When music comes to you, whether it's in a dream or through the clear spring of inspiration,
don't try to seize it. Let if flow and fly away.
Then, maybe in the remaining feeling of this unexpected gift,
you'll find some light... to share
Music has always been a great passion of mine. I started playing the guitar when I was a kid and have since then been involved in quite a few projects, whether they are video clips, playing music live, writing and composing for others or playing an active part as a consultant on various projects, concerts, shows, performances, albums, etc.
Universatile is my first solo project. My aim here was to write songs that other artists might find interesting to interpret. It's a mix of French and English tunes, from Pop to Rock, Folk and lounge, to what I would consider an ideal film soundtrack with the title “Gibraltar in Heaven”. My inspirations for this were as diverse as the outcome.
I thank my friend Robert Van Hove for his precious work in recording these tracks, in his wonderful PRS Studio in the south of France. The man worked with such names as Ella Fitzgerald, Herbie Hancock, John Lee Hooker or french singer Francis Cabrel, and it was an honor for me to work with him. I also thank percussionist Xavier Desandre Navarre and RomDom for their collaboration.
If you are interested in getting a copy, please get in touch and I'll get one to you.
My functions during the festival are many. For example, I've had the great pleasure of spending a day with cuban pianist Chucho Valdes, serving as his interpreter. He is truly a great character and an incomparable pianist.
Here, I translate an interview by french radio France Bleu, from French to Spanish.
To find out more about Chucho Valdes:
Jazz à Vienne
Located in the city of Vienne / France, Jazz à Vienne is one of the five largest jazz festivals in the World, and one of the two largest in Europe with / Switzerland.
I was fortunate enough to work there ponctually for three years, in the ‘Régie’ department, and therefore was lucky to be apart of wonderful concerts, share some time and exchange with many artists I admire, and gain some precious experience, both professional and personal.
To find out more about the festival:
Cover art by Tatjana Stoffel
A moment with Chavela
This photo was taken in 2010, as I was in Mexico City visiting some friends for the Bicentenario of the revolution.
During a conversation, I mentioned how much I love Chavela Vargas, and a phone call later, here are my friends making my wish come true. I was so lucky to watch her last performance at the Teatro Nacional, and spend a moment with her the next day. Time to take in the energy of this iconic mexican figure of the XXth Century and tell her my infinite admiration for her music.
Chavela has now gone home, to the stars, but watching her transcend her illness on stage, with 91, to sing one last time for Mexico, is and will remain one of the most powerful and inspiring musical moments I've ever lived. I can never thank Julio and Estela Livera enough for making this possible.
La llorona is probably Chavela's most famous song. In fact, the track was used in Salma Hayek's film Frida , about Frida Kahlo's life. Chavela appears in the picture as she had a powerful love story with Frida.
To find out more about Chavela Vargas:
ROMDOM is a young and exciting french song writer, composer and singer, with whom I worked quite a bit over the years. I enjoy his work as he is a true poet and has come to develop his very own universe. Here is a recording session extract of his latest album on which I co-wrote a few songs (including this one). I wish him much luck with this new project.
To find out more about ROMDOM:
Based in New york City, Ty Stephens is one of these amazing old school entertainers who can really do it all: from dancing to singing to grooving. For a few seasons in a row, he opened and still opens every concert from Stevie Wonder to Sting and Jamiroquai at the Sporting Club in Monte-Carlo / Monaco during the summer jazz festival (which is unprecedented), and I was lucky enough to give him some counsel about his promotion and work as his european booking agent for some time. I wish him to be recognized at the level of his incredible talent.
To find out more about Ty Stephens:
Click on the image for a full spanish interview of Chavela Vargas
You can listen to Gibraltar In Heaven by clicking on the play button
More about Robert: