Image Credits: Fabrizio Salvatore © Alfa Music.
May 31, 2018
The art of producing
Alfa Music is an Italian record label very which pays a lot of attention to personal and modern jazz and pop projects. We met and interviewed Fabrizio Salvatore who, together with Alessandro Guardia, founded the label in 1990.
> Ivano Rossato
How has the wish arisen to found a record label?
When Alfa Music was born in 1990, we had no intention to undertake the path to become a record company, we simply started by studio and recording activity, that we still carry on. What we have been experiencing during almost 30 years is a natural path, motivated by the passion for this kind of things and by which, only in a second stage, we were pushed to evaluate the possibility for a change. The work for the recording studios between the end of the 1990s and the beginning of the 2000s was more and more decreasing. We are by now in the digital technology era, which allows to realise your own productions, even at home. This gradually pushed us to evaluate the production activity and the construction of a catalogue that presently counts about 160 works, realised with a lot of passion and sacrifice.
How has music fruition changed over the time?
Entertainment culture has changed a lot in comparison to past times. Nowadays the offer for home entertainment is very large, from music to cinema to sport. This progressively brought a change in the entertainment culture fruition itself. A fruition which is more connected to the home and therefore without the socialising and sharing part typical of the live event, in both arts and sport.
How is Alfa Music adapting to this change?
In comparison to the traditional record scheme of some years ago, nowadays the work is carried on more with the musician and at one with him. There’s an evolution in the job description, in the skills and in the work load of all the parts concerned, musicians and music industry executives. In the past, the artist was essentially engaged in the creation of a very good discographic product that, once recorded on a support, was sold and promoted in concerts. Now is exactly the contrary. Today our production of an artist is also involving concert activities, how to develop it. At the beginning of the artistic career this work can be done by the musician, also because managers are usually engaged in promoting their top artists and they cannot think of dealing with the interests of 20 or 30 different artists with the same care.
What do you think of the self-production and of the possibilities offered by the new technologies, which are more and more economical?
The self-production is possible, but you must take into account a minimum quality standard for recording, mixing, mastering tools and acoustic environment. Otherwise, there’s the risk of having a very good artistic material, with good musical contents, but with poor recordings made with makeshifts means, and it’s always a pity when this happens. Nowadays the technology allowed everybody to express their creativity both musically and graphically with a very low investment. This, however, brought a decrease in the medium quality if compared to what you could obtain in a recording studio. It is the same way of thinking when you judge a musician having a minimum level of technical skill that comes from a path of studying, sacrifice and growth.
How do you select the projects to be produced?
The first feature we look for is a high artistic level. Even if I have to admit that I don’t remember receiving poor artistic proposals in the last ten years in jazz environment, even when young artists are concerned the level is always quite high and professional. The second feature, but not less important than the first, are the personal relationships with the artists. It is very important to completely understand the musician’s expectations, projects and availability to work for the production. I deem, moreover, that a label should have a good selection for the catalogue, reflecting a precise and identifiable editorial line. In our case is Italian contemporary jazz, substantially.
Which is, today, Alfa Music dream?
More than a dream, I’d say it is our main professional target, that is to close the circle unifying production and live activity for our artists. It would be beautiful, eventually, also to do something going beyond Alfa Music, to be left to the persons that will come after us.
Reservados todos los derechos – All rights reserved – 版權所有 – 版权所有; An espresso with... Fabrizio Salvatore and Alfa Music copyright Jazzespresso 2018.
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