Whether you’re in Nelspruit, Pretoria, or Mozambique; chances are… You’ve heard of Pedro Barbosa & have had his track ”Crazy Love Is” playing in your car on full volume.
Pedro was born in Maputo, Mozambique in 1979 and discovered his love for Music at an early age. He started writing his own songs and learnt to play the guitar at aged 15 but didn’t know that music would turn out to be his career until he was 20 years old. Pedro has also recently been nominated for best Pop Performance at the IPMA awards, and has been selected for the people’s voice awards.
He studied Marine Biology for a year before realizing that Music
was his calling. We asked him what his turning point was and what made him decide to start a career in music, ”Funny you ask this my mom asked me that question yesterday. At first I didn’t think that Music could be a career. I knew how hard it could be and in Mozambique there wasn’t much prospect in that”. Pedro Explains that while studying Marine
Biology he realized that his focus was more on the shows than in the studies, ”and at some point I had to choose between a exam and a massive show for 6000 people. And then I realized my heart was in the music”.
Pedro did a 3 year National Diploma course in Jazz, Performance and
Sound Technology. When asked how has this helped him come where he is today, he explains that it helped him a lot in understanding the technical part of music, especially in the writing and arranging of Music, as well as his guitar playing improved, ”Jazz is the most complex style of music and to go through that process adds so much vocabulary to your playing and enriches your musical language. With the sound part I never really worked in sound but I do my own productions at home so it helped me a lot in a personal level recording wise”.
When asked how he would, in detail, describe his music style and sound, He explains that he doesn’t have a sound per say, ”I think I started in a Rock background and I have released songs that go from African to Dance music”. He goes on to explain that he doesn’t like to be associated with one specific sound and that he appreciated music from a deep emotional aspect, ”luckily I have always been open to many styles of music, for example my new thing is I want to rap, so I have been practicing writing rap tunes, and I love it. So there might some rap tunes coming out sometime, you never know”. Pedro explains that it all depends on the mood or phase of his life which in he’s going through, ”SO to describe my sound is kinda hard. Maybe the best way is to say, SUIT MY MOOD MUSIC”.
In January 2017, Pedro decided he wanted to record a few songs with a more international flavor and with higher standards than his previous recordings so he approached Mark Beling, a well known Producer in South Africa and who is also a SAMA (South African Music Association) winner.
We asked Pedro what it was like working with Mark Beling and how this helped him career wise. He described their relationship as ”now inseparable”. Pedro explained that Mark wanted to work with him since
the Mrs. B days, ”I had no idea, but working with him changed everything,
that was the tipping point of my career, working with an international sounding producer just elevated my Music to a new dimension, and it was the first time I felt ok this sounds great! I owe him a lot in that respect”.
There are a lot of crazy things that can happen on tour or during a gig, and Pedro describes two of his craziest; ” I once had to stop a gig cause I started crying on stage, and I had to stop the show walk out and come back. Just randomly, I still don’t know what happened but I couldn’t stop crying” and the other being when opening for Brian McFadden from West life and him inviting Pedro on stage during one of their songs, ”I didn’t want to go and realized I didn’t know the lyrics so I rapped in Portuguese when we came out of stage he was saying that was probably the best version of the song, I think it was called world of our own or something like that”.
A few other questions were asked such as his favorite venue to play, his being Platteland, and our signature question which we ask in every interview we do: If you could change one thing about the South African Music Scene/Industry, what would it be and why?
”I would try make musos realize the importance of a quality recording. And a good producer. Reason being is I don’t think musos realize that, they just want to release music, but we don’t see the importance of quality and international standard. And I saw that with me how it changed everything, yes its expensive but save up and record properly”.
We asked Pedro how he has been able to get through the Lockdown and how he has ensured that he stays on top of his music game, ”I am not sure I have been able to get thorough it yet” he says with a laugh, ”I have been exercising and studying online and I have been writing quite a bit, I haven’t
been playing much though but a break is good when u were coming from 5
shows a week”.
We asked Pedro where his fans could donate to him during this difficult time, a time where musicians can’t play to earn money, and he said ”if you
would like to donate I would say please rather give to a fund that really helps those who are in need”.
We thank Pedro for sitting down and chatting with us!