As I mentioned last week, Spanish folk/pop artist Bigott made his L.A. debut last week following his trip to SXSW. I was able to meet with him and his impressive facial hair (hence the name Bigott after “bigote” [mustache]) afterwards for a brief interview. He didn’t divulge much (something he’s famous for) but there were plenty of laughs to be had.
Did you swing by L.A. because you were in SXSW a few days ago?
That’s it. We were close by and thought we’d swing by Los Angeles or Charlie or St. Raphael or whatever.
When did you arrive? Saturday?
Yes, Saturday. Well, I’m a little confused as to exactly when but I think it was Saturday.
And what have you done so far here in L.A.? Did you go to the beach?
Yeah, we rented some bikes here in the Venice of L.A.! Venice is the name of the beach. We were all over the place.
Hollywood and all that?
Yeah, we walked all over the place. My legs look like a Transformer’s. You’re nobody without a car out here.
And out of everything you’ve seen here, what have you most enjoyed?
In general, well, what do I know? I’ve enjoyed visiting a whole new city, a whole new area and trying different things even though I’m pretty well off in Spain.
I’ve been to Spain. It’s nice there.
Valladolid? We performed there recently. What did you think? Did you like it?
I loved it!
Well, you must visit other cities as well!
Yeah, we went to Salamanca, Segovia, Pamplona for the San Fermines…
Pamplona too? My goodness! Right there alongside Hemingway.
Yes! Actually, I slept on Paseo de Hemingway near his statue. My friends and I spent the night there. Just you and me, Ernest!
Classic! Tell me about the sea, Hemingway!
And we also visited Santander and San Sebastian. The food in San Sebastian is…
It’s something else, isn’t it? I’ve tried some of the food there.
It’s heavenly. We wanted to visit other cities like Zaragosa where you’re from but we didn’t have time.
Let us know if you go and we’ll give you a tour. We’ll show you the churches and everything.
Is there a cathedral there?
Yes, there’s also one with bombs on it but, don’t worry, they’re fake. It’s all a myth.
Is Zaragosa part of the Basque country? I forget.
No, it’s part of Aragon. Spain’s a little mixed up…
Because of all the different territories.
Yes, and it’s all those territories. Barcelona, the Basque country, those in the south…it’s a little odd but it’s fine so long as you don’t get involved in any of the politics.
Let’s talk about your band. Are you all friends?
For some time now, yes.
But where you friends before you began to play together?
Right, you began as a solo artist.
Yes, I started solo and, little by little, people start coming together depending on how badly they want to play and write music.
And when did you begin playing solo?
Since the day I was born. I’ve always been alone. *laughs* But that’s the truth and, over time, I began making friends, enemies…such is life!
When did you start recording music as a serious endeavor?
Around 2004 or so. A long time ago, a short time ago…
And you’re young!
Well…in spirit, yes but, in appearance and hair, no. You though, according to your hair, you’re about one year old. How marvelous! Such envy!
*laughs* Are you influenced by music from the U.S.?
I’ve only recently started listening to really good music, unfortunately but I love discovering new music. I listen to it all whether it’s from here, India, Puerto Rico, everywhere. If I like it and it’s the right moment, well, what do I know?
Anything that catches your ear is fair game.
Definitely even if it’s shit.
Guilty pleasures, as they’re known. Do you have any guilty pleasure songs at the moment?
Well, I have whatever I deserve meaning nothing.
Aah, not true! I have to say your live show is incredible.
Ah yes, well, it helps that this venue is so great! I love this theme with the American bar and..what would you call this? A peep show?
It looks like a peep show thanks to the pole at the end of the bar.
Yes, it’s a bit weird but I love it. I’ve never performed in a place like this.
I think there’s a burlesque show here on the weekends and the girls dance on the bar.
And the bartender is pretty tiny, isn’t he? Like a micro machine!
Maybe he’s from Oz. So you’ve recorded a new album nearly every year.
Well, I attempt to. Otherwise, it stays up here (taps his head) and it rots. I need to get it out and from there, I don’t know, maybe people grow tired of it, I don’t know. I think we should release records, we should play live and have a good time. When that stops happening, it’s time to retire.
You’re a bit like Omar Rodriguez-Lopez of The Mars Volta in that aspect.
Someone told me about that band the other day but I still haven’t listened to their music. I should check them out.
He’s the guitarist for TMV. He’s released six records with them but released like 30 as a solo artist.
Someone must have told him to start recording or he’d lose it all.
*laughs* I think he’s made statements along those lines.
Maybe I’ll meet him one day.
And you could record together.
Maybe! One never knows.
How was Texas?
It was wonderful. There are lots of people and the competition is brutal but we had fun. What do I know? I’m happy playing anywhere I can. Texas, Sweden, Mars, it’s all the same to me.
Did you play in a lot of showcases or on your own?
Honestly, we didn’t play that much. I don’t know what happened but maybe there was some miscommunication with the promoters and we didn’t play many shows. We should’ve been performing in many spots but, next year, we’ll be more established as musicians and we’ll be able to headline.
Will you tour the U.S. too?
Hopefully! I look forward to it.
Why do you sing in English and not Spanish?
I don’t really know. People ask me that in Spain and I always say that it just comes out that way (se me salen de los huevos) but, how can I explain it here in the U.S.? Because ‘se me salen de los huevos.’ Just to keep the answers familiar!
Does your music sound too pop in Spanish?
I can’t say that’s the case since I’ve never tried it but, if I try it one day, I’ll let you know how it feels. I’ll give you every detail like in a diary.
There’s a group from Valencia called Polock…
Polock? That sounds familiar. Like the painter.
Yeah, that’s where they got their name from.
I watched the movie about him recently. It’s really good. It’s the one with [Ed] Harris. He seemed like a weird type. You could see it, then he started drinking heavily and that’s what did him in.
A lot of great artists have ended up like that. But back to Polock, they say they sing in English because it’s the language of Rock.
I don’t really know what language it is but, then again, what I do isn’t in the most formal English either. I invent words sometimes. For example, I can’t have a conversation in English with a native speaker. Hello! How are you? All to fuck!
And what happens after today?
We have to leave because we’re playing some shows in Canada. We’ll be at a festival in Toronto.
Is it safe to say you have next your album ready?
Yes, it’s ready! I think it’ll be out by the end of the summer. It depends on what the manager wants but it’s ready to be released.