Direct Talks with Josè Padilla

Jose Padilla is known all over the world like Disc Jockey and Producer but most of all like the spiritual father of Chill-out.

His love for music borns when he was very young, he leaves Barcelona in 1975 to follow his passion. After a period of ranks he became the familiar face of summers in Ibiza, the dj that has done and is doing dance whole generations. For several years he was the spearhead of “Café del Mar”, he appears in many compilations of the series, his first solo album, “Souvenir”, is released in 1998, the second one follows in 2001, “Navigator”.
Meanwhile new adventures start. Different albums born including two new series of collections “Café Solo” and “Bella Musica”, moreover he moves to the beaches of the world (Italy, Croatia, Hungary, Japan, Germany, Indonesia, Mexico…) continuing to spread the chill-out and emotions.
From a young age his musical culture is very rich and the curiosity to discover new sounds has never abandoned him, succeeding in this way to enrich and variegate his musical arrangements, creating a unique sound and an unmistakable signature.
In March 2012 José released a Blue Note compilation, then the “Singita” compilation for their 10th anniversary and in June the Ibiza “Sunduowner” (EMI Germany). Also this summer was full of gigs, there was the “Ibiza Sunset Summer residence” at Kumharas and in the meantime José is working on the production of his new album and is preparing some remixes for a North American singer (he keeps the mystery about).

What follows is my interview with him:

  1. Josè Padilla feat Dee Lite – Something Josè Padilla feat Dee Lite

01. We know how and when your career started. How, when you was a teenager, the musical genres that you listened have captured you and who were the first inspirers?

When I was a teenager I listened to Rock, Soul and the Tambla Motown records that were available in Spain back in those days. I fell in love with Bossa Nova when I listened to it for the first time and Soul music also got straight to my heart. Antonio Carlos Jobim, Marvin Gaye and The Rolling Stones were among the first musicians who inspired me.

02. Is there someone who has contributed in meaningful way to your musical choice?

The Bossa Nova discovered me a new world of music, and my style was strongly influenced by it at a time, it is always present, but my musical choice includes many genres and it keeps evolving with time; it is defined by what songs inspire me and the ones that touch my feelings. So when I play them, I hope to transmit those feelings to the people listening.
I collect vinyls and I am continuously listening to new and vintage records so there are many musicians and bands that contribute

03. How you consider and live your undeniable contribution to the development and dissemination of Chillout, Ambient etc.?

Well, fortunately I do what I love: to play the music that moves me. It makes me happy to know that people enjoy what I do and that it inspires them, but it is not for me to decide or dwell upon the importance of my contribution to a particular music genre. I just keep doing what I like most and, between gigs, I live a normal life here in Ibiza, in my “casa de campo”, working in the studio, listening to music, taking care of my pets and the garden…

04. Your music is strongly linked to summer, to the beaches, first of all Ibiza where you worked to become what you are. There is a special connection that links your musical creativity to that island and there’s still in your works?

I was born in the Mediterranean. I love the smells of pine, the ocean, the flowers, the fruits, the colors of the sunset, the green of the trees, the ocres of the earth, the warmth of its people… so my music (the track selection and my own productions) has all that. What I mean is that the songs that I play and produce bring me feelings, memories or thoughts closely related to the Mediterranean.

05. About beaches, in these years you’re moving a lot and in the 2011 we’ve seen you in the italian beach in Fregene. What feedback did you get from our audience, sometimes still a little reluctant to chillout sounds and similars?

Yes, I keep playing in many countries all over the world. I just played twice in Fregene and also in Marina di Ravenna, in June. Italy, as well as Greece, are the two countries most connected musically and culturally to my life style, since they are both Mediterranean. So yes, in Italy I always get a warm welcome and I always feel at home.

06. Who is José Padilla, musican apart?

A human being that enjoys life and music… and looking for a girlfriend (laughs).

07. Please, tell us a meaningful or amusing anecdote related to your career.

Greece, Mykonos, years back. I was playing in a full moon party, it was amazing because you could watch the sunset and the full moon at the same time… so I played Shirley Bassey’s version of The Doors “Light my Fire” and all of a sudden people started waving their arms and going crazy, and I was thinking “this song is good, but not THAT good”… Eventually, I turned my back, and it turns out that the windmill behind me was on fire, really blazing, it actually burned down to ashes. So now, when I go back there, and I say I am Jose Padilla, they go “oh yes, the one that burned the mill”.

08. When you listen your music, in which places, real or imaginary, your mind travelling or takes refuge?

Depending on my mood, I listen to this or that, so more than transporting me, the music is the soundtrack of my life, it brings me memories, uplifts me, or just goes along with my mood.

09. What are your plans for the immediate future?

At the moment I am remixing two tracks for a very popular North American singer… no names just yet, I’ll keep the mystery until I’m done. Also working on my new album produced here in Ibiza, it will see the light pretty soon, and of course, all the gigs around the world, coming up just now Germany, Budapest, Bali and Japan, and my summer residence at Kumharas Ibiza, every Wednesday.

10. If you could return on yours musical scores, which chord would you change?

I would change is my first years in England, where I tried to be someone else, not being faithful to myself.

In the Ibiza scene since 1975
Official website
Official facebook page

booking: Carucha de Rivera
photo by Raquel Martinez

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