Friday was a very familiar day. First, there came Diogo Castro, who integrated our team, helping us getting more participants during the course of the project. Now, it was his turn! We were surprised with his vocal emulation of Snarky Puppy [experimental jazz band], whose rhythmic and harmonic structures are not the easiest to reproduce. He also played this tambourine in order to demonstrate the first rhythmic patterns he has learned, but he seriously told us he didn't know how to properly play that instrument; a commentary from someone who is able to precisely distinguish between the timbral nuances and technical traditions (even if dangerously similar) of different percussion instruments. Before leaving us, he gave us the coordinates to the road where he used to live before moving to Caniço. He remembers hearing buses crossing at the end of the road, down the hill, given he lived in an inner urban type of house, where from one could still hear the birds and those less aggressive sounds.
Tozé Cardoso, who had not yet done any recording with us, surprised us with memories of his childhood spent in Angola, where at the time, his mother would sing him these traditional Angolan lullabies. He told us about his many-paths career, outlined through maritime biology - from the days in Tomar [central Portuguese city] - until having arrived in Madeira, time whenceforth he took on music as his most serious practice. Who knows, it was really the prevalence and the abundance of music in the island's culture that did not let him escape. He told us still about his project Vértice in which poems by Madeiran authors are musically interpreted, and ended up offering us some those verses acapella.
Mariana B. Camacho came afterwards, already loaded with so much energy, after having been involved in the documentation of the project and having watched a bunch of interviews in a row. Interestingly enough, not even in this way, she felt prepared to search for all those memories and choices Sara proposed. It was good to see how spontaneity happened to her. When questioned about the places where she mostly to play in, she mentioned the multiple projects she is part of in Lisbon, and told us about the several genres and styles she performs, from renaissance music with the University of Lisbon Chamber Choir and the Gulbenkian Choir, up to Miositis choir (which rehearses inside an all-products-organic kind of supermarket of the same name), passing through Tochapestana (which she labeled as hipster pimpa [hipster ironic cheap-pop]) and even, of course, Punk D'Amour, eclectic band, within which she gathers and reutilises all this in a revival act with Filipe Ferraz. She sang also this most beautiful song composed by a priest of the Évora School [16th-century polyphonic Portuguese school], who had immigrated to Mexico, where he suffered a drastic change to his compositional style, which one only believes upon listening to it. Amazingly beautiful!
By the end, Filipe Ferraz appeared. He offered us this song by Punk D'Amour, live and solo, on a guitar for right-handed people, with clear Brazilian subtropical influences, which he pointed to us as being his and Punk D'Amour's main influences. More than once, he referred to natural acoustic chambers, a natural particular phenomenon of the Madeiran topography, he said, in which, within a valley, one can sometimes crisply understand someone shouting something on the other side, miles away, which causes one to strangely feel as though all that volumetric space is somehow part of one's intimacy. He chose Helena Camacho's sound to reproduce, that of gossip-talk at Barreirinha beach, although the place reminded him of other times when, at night, the clubs-pooped crowds would gather there, amongst junkies, and that specific acoustic chamber would always hold its own characteristic soundscape.
Mariana and Filipe then came with us to the mythical dinner party at Marco Fagundes' house which, this time, earned a theme somewhat to do with vegetarianism. There we met Diana Serrão, whose birthday we did not know was today, and who had brought us this roasted chicken (called Tofu) and the until-then-gone Jorge Maggiore. As it could not otherwise be, we ended up doing this jam-session, with buckets, cutlery and wine bottles (which after emptied-out, we filled up with water at different levels in order to build a tempered blowing organ). At a critical point, Fagundes decided to compete, arming his CD player up, and playing this integral sung mass in German, something whose mood could never make us predict that the night would have finished with 80s pop music and a mad improvised dramatic act on the balcony, garnished with props like various hats, a power drill, hangers, and a paschal candle and, by mistake, a fingernail XXL bucket… Lots of fun! Shuffling through photographs, we found one we could not remember who had taken, which we though, represented the night.
Recording stills selected by Sara Rodrigues
Photographs by Sara Rodrigues