by Maria Angélica Parmigiani

If we look at Bernardo Campos‘ career and his involvement with music in general, we can see that he’s a restless soul. Stimulating the scene on several fronts for more than 15 years, it’s no exaggeration to say that he is pretty important in the growth and maintenance of the style in Rio de Janeiro.

Musician, DJ, producer, member of some collectives such as Underdogs and Cocada Music, co-founder of an awesome party known as Festa Rara, part of the duo Nu Azeite, alongside the multi-instrumentalist Fabio Santanna and also a member of the Pato com Laranja’s crew, a conceptual bar in the wonderful city, in which the soundtrack is dancing and tropical sounds, where Bernardo is the curator. These are some of the projects, because believe me, there is still a lot more.

In 2021, he lived what we can call a ‘creative wave’ and brought 25 original tracks to the world. A declared fan of House Music and Brazilian music, whenever he can, the artist sews between the worlds to create something that honors our roots and our rich musical culture. In addition, Bernardo goes against the grain and is one of the names that bets the most on vocals in our mother-language. Which, let’s face it, is beautiful.

Well, rather than telling his whole story in a text, we decided to invite him for an interview and get to know a little more about this musical mind. Check out!

Hi Bernardo, how are you? Thank you for this chat! Well, it’s the first time we’ve interviewed you, so it’s consistent on our part to “start from the beginning”. You are from Rio and you certainly ended up experiencing Brazilian music and culture in a very strong way. How was this for you and how does it impact on who you are today, as an artist?

Bernardo: Hey, guys! I appreciate the space 🙂

Well, I think that, being from Rio de Janeiro, I naturally had training in Brazilian music. After all, this is the land of Vinicius, Tom and so many other important composers in the history of MPB. You walk in the south of Rio and there are references to this, whether in street names, radios playing in establishments or just enjoying the sea breeze. This way, I was unconsciously influenced by this type of music, despite my professional training having started from a completely opposite side, electronic music.

And electronic music? How did it become the focus of this story? What was the moment, or moments, that made you realize that this was what you wanted to work with?

I started going to raves very young, at 16. I traveled all over Brazil looking for festivals. Then I was Club attender and always was at Fosfobox and Dama de Ferro. I downloaded more music than I did anything else, participating in forums and digging through the blogs at the time. It was a natural way to eventually start DJing.

In fact, you work like hell with it. We know you have several projects, could you tell us about them? And how do you manage to keep so many plates turning? How is the time management?

I am a resident DJ at Rara, Festa do Bbzão, Couscuz, Agua Viva, Tikal (BA) and Pato com Laranja, where I also curate the restaurant. I have my musical project with Fábio Santanna which is Nu Azeite and we play live.

There are many projects in fact, my secret is not being lazy to work and working exclusively with that. I wake up and go to sleep always thinking about how to make the projects grow.

To define yourself is to limit yourself, they would say, but for those who are arriving now, what makes up your mind in terms of music, whether electronic or not? Who are your mentors?

Wow, it would be impossible to name everyone but I’ll try to name a few.

Bands/solo artists – Depeche Mode, Chic, Milton nascimento, Sandra de Sá, Di Mello, Radiohead, Hermeto Pascoal, Air, Thievery Corporation, Gotan Project

Producers – Lincoln Olivetti, Nicolas Jaar, Kaytranada,  Fábio Santanna, Richard Dorfmeister

DJs – Laurent Garnier, Moodymann, Tini, Ricardo Villalobos, Mark Farina, Maurício Lopes and DJ Marky

Now about music production, you have had a very assiduous rhythm. In 2021 there were 25 original songs, right? Why do you think this happened?

The specific fact that so many songs came out was that in the pandemic I finally had enough time to dedicate to music production, combine that with my restless nature and boom! 25 songs ready to go! lol

Among so many authorial works, which ones do you have a special affection for and why? 

The 2 albums of Nu Azeite. First of all, for the friendship and learning I acquired working with Fábio Santanna, a great brother that life gave me. Second, through the process of making an album, the details and the many stages from the creative process to completion. It made me grow a lot as an artist.

My EP Desire was remixed by Rick Wade, producer who I’m an absolute fan, and support of some of my idols like Laurent Garnier.

My first solo album is due later this year. A multi-track compilation I’ve been producing for 2 years.

If for some people Rio de Janeiro would not be the ideal place for electronic music, to many others it’s the perfect source. I dare to say that’s how it goes for you. In what aspects does the city influence dance music? And what are the differentials that you could list for being there?

Rio de Janeiro has always had a tradition in electronic music since the beginning of raves or clubs like Bunker, Dama de Ferro and Fosfobox. Here we have some breathtaking locations, because the city is so beautiful and at the same time it’s really large. The city center has also become the stage for excellent parties. The scene here is consistent despite not being as big as in other cities.

With the return of events, parties, collectives, the agenda must be booming. What has been going on for you in terms of musical projects? And what are the news that will come in 2022 for Bernardo Campos?

Lots of cool dates this year. Nu Azeite confirmed at Rock in Rio and Rock the Mountain. Rare stronger than ever. Festa do Bbzão is the funniest party in the world. Agua Viva is always innovating in Line ups and rentals. Pato com Laranja where I’m weekly releasing some grooves and Cuscuz which is my new party and my baby. Apart from the trips I’m always taking it to São Paulo, BH and other corners of this wonderful Brazil 🙂

To wrap it up, what can you say to all the people who are starting their artistic careers that can be an inspiration, as it was for you. Thanks!

Find what you love to do and fall in love with it everyday ❤️

Bernardo is on  Instagram & SoundCloud.