I had been part of many bands before, but this one was different from the start!
We set goals we aimed to achieve, we made commitments, and we were very eager to "get out of the garage".
By then we were all in our 20s and this would be a last chance. I speak for myself! I thought about quitting music so many times... But I had a dream I hadn't fulfilled yet: playing at least once on a national radio station!
This was a year filled with rehearsals, live shows (in bars) and recordings. At this point, we had decided we would be working with Quico Serrano, who agreed to be the producer for three or four songs. We were very happy that he accepted the challenge.
He saw us playing in a bar in Espinho and he liked us!
Would we be the same without him? Obviously not. We spent a year working on four songs, because learning how to be in a recording studio also requires time. The future looked promising! I felt I was on the right track.
This was the year that changed my life completely.
The "Partizan Pop" EP was released, our songs started playing on the radio, we scheduled "queimas" and freshmen receptions...
Real concerts! We started appearing in newspapers and TV shows...
My dream of playing on the radio finally came true in March 2002! I met Saul Davies (guitar player from James) and, around that time, did an interview with him in the RTP TV station. I couldn't believe it! To finish off the year, I wrote the song "Daisy". We played on the main stage of the Paredes de Coura festival and other important events.
Besides the songs written in English, I also wrote a few songs in Portuguese. The song "Pequeno T2", among others, came about at this time. While recording the first album, Saul Davies and Quico Serrano selected the songs we would be working on. I was very happy because from the ones that were presented, almost all of the selected songs were written (music and lyrics) by me. At that time, I was asked to consider the possibility of Ez Special becoming a solo project, but I said no. I felt that this project should also belong to the other band members.See more videos and photos from 2002
This was an unforgettable year! Our album was released by a multinational record label and, for the first time ever, a Portuguese artist's image and song were used in an advertisement campaign for a major Portuguese brand.
The song "Daisy" became the main theme for TMN (which no longer exists). All that made it possible for us to start playing for thousands of people, sign hundreds of autographs, and even have a fan club. It was all so sudden that I'm not even sure how it happened! It wasn't that long ago that I was thinking of giving up, and now I was the lead singer for the most talked about band in Portugal! It was really strange, to go from being anonymous to having people look at me on the street and start singing the songs, especially the "Lalalala u" part from "Daisy".
It was wonderful, being able to make my dream come true and go far beyond what I had imagined.
I was part of a project that was going very well. However, during this year, I started feeling a bit of stress and a lot of weight on my shoulders. After achieving so much success, there were a lot of expectations about the future. This was the year that had me writing more songs than ever before. Besides all the songs in Portuguese, I wrote about 80 songs in English.
I was feeling very tired, and I was wondering: Could this be the highest point of my career?
The video for "My Explanation" was shot in New York, and the song soon became No. 1 in radio airplay in Portugal.
It held the top spot for 6 months!
At this time, we were the most requested band in Portugal. We played a hundred concerts in a year!
The high point was at the end of the year, with the concerts in the Coliseus. I was very happy to see that all our effort and dedication had paid off, but I was physically exhausted. We played almost every day, sometimes three shows a day! There were dozens of interviews, we had to interact with fans and, worst of all, I was physically worn out and losing my voice because of it... I was having mixed feelings. I was thinking: Was this what I had always fought for?
My voice wasn't the same anymore... I had to take medication and singing lessons to make my vocal chords go back to normal.
After taking some time to think about it, I talked to the members of Ez Special and said I wanted to take a break for a year, and also put out a solo album, which was something I really wanted to do. At that time they all agreed, but soon after that they changed their mind, and I found myself at a crossroads. They said: "Either you give up your solo project and stay with us, or we move on without you."
I felt the situation wasn't fair. This project was mine also. I had invested a lot of time, dedication and money into it. But I couldn't stay feeling trapped, so I decided that Ez Special wouldn't be part of my future. And that's how it ended...See more videos and photos from 2006
I wanted to take a break and do something different. I started working on a few songs in Portuguese that were "in the drawer".
It was strange, but tempting.
I wasn't looking for success at that point, I just didn't want to let the music dream die. There were hard times ahead. I never thought it would all be so hard at the beginning. There were a lot of closed doors... It was like going back to the start and fighting for everything again! Letting go of the past was hard, but I got some guys together to play with me and I went back on the road! How ironic that "taking a break" would end up being the best project of my life...
"Pequeno T2" was a song that almost didn't make it into the album, because I was not completely happy with the result. Curiously, it ended up being chosen as a single by Pedro Ribeiro from Rádio Comercial, and became my biggest hit up to that point!
Thank you, Pedro!
And that's how I, once again, became the face of one of Portugal's major brands!
It was time to face the future with confidence.
I never thought my solo career would go so well in such a short period of time.
I had to stay in the moment, so I didn't rest a whole lot. I released the song "Entre o sol e a lua", which brought continuity to my success and my new direction.
I was giving a lot of concerts again, and there was a lot of media exposure due to airplay, soap operas and TV commercials.
I went to Madrid to record with producer Mário Barreiros.
There were a lot of expectations surrounding this album. I was invited by Anastacia to do the first half of her shows in Portugal. The Bio television channel mentioned me as one of Portugal's greatest music talents and did my biography, which ran on the Bio cable channel in Portugal and Spain!
I was able to rest a little for the first time. I had never gone so long without releasing new material.
The music industry had changed dramatically. Within 10 years, record and concert ticket sales dropped significantly, and artists had to come up with new ways to release their projects.
However, I recorded an album with producer Vítor Silva. Another old dream of mine came true: I performed for thousands of people in the Castle of my hometown, Santa Maria da Feira.
That was the end of a three-album cycle, exclusively in Portuguese.
Saul Davies had challenged me to record in the UK and try to take my music abroad. And that's what I did! I accepted the challenge!
I recorded new material in London and Glasgow.
"U can't stop me now" and "The Bond" are the songs from this new adventure that I have already unveiled. But there's more...