4 de dezembro de 2017

André de Brito Music and Life

The singer, musician and songwriter Andre de Brito was born in Lisbon, Portugal though, the artist prefers to call himself a ‘citizen of the world’. “I am the least patriotic person in the world,” he adds. His journey in music began when he was five years old but taking piano classes. “In that time I was too dumb and I quit piano lessons,” he comments.

Brito tells us that during his teenage years he used to practice guitar a lot, sometimes up to twelve hours per day; nowadays he divides his times on singing and composing. He chose the guitar because of its portability; he could bring it everywhere easily. His parents were his greater supporters; they always paid his instruments, music classes, and encouraged him to carry on with his projects.
About the difficulties in the beginning of his career the artist says it was complicated to find people to play with and venues to perform and he argues it is still a struggle. Brito plays guitar, piano, bass guitar and he also ventures himself on drums, percussion and saxophone. On his music path he took classes in several music schools. “Two important teachers on my music trajectory were: João Charepe, who opened my mind up to the different vocal techniques; and Pedro Madaleno in terms of music composition and theory,” he emphasizes.

Brito comments he usually listen to diverse music genres. “Some musicians may influence me in terms of vocal expression but not in composition field; I would say in terms of vocals some of my references are Mike Patton, Freddie Mercury, Sinatra,” he adds. About music composition he says he is currently attracted to a mix of pop and funk style like Prince, Michael Jackson and James Brown, among others. “I’m inclined to enjoy so different things, from Pat Metheny to Nine Inch Nails, from Bach to Bjork,” he points out.

His first performance was in Almeda, his hometown in Portugal; he states he cannot remember the place's name because it was a long time ago; he received no money from this gig. Although the performance went on pretty good he was nervous and excited on the stage.

In addition to singing and playing different musical instruments, Brito is also songwriter and composer. He started writing music when I was around fifteen to sixteen years old. “I have written music from pop to rock up classical music, and other genres; I am not a religious person but I believe music comes from our spiritual side, like an empty box in our brain where creativity flows from nothing,” he reveals.

Brito says his writing process is quite diverse: he can pick the guitar up or sit down on the piano, and just come up with some musical ideas and then move forward or he may start with the lyrics and the vocal melody. “There are times as well as the entire song shows up in my head with vocal melodies and instruments included; walking seems to have a creative effect in me as well; I get musical ideas on the most bizarre moments as well,” he comments.

He tells us his writing process is to try to translate the musical ideas on his head into a physical product; this could start by writing the chord progression or part of lyrics but he also works differently like for instance by creating a beat on a computer and record his vocals directly to see where his creativity flows and what comes out. “Other peculiar stuff I do is to watch movies while composing particularly lyrics; sometimes I use something an actor said or a word or phrase triggers something inside me,” he describes.

Brito have collaborated with the singer Melanie Spencer which resulted on the music project called MEL, a pop soul project that started in 2010. Two of their songs are available on YouTube: Crazy, and Shine. “These songs are from our second album called ‘New Soul’ released in 2014,” he adds. Brito tells us he generally doesn’t like the songs he composes; however, there is a ballad called ‘I Can’t Say Goodbye’ written by him that he really appreciates.
He has an extensive discography of over 15 albums from different projects using different artistic names but he is currently focusing on his pop music project with some funk influences. “I am about also to release a new CD until the end of 2017. My body of work is very eclectic since I am curious about different musical genres,” he points out. He reveals that in his recordings he invites some musicians who are his friends and better instrumentalists than him.

He signed with the indie Swedish label PR Records with his project MEL but his projects solo are still released independently. Brito argues that there are so many ways of promoting music although it is difficult to be noticed. “People give more importance to someone who makes covers on YouTube rather than someone who makes original music;” he laments. The artist tells us he uses social media but he thinks it also distorts the reality and takes away the mystery around the artist.

Brito comments he loves the creative music aspect of making something out of nothing. “I love working in the recording studio as much as I like performing live,” he emphasizes. Asked about the music meaning in his life he takes a long breath and says: “It means everything, it sounds cliché but it is real... I don't care about fame, I care about music quality”.

In addition to his music career, Brito also does voluntaries gigs; one of them was an improvisation with actors in a performance style called ‘Playback Theater’ that involved people with rough background such as formers drug users. “They would interact with the actors and I would improvise music on top of it; this would help them recover psychologically speaking,” he describes.

Inquired on his expectation in the world’s musical future Brito points out: “I hope that some of the artificiality in music that is perfectly evident nowadays goes away and we focus again on music quality; now we have artists on Top40 that can't even sing, they can't play an instrument, they don't write or produce their own songs; you take a look at someone like Stevie Wonder or Prince and you could see real raw talent there; and they were control freaks in terms of their work and creativity”.

And to conclude our interview Brito emphasizes that music is what makes him happy, and he tries not to waste his time with negativity. To learn more about the artist’s please go to: André Brito Official Website; Fan Page; Twitter; and YouTube.

by Zel Florizel