a 'Music makes life better'

a 'Music makes life better'

Among the international jazz circuit, Swiss-born French trumpeter Erik Truffaz is a living legend. Across the conservatory-trained musician’s two-decade-long recording career, he has explored genres like jazz, rock and electronica and released over 15 critically acclaimed albums.

Metrolife caught up with Erik after his recent performance in the City. Speaking about his early days, Erik recalls how he always wanted to be a musician. “When I was 10 years old, I dreamt of becoming a musician. My father plays the saxophone and I picked up the trumpet because he wanted the instrument in his band. I also learned the piano when I was a teenager. If I had a good voice, I would have been a singer,” he laughs, adding, “but the trumpet is quite close to the voice. I can express my soul through it.”

With tours and gigs always keeping him busy, Erik says that there is little to complain about.  “I lead a good life. I travel everywhere in the world, play for people and I earn money. What more can I want?” smiles the 53-year-old. “For me, what is tiring is to have the same life everyday. If I can have a life with a concert everyday, meeting new people and playing the music that I love to play, I’ll never get tired of it. But it is difficult to manage family life and a music career,” he notes.

Describing his tryst with music, Erik says, “Music makes life better. Sometimes, I listen to a good rock ‘n’ roll tune and for three minutes, my life is great. When we play a gig for two hours, it’s like meditation. I’ve played with the drummer and keyboardist for 30 years. It’s like a musical family. But we’re not bored because the music gives us the inspiration to stay together.”

The jazz quartet has gone beyond the conventional approach and added contemporary elements like hip-hop, rock and roll and drum ‘n’ bass to some of their compositions.

 Justifying the need for this, Erik explains, “We have worked with some rappers and vocalists and I love it because it makes the music more democratic. More people can understand it.

Jazz isn’t for the masses and that’s a bad thing. I don’t have the ambition of changing the face of jazz. But when we integrated drum and bass, we were suddenly really well-known among the younger audiences. So in some ways, that’s changing the audience of jazz.”

Having worked with musicians like Talvin Singh in the past, Erik is no stranger to India. “I love India. I’ve been here six times and I love this country because it’s very strange. One of my biggest influences is Hari Prasad Chaurasia. I would love to collaborate with him and Zakir Hussain,” he wraps up.

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