A few moments after his concert, which took place on February 7th in Warsaw Palladium theatre, the editors of “Fun in Poland” had a pleasure to have an interview with Dino D’Santiago.
Interview with Dino D’Santiago
This is your second visit in Poland. We had a great pleasure seeing you two years ago in Gdańsk during Siesta Festival. Do you have any exceptional memories from that event?
Yes, because for me it was a big surprise going to northern Poland and then seeing the reaction of the people. Everyone told me it will be a venue where everyone will be sitting down and chilling, and my mind was like “I can’t do a concert where people sit down”. Then, people just stand up and start dancing along and it was amazing. The experience was really good and I made great friends there. I know that it was because of there that I’m here again.
Can you give us a little bit of background on how you ended up in Poland for the first time?
It was because of Piotrowi Łyszkiewicz, a great friend and the main producer of the festival, and Marcin Kydryński – he used to play a few of my songs in the Siesta radio, and then I started receiving messages on Facebook from people from Poland – “When are you coming?”. Then Piotr sent me an official e-mail telling “I will bring you to Poland because people want to feel you”. And it was through.
What was the largest breakthrough in your musical career? One where people finally learned who you are.
It was when I played in Central Park in New York. I went to play there in 2015, and then a lot of people just started to follow my music, and it took me to South Korea, Brazil, Angola… So 2015 was really the most important year. That moment in Central Park really made the open thing.
Of course, now more people know me because I met Madonna in Lisbon. We started creating music together and a lot of people started following me because of her. She did a lot of great things for me. So the United States have a lot of importance for my career.
What are the most important musical inspirations?
My most important definitely is Bob Marley, the way that he writes his songs. I know a lot of people think about Marley “oh, rasta, and smoke weed”. Bob Marley is much more than that. He’s a symbol of freedom to do, freedom of mind and soul. Other great musicians I’ve been inspired by are Marvin Gaye and Tito Paris, among others.
Everyone knows how much good Tito Paris did for you. Who else helped you in your musical career that you wish to give shoutouts to?
Definitely the band Buli Mundu, Jorge Fernando – fado singer from Portugal, Expensive Soul – the band I’ve been in when I was 11 years old. Also exceptional for me was and still is Paulo Flores, a great friend, musician and person.
Music aside – what shaped you as the man you currently are? Have you had any particular idols or inspirations in your life?
Yes, the vision and the soul of Gandhi, Nelson Mandela – those big leaders that made a revolution within. Those are my biggest life standards – how a human being should see other human beings.
We saw you in T-Shirt where it was written „Funana is the new Funk”. What is Funana for you?
When I was in South Korea, France, Germany and even here in Gdańsk, people enjoyed the Funana, but then they want to know “Where it comes from?” and such. This music has its roots in labor of farmers – escapees from cities and former slaves. Their work was so frenetic that they started putting conductors to give others a rhythm to work by. One could say that that as Funana was being formed back then, Funana now reflects and shapes minds of people of Cape Verde.