Who Is Lázaro Cristóbal Comala?
“Under The Concorde gave me sleep and I slept / I awoke a cock singing qui-qui-ri-qui”, intones Lázaro Cristóbal Comala. Are the 21:10 in Des Moines, Iowa. Protects us to a wooden shack they built other men, under the orders of a foreman contemporary. Men of different nationalities: mexican, peruvian, venezuelan. Men, sad all, in thinking of the fist of earth that keep in the saddlebag of his pants; small grains collected from their plot, there, in the town where you were born and in which they left everything. That speaks to the folk and that speaks volumes Lázaro Cristóbal Comala. I listen to it while you sleep my son, is sick the little one and his weakness is a tear in the heart: “Open your eyes, my soul / I came because I’m here.”
It is said that Lázaro Cristóbal Comala comes from Durango. It is said that its name comes from the literature of Juan Rulfo, the voice of Johnny Cash and the orphan in the novel Lazarillo de Tormes. It is rumored, is screaming and is now in the voice of all, or even in the very few. I care almost nothing. The only thing I know of him is that his music hits hard, hits deep, you arch, and you cringe, you steal for the good of those tears the pain more bitter. What else should I import?
Lázaro Cristóbal Comala I should thank the time to answer this interview, by its language, cult and clean, due to its lack of presumption and of his great humility, his willingness to enlighten us on the subject of music.
The pathways lead us and the letter to send.
How Lázaro Cristóbal Comala is the Mr. Hyde Daniel Azdar Sil? How does this new name?
Basically the names Lazarus and Christopher come of a song that I translated into Spanish: “A Boy Named Sue” written by Shel Silverstein and performed by Johnny Cash. There is a part where it says: “and if I ever have to are, I think I’m gonna name him Bill or George,” and in my version, Lazarus and Christopher a substitute Bill and George, because they lend themselves to the rhythm in Spanish. That is to say, composed this version long before there was the project. After, Comala is added inevitably, because the work of Rulfo influences most of what I want in this narrative of an orphan in my songs. With time, more that pseudonym became a heteronym: we have very different personalities and all the time we are crashing. He wants to play, I don’t; I am terrified to stand in front of a bunch of people, I just want to compose, upload and already; he wants to do more, you have one other dream. The Lazarus project is moving in these indecisions, why not play as much as I should.
What is Johnny Cash for you?
One Sunday, my brother came with a DVD of Johnny Cash live from Denmark. I heard it far away, and I went down as a dog chasing a scent. Everything was new for me. His voice, his look, his music, his gestures. I have seen that video hundred times in just one week. With Cash I have a deeper relationship to the music. It is a spiritual, Immediately something in me adopted him as a father figure. Saved Me. It gave Me a way to stay in the music. If it was not for him, there was no other.
How many versions have you heard of “A Boy Named Sue”?
Only two: Shel Silverstein and Johnny Cash. And leave mine on my new drive. It is a version very free; even so, I’ve asked for the rights to use it.
How you ended up embonando in a musical project to Cash, Rulfo, and The life of Lazarillo of Tormes?
I don’t know, the orphans. It is a topic that I find it difficult to drop in my songs (I hope to do that some day, come to a certain age). I found it in “A Boy Named Sue” the work on orphanhood and american par excellence, and in Pedro Páramo , the mexican par excellence. I found it a good idea to join them in folk and country, genres that in turn have a close relationship with Durango, this issue of the movie western that was made. I am made of that same matter.
“There is No more a slave than the one that bends over backwards to demonstrate that it is free”, you wrote. What is your concept of freedom?
I get bored of the freedom. I’ve tried it and I find it impossible to have a good time without work, without work, tour, traveling, playing. 90 percent of my songs has gone out of the routine, the schedule, the odd times, the feel “of the vegetable”. I think that for all practical purposes, the routine and the stability will keep me in this world. My freedom is to give the role by the house, a Sunday go to the commanded. I am very suburban. My dreams are of apple, a garden, a beer, pots; not the world. I have a rolita with Belafonte for the new album. The chorus says something like: “I get bored of the freedom […] I am inside because from the outside can not see out the window. I prefer the light to freedom”. It was very exciting to me to share this song with him, given that we have a concept of freedom different. In summary, I function best in. I do my freedom inside. I prefer to be inside and look out the window instead of being outside and seeing everything. To me it serves.
Why change the noise by acoustic?
Now that I posted these last two singles (“When you do shit” and “bye-Bye, you open more windows”) I came to comment on that was roquereando and such, or even that he had ruined the acoustic version of “Goodbye, you open more windows”, because that was better (made me laugh that someone told me I was ruining my own songs). I can only say that this new album has twenty tracks and is divided into two parts: ten pieces with electric instruments, heavy batteries and such-and-ten with an acoustic guitar. Wait a bit… give me the benefit of the doubt; the noise so acoustic is only a part of all that I’m about to publish. In addition, I worked with another drummer for this album and very few Children Broken (my band) recorded; it was also influenced to try other things, other instruments. If my first albums, they bring the spirit of Cash, this will bring Richard Hawley and Roy Orbison. I don’t want to sing “who kill all life” or compose always, “thirst 2”.
In what way influences the literature in your music?
I started to write and to read –so let’s say “professional”, from a sense of discipline– before that play. I don’t consider myself a great musician, and I know that my songs do not have great arrangements, but the truth does not interest me. What interests me is the letter. Tell a story, to rescue a memory. Say something that can stay. My priority is that the music accompanying the lyrics, not vice versa. I do the songs I want to listen to, you expect that already pass the intro or the bridge to sing the lyrics. So I understand the song. My poor but cute literary training has given me such a priority: that the letter you send.
Who is your favorite author?
Now, Jorge Ibargüengoitia, and Bret Easton Ellis. The other week, it will be others.
The folk is the way that the people found to tell each other their history, breaking the limitations of time, language and space. Why this genre and not another?
I found it in the folk’s the most direct and clean, without ornaments or poses, to say something. It seems to Me one of the genres most honest way to tell what I saw and what not. I like rock, and their entire culture, but it is inevitable not to see it with your false freedom and go out of their way for decorate an idea of despreocupaciones rather worried and tested. The folk has other priorities, for me the most profound and honest.
Why situation you were going through when you wrote the song “who To kill”, your first self-titled album?
My father. It was one of the first songs that I composed. We all believe that it is on a chavalona. In reality it is a song that if it gets really care, it’s my head speaking to me, singing of defeat. Saying good bye. Saying there dies, I could not do more. When I realized this, on the way to work, listening to them, it was as if a truck I would have gone over. A revelation.
How did you get into singing cardenche?
By Todd Clouser. A friend of Durango passed my music to the Bonus Crown, a friend from Mexico City (I did the video of “Goodbye, you open more windows”; it has also made videos for A Love Electric and was working at the last video of Natalia Lafourcade), and he in turn passed it on to Todd Clouser. We liked it so much, we contacted, told me that we should do something together, that would be in Gómez Palacio with The Cardencheros of Sapioriz because they produced an album (A love pending) and I went down. I was sent to interview them for the job and there I met Todd Clouser and Cardencheros and in a jiffy we did click. Then Todd asked me to do a song based on a letter cardenche to present it with him, with Aaron Cruz, Iraida Noriega, and others. I wrote “Already very much for a long time you’re”, but that you never did and I stayed with that song. There is a story of The thousand and one nights , which then Borges rescued in universal History of infamy: “History of the two who dreamed of”, in which a guy dreams about a treasure far away from your home, you are going to look for it and while there you say you dreamed of a treasure right where he lived; he returned to his home and found it. That happened to me with the cardenche. I had to go away, until the folk (song of the workers) for me to realize that here in Durango I had my own song of the workers. More than a privilege, I feel an obligation to do something with that. Could not be in a genre like folk music, which speaks of the hours of labor, the laborers, the working class, without having turned to see the cardenche. It was an obligation.
How would you define your last album, Porch: five songs cardenches?
Natural and fast. The project with Todd Clouser versions cardenches not concluded. I had already composed “Already very much for a long time that you’re going” and I decided to make my own project. I wrote four other songs based on lyrics of the song cardenche and I put out the EP. It is, as I said earlier, the fruit of having found the treasure in my own house, after I have gone. I returned to find what was always here. In the hallway. It is an album of arrangements are very basic, just guitar and banjo, and friends who have lent their voices for an impromptu chorus, among them Israel Ramirez, Belafonte. The folk is a very bad cardenche.
Tell me about Jonathan Crow Derleth and how it is joined to the disc by playing the banjo.
I met him when we were in high school, but then we don’t we were talking about. If there is one thing I was sure is that I wanted someone to play the tololoche. I was introduced to him, we realized that since high school we had ever seen and in a jiffy joined. Is a Child Broken. Plays the tololoche with me from the first disc and to Hallway brought his taste for the banjo.
How did it sample to Borges?
I used a fragment of the poem “The night in the south watched over” for the song “The willows”. Talks about the cardenche: “The small wisdoms that are lost”. It was my way of bringing to Borges, in that disk, with the story of “a tale of two who once dreamed of” and what it meant for me to discover the cardenche.
What comes to Lázaro Cristóbal Comala?
I am in the final part of my fifth album: Songs of the anchor. It is the most ambitious work in which I have engaged, a double disc of twenty songs, and therefore the more difficult. Is full of collaborations (Axel Catalan, Black, Belafonte, Wild, Blazing Scapelands and a lot of friends who are musicians). The idea is that they will go after you four simple (I’m going on the third) for the 8 of march, the day that I turn 30 years old. In terms of the way you promote it is the same: I will ask permission in my job to be lacking, I will do a few dates to move it and no, I will continue with my life up to begin work on the sixth and so on. I have No other ambition than to have always some room to where I can get with my guitar.