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Multiplicity of sound

Foto. Henrique Oliveira

Entrevista Interview

Rusó Sala


etween the sea and the hills, in Cap Ras bay, Rusó Sala (Roses, 1982) confesses to having drunk a lot of music: from Sephardic and Mediterranean songs to jazz and classical. Her creative work is born of musical emotion and encompasses her curiosity and passion for new discoveries: she is a sound explorer. In perfect harmony, her voice and guitar evoke dreamy landscapes and precious scenes from old times. She’s just released her third album, ‘Desirem’ (Microscopi, 2019), a trio with Míriam Encinas and Aleix Tobias, of the band Coetus.

Your career is always coming and going. Do you think of music as a journey? I think it’s important having a place to be, where you can put together all you’ve been learning and picking up along the way. On the other hand, for me, travelling has been vital. Meeting people from other cultures and facing different audiences makes you look for new expressions. When you’re playing abroad, you discover unexpected paths that lead to deep musical explorations. There are moments in which words don’t matter any more and the most important thing is the way you deliver them. You live in Empordà. Do you feel at home here? I consider Alt Empordà as a retreat. If I need to concentrate or to get inspired, here I find wonderful landscapes and silence, and the sea. It is a place to which I constantly need to return. I feel it’s a creative retreat. How did your musical adventure begin? As a kid I already started exploring, beginning with dancing, which was a more corporal and rhythmic experience. It wasn’t until I was 22 that I started having lessons. And when I finished my degree I went to Barcelona and studied at Taller de Músics school for 3 years. When I found out that there were other paths, I left and dove into what I really loved. It’s very difficult to find out your musical influences. I wouldn’t be able to point out a concrete influence for my music. I listened to a lot of things when I was young, especially classical music. And [52]

I’ve always admired Freddie Mercury, Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell. They moved me—I sang along their songs and melted in their voices. Sephardic music is also very important in your work… Sephardic music integrates old melodies full of special flavour, for instance, by using melisma, a technique that modulates vowel singing. You realise that there are many ways of singing and enriching the words. And that’s what I’ve tried to do in this latest album, ‘Desirem’. Tell us about ‘Desirem’. It’s a transition album, emotionally contained, with the participation of Aleix and Míriam, two brilliant musicians. With their instruments they can make the tiniest thing seem enormous, an extremely unusual power. Is it a spiritual album? There are mystical and spiritual poems by Ramon Llull, but I’d say the project is more an existentialist research. It’s a poetic and philosophical work. I’m looking for answers I can’t find elsewhere. How do you normally compose? Usually, while I’m sitting on my own with my guitar an image or a concept suddenly appears and moves me. Working from a deep emotional base, I keep searching for the words and the melody to decode what I’m feeling to then express it through a story. Do you see music as a therapy? Completely. Music helps me to focus and gives me insight into what’s important for me, although I might be looking outward or referencing something external at the same time. I believe in the healing power of music for it makes me connect to myself and to the world. You’ve put music to Lorca, Casasses and Maria M. Marçal’s poems, amongst others. How do you relate to poetry? Poetry has helped me to grow emotionally. Putting music to poems is a very beautiful creative exercise. An interesting dialogue is set when the poet’s words echo in the music. Rosa Zaragoza is an important figure in your career. How did you two meet? When I first started researching Sephardic music Rosa’s was one of the first names I found on Google. I investigated a little and she turned out to be my neighbour in Barcelona. I wrote to her and we met. She then invited me to go on tour in Germany, which was a great challenge for me. She’s my mentor-friend. Is it a sacrifice to be a musician? I wouldn’t put it that way: To me, not to make music would be the sacrifice. On top of that, I’ve chosen a minority ‘marginal’ kind of music. Many people ask me why did I decide to do that. I’m aware I work outside the mainstream, but because it was about taking a leap of faith I’d rather do it completely. I can’t complain at all because the outcome is extremely positive. Being a musician gives me real freedom. I feel extremely engaged and amazingly free at the same time. //

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Ja tenim aquí la nova edició de la revista cultural i guia de turisme creatiu de tot l'Empordà, la [ut] Empordà 2019! Art i cultura, dormir...