Damo Suzuki is a sound carrier that communicates with an assembly of other sound carriers (local musicians from whatever location he happens to be playing, that he meets just before their performance) and the audience to engage in “instant composition”, creating a free space outside of the systems of daily life and restraints of society to experience freedom and truth. He believes that energy and communication is an important part of life and that when there is true communication there is no violence; he uses his music as a weapon against violence and to spread positivity. Gimmie spoke with Damo from his home in Cologne, Germany.
Hi Damo! Thank you for speaking with us.
DAMO SUZUKI: Sorry, I haven’t spoke English for about half a year, I have been talking more German. I haven’t had any concerts; last time I spoke English was when I had concerts in the UK. It takes a bit of time to use the English. It’s ok though, no problems.
I don’t make any concerts right now because organisers don’t like to make anything because they can not make money. Another thing is, I said to organiser, if audience is made to wear a mask then I don’t perform. I don’t like things that people are supposed to do, when it is commanded from somewhere, because the only system that exists is the system from God, not human systems. I don’t need anything… especially now, people are being forced to do this kind of stuff, it’s absolutely not like a human being, everybody can’t live how they like to…
…I have to know myself because I have to know my truth. I have been talking to you about my truth, that’s not your truth, it is important to find your truth; that’s why I make music. We don’t have any kind of concept what we will play, we don’t know what’s coming up and audience doesn’t know what we will play; “what is Damo going to sing?” Audience can make their own story; everything is their own truth. Being at a concert is better than listening to a CD or something like that, being there you meet new people and atmosphere. It’s a totally different thing than if you are listening to music in the studio or at home with headphones.
I use the space to make live music, live music is no system to me and together with audience we are creating new platform—this is my music. My music is not so I create every day the same piece that’s maybe four of five minutes, no, now I create one piece for one or two hours without any stops because I think this is my music and I like to live together with nature, nature never stops. If you have a product there is always a stop, radio stations like to play short singles, they want you to make short pieces, I am against this; I am against any kind of stop [laughs]. I like to only have system from God.
I don’t know the musician I play with; I don’t have any information from them, I don’t know how technical they are; the thing that makes me happy is they like to make music together with me and audience. They are coming and spending their time, this is a very happy moment. I am not making music right now because if they have to wear a mask that is not freedom; if they want to wear a mask then that is OK, though.
What else makes you really happy?
DS: Speaking with you. Communication is the best part of social life. Everything starts with communication. Music is communication. I can play guitar, I can make music alone but for me music is communication, a social thing much more. That’s why I was so happy this morning to speak with you.
Have you always known that energy was important? When did you become aware of the importance of energy?
DS: Energy is coming, if you are curious about anybody or any things and you have the possibility to research then, energy is coming. Energy is not always geographically; energy is a place that you create and develop yourself—this power that is pushing you is energy. Also, energy is feedback you can get from other people, this exchange exists and another energy is coming. It is understanding. It is communication. From communication also started energy. This source is a kind of spiritual food. If you have positive energy, you share it with people then they are sharing it with other people and then they share it with other people. Positivity starts with, as you said, happiness, and communication.
I love how it’s important for you to put out positive energy! There’s so much negative energy in the world I feel like it makes sense to counter that with creating and communicating positive energy.
DS: Yeah, this is how I have lived for a long time. The only thing I have a problem with is lies, I care about the truth.
Truth is the most important thing, also creativity, communication and love.
DS: Information is kind of like a good food. Many war and many hate family or friend, it is coming from missing information, not communicating. Full trust is the most important thing in social life, if you don’t have trust, you cannot have communication and be together in this.
I am quite happy making music. Music for me is a process. If you go to studio and make a hit, you make money, you plan, plan, plan; it is not the music that I like to do. Having a plan is not creative for me; creative things for me must start at zero, a place of emptiness, a place of nothing—this is creativity for me. Real creativity is having no information. If you have information you go a particular way. At home I don’t hear any kind of music, I don’t play any musical instrument, I do nothing musical. I cook, I really like cooking. Every night I like to see a movie. I buy so much books too; if I am on tour and at the airport, I will buy books. I generally read them at my desk. Maybe we might have 10,000 books.
Wow! That’s a lot. I love books too! My day job is working in a library.
DS: That’s a good job to have.
Yes, and working in a community service and helping people find information and knowledge rather than trying to sell people things they don’t need.
DS: That is so good you are enjoying your job, it is not something that everybody can do, this kind of life. Many people are doing things they don’t like. Reading books is quite special.
It is important to have your own ideas of life. Now days so many people don’t read books they just go to YouTube for information. After that, if you have questions, you can decide by yourself—this is important. Einstein said something about having questions… if you have questions you can develop. Like, many people are Catholic because their family were Catholic and they don’t prove it to themselves. It’s important to prove things to yourself and educate yourself and to know yourself. If you take everything from information from everyone, you cannot go anywhere because you are stopped… It’s the same with the spiritual or creativity. Many people make mistake because they take in so much information, before they did something, they already had the answer, this way you cannot develop yourself. I wish everybody is developing and finding their own way to live and can be a free person.
Everyone has a mission in their own life but the majority of people don’t find it. If you are developing yourself and are trying you can find it because you are trying something. If you are trying something you are movement. If you take information from everywhere else you can not find yourself.
Everyone should have their own goal, own opinion, own experience and find their own lifestyle, because everybody is unique and everybody has a talent. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come automatically, you must find it; if you don’t move nothing is coming. Everybody is individual, you don’t have to compare with anybody, just compare yourself to yourself.
Please check out: damosuzuki.com