Ernesto Rodrigues Interview










Kathodik - Where, how and when was Creative Sources Recordings born?

Ernesto Rodrigues - Creative Sources Recordings, was born as an idea in my head when I was doing a gig in Macao as a way to meet my need to edit and produce my own musical ideas. It turned into reality only in 1999 with home made CDR editions. Now it has grown into a real and very serious thing and at the verge of becoming more and more known and prestigious – so I expect.

Kathodik -What was the main idea behind its birth?

Ernesto Rodrigues - It basically was an attempt – at the image of so many European based labels such as Ictus, Incus, FMP, Po Torch, ICP, etc. - to show and divulge my work.

Kathodik - Most records produced so far are your own works. What were the criteria for all other releases?

Ernesto Rodrigues - The main criteria to have mostly my records edited has been mainly the lack off money to edit other authors rather than a special need to focus in my own work. My judgment as far as has having other people’s work edited his quality, the way I understand it.

Kathodik - Creative Sources Recordings is a divulgation channel of Portuguese musicians. Would you like to produce foreign artists? If so whom would you choose first?

Ernesto Rodrigues - The main reasons why I haven’t done that so far are very pragmatic, as I’ve stated on my last answer... My first choice would be any musician whose work is related to the new schools of experimentation and improvisation such as Berlin, Tokyo, London, etc.

Kathodik - How do you choose your musical mates? Do you change your role depending on whom you’re working with? What could you tell us on Manuel Mota’s case as a musical partner?

Ernesto Rodrigues - As far as most of my cds and performances are concerned the people who join me are the ones I keep a stable and long lasting relationship with (José Oliveira and Guilherme Rodrigues). One of the most interesting things about playing with different people is precisely the possibility of having your own role changed by what is determined by their different musical personalities. That is a thing I enjoy very much. Manuel Mota appears in «Assemblage» as a première in recordings at Creative Sources Recordings but the truth is we’ve played a lot live, lately. His conceptions of time and space fit perfectly the conceptual framework I’m in. Then he is a very sensitive, determined and reliable guy.

Kathodik - Tell us a beat about your stylistic formation. Does it include academic or didactic studies?

Ernesto Rodrigues - I started studying music when I was thirteen. My grandfather was a play writer and my father’s godfather was a maestro. I lived in the same house with them and they where a very important and strong influence in my childhood. Later, a friend of mine filled some forms for my admission at the Lisbon Conservatory, without my knowing, and I started my musical studies. (As there were no vacancies for violin I studied bassoon for one year). Now a days I try to forget all technique I’ve learned as far as playing the violin is concerned, for all I’m interested in developing as my musical universe hasn’t got anything to do with what you learn in academies. Today there is a new musical reflection on what concerns experimentation. There is like a trend to make it autonomous and free it from any connotations and make it become a new musical sphere.

Kathodik - Is there a lot of improvisation in your music? What is improvisation for you?

Ernesto Rodrigues -
My music is totally improvised. Improvisation for me is a goal not a mean. I see improvisation as a form of instant composition, a way of approaching music as fair as any other, and a way of being in music.

Kathodik - In one of your cds there is a transcript from John Cages’. It seems there is a strong sensibility for one of most influential innovators of the 20th century. Can you elaborate on this liaison?

Ernesto Rodrigues -
In one of your cds there is a transcript from John Cages’. It seems there is a strong sensibility for one of most influential innovators of the 20th century. Can you elaborate on this liaison?

Kathodik - Is the place you live an influential factor to your moods as a frame to the global visions which are present in your work?

Ernesto Rodrigues - Nobody is to have the right of denying the major or minor importance of having been born in this or whatever place for his growth and creativity- in other words, his personality. On the other hand, and meeting your question, I have to confess I’ve allways had a difficult relashionship with my country. I’ve lived the first 15 years of my life under a dictatorship, a black and white picture which inevitabely cut down your self-esteem and creativity. Yet, these conditions may become potencially enriching provided you’re lucky enough to have developed an analitic mind and the skill to have a critic look on the world around you. If togheter with these you have access to the right people who will show you – at these very early age- some of the best things which are beeing produced in the universes of Art and Culture from all over the world, you’re probably going to sublimate your life experiences in a very strong way in terms of your creativity. Today, part of the European Union, all information is equally spread all over the world and distances are quickly shortening. Even if Portugal’s cultural legacy is not as strong as other nation’s, as far as experimemtal music is concerned I think you can say that we have a hard strong nucleous of sound artists which are recognized world wide. Of all the improvisation scenes you have access to, today, I can say that the ones which please me the most are the London, Berlin and Tokyo schools.

Sergio Eletto , June 2003