Rosario Says We Gypsies Are A Bit Far From The System

Rosario Says We Gypsies Are A Bit Far From The System

Rosario in an interview: “We gypsies are a bit far from the system and that makes us happy”. The singer redoubles her gypsy-funky bet on her new album, ‘I tell you everything and I don’t tell you na’, the first in five years, which she presents this Tuesday in Pedralbes, on the way to another three concerts in Catalonia, at the Sons festivals del Món (Roses, July 30), Jardins de Terramar (Sitges, 31) and Porta Ferrada (Sant Feliu de Guíxols, August 18)

Sometimes it seems that artists with a long history no longer need to release records, because people want to hear them singing their usual hits.

I am from a generation that likes records, and although the rhythm of the music has changed a lot, my audience is also like that. I like to deliver new material and renew myself a bit, like here when working with Juan Magán or Amparo (Sánchez, Amparanoia). All these songs have come from me, although some I have finished myself and in others I have blocked myself and creative people who are by my side have helped me to finish them.

What is the message of this ambivalent album title?

It is a very Andalusian and very Spanish phrase. That is to say that I am here, I am Rosario, I have already told you everything, but do not think that I am the bomb either and do not demand too much of me. A little humility, yes, and energy to give thanks and transmit joy to the matter.

In ‘Oye primo’, a duet with Juan Magán, he seems to defend the rumba against the invasion of reggaeton.

There I say “the rumba is not what it was”, and you have to see how we are. I give the subject a bit of cane, because the Catalan rumba can be universal and modern, and it is already good from so much reggaeton. It has that warm electronic music that Juan does, as in other songs where there are programs that he had never done.

I have taken many rumbas of my family, pieces of artists from the Gràcia neighborhood

The Catalan rumba comes from his cradle.

I breathed it at home. ‘Mía mama’, one of my most successful songs, was by my uncle Juan, and ‘Marcha Marzo’ is by Ramonet. When the holidays came, for Christmas, they sang them. I have taken many rumbas of my family, pieces of artists from the Gràcia neighborhood. There are just a few left: Chango died recently, and Ramonet. But the new generations are coming, like Yumitus.

Peret used to say “I’m the rumba.”

The first was my father. Even if it was only because of his age, because he was older than Peret. He and Dad always had that rivalry. I can’t prove that to you, but all my life I’ve heard at home that the one who invented that, who brought the boleros to the rumba, was my father, who traveled with my mother through Cuba, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo and Costa Rica, and listened to all the boleros. I think he was the first to listen to Armando Manzanero and he passed him on to the rumba. He listened to Compay Segundo and did ‘Sarandonga’.

He was talking about renewing himself. How do you do it without seeming forced or opportunistic?

I am very interested in the new generations, what is new that comes out. C. Tangana called me to ask my permission to catch the chorus of ‘How do you want me to love you’ and I was delighted that he took an interest in me. I am interested in everything that I can take from my youth and that rings true, because I will never do anything that I do not believe or feel.

The ballad ‘You have to live’ has a delicate undertone.

I dedicated it to Antonio Carmona, who was very ill, two weeks in a coma. I saw him tubed and I went home to pick up the guitar. And now, with the pandemic, if you can relieve a person who has his loved ones bad, then music is medicine.

With the pandemic, if you can relieve a person who has bad loved ones, then music is medicine

Where does that unpublished lyrics by Manolo Tena, ‘Como si nada’ come from?

Fernando Illán showed it to me and I saw there those “verses of fire, verses of snow”. I thought: “Manolo, you are sending it to me from heaven.” He was always a good friend of mine. He wrote the lyrics for ‘De ley’ and other songs. He was from my generation: there were also my brother Antonio, and Antonio Vega… What pieces of artists.

All in all, this is a more elusive and less mystical album than the previous one, ‘Gloria a ti’ (2015).

It is an album with positive energy. ‘Glory to you’ was heavier. I see this one cooler.

Is it also a record against noise and political trenches?

I don’t like to talk about politics, because I don’t understand or have the information to speak for sure. We gypsy flamingos do not have politics: we have the politics of love and music. I think you should never go for it. We must be free and the music must be clean.

Do you see a gypsy code there?

We gypsies are a bit far from the system and that makes us very happy. It has given us a lot of freedom. There are also shortcomings, although now there are gypsy doctors and nurses, and I love it, because we have wonderful gifts. But our philosophy is freedom.

My parents raised me in an abstract world where with a tomato, a guitar, the sun and a bonfire we are happy

Do you feel out of the system?

My parents raised me in an abstract world where with a tomato, a guitar, the sun and a bonfire we are happy. The world of matter, the possession of money, all this is secondary to us.

In his concerts he usually evokes his parents and his brother.

I am part of them and they live in me. I can’t forget who I am, the blood that I carry inside, my skin, my eyes, my hair. I carry all your gifts, your creativity. My mother is very present on the internet and everywhere, and my brother.

The beer ad with his mother’s image is daring. Did they doubt?

I thought about it a lot with my sister. I think my mother would have liked the ad, because it talks about their accent, how important each one’s roots are. Cruzcampo had a lot of interest in Mom and I didn’t see it badly. She is still alive. It is a universal icon. It could be done without our permission, but they wanted to have us. My sister and I kept telling them: “Not that face”, “that gesture is not made by mom”… Lolita put her voice to her. It was about helping them to be more of her.

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