Cristóvam – Being vulnerable in front of other people

with Brak komentarzy
Poleć innym:

Ostatnia aktualizacja: 2021-05-01. Autor: Milena

You have to fight for what you believe in. An artist has to learn to be vulnerable in front of other people. How it is to be a musician in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. These and many other things in the interview with Cristóvam.

Cristóvam is a great singer and song writer, who comes from Terceira and makes his music here, and luckily shares it also with the rest of the world. On the 13th of August, 2019, he will play a concert in Warsaw. I decided to introduce him to you before that concert.

Pobierz e-book „Azory – co zobaczyć na środku Atlantyku”

Wybierasz się na Azory? Chcesz wiedzieć, co warto zobaczyć na każdej z wysp?
Pobierz bezpłatny e-book!

Pobierając e-book, wyrażasz zgodę na zapis na newsletter Mileny Dąbrowskiej, a tym samym na otrzymywanie maili dotyczących Azorów oraz nowości, produktów i usług Mileny Dąbrowskiej. Zgodę możesz w każdej chwili wycofać. Szczegóły dotyczące przetwarzania Twoich danych osobowych znajdziesz w Polityce prywatności.

Today’s article in untypical. Because it’s the first podcast on my website. I hope that you like that form.

The text below is a transcription of our conversation. Under the transcription you will find more information about the artist and the concert. And now – enjoy the interview!


Cristóvam – Being vulnerable in front of other people – interview

Here you can also download the interview an listen to it in a convenient moment:


Cristóvam, fot. Laure Geerts
Cristóvam, fot. Laure Geerts


Hi! It’s Milena Dąbrowska speaking and you’re listening now to an interview with Cristóvam. Cristóvam is a singer and songwriter coming from Terceira island in the Azores, Portugal. Yes, that’s where I live. And that’s where I heard him for the first time in June 2018. I was so enchanted with his music that I immediately knew I had to bring him to Poland. I wanted you to listen to him as well. And the impossible is happening now. Cristóvam is playing his first concert in Poland! His concert “Hopes & Dreams” will take place on the 13th of August, at 7 p.m., in DK Śródmieście in Warsaw. You can find more information about Cristóvam and his concert on my website www.milenadabrowska.com – and now relax and enjoy the interview!

Hello.

Hello.

Thank you that you agreed for this interview.

Thank you.

The first question is: why music?

Because drugs are bad. (laugh)

And illegal? (laugh)

And illegal. (laugh) No, because my grandfather was the founder of the radio here on the island and he left a big collection of music that my father inherited and also I inherited myself. I grew up listening to many records that were very old for my age, so… when I was 6 or 5, I already knew Dire Straits, Supertramp and Bob Dylan and Neil Young records back and forth.

And without having any musicians in my family, I did have a good friend of my father, who was a great guitarist. And he would lead me to this passion about trying to learn guitar.

When I was 11, my father finally gave me my guitar. My first guitar. And then I started locking myself in the room until 4 a.m. every day, trying to write songs. First learned two or three songs and then started playing my own songs.

And because I did now know other musicians when I started doing my songs and I wanted to hear other instruments, I had to learn the other instruments in order to have them in my songs. So that is why I learned how to play bass, and some keyboards, and to program drums, and record myself in all of that. It was a necessity.

Did you learn it all on your own?

Yes. And there was no YouTube. (laugh) Because I’m old already. (laugh)

Oh, you’re so terribly old! (laugh)

But there was no instructions, so yes, it was a lot of trial and error. But I loved it so I never got bored. I saw my friends getting bored every day and I was never bored, I was always eager to come home and to play with these toys.

And at that time were you already thinking about making it your profession or was it just some playing?

At the beginning no. Probably around 15 or 16, I started to realize that the only thing that I was really absolutely passionate about was music. I started to think about making a living out of music, despite everybody telling me it was impossible. And that I would have to move to a big country and a big city, because the Azores were very bad to become a musician.

I think you’re reading my questions because you’re already answering them the way they are here. (laugh) So how is it to be a musician in a little island in the ocean?

It’s something that you cannot explain, because it’s a very unknown reality.

Even to myself to a certain degree, because there was not a lot of people that I could look up to and see, and say: this guy is doing really what I want to do. There was no one that I could look and have that. There were of course great musician from the island and there are some great musicians that I admire and think are very talented, but there was no one doing what I wanted to do, which was to live here, but to make music and to tour the world. It seemed even a little immature to think that big.

But I was very stubborn and when I was 18, I sent a message to a big pop star from Portugal back then and he replied, and he listened to my music, and I met a lot of other people.

That was a big turning point to me, because for the first time I felt like that this gap dividing the islands from the mainland was not as big as people thought.

Because of the internet. That you could send these messages to these people. And of course most people that you send messages to when you are a kid making music don’t even answer, but some do. And that was a turning point for me.

And then I went to Lisbon to study fine arts. It only lasted 5 months. And then I quit college because I could not afford to pay college and make record at the same time. I had to choose between what my investment would be. And so – I chose music. And then one thing led to the other and here we are.

Ok, wow, it sounds like a real story.

It is.

So what did that musician from the mainland answer? Why was it such a big thing?

It was a big thing because when you… Nowadays is not as much as it was back then. Because this gap has been shortened of course by the internet. And because there is much stronger connection between what happens in the islands and what happens in the mainland. But back then it was two separate worlds and no one knew about what was happening here. And people who were on TV were of course very famous and rich. And it was distorted reality because once you get on TV, you start to realize that you’re not making money out of going to TV. Which is something that I found later. But when I was a kid and I would see MTV and see all these guys, I would think that they were untouchable and they were slightly above the rest of the humanity, sort of like the gods. And that you would never talk to them. And then a simple message and a simple reply. He told me that he liked my music a lot and that we should meet.

And I was a kid. I told this to my parents, I flew to Lisbon and I got to Lisbon, and he was launching his records. He introduced me to another big band back then.

And here I am – a kid from an island on a desk with people that I only saw on TV once. And then it made a click to me.

I finally understood that people around me did now know anything from this world, from the music world. So their opinion should not matter. Regarding saying “You shouldn’t do this because it won’t work”. I found that they had zero foundation to say what they were saying, to talk about this world that I was trying to get into. So I became a very stubborn and locked person, and I decided to do things by myself, because I couldn’t really look around and see a lot of people that could have an opinion that should matter on this aspect. Of course in all the rest – yes, but not on this professional aspect.

And then maybe because of my childish stubbornness, I eventually became at least a version of what I wanted to be.

Cristóvam, fot. Diogo Rola
Cristóvam, fot. Diogo Rola

Ok! So is this life what you imagined?

I don’t know. It is beautiful to travel the world with just your guitar. Sadly beautiful at the same time, because you do it most of the time by yourself, on planes and trains, and buses. But you meet all these people and you know all these stories, and you meet so many different cultures, and you travel to so many different places that you never dreamt of. That it is as good as I thought on that aspect.

And then there is the other aspect that you start growing and you start to realize that musicians are people like everyone else.

That have problems on their daily basis and have bills to pay, and have all the same concerns that every other human has. And it’s not as glamorous. At least not for musicians that live on the, let’s say, the medium spot of the table. The big musicians yes, they have luxury lives and they live in a sort of a parallel world. But musicians like myself who do small clubs and tour a bit everywhere are just regular people who have regular problems as everyone else.

And they have to pay the rent on their own.

But it’s amazing that I was stubborn to the point of not going back.

You mentioned this stubbornness a few times.

A lot of time, yes. The worst part about being musician and the part that’s hard, but it’s also the part that makes you become a stronger professional, is every time that something very big is about to happen and it does not happen. This is a reality for all musicians, artists, actors. Sometimes you are a nail close to living a dream and things don’t turn out the way that you thought they would or everyone else around you said they would.

The first two or three times that this happens to you it’s sort of like a hard punch in a stomach. Something that makes you get back a while and think to a certain degree: how am I going to ride that horse again.

But I think these step backs are essential because they develop a lot of things in you that are necessary. To deal with an uncertain life that music is.

You never know the day tomorrow, you never know what’s holding you in two months, you never know what’s going to happen. Sometimes great things happen, sometimes bad things happen. But it’s all a part of it. And it’s the main difference between an artistic career and a steady career. It’s that you either love highs and lows or you love a steady line. And I love highs and lows.

And with time it’s getting easier?

I don’t know. Right now I’m becoming superstitious over the years, so I don’t like to talk very much, but what I’ve certainly learned is not to expect a lot from anything. Just deliver what you have, give your best. But to not jump into a stage thinking that this will change your life or to jump into a radio stage and think that this is going to… or a tour, or whatever. Because it’s very uncertain and it’s very hard to predict. Sometimes the things that seem that are going to be the most important things are the things that pass you by and sometimes the things that you never thought were there end up becoming a very huge step in your career.

I think this is what’s important – you learn to do what you love because you’re doing what you love. And you stop thinking about all the rest, because all the rest is just things that you absolutely have zero control over.

All these things that happen – do they change you as a musician or a person?

They change everything about you. They change you as a person. Because they are lessons that are valuable not only for your career, they are valuable for your life. When you’re a kid, you’re 18, the vulnerability that I had to send that message is the same vulnerability that I had to believe everyone that came to me and say: “I’m gonna make you become this guy” or “This is going to happen to you because I’m going to push these strings”. And a lot of this happens to musicians and to artists. A lot of people come and go. They say they are going to do this, and then they don’t do anything. And then they go and they leave you devastated. And it’s part of it. You cannot change that and it’s always going to happen. And so you need to create a certain barrier to defend yourself from getting delusional from what people say is going to happen. Because no one has a control of anything honestly. Sometimes people come to you with the best intentions and sometimes what happens is the worst. They wanted to help you, they did not help you, they raised big hopes on you and then they destroyed you.

It’s a part of the game. You learn to live with it, it makes you stronger. It makes you do things for the right reasons.

It makes you forget about the business aside of things and makes you focus on the music and what brought you to the music in the first place. And the truth is that I think that as long as you stay loyal to music and to the reason why you started doing things in the first place, you’re doing it. Because it’s very easy to get spoiled. When all the good things happen at once and you didn’t have to struggle to reach to a certain degree. Once you reach it, you don’t know how you got there and you ruin it, and you fall back down. I think that’s even worse. And it happens a lot. Kids have a career without having to fight for it, and then they’re 19, and they have millions of dollars, and they start doing drugs. And then they ruin everything and they become the guy working at the café somewhere, that no one knows who he is. All these lessons are valuable and essential lessons that I did now know were expecting me. At all. Like anything else, because I did not know anything about this. So… You just play the game. You take a few punches and you get some, and you swing some, and that’s it.

So you’re saying that you have to have good reasons to do music and you have to remember about them. So what drives you when you write music, when you write lyrics? What inspires you?

It’s like I said – when you’re a musician, you have a normal life. You have feelings, and you have friends, and you have relationships… And all these things play a part on who you are and a part on what you feel. And the difference between a musician and somebody who is not an artist, who has a regular life and does not in somehow put to the outside, to the world how they are feeling, is the way you put yourself vulnerable in front of everyone else.

Cristóvam, fot. Diogo Rola
Cristóvam, fot. Diogo Rola

The best songs come from the heart, come from who you are and what you’re feeling. And not everyone is ready to put in a song how they feel and to put that to the world open wide. It’s complicated, you need to learn how to be vulnerable in front of other people.

And when you’re walking to the stage and you’re singing a song about something that made you sad or happy – if you’re doing a good job, then when you’re performing that song, then you’re on the place you were when you wrote it. If you were sad, you become sad on the stage. If you were happy, you become happy on the stage. And people like honesty when they’re watching a show. So… It’s that, I think. I don’t even know what question was anymore. (laugh)

We’ll come back in a moment to the question… (laugh)

But I think I answered it. (laugh)

More or less. (laugh) But I would like you to tell me more about putting your heart into the music. Because I know that art can be kind of a therapy also.

Yes. Exactly. Most of these songs are a therapy. This is why most of the songs that seem to be heartful, if you think about it, seem to be sad. When you think of a heartful song, you always think of a sad song. And that is because when people are sad, they tend to keep it to themselves. When they’re happy, they exteriorize to the whole world, they make everybody laugh, they jump in a street and it’s something that they put out in everything else that they do.

When they’re sad, they would sometimes be putting a mask and wandering around the streets, and people seem to get that this person is not a 100% happy, but they have zero clue of what’s going on. Because people keep it to themselves. And when you’re a musician or an artist, you always tend to exteriorize what you have locked inside. This is why a lot of songs are sad. And why these songs seem to be the more heartful songs. It’s hard to write a good happy song.

Yes, that’s true. Because happiness seems to be…

It’s something that when you’re happy, you don’t think about writing songs. Because you don’t need to exteriorize how you’re feeling, because you’re very open to how you’re feeling. Everyone around you sees you’re happy, they get happy, everyone is happy. They jump, they play, they have fun. And that’s it. When you’re sad, you keep it to yourself. And then if you’re home and if you’re not feeling good, and if you have a guitar, and you start writing a song, you’re putting on paper what’s on your mind and what’s in your heart and it becomes this thing. So… This is why I feel there’s more truthful songs that are sad then that are happy. I wish it wasn’t like that, but it is.

But then at least people who are sad and they close themselves in the house, they have something to listen to.

Yeah, exactly. Which is also, I feel, very important.

It’s also one of the things that drove me into wanting to write music. I didn’t feel that anyone understood how I felt, but there was a song about it. And I could think that this guy who wrote this song knows how I feel because he says it in a song. And that was something that I felt was magical.

Especially when you’re a teenager and you’re always either crying or laughing out loud. When you’re a teenager and feelings are super fragile, and oscillating, this is the part where I feel that people hold to the songs that they will listen to their whole lives. Because they relate to those songs in such a specific matter that they will carry it through their lives. That’s magic of songs and that’s something that drove me into wanting to write some.

Coming back to that previous question – what inspires you to writing songs?

Day-to-day life and day-to-day feelings, and day-to-day things that either happen to me or happen to someone so close to me that I feel them as if they were my own. Sometimes your best friend is going through a rough time and you feel it almost as badly as he is feeling it, because you are that close to him. So sometimes there is a song that people will say: “Oh, you were in a very bad place when you wrote this song”, and sometimes it’s not me, it’s my friend, but I felt it as he felt it or at least close enough that I could put this material together. Which happens a lot. I don’t tend to tell everything about my songs, because some are either super personal about me or super personal about someone that is very close to me.

There is this great songwriter that I love called Ray Lamontagne. He says that a musician telling people what a song is about is the same thing as a magician telling how he does his tricks. Because you’re ruining a possible phantasy. Because that’s the magic of music. I wrote a song today about my grandmother and the next day someone listened to it and thought it was about their girlfriend, and the next day someone connects the story with the career problem. Songs have this capability of changing according to people’s lives. Their meaning swifts a lot. And I have songs from other artists that to me have a very clear message about something in my life. And I know he didn’t write about that, he wrote about something that has nothing to do with that. But to me it is what it is. And if I tell: “Oh, this song is about this” and you listen to me saying it, it’s locked in your head. This song is no longer to be about anything else, it’s going to be about that specific thing.

This is a funny story. I wrote the song “Red Lights” that is on my record. I wrote it in Amsterdam and called it “Red Lights”, because when I went to Amsterdam, all I heard about Amsterdam was the commercial side that everyone talks about. They talk about the red light, they talk about smoking weed in the streets, they talk about the sin city. But when I got there and I started wandering around the streets, what I found was magical was this sense of freedom that is true. What I mean by this is that no one condemns anything as long as it does not mess with themselves. I mean – the lady next to you can have a pink unicorn in her head. If she does not bother you, you have zero thoughts about that person. Which it something very nice to say and something very sweet that we all say: “Oh, but I am like that!” But the truth is no one is like that. But I only felt it literally that way it was in Amsterdam. It was very poetic city, because everyone is who they want to be and no one cares. And as soon as I walked the first time around the city, I was blown away. I felt: this is a magical place.

When I got home that day, I wrote that song in 5 minutes. And I had zero clue what the song was about. It was about wandering around the street and paddling, and falling in love with the street. Then, when the song was ready, I immediately felt that it would be nice to record it with a female vocal on the chores. So I have this Dutch friend called Manon Planting. And she has a gorgeous voice, and I asked her: “Do you want to do this video where you’re singing this song with me and we’re going to shoot it in Vondelpark”, which is a very famous garden in Amsterdam. And she said: “Yeah, let’s do it!” And she got home, and she listened to the song, and then she came to me with this idea. She’s a very religious person and she’s very clean, very angelic type of girl. So she actually read the lyrics and she thought that in the song she would be playing a prostitute from Amsterdam. And then I read the lyrics. And I said: “Wow”. Because when you actually read the lyrics, it seems like a song from a man who fell in love with a girl from the red light. It literally feels that there’s no single verse that contradicts this idea.

And that’s when I felt like: Oh! That’s the magic of songs.

I say:

I go around this town a time or two
Just to waste another dance with you
And I know it’s wrong but I just can’t help myself
See I’m a little bit lost and I could use some help
(…)
Oh my dear, have no fear
I’m here for the good times, here for the hard times
Here for all that’s wrong and all that’s right
We echo through the night
Between these red lights

It literally seems like a guy walked into the red light and fell in love with a girl. So you know… She was very skeptical about this, and then I said: “No! This is absolutely not what this song is about” – “Ok, then I’ll do it” – and then we did. We recorded it. So it’s funny how songs shape into people’s minds and interpretations change so much.

Yes, I remember that this song for me was about a guy falling in love in Amsterdam, but I didn’t think that it had to be with a prostitute.

Yes, you know, but she was so clear about this idea. And no, it’s not. I don’t know what it is. (laugh) I just wrote it! And then sometimes songs are even more enigmatic, because when you’re writing a song, you tend to not know what you’re writing about. Most of the time you’re writing a song and you only start to realize what you’re writing about when you’re closing the song, when there’s like three lines to go. And that’s when it gets hard to close the song. Because you’ve been writing, lost in a room, about the entire universe and once that idea closes to you, you no longer can talk about a lot of things. You need to specify this and that in order for all of that to work towards where you want to go. That’s why I have a lot of songs that only have the first half ready and the second one has been going on for years.

They are waiting for their time.

Yeah, they are waiting for their time. Sometimes the time does not come. (laugh)

But you’re working on the second album.

I am working on a lot of music all the time. It’s hard for me to say it’s the second album…

Maybe the fourth already?

…because I never know where songs are going to end, but I do have a batch that is sort of more ready that will eventually become my second record that I plan to release next year. It’s about 11 new songs. Some of them I’m already playing these shows that I’m doing.

Any other projects that are going on now?

I’m going to release a new lyric video for the song “Burning Memories”. It was done by the same animator that did “Faith and Wine”. This is going to happen this month. I also have a few shows that are going to happen between August and September/October, already November also a few. I’m also a part of a group show that is happening now, that we’re going to do all the islands from the Azores, it’s called “Contos e Canções”. It means “Tales and songs”. It’s four song writers from the Azores and we get together on a stage and we tell a story behind a song. Either of how we wrote it or where we were at that time, or how the idea came, or what the lyric is about, and then we play a song. It goes in a circle. And it’s a very fun thing. And we did the first show last month in Faial. It went very well and now we have shows already for the next year, September also.

And then I have a big song that came in a big TV commercial last month called “Lifeline” and this song was already recorded. After the TV commercial went on, I went to Lisbon to finish the song. The song is now currently being mixed, it will be released soon. It will be out in September. It’s going to be the first piece from my next record. Also I did video that we’re finishing right now, for another song, from this record, that is also going to come out this summer. It’s “The Old Man’s Tale”. After the lyric video that one should come out and then after this, in September, we are changing chapter and starting to work on the next record. Which is very exciting!

It must be! But before that – you’re going to Poland!

Yes, I’m going to Warsaw, thanks to you. And I’m very, very, very, super excited about this. My first time in Poland. And the venue has the size that I like, when you get close to people. So this is going to be exciting.

Nice! Do you know something about Poland?

I know a few things. But what in particular?

Generally. The things that come to your mind when you think about Poland.

Cold. (laugh)

Not in the summer!

How many degrees are there in the summer?

Two weeks ago it was 35, today it was 16, so it’s oscillating.

I hope it’s 16.

So that you can prove that it’s cold there.

Yes. I like cold better than hot.

So 16.

Or 20. 20 is good.

Maybe 20 would be better. I hope that you will enjoy it.

I will! A lot.

And tell me – what do you do when you don’t make music? We already agreed that you paid bills, right?

I do a lot of things. On my free time, on this place where I am now, which is basically switching from one record to the other, and already slowing down a bit, I work voluntarily inside a volcano on the island, where I know you are starting. I also sometimes work as a guide here. I don’t know if you are talking about professional or for fun.

For fun as well.

For fun I play music.

When you don’t play music, for fun you play music.

Yeah, I play music for everything. And I like to go out on a boat. I like to swim, to run – that’s it. To hike in the nature, of course.

Which is your favourite hike here?

I like Mistérios Negros and Nasce Água.

As we’re already in the nature and in the Azores, maybe you could also say something about the island? Imagine that somebody doesn’t know the island at all, they want to come here to visit. What would you tell them?

I would tell them to come with time, with at least 10 days, to do more than 1 island, but to of course come to Terceira. To enjoy all our incredible beaches around the island, which needs to be in summer time. I would tell them to visit Algar do Carvão, where I work, the volcano. The only one you can see in Europe and the only one you can see in the world except for the one in Iceland. I tell them to come and see the happiest cows in Europe. (laugh)

Oh yeah, with the great view for the ocean!

With the great view. To taste the great food that we have here on the island.

Which food?

Everything that we have here typical from the island. Not anything in particular, but… Can I say restaurants? (laugh)

You may say… Hm… (laugh)

Well, we have a lot of food here. Don’t know anything more in specific, but it’s a very nice, remote, different place from anything you’ll find in the world.

This is why I never left. I’ve traveled a lot, I’ve seen a lot of things, but I always come back to this little corner.

Cristóvam, fot. Timothy Lima
Cristóvam, fot. Timothy Lima

Exactly, why do you always come back? You have a possibility to live anywhere.

I don’t know… I wrote a song about that called “Home”. It’s not on this record, it’s part of a record that I released in 2012 with the band called October Flight. And it’s this song that I wrote about the Azores and I wrote about missing home and this place, and why it’s so special. Listen to that song.

Ok. Where do I find it?

On Spotify or anything else. October Flight, “Home”. That is my best attempt to describe what it is like to be from here and to be outside of here when you leave. I’m a suspect because I was born here, but I simply I cannot find a place that is similar to this one anywhere.

I think I’ve heard this song. Weren’t you playing it in Teatro Alpendre?

Angrense. Did you go to Teatro Angrense?

Angrense also.

I did it there. It’s one of my oldest songs.

So… If you weren’t a musician?

If I was not a musician? I’d be a very sad person. I honestly don’t know what I would be. But I would certainly work in something related to sea. And the ocean. Because I’m super passionate about the ocean. Once upon a time I wanted to be a marine biologist. And then, when music invaded my life dramatically, I switched. But something about being a marine biologist seems very appealing to me, or being sea patrol, that was also an option. So anything related to the ocean would be my first choice. Actually I would be very happy working in the ocean if I was not a musician.

You wouldn’t be so sad and miserable?

No, but I would be sad and miserable if I could not have any contact with music.

Imagine now that you are talking to a kid that’s 10 years old and he’s dreaming about being a musician. What would you say?

I would say to follow what he believes and to not think as much about it.

To not listen to what everyone has to say, because the truth is if you don’t fall into the normal categories that society tends to want people to fall in, you’ll always hear people saying “It’s not the best choice”. The best choice is always to be a doctor or a lawyer, or an architect, or an engineer. Everyone will tell you that. If you say you want to become a painter or an actor, or a musician, or a photographer – everyone will tell you “You should have a plan B”. Which is something dangerous to say to someone.

What do you mean?

Because if you decide to become a doctor, you don’t have a plan B.

So if you want to be good at something, you can only have one plan. That’s plan A.

And you need to stick with it, and to stick with everything bad that comes with it, and to still go through, and to still make it. It comes with effort. To some it comes with more effort than to others. But I honestly believe that if you want to be good at something, you cannot have your head split into two places. And that you need to fight for what you believe.

Of course at 10 years old – that’s very tender age where everything changes. One year you want to be an astronaut and the other one you want to be an architect. But if you’re going into college and you’re thinking about becoming a musician… It depends from case to case, I think. But if you like what you’re doing in college and you feel like you can invest in music during your time of studying, I’d say – complete you’re degree and when you’re finish your degree you’re 21 years old, jump straight into music and you have a degree that if things don’t turn out good, you can jump into it.

The bad news is that things don’t tend to get good when you’re a musician. They just are what they are. So it’s a choice. If you want to do what you love, you have to sometimes give up on things that some people have when they choose the life that they don’t want to have. It’s sort of a natural balance that things tend to have. If you love a lot what you do, sometimes it means you don’t get as much money as you would if you did something that you don’t like. It’s not exactly that way. Some people are very well paid to do what they love. But it’s a reality, you need to face it. I’m very happy I do what I love, so to me that’s a lot more important than to have a lot of money to buy things I don’t need.

Because you have something important on a daily basis.

I travel a lot, I see a lot of people, I meet a lot of people. I have a lot of things in my memory that if I get to become an old person, I’ll remember them tenderly. Good moments everywhere, a lot of people I met. Heroes that became friends. And people that I admire a lot and that I got to tour with. And to me that’s a lot more than to have a couple extra thousand Euros in my bank account.

And it’s a very heavy conversation to have with a ten-year-old. This is where this conversation started.

So let’s wait until the 10-year-old grows up.

So I’ll say: “Please, grow a little more before you start saying what you want to be”.

I have the last question – a question from my friend – can you play a string harmonic?

Is it a pinch harmonic?

(Quoting Wikipedia) “A string harmonic is a string instrument technique which uses the nodes of natural harmonics of a musical string to produce high pitched tones of varying timbre and loudness.”

Yes, I can do that. (Quoting Wikipedia): “String harmonics are high pitched tones, like a whistle’s, are produced when the musician lightly touches certain points on a string.” Typically people who know how to play a guitar for a while know how to do that. I can teach him how do to that in 5 seconds.

This friend will be on the concert, so maybe after the concert…

Yes, I will teach him!

Ok, deal!

All right!

Thank you very much for this interview.

Thank you very much for all the help and for getting my music out there. And I’m very happy and looking forward to playing in Poland.

Great. Thank you!

Thank you!


Hello, it’s me again. Thank you for listening to this interview. I hope you enjoyed it. If so, please, comment on my website and share it with your friends, so that they also have a chance to listen to it. And I hope to see you at the concert. I’ll be there, will you? Bye bye!

Cristóvam, fot. Diogo Rola
Cristóvam, fot. Diogo Rola


Cristóvam – biography

Cristóvam was born amongst the deep blue of the Atlantic and the lush green of the beautiful Azores, Portugal. By 21 he had already won 3 music/songwriting contests. (Vodafone One’s to Watch Portugal/LabJovem/AngraRock)

In 2015 he started recording his debut album “Hopes & Dreams” at the legendary Namouche studios in Lisbon. One year later, Cristóvam released his first solo single “Walk in the Rain” and sold out Teatro Angrense (650 capacity). The single was featured in portuguese blockbuster “A Canção de Lisboa”.

His new single “Faith & Wine” was released on April 13th this year and reached number 1 on the Itunes Singer-Songwriter charts for Portugal. On April 20th, Cristóvam became the first portuguese to ever get a 1st prize at the International Songwriting Competition. The judge panel featured the likes of Tom Waits, Keane, Bastille, Lorde, among many other great acts and a long list of executives from the industry (Warner, Interscope, Island, etc.). His song “Faith & Wine” managed to win first prize in the “Unsigned Only” category and to receive and honorable mention in the “Folk/Singer-songwriter category”.

His debut album “Hopes & Dreams” was released on September 28th, 2018. Since then Cristóvam has played more then 20 shows in 5 different countries and supported Stu Larsen & Natsuki Kurai in part of their European tour.

In March, 2019 he released a video (recorded in Amsterdam) for the song „Red Lights”, and in May, 2019 played at Cannes Festival at Artonboat.

Concert „Hopes & Dreams” in Poland

Concert will take place on the 13th of August, 2019, at 7 p.m. in DK Śródmieście in Warsaw, Smolna 9 Street.

Information about the concert on the organizer’s website: website of DK Śródmieście
Tickets: biletyna.pl

See you there!

Poleć innym: