There is a country we do not usually talk much about in this edition, but we have found the best moment to do so, and it is the land of tango and mate, Argentina. It turns out that, on this occasion, we talked with composer, singer and guitarist Alejandro Meola, who has honored us by accepting our invitation to this very special exclusive interview we had.
Alejandro Meola is an artist who was born in the city of Miami, but his parents moved to Argentina when he was very young, so he spent his childhood and adolescence in the aforementioned country. In his accent, we can see how influential his upbringing in Buenos Aires was.
Next, we will touch some of the most important issues related to his career and his life in general.
Alejandro’s beginnings in music
As is typical, Alejandro began to feel a great attachment to music and it all started with the guitar that was in the house he grew up, with which he played at an amateur level and began practicing slowly and improving his skills over time. He says he always knew that his vocation was music, even without being old enough to decide on these issues.
Given that the guitar was the instrument with which he started in music, this will always be the most important element in his artistic life above any other. However, he is also capable of playing other instruments such as piano, drums and bass, which can transport him to places within his mind where the guitar does not always take him.
With regard to composition, Alejandro started to develop in this area through the need to express those emotions he had on the inside and communicate what his feelings in an original way with the help of music and the melodies that compose it. ‘‘I like to communicate things that resonate in other people’s minds and that’s where my taste for composition came from. Besides, I think that practice and time improve your ability to communicate emotions and transmit messages to anyone who listens to you. That evolves with oneself” said the artist.
Alejandro’s musical education
Alejandro told us that he studied at a music school in Argentina where he specialized more on guitar and composition, but what he calls ”street training” also helped him a lot to polish his act as an artist. The experience gained out the academies is so important to Alejandro that he even defines it as ”a parallel university”, which is as important as formal academic training, if not more.
”It’s the street that gives you the tools, the experience and the journey to be a more complete artist. Practice on real stages is critical to specialize in music as it should be” Alejandro said on the subject.
Argentine and American roots in Alejandro’s work
Hearing Alejandro play evidences that he is heavily influenced by legendary and world-famous Argentine rock and the artist confirms this stating that he listened a lot to Fito Paez, Soda Stereo, Charlie Garcia, Gustavo Cerati, Luis Albert Spinetta, Andres Calamaro, among others. Undoubtedly, all of these music luminaries played a very important role on how this young man would perceive music, adding to all the American rock and blues he would listen to upon arrival in the United States.
However, he noted that being in the United States also allowed him to listen to a number of Latin artists and rhythms which he never planned on experimenting with, but he did. His song ”La Inmigración” is a good example of this. In that regard, living in New York has expanded his horizons and led him to discover salsa, Cuban and Puerto Rican music. He also says that he took inspiration from Héctor Lavoe, Cheo Feliciano and La Fania when doing one or two songs.
”At the end of the day, my music is a mixture of who I am and the places I’ve lived. A little from there, a little from here and a little from nowhere (laughs). A little from everywhere and a little from nowhere” he said.
Alejandro also said that he is always on the lookout for other rhythms and ideas that come his way, but always using rock and guitar as a starting point.
Why Alejandro chose New York as his permanent residence
Since he was very young, Alejandro had always wanted to experience the dream of living and working in his art in New York. In addition to that, he wanted to know other cities in the country where he was born because while it is true that he spent most of his life in Argentina, he was also very clear that his country of birth was the United States, so he was curious to know it better.
Once in New York, I met all kinds of people and artists with a very high musical level, so I was able to learn a lot from all of them. I feel like the bar is rising here and that led me to want to improve further every day. In that sense, I feel that New York gives you thick skin, since there are many obstacles to overcome to be truly recognized in music” said Alejandro about the city.
The artist has been living in New York for 10 years now and is at ease in the place in which he currently is. In addition, he has managed to find a niche singing in Spanish, which has made him very happy and satisfied with his career.
How Alejandro deals with languages in his music
Something very common that many well-known artists do is to record songs in both English and Spanish so that the audience they reach is bigger, but Alejandro does not believe in it. He thinks that each song must have its own language and feeling, so he prefers to do one version of each song in one language.
When he arrived in New York, he experimented a lot with English and has several albums in this language, but noting that he could work with Spanish without problems, he began to focus his music in that direction. In fact, today, almost all of his concerts are in Spanish.
Each language has its advantages and disadvantages in terms of sound, so I must always pay attention to that,” said Alejandro on the subject.
It has been a great pleasure for us to count on the talented Argentinean singer Alejandro Meola for this edition and we wish him the greatest success in his career from now on.
Read also: El Tresero Moderno San Miguel Perez
- The Conga Room closes its doors, but says goodbye in style - February 21, 2024
- Argentine-American composer and guitarrist Alejandro Meola kindly talked to us - February 12, 2024
- Gabriel from the band Changüí Majadero talks about traditional Cuban Music - February 12, 2024