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Art & Life with Edgard dos Santos Paiva Neto

Today we’d like to introduce you to Edgard dos Santos Paiva Neto.

Edgard, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
Music always has been a huge part of my life. When I was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, my mom used to sing to me throughout the entire day and you could hear music coming from our home constantly. Since I was a small kid, I knew I wanted to be an electric guitar player. There was something mystic about the way it sounded and the instrument itself that always touched deeply my very soul.

I started learning how to make music on an acoustic guitar when I was seven and at age of ten I picked up the electric guitar. I had some private instructors that guided me in my early days and from time to time I would keep on learning by myself. Something that I always wanted and I still hold dear to me is the fact that I want to sound like myself. I’ve always craved to have my own identity, my own musical voice. So I kept for years exploring my own influences and the sounds that I’ve heard in my head and in my dreams, in order to be able to each time better express myself in a way I feel that best represent what’s inspiring me at the moment or how I’m actually feeling.

Especially having in mind that my greatest joy is to improvise and to create something on the spot, transmitting what I’m perceiving and feeling at that specific moment.

Huge turning points in my life happened almost simultaneously. Shortly after I was initiated in energy healing and started practicing Reiki, I moved to Los Angeles and started attending Musicians Institute back in 2015. With my perception clearer and my personal intention channeled towards my life’s goal, I was focused and ready to keep on growing. Studying what you love, surrounded by creative people that share your passion for music and art, being at the same time as devoted to their craft as you are, is indeed priceless. Every single person I’ve met during my days here have taught me both music and life lessons that are beyond what any college can offer. At the same time, learning with some of the best music instructors and artists in the world have pushed my musicianship forward in a way I couldn’t have even imagined.

With some of the people I’ve met, blossomed dear friendships that will follow me throughout my whole life’s journey, and I’m fortunate to have started musical projects with many of them. I’ve always found effortless to come up with musical ideas, being at times even overwhelming to keep up with my creative flow. At the same time, the sounds I hear and write spanned from the most distinct styles. Having that in mind alongside all the talented people I’ve met, I became a founding member of a variety of projects that could each of them represent a perspective of my musicality. Soul Press, a blues/rock band in which I’m both vocalist and guitarist, Moonkings, a prog/fusion instrumental trio and Mr.Giant, a funk/fusion 9-piece band.

Now I’ve reached a point where I’m converging my whole creative being into my own personal project, “EDGARD | reach within’”, in which I won’t restrain myself to a specific style and I can be totally and integrally myself.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My main principle is to fully and truly be who you are. My message is to reach within ourselves, not holding back all the beauty and immensity that lies inside. Music, to me, always have been more than just a passion. I really do believe that writing and performing music is a spiritual experience.

In Improvisation, I find my greatest joy. When you’re in the moment, you shouldn’t think. You must just feel and flow. You create a bridge and become a channel in which all the creativity run through you. That’s why it’s crucial to practice a great deal and be comfortable with the moment you’re performing. Also, I do believe that all comes down to energy. Who you’re making music with and what you’re performing will influence in the way the piece of art is created, then transmitted to its audience and, finally, perceived.

I always have found easy to come up with new songs and ideas. To me, it’s a natural intuitive process. There are times that I pick up the guitar, start playing something and it instantaneously strikes me. I know I’m onto something. I search what I’m mentally hearing, where that first part wants me to lead it to and so on. That’s how many of my songs started. Also, there are times that I want to portrait a specific feeling, a certain mood. So instead of allowing my creativity to work randomly, I give it some boundaries, and I know how I should proceed then.

Inspiration comes from everything in your life, and you never know what could possibly inspire you. It really can surprise you sometimes. By experiencing different things, you’re enhancing your own repertoire of feelings. What you see, listen, read and even eat.

Wherever you go. Who you do talk to and relate to. Everything is influencing you and can sparkle a creative light into your world. For instance, I personally like to take different routes to places I’m always going, or even trying out to cook new dishes to help me staying fresh and having a different stimulus. Having a hobby or something that you can find joy is also important and give you some mental relief.

My personal goal is to inspire people, to make them feel something. You never know how people are going to react to your piece of art as everybody reacts differently in their own personal way. Being able to materialize a feeling or a sensation I had, transmitting it to the audience and allowing them to have their own reactions and reflections is an incredibly rewarding ecstasy.

I’m really thankful and proud of all the projects I’m currently working with.

I’m one of the founding members of Mr.Giant, a 9-piece funk/fusion band. We have members from every corner of the world with distinct influences from musical backgrounds. We’ve released our debut EP “Face to Face” and we’re currently finishing the new material for our album. We’re performing regularly at Lucky Strike Live in Hollywood on Friday Funk.

I’m working with Christie Huff as a lead guitar player and we’re performing weekly in LA and neighboring cities. We’re going on a 3-week tour starting on June 7th to perform at Country Fest in Wisconsin opening for Jason Aldean, Jake Owen and Lauren Alaina. I’ve recorded all guitar parts on both acoustic and electric on her newest single “All to Myself”.

Also, I’ve found a prog/fusion instrumental trio called Moonkings. We’ve recorded our live EP at WAX Ltd. in Hollywood and it’s currently in post-production. As both vocalist and guitarist, I’m the frontman of a blues/rock band Soul Press. We have a couple of singles recorded and about to be released. I’m also developing my own personal project under my name, EDGARD, and I’m about to go in the studio and record the material on the next couple of months.

How do you think about success, as an artist, and what do quality do you feel is most helpful?
I believe that success is achieved when you’re recognized in your field by your craft and your own individuality.

When people you admire respect your work and are influenced by it. And also, when you know you’re giving your best in your work and being truthful to who you are. Most of all, one must have a strong will to accomplish their goals, consistency to keep up with their progress and resilience to keep on going even on harder times.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I am always performing around Los Angeles and neighboring cities. Feel free to come to any of my performances, I’d love to have you there. Below you can check links to all the projects I’m currently working with and stay updated with upcoming gig dates and more.

-Mr.Giant:
mrgiantband.com/
facebook.com/MRGIANTBAND/
instagram.com/mrgiantband

-Christie Huff:
facebook.com/ChristieHuffMusic/
instagram.com/christiehuffmusic

-Moonkings:
facebook.com/officialmoonkings/
instagram.com/moonkingsofficial

-Soul Press:
facebook.com/SoulPressBand/
instagram.com/soulpressband

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Júlio Mendoza, Pierre Tsigaridis, Yeji Shin, Zoé P-Marcombes, Matthias Fau, Zoé P-Marcombes

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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