BIO – SOLILOQUY

*Soliloquy is a kind of theatre monologue
 



Life is funny, don't you think?

We never know what's waiting behind the corner, what will come next, who will catch our eyes in the cafe we never thought of entering. Still, it's in all these 'little' details we find life itself, the core, the essence.

I could have ended up in Rio de Janeiro, in London, or even stayed forever in Mjölby where I was born. But I always felt attracted by foreign countries, far-away places, a strong intuitive feeling that I was not supposed to stay among those open yellow fields and old forests. Something told me to move on, the restless voice inside me would never let me relax.

I was a quiet child with a loud heartbeat and an intense passion for music which made me try to learn every instrument I laid my hands on, from the early Magnus organ my family had to my first guitar, which I discovered in a trash container. It only had 3 strings, but I wanted to play so much that I learned to play with 3 strings missing. I was 7 years old.

Aged 4 I had learned to read, beginning with the Bible, for no other reason than it seemed to be a cool book, but I pretty soon lost interest in the stories of the Old Testament. However it was the beginning of my life-long lovestory with language and philosophy, and I soon found myself writing poems, short-stories and even starting (but never finishing) my first novel before I was 10. In 1998 I actually finished a novel, which I didn't like very much, and now I don't even know where it is.

However it was music that took most of my attention. And songwriting. I wrote my first song when I was about 10 years old. Up to date I have written almost 500 songs, of which I count the most recent 200 as good songs. I see the rest as training.

In 1999 I moved to London on a Scholarship to write songs, and my time in 'The Big Smoke' (that's what people called London because of the dirty air) really changed my life. I often performed live and made new wonderful friends. I discovered there was a world outside.

I made many demos and unofficial CDs until 2004 when my first official album PASSION was released. It changed my life again in a way I'm still trying to understand. I had a peaceful sun with eyes closed tattooed on my arm. Three years later, PASSION took me to Japan, and again. And again. And again.

I moved to Stockholm in 2005 during the production of my second album BLISSA NOVA. Stockholm is funny. It's not particularly big, but the people living there think it's the center of the world. I saw something more and entered Stockholm's University, where I later got myself a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Portuguese. Inspired by my love for Brazilian music, I learned my first foreign languange apart from English, which is almost like a first language for us Swedes.

BLISSA NOVA was released in 2007, and in November I was invited to do my first Japan tour, following the successful release of my debut album. From the first moment, and for the first time of my life, I felt at home.

In December 2008 I did my second Japan tour to promote the release of my third album C'EST LA VIE, and it was released worldwide in May 2009. Most of the songs were in Swedish, something the Swedish critics didn't seem to appreciate very much. I wanted to emigrate but didn't know where. The moon seemed pretty enticing.

During 2009 I started to write songs for a musical with a story which mainly takes place in Japan. I guess that The Scholarship Foundation for Studies of Japanese Society (www.japanstiftelsen.se) saw some potential, as they granted me Scholarships two years in a row to develop it. We have started recording a concept album but due to lack of funding that project is at a standstill.

In 2011 I released 2 singles and an album as PEACEBIRD, music with a more souly, melodic pop sound. When the PEACEBIRD album, my fourth, was released in October 2011, "Slow Down" was the most played foreign song on Japanese radio during the whole month. I was stunned and very very grateful.

I also started spending more and more time in Tokyo, and finally moved there and stayed until 2013 when I was offered to go to Sweden to stage my first musical TIVOLISAGA (Carnival Tale) together with my co-writer (and Director) Johan Pettersson at Arbisteatern, Norrköping. It premiered on 24 August 2013 and received a 10-minute standing ovation from the sold-out theatre. I realised that musical theatre is what I always wanted to do. In 2013 I also released my fifth album BEAUTIFUL PLACE and went back to Japan for a short promotion tour.

In 2014, Johan and I went on to stage a new, more realistic (grittier) production of Jonathan Larson's musical RENT at Skandiateatern, Norrköping, with him as the Director and me as the Musical Director. We rebuilt the theatre's interior completely to make it resemble a late 80's Manhattan street crossing. Again we got rave response and reviews, and my passion for musicals deepened even more. I also helped start up a winter night shelter in Norrköping for homeless EU migrants.

I currently research and sketch on ideas for three new musicals and am also finishing a Swedish Cast Recording of TIVOLISAGA. In 2016, I was admitted as a composer to the BLM workshop in London, aimed at developing and nurturing new musical theatre writing.


That's pretty much it. Maybe I'll write a book later about my life, if I can relax long enough to sit down for a summer.

Peace!
J.C.



Discography


ALBUMS:

2013      

Beautiful Place

2011

Peacebird

2009

C'est La Vie

2007

Blissa Nova

2004

Passion

SINGLES:

2017

Difficult (Impossible Remix)

2017

Love This World

2016

Changes Changes (Nujabes Tribute Remix)

2015

I'm Here

2014

Möten och avsked

2014

Det kunde lika gärna varit vi

2014

I Guess It's Ok (Vai Ficar Tudo Bem) - with Vanessa Pinheiro

2012

Christmas Time (We can change the world)

2011

Hold On Now

2011

Peace (Give the people the power back) [Peacebird Edit]

2009

Balans (bossa remix)

2009

Se solen gå upp

2009

Dröm

Full Discography is right here


Acting


I've done some Extra jobs in Japanese TV-series and movies. I even had a few words of dialogue in the drama about Yoshida Shigeru, MAKETE KATSU: "What's that? Toilet paper?"

2013: GATCHAMAN
(feature movie; extra) I'm in one scene.

2013: AIBOU
(TV Asahi; extra) Original air date 2013/01/01. I'm in 2 scenes.

2012: MAKETE KATSU (Drama series about Shigeru Yoshida)
(NHK; extra) Original air date Saturdays in Sep-Oct 2012.
Featuring Ken Watanabe and David Morse.
I'm in 4 of 5 episodes. Search and you may find!


Some of my favorites


I usually can't answer when people ask me, but here are some of my favorites:

Favorite artist/song/album:
I really can't choose. Sorry. Doesn't matter if it's music from India or Brazil, jazz or world music. I'm a melody and rhythm guy. And I love good lyrics (Cole Porter and Noel Coward are two of my favourite lyricists).

Favorite novels
Siddhartha  -  Hermann Hesse
Beneath the Wheel  -  Hermann Hesse
The Waiting Years  -  Fumiko Enchi

Favorite poetry book
Vitsvit (White Blight)  -  Athena Farrokhzad

Favorite movies
In the Mood for Love  (Hong Kong)
Aaja Nachle (Come, Let's Dance)  (India)
The White Silk Dress  (Vietnam)
Dancer in the Dark  (Denmark/USA)

Favorite TV channel
I don't watch TV, but internet is good for watching news:
Democracy Now