For fear that the uniqueness of his music would be of little interest to others, Pedro Mafama too often postponed the desired step of assuming himself as an artist. the EP Bad fame and so much salt, published in 2017 and 2018, introduced a strange song that quickly became familiar, made of kuduro, kizomba, afro-house, R&B, hip-hop, but also fado and other references to popular Portuguese music.
He saw himself elevated to the status of great promise, becoming a recurrent figure on the stages of clubs and festivals more attentive to new developments. The “illusion of apparent success”, however, almost ruined everything, as he told VISÃO: “I had that kind of childish vision that it was no longer necessary to work, but I realized how lucky I am to be able to do something that taste. And that takes work, it’s not a constant celebration. ” Some of the themes from the debut album, like dark night, something for the pain or night butterflies, are “the result of this learning process”, which was followed by a “sort of epiphany”, recorded in tracks such as riverside or He takes, I take it as “a cry of strength and affirmation”, also felt in beautiful way to die, a duet with Ana Moura inspired by the Alentejo songbook.
“This album is like an autobiography without being one, told through images and characters that are not literally me at this time”, he says. More assumed is the way it recovers, in the light of urban contemporaneity, tradition and the popular, but also “some forgotten or hidden connections” that are equally part of being Portuguese. The songs on the album (Profjam, Branko, Ana Moura and Tristany) mirror a “harmony between past, present and” that you want for your music. Some of them must be present in this first great show by an artist for whom tradition serves not as a starting or ending point, but as a question mark.
Listen to the “Dark Night” theme here
Pedro Mafama > Teatro Tivoli> Av. da Liberdade, 182A, Lisbon> T. 21 315 1050> 27 Nov, Sat 21h> €10 to €18