- web originals
- web originals
Sordera and Family in Conversation
Web original London, 1999, 3,000 words; extracts
V: Do some flamenco styles attract you more than others?
Manuel (Sordera): Of course. I sing the seguiriya every day, sitting down so as not to lose my balance. I have diabetes and my heart isn't strong, but my voice is good. I sing Paco la Luz's seguiriya - he was my grandfather's uncle. I’ve sung it all my life.
V: Where do you think flamenco is moving today?
Sordera: Well, it's a good thing that so many people like flamenco today, but its purity is getting lost. Of course it won't be entirely lost because it's recorded, but nevertheless a lot is being lost. A lot of young singers out there may have a record on the market but believe me, they cannot even clap. And believe me, there are a lot of cantaores who don't sing in compás. They aren't properly prepared.
Vicente: My father means that a lot of young artists are encouraged to rush their careers instead of taking it step-by-step. Singing for dance, for example, is important because it teaches you a sense of rhythm, it broadens your repertoire, it teaches you how to work with other performers.
Sordera: And flamenco needs a lot of heart and feeling. But there are a lot of cantaores who have nothing inside, you hear them sing and it doesn't touch you. The singer with something inside them gives you repeluzco.
Sordera Chico: That shiver.
Vicente: The tablaos were such good places for learning the full repertoire of flamenco.
Sordera: Around 1955 the tablaos began to appear, just after the salas de fiesta. I worked in the first one, El Guajiro, in Seville in 1958. The show was two hours long with good flamenco - the performers were artists like El Moro [Indio Gitano], Manolete, Farruco, Rafael Negro, Matilde Corral, and maybe another ten or fifteen girls dancing.
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