He spent half his life cracking the biggest voice in the history of flamenco with his strings, living in his shadow. And now his music shines in the sun. Tomato runs through his veins, although he, from a very young age, is called Tomatito. Here is a man stuck to his guitar. His were the chords with which the genius of the Island broke his shirt, with which the ears when he heard them were shivering with the cold, with which «tiriti tran tran tran tran / tiriti tran tran tran trero» proudly accompanied Camaron, being His faithful and loyal squire. Reinvented and as a soloist, coinciding with the 80th anniversary of the publication of the composition, the artist has recorded on an album, which was released on October 4, a work as emblematic – with his popular adage – as the Concert of Aranjuez .
–You will face one of your greatest artistic challenges, with the «El Concierto de Aranjuez»
– Yes, because I come from the flamenco world, a much more improvised music. And having to play in a more static way requires discipline. In any case, the work is wonderful and very guitaristic. The adage touches anyone, of any race and any country.
–You have won 6 Latin Grammy awards in three different categories: flamenco, jazz and classical music. What does life sound like?
–A music, which is universal. Of course, I come from flamenco and I will die in flamenco. Although the guitar has no languages. I can go to Germany, do the same concert as here and that people understand it perfectly, without the need for me to speak German.
– What is the guitar?
– My life, in her I have invested all my time. I get up, take it and touch it. I have a rest, I take it and touch it. He always accompanies me, even on vacation.
–What does he play with?
– It is an extension of my body. And it is not only played with the strings and with the hands. There is the heart, which is needed to express and transmit what one carries within. It is played as it is and as it is, since the mood influences a lot. If you are reassured, it shows. And if you're nervous, too.
– How do you live in the sun, after so many years in the shade?
– I would have liked to live my whole life in the shadow of Camarón. I went to the sun because I had no choice, but I would have loved to be by his side, accompanying him, my entire career. It's a pride to ask me about him and to recognize me as his guitarist.
–A word to describe it.
–A saint, an exquisite person.
– How much is said about him …
-Yes. There are people who talk a lot, which I have never seen, when I was always with him …
– What distinguished him?
– He sang better than those who invented the songs. I don't know what he was doing, really.
– Will someone be up to it again?
– It will be something else, because the comparisons are ugly. But he has passed through this world being a genius.
– Have you reinvented yourself?
–I have worked hard. I have always had discipline. But now, being solo and sending in my music, it is very different. And for the record, Camarón let me play as I wanted. To Paco de Lucía he said: «Look what the child has taken». "Do it, do it," he insisted. And I was embarrassed …
–And the flamenco?
–It is a lively and dynamic music that is always reinventing itself. If there is a beautiful chord, it is placed and included. If not, it will exit through the back door.
– But what is flamenco?
–It is a way of living and feeling. I live flamenco, like flamenco and seen flamenco, as Raimundo Amador says.
–How do you rate your situation in Spain?
– I am a little disoriented because I have my concerts outside and my tours in Europe, although I also play in Madrid, Córdoba, Barcelona … But the truth is that, culturally, I should be better considered, because it is the music we have to export to world. They are better trained abroad, so they value it more.
– Do you see yourself playing with Rosalia, for example?
-Why not? It is a girl that sounds pretty to the ear. He does not sing for soleá, nor for seguiriya, but what he does to youth. And with youth there is no one who can.
– How do you like fame?
–I don't know her. If the fame is that you recognize your work and your music, bless it. But it's a word that fits me.
-And the money?
-Good. I do what I like and I get paid to live fairly well, so perfect.
–Tomatito, after so many years, will one day be called Tomato?
– They are calling me, by age (laughs).
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