Interview with Guilherme Cosme
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
I’ve always been into creative activities. I used to sing for myself when I was a child, but I was also very shy. I started to make music in my early teens, quietly, nobody knew I was doing it. Writing song lyrics got me into poetry as well. It was my way to express myself silently. I was unsure about my skills and I grew up in an environment where I had no support at all, so when I was 21 years old, I realised I had too much sound in my head that I needed to put out somehow and If I didn’t, I’d spend my life repressed and maybe become bitter as many people who don’t pursue their dreams. So, I booked a one-off singing lesson with a coach just to ask her If I could sing in tune lol I have a good ear, but I was so repressed and shy I couldn’t hear myself. If I hadn’t chosen music as my path, my second option would be cinema. My grandfather, who I never met, was a filmmaker. I guess this came in my DNA.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
Watching films and making videos. My work is quite visual as well, and I tend to bring cinema references to it.
How long have you been making music?
Since I was 14. But I only started to invest in producing my work about 5 years ago. I was sick of waiting for funding or help from others, so I decided to dive into music for good. I’ve just released my third album “They Call Me Names”.
Where are you based and how did that influence your music?
I’m based in Dublin, Ireland. This country somehow became my home, but I don’t get any inspiration from here to be honest. I have a strong connection with my cultural Brazilian roots and my many influences from worldwide, but Ireland doesn’t really resonate when it comes to artistic/musical inspiration.
Tell me about your most memorable shows, and what is your vision for a live show?
My last show meant a lot to me. I launched my new album “They Call Me Names” and was accompanied by this amazing ensemble including The Dublin String Quartet (Aoife Dowdall, Jenny Dowdall, Katie O’Connor and Aise O’Dwyer), Jillian Saunders (piano), Graham Heaney (bass), Igor Iofe (trumpet) and James Mackin (drums). It took me 6 months to produce this show. I produced, edited and put together everything for this show.
What is your favourite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
I don’t have a favourite place but I’d love one day to be able to perform in the Municipal Theatre in my hometown Rio de Janeiro.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into making music and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Don’t give up on your personality. It’s the most precious thing you can bring to your work. It may not be the most popular, people may find you weird and so be it. I chose this path for myself. I always wanted to do my things my way, applying all my references and personal approach. Why would I want to sound like someone else? However, this is the hardest path I guess. People tend to be more open to what’s familiar to them, and this goes for most things. The advice I give to myself is the same. Don’t give up on what makes you unique just to be more palatable for the sake of it.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
“I Thought I Was Special”. This song is meant to be like a shiny beacon of hope to anyone who’s been through many hardships in life, especially in their early years. This song features on my new album “They Call Me Names” which explores themes of child abuse, neglect and childhood trauma. I end the song singing the following lines: “You’re not your blood/ No generational curses/ What you’re waiting for? / Be your finest self/ Rebel/ Never beg for what you should get for free”.
Which songs are your favourite to play and which get requested the most?
Many people I know like a song I wrote for my band “Mary Bleeds” called Rapture. It’s a post punk tune with a touch of Siouxsie and The Banshees.
What is your creative process, and what inspires you to write your music?
My life experiences and things that I see in the world that displease me. So in my solo work I talk a lot about my childhood, mental health, my relationship with religious brainwashing for example. It comes from a personal place, at times very dark. With Mary Bleeds I tend to go more political and talk about many issues I see in modern day society, always taking care not to extrapolate and become one of those rebels without a cause promoting riot without knowing what they’re talking about.
Do you have messages that you like to get across in your music? If so, please tell me about them.
Mental health and inner connection. I think we live in a world where a lot of people are afraid of the silence of their own company. In my music I tend to disclose a lot of details of my life and I’m not afraid of this. I wish I could through my music be able to inspire people to open up more and confront themselves. Maybe this is just a dream really. I don’t have such power.
Do you have any new singles, videos, or albums out that you would like to tell me and your fans about?
Sure, my new album “They Call Me Names”. This record is a semi-autobiographic collection of 14 pieces for piano, voice and strings mainly which explore themes of child abuse, neglect, childhood trauma and elements of mental health. I wrote this album as catharsis while struggling with Bipolar and PTSD. Putting these feelings and memories out surely contributed to my growth as a person. You know I had to confront a lot of things in my past and present in order to make this album and it’s worth it. Though it was not an easy process. It’s like opening Pandora’s Box and losing the key.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
The follow up to “They Call Me Names” is already in the works. The album will be titled “Elegia”.
How can your fans best keep up to date with you, any socials you want people to check out?