-You’ve recently released your EP ‘The Alto Nido Sessions’ by Sergio Messina & The Four Twenties. Tell us something about this new project (where the guitars are still very present).
I play guitar since I was a kid, but never really used in my music: my instrument until 2010 was the sampler. But at one point I felt the need to change my music, so I started playing string instruments again, relearning the guitar and bass, rand ecording on a multitrack, using the computer only for post-production. Reducing the possibilities enhances creativity (I often say that having thousands of presets is like having none, too much choice). Also, I wanted to explore different styles of music. I've played Funk for most of my life, but Funk has a problem: it's a rhythmic prison, and it forces you to use rhythm elements always in the same ways. What I do now (slow boogie/shuffle/swinging beats) can have a Clave and a matchbox for drums. It's more organic music, blissful and emotional. I am very happy about where my music is today, the main reason being that I don't sound like anyone else, despite the fact that my music is full of influences. I consider this a major personal achievement (but again, not something that leads to "success").
-During the first lockdown you started your daily radio appointment
called 'Sergio Messina Racconta Cose', which has been for many
of us a delightful routine. In relation to that, how much do you think
is important, in this day and age, to build loyalty with your
listeners/readers? How crucial is to create an archive that people
can tap into whenever they want, especially in an era of volatile and
SMRC is part of one of the great loves of my life which is radio, and
specifically talk radio without music. It's something I've already done in
the past, on an actual FM station. Radio is by nature a streaming,
volatile, non archivable medium. But today we have the internet, where
everything is saved, retrievable, available. So I put the 58 SMRC shows
(30' each) on my website, but I still think the best way to hear them was
live. As far as loyalty building, I've always felt that having a direct line
with my people was the way to go, and thankfully at one point the web
came along. My email address is public since 1997 (at the top of my
page on Rumore magazine), I have a personal website since 1999 and
I've always used these channels to be there, to interact. In almost 25
years I have received (and replied to) tens of thousands of messages,
questions, comments, a few "vaffanculo" even from celebrities. I
consider this to be an integral part of my work, as my business is not
music, teaching or writing: it's communication.