

AA: – The moment when I started my career in Rio, Brazil. I was 17 years old and started playing with great musicians that had stimulated myself in the music career. Also my recent Grammy and Latin Grammy nominations. That came as a great stimulus as well.

JBN: – Before we jump into anything historical, can you tell us about what we can expect musically this evening?

AA: – The music that I really like to create and play.

JBN: – Are there sub-genres within the jazz field that you tend to stay away from or focus on?

AA: – I am very focused on Brazilian Jazz.

JBN: – What do you love most about your new album 2022: Octet And Originals, how it was formed and what you are working on today.

AA: – The octet is great and we are like a family conducted by good music and great vibes.

New CD – 2022 – Buy from here

Cover art for Octet and Originals

JBN: – Did your sound evolve during that time? And how did you select the musicians who play on the album?

AA: – The group of musicians playing with me are pretty much the same that have been recording my albums in the past decade.

JBN: – When your first desire to become involved in the music was & what do you learn about yourself from music?

AA: – Since I was a young kid (at the age 7). Music and my family are all to me.

JBN: – How do you prepare before your performances to help you maintain both spiritual and musical stamina?

AA: – I like to be in silence, concentrating on what I will do in the minutes ahead.

JBN: – How would you describe and rate the music scene you are currently living?

AA: – The actual music scene is very rich with so many different forms of expression through it.

JBN: – When you improvise, you know where you’re going. It’s a matter of taking certain paths and certain directions?

AA: – Improvisation to me has totally to be with the moment. Of course, our technique has to be ready to follow whatever path we take.

JBN: – Do you ever get the feeling that music majors, and particularly people who are going into jazz, are being cranked out much like business majors? That they are not really able to express themselves as jazz musicians?

AA: – I am not sure…

JBN: – What about somebody who is really gifted and puts together a band and just gets upset to the point of quitting because of the business aspects-the agents and the clubs?

AA: – It is a pity, but that can happen, That is why passion is the only solution to go ahead in the music career.

JBN: – And lastly, being a teacher, do you find it difficult to write music yourself?

AA: – In my case, I believe all experiences can help. We learn with our students as well.

JBN: – With such an illustrious career, what has given you the most satisfaction musically?

AA: – No doubt the feedback we get is VERY important to our satisfaction and growth, both as a musician and as human beings.

JBN: – From the musical and feeling point of view is there any difference between a old and great jazzmans and young?

AA: – Yes, when we are younger we have more energy, play more notes. and when we get older, but with some portion of wisdom, things get clearer in our minds and behavior, and then we don’t have to prove anything.

JBN: – What advice would you give to aspiring musicians thinking of pursuing a career?

AA: – Passion is the key word!! All the rest will then come naturally.

Interview by Simon Sargsyan; Photos by Andre Pinnola and by Paul Constantinides

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