Jazz Revolution:

Exploring the Musical World of

Ibrahim Maalouf

By Guillaume Jean Lefebvre

1. You are a renowned musician and well-known in France; however, could you still introduce yourself for those who are discovering you?

Not easy... But I'll put it this way. I'm a pragmatic dreamer.

2. Your tour for the album "Capacity To Love" started at the Zénith de France in October. What can the audience expect from this tour, and how does this album reflect your artistic evolution as a trumpeter?

"Capacity to Love" is my 17th album. I believe that it brings me clearly out of my control zone. It's a mix of Jazz, Hip-hop, world and global music, and Middle Eastern influences. So on tour, we try to bring this to the highest level possible.

3. The tour concluded with a performance at Bercy on November 29, 2023, with prestigious guests. Can you give us an overview of what made this concert particularly special and how you approach collaborations with other renowned artists?

Playing trumpet in a sold-out show at the biggest Arena in France is special in itself. It's the 3rd time I do it in my career and I have to admit that nothing is comparable. Almost 20,000 people who are here for you, not like in a Festival, where people are there but you know it could be for tons of other artists. And all this happens, even though I'm not a pop star or a rapper. It's honestly one of the most beautiful things you could ever experience.

4. Beyond the world of music, you will also be performing in the play "Un homme qui boit" alongside Thibault de Montalembert. How does your experience in theater compare to your musical performances, and what drew you to this particular play?

I can't really tell you yet since we didn't start to work on it yet. But I can already tell you that I'm really eager to start. I love new experiences, and this one is definitely going to be one of my favorites, I'm sure.


5. Your unique approach to blending different musical genres, including jazz, world, and electronic elements, has garnered widespread acclaim. How do you maintain a balance between these diverse influences, and how has it shaped your distinctive musical style?

To be honest, I don't really think about it. When you talk, you don't think about your accents, or about what kind of vocabulary you are using. You just talk. If you think that you can pretend to be someone else because you change your accent, at some point, people will see it. Nothing is better than authenticity. So in music, it's exactly the same. And to be authentic, you should never think too much about how you do things, and just do!

6. As an internationally renowned trumpeter, how do you view the current landscape of jazz and world music, and what role do you see yourself playing in pushing the boundaries of these genres?

I think that jazz is experiencing a revolution. I don't really know what my role is, but it feels to me that everything is changing, and for the good!

7. "Capacity To Love" is your latest album. Could you share the inspiration behind the title and the creative process that went into crafting this musical journey?

This album is all about Love. About our capacity to love people who are different. And our capacity to love yourself in the middle of the world that doesn't look like you. We worked on it for a year and a half. It was one of my favorite collaborations. I trusted two amazing producers who worked with me on all the production, arrangements, and songs. Henry Was and NuTone. It was the first time in my entire life that I actually allowed anyone else to produce my album.

Artist: Ibrahim Maalouf - @ibrahimmaaloufofficial
Photographers: Yann Orhan & Boby
Agency: Agence French Lights

8. With a career marked by numerous accolades, including the Victoires de la Musique award, what achievements are you most proud of, and how have these milestones influenced your artistic journey?

I don't see things this way. Of course, the prizes are important, and I'm not gonna hide that I'm happy to be nominated for the second time for the Grammys etc. But when I'm working I try to forget all this. I never look back. I always look forward to the next projects. Currently, I'm working on more than 10 different projects that are completely different, and I need to focus on the artistic aspect of the process. I never think about the achievements, otherwise I wouldn't work the same way, nor with the same intensity and creativity.

9. Your performances often feature a visually stunning element, incorporating projections and visual effects. How do you envision the relationship between music and visual art in your work, and what role does it play in enhancing the audience's experience?

Music and image are inseparable. You can't see an image and not hear some kind of music. Even silence could be your choice of music. And also, you can't hear music, and even silence, and not see an image or even a blank page. Also, you can see with your ears and hear with your heart. It's proof that eyes and ears are one.

10. Collaborations have been a significant part of your career. Are there any dream collaborations or projects you still aspire to pursue in the future?

Again, I never think about this. you know, creating is a totally different process from listening. So when you create, you can't really know where it's leading you to. So I'd rather not even think about it and just go with the flow.

11. Looking ahead, what are your aspirations and goals for the coming years, both in terms of your music and any other artistic endeavors you might undertake?

Being happy and keep enjoying time with my family and friends. Nothing else matters!

12 - If you could give advice to your younger self, what would it be?

Always see the best part of people, of things and your life will be much easier.

Quality, not quantity

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