Passion and Romanticism
By Tanya Abad, firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo Credit: AP/ Radio Formula
Amaury Gutierrez is a Cuban singer and composer, winner of a Latin Grammy as best album. Amaury has been interested in music since he was in elementary school. He left his native Cuba in 1993, when he was on tour in Central America and decided to settle down in Mexico to start a career as a solo artist. Amaury leaves his heart in every arrangement and turns it into a song. He is simply put, a romantic at heart whose passion and perseverance in his own life have given him a successful career.
Ciudad Weston Newspaper (CWN): When you won the Latin Grammy, how did you feel? Was it all that you had dreamed about?
Amaury Gutierrez (AG): It was one of the things I wanted. It is very nice to win the Grammy because it is an acknowledgement from your colleagues. I think that an artist becomes a musician when he has that special relation with his public and his colleagues. Then, the public becomes the measure of the success you have achieved in your career and your life. Your relationship with your peers can be an award such as the Grammy. The highest award you can get. I was nominated and I won it in 2012. I can only tell you that it is an indescribable feeling.
CWN: Amaury, We know that you started with a tropical sound, salsa and Cuban music and you are known as a singer-composer. Do you lean towards any particular genre?
AG: In 1993 when I left Cuba for Mexico, I was forced to go with a band that played Salsa but I am not a “Salsero”. I have played that kind of music before because I am a musician. What I am is a composer but the circumstances forced my hand. What I have done is to write and give music to my writings.
CWN: Your new production “Entre Cuerdas”. What does it mean to you?
AG: It is a debt with myself and for my followers. It is as I told you before, I am a composer and I carry my guitar everywhere. My house is filled with guitars. That is what I wanted to do as risky as it seemed, I wanted to do it. So I went ahead and did it. I recorded an album that way.
CWN: Who was one of your favorite singers that may have inspired in you this love for music?
AG: I was inspired by many people like Jose Antonio Mendez whom I watched on TV singing with his guitar. He was a virtuoso. I liked him very much and I was impressed with what he did. He lived in Mexico and they loved him very much there. He died there in 1988. I wanted to follow in his footsteps. He was one of my idols. Then, there is the Orchestra of Arangon Miguel Matamoros who was a composer and one of the best Cuban musicians of all time. Cayetano Badosa has inspired me too as has American Music. Cuba is the most pro-American country because we spend our life listening to American music.
CWN: Many of your songs have been interpreted by artists such as Luis Fonsi, Paloma San Basilio, David Bisbal and Gilberto Santa Rosa among others. What inspires Amaury Gutierrez to create music?
AG: Love above all. My songs are very romantic songs. There are some songs in which I speak of freedom but most of them are about romantic relationships. It is a dream come true that other artists interpret my songs and I have realized that dream many times and I am thankful to God for that and many other things.
CWN: When composing your music, what worries you more. The sound or the lyrics?
AG: The music is the most important thing. I am part of the most popular music in Cuba, Trova, which is linked to poetry. I have many friends who are poets and that is an inspiration.
CWN: What do you think about the new relations with USA…. Do you think it will have a positive or negative effect with the arts and the music?
AG: When I lived in Cuba, I dreamed with the United Sates which is something that happens to everybody. Once I left there and traveled the world, is when I realized what Cuba is like and that is why, I am a staunch defender of the commercial embargo. I thought a hard stand could break the dictatorship (laughs). Nowadays they broke Venezuela so they turn their sight on the Americans.
CWN: Amaury, you wear your hair long. Is it significant?
AG: The main significance is freedom. I could not wear my hair like that in Cuba because I was a music teacher there and I was not allowed to have it this long, so I got creative and would turn a pony tail. When I moved to Mexico, I told myself “I am going to let it grow long” and then reporters would ask me why I wore it like that. I replied “it is a promise I made. I am not cutting it until communism leave Cuba”.
We finished the interview laughing it up and talking about his hair reaching the floor if he were to keep his promise. Amaury is sure he will have long hair for a long time!