Agustí Fernandez, A Portrait In Words For An Artist Of Sounds: a discussion with Ken Vandermark


KV: Do you utilize the tools available through the internet and aspects of social media in connection to your music?  If so, how and why?  If not, what are the reasons for this decision?  Do you perceive the reality of free access to all media- especially in your case, music- as positive, with the potential to bring more listeners to you music, or a problem leading to less sources of income for the artists; or- both?

AF: I only utilize the social media and the internet to advertise my professional activity. No time for more than that. I know that many people live, reside on the internet because when I post something I get an immediate “Like.” But I don’t [pursue this aspect of the internet]. Of course, now and then I take a look at youtube and other websites and listen to and see what other people do, specially for concerts that I can’t attend, or to remember something specific or versions of tunes.

But for me music is only happening in real time, music is the experience, music is life. Documents (CDs, videos, etc) are alright but they are only documents, sonic traces of the real music. Music is happening when a musician plays and a listener listens in the same place, at the same time. “You and I are here now and music is the magic happening through sounds that link us together.” I know that I’m old fashioned in saying this but this is what I think. And my best memories of music are always linked to musicians in a specific place and date.

I see the free internet access as a problem. I mean, if you spend a lot of time, energy and money in a product that you expect to sell in order to make a living, what is the point of this product [if it’s] being free accessed on the internet? You don’t go to the supermarket and just take what you like, you pay for it. It’s called capitalism. If you want to give it away for free (webs, Spotify, SoundCloud, etc.) it’s ok, but what if you don’t? What if you are an artist, a label (even a net label) that needs some revenues to just keep going?

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