Pedro Barbosa is no stranger to the stage and spotlight but it is his most recent endeavor of recording a solo album that has tongues wagging. "Reborn" is his debut solo offering and the singer dove deeper than he ever thought he would.
Have a read to see what made him sweat bullets, burst with pride and shed a few tears during this process.
Q: You have been doing solo gigs for a while now and it seems to be going great. So what is the train of thought leading up to the idea that “I have to make a record”?
A: I don't think there is a train of thought, I think I just had something to say, and wanted the public to hear, I think. Hehe... At first, we were only recording 3 songs and it was so awesome working with Mark I decided to go for the full album and it wasn't planned - it just happened. And during the process I felt some cleansing and relief etc, and that is where the name comes from - the need to start fresh. A new beginning.
Q: You said that this album has less of a “party” sound and more of an “adult contemporary” sound. Your act has become synonymous with that exact “party” sound and fans seem to dig it! Why the transition? Will the party still continue on stage?
A: It wasn't a transition, I think getting the party started has always been easy for me, one doesn't show the true side of a person with that, so it was perfect to hide behind that cover. Reborn is more me than anything else, it's a guy outside the stage, at home, sitting on the porch writing a song and thinking about life. I wanted people to know that I think. I felt the need to be more me, and not just as a crowd pleaser. Even though it comes natural to me to please a crowd I wanted the public to know the other side. There is always a party on stage. And no, that will never stop. All my CDs are phases of my life, and if you listen closely you will notice that. :) They represent a moment. I'm quite curious to hear what is next after this. I honestly don't know what I will be in the mood for next year.
Q: You have friends from all walks of life within the industry, did you take advantage of that and get them involved in the whole process?
A: No, I don't think so. I have been used to do everything myself. I have hired people to work with me and help me achieve exposure etc. Keshli Lindemann does my bookings and all social media, Rachelle Crous is the amazing publicist and digs Backstreet Boys, so I relate to her a lot, hahaha. Mark Beling is my producer. That is about it. I have been blessed that all these people would work with me, and that I have had a good relationship with some of the main guys in the industry including Gareth Wilson, we had our tiffs, but I played Koppi this year so I guess that is over. I think we approach our connections about getting a gig, but I won't beg for a gig. You ask if there is a slot and you fit the profile and that is it.
Q: The creative process behind such a body of work has to be pretty extensive as well as liberating. But where did you go dig for inspiration for your content and melodies, especially now that it is so removed from what we have come to know and love from you?
A: Heart, it's all about heart I say. Write with heart and produce with smartness! I went into the deeper parts of me, and I guess life was the inspiration. It's a boring answer but it's the truth. I didn't work hard on any of those songs, they came out so naturally. I have to thank Mark for feeling what I had to say and for making such a great production out of it.
Q: You stepped into a recording studio for the first time in 2006 with Mrs B and have been through a few reincarnations in your career. How did this experience in the recording studio, as a solo act, compare to your first time?
A: Man, liberating like you said... It was honestly the best time I have had on studio. Mark and I clicked from the word go, he always wanted to record Mrs. B but unfortunately he didn't get a chance to. It was the first time in my life I cried in studio, specifically recording "Crazy Love Is". I had to walk out for a few minutes and then come back in to re-record the vocals. It was very emotional and I really enjoyed that, I was so comfortable and it's hard for me to be at ease in a studio. Stage is so much easier.
Q: It is imperative that a musician and producer pair fit like a glove to get the best out of each other. You mention that Mark Beling, producer of the album, challenged you emotionally and vocally. How did this help develop the final product?
A: Oh totally! He has to be part of your skin, he needs to relate and feel what you feel. Otherwise he might be in a completely different place, emotionally. And me and Mark are very similar emotionally, so it was very easy to work with and made the project even more personal. I would come in, track the songs and with some songs I told Mark: "This is the concept, I want these accents and this feel. Arrange it as you want," and I would come back and be like "Wow! That is perfect, don't change anything!" It was insane. He truly is amazing.
Photos by Greyline Photography
Q: Is there any message you hope comes across after folks have had a listen? Or perhaps some feelings you want to provoke?
A: Well, I hope people relate to the album and that it inspires them in some way. Being a deeper album you can't say: "I hope it makes you feel happy", but I think there are a few songs that might give that feeling.
Q: What lies ahead for you in the next year?
A: Play, play, play. Write, write, write! And hopefully I raise enough money for the next CD! And a couple of overseas tours. Also, I would like to play more festivals :) And promote REBORN as much as I can!
REBORN is available to purchase on Apple Music HERE.