Name: Luca Accardi
Occupation: Producer, DJ
Nationality: Italian
Recent release: Luca Accardi's Vayo is out via Fabio Florido's Runa imprint.
Recommendations: Music album: Lowfish – Test(e); Book: Yogi Ramacharaka - Some light on the path

[Read our Fabio Florido interview]

If you enjoyed this interview with Luca Accardi, visit him on Instagram, Facebook, and Soundcloud for more information.

When did you start writing/producing/playing music and what or who were your early passions and influences? What was it about music and/or sound that drew you to it?

Well, I started to play music in 2009, just having fun with my friends in some “bar” and disco pub. I remember my only equipment was a chip controller MIDI with virtual DJ.

The reason why I started is attributable to a big festival in Turin and it was my first time that I heard Richie Hawtin play. That night blew my mind, completely! He was my biggest early influence cause his sound was so powerful and futuristic! The day after I was like: “Ok I want to do that, too!”

A couple of years later I started also to make my own music thank to a friend of mine that have taught me for free Ableton live.

[Read our Richie Hawtin / Plastikman interview]

Some people experience intense emotion when listening to music, others see colours or shapes. What is your own listening experience like and how does it influence your approach to music?

I’m more of an “emotional” person. Music in general evokes emotions in everyone, more or less. It is just a matter of how you are focused on what you’re listening to.

Personally when I listen / produce music I pay attention to what emotions it evokes in me. Obviously I choose only music which elicits positive emotions like inner peace, bliss, happiness. Sometimes something more dark and introspective but never anything that makes me anxious or melancholic. Good vibes always take away “trash” from our mind and thanks to that, creativity gets more space!

On my latest productions for Runa, Vayo, I tried for the first time to keep in my mind a scenario, looking for the right melodies / frequencies that carry me there. It worked very well!

How would you describe your development as an artist in terms of interests and challenges, searching for a personal voice, as well as breakthroughs?

In my early years as a producer I completely overlooked the importance of finding my unique way. I tried to “copy” my favorite producers. I hope I wasn’t the only one!

In the last years I finally took a break. I didn’t release anything for more than two years. I promised my self not to release music anymore, until I found my own sound. I finally I got it. That’s my best development as an artist so far…

Obviously you never stop improving!

Tell me a bit about your sense of identity and how it influences both your preferences as a listener and your creativity as an artist, please.

Luckily my sense of identity today is stable. Perhaps because of my hours of meditation during these last years, maybe because of my natural evolution, I don’t know!

Anyway, back in the days, when I was more unstable, depressed or when my sense of identity was troubling, I’ve always preferred to listen to music with a “good vibes” melody and harmony to contrast depression and anxiety.

I know many people listen to depressing, heartbreaking music when they’ve lost their sense of identity, just because it reflects their state of mind, but that's the case for me. I think it’s deleterious and worsens the situation. But this is just my opinion.
What, would you say, are the key ideas behind your approach to music and art?

My key ideas are that music and art are about sharing first. There must never be competition behind them, instead, there must be the desire to share something with the community. In my case to share also something that touches our most animistic side.

Finally I think it’s important to let yourself be overwhelmed by the inspirations that come from what surrounds you at the moment, which can be a forest full of fauna or a beach with the sound of the waves on the rocks. That’s how I approach music and art!

How would you describe your views on topics like originality and innovation versus perfection and timelessness in music? Are you interested in a “music of the future” or “continuing a tradition”?

I state that for me there’s not a right vision or wrong vision, it’s just a matter of taste. To be honest I feel bored to listen to music that never changes.

I mean, in techno right now, it seems as though producers want to preserve some traditional sounds, like a 808 distorted kick or 303 acid synth used always in the same way. I can’t listen to that anymore!

So, as you’ll have understood, I prefer innovation. There are so many as yet unexplored soundscapes that I can’t resist the temptation to discover them.

Over the course of your development, what have been your most important instruments and tools - and what are the most promising strategies for working with them?

I don’t use too much hardware. I started to make music in an era where most instruments were digital.

What’s important to me, apart from Ableton Live, are my Ableton Push and My Native Instrument keyboard. Usually, when I start to use digital synths and create melodies to shape the track, I try playing on the keyboard with my eyes closed. I spend hours looking for the right melody / harmony that makes me go like “Ok I got it! Now I can switch to REC. mode!”

Last but not least I think the best instrument for everyone is our intuition. Intuition does not come to us around the clock, so, personally, I don’t even open Ableton when my best instrument doesn’t work.

Take us through a day in your life, from a possible morning routine through to your work, please.

My morning routine start at 7.30 am. I spend about 30-40 minutes each day meditating, this is the first thing I do, even before breakfast.

I always have a classic Italian breakfast: avena’s milk with biscuits or cereals. Then I go to work. My job is nice and fun. We select and sell wines via the Internet, in Italy. My working hours are flexible and not demanding at all, so, I have time for myself, friends, listening / making music, yoga, nature.

I live very close to Milan, so sometimes in the weekend we let us drag into the crazy and chaotic city life where you can’t predict when you come back home!

Could you describe your creative process on the basis of a piece, live performance or album that's particularly dear to you, please?

I wish to take this opportunity to talk about my new EP on Runa called Vayo. This is the first project that’s really dear to me.

Everything started about a year ago when we were in “social distancing” and “lockdown” mode. Normally I tend to take a positive view of circumstances so I used to spend that time to stay alone in the middle of the nature, looking inside, rooting my connection with all around me.

As I said before, I was coming from 2 and more years of releasing no music. I was tired of always producing obvious music. But, finally, all these nature connections lead me to go to the studio trying to do something different, something that was referring to that feeling of inner peace, bliss and depth that nature gave me!

At the same time Runa was releasing music by Fabio Florido, which had precisely the same concept behind it. That was the last piece that completed my inspiration.

Pads, synths, sound from the woods recorded, singing bowl, gong - I started to find the perfect match between them and finally the magic happened!

Listening can be both a solitary and a communal activity. Likewise, creating music can be private or collaborative. Can you talk about your preferences in this regard and how these constellations influence creative results?

I always listen to music at least once a day, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends so, talking about listening, I can say I love both!

If we talk instead about producing, I’ve never tried a collaboration so far. Looking at the others collaborations I feel like a communal production can be something magic only if participants have something connected like “vibration at the same frequencies”.

How do your work and your creativity relate to the world and what is the role of music in society?

My creativity is related to everything around me. We see, hear, perceive things which we then put into a reservoir of memories, whether consciously or unconsciously. I think creativity relates to all these memories, with all the experiences we live in the world.

Music has multiple roles, music in company, sharing, inspiration to others, therapy and medicine. When I say medicine I am thinking of our ancestors in India or South America and other places in the world that repeat chants and mantras always in specific frequencies to cure all mental illness! Today we've lost a bit this important function, unfortunately.  

Art can be a way of dealing with the big topics in life: Life, loss, death, love, pain, and many more. In which way and on which occasions has music – both your own or that of others - contributed to your understanding of these questions?

I’d say music was my way to understand a lot of things. When I listen to music, my brain calms down, my thoughts almost cease to flow and, you know, when your mind is free you can understand everything more easily.

There seems to be increasing interest in a functional, “rational” and scientific approach to music. How do you see the connection between music and science and what can these two fields reveal about each other?  

Music is science without a doubt! I mean, every interval and every scale have a specific effect on our brain and it’s scientifically proven. There have been a lot of tests about that. Also, water molecules react always in the same way in relation to the melody / harmony / frequency being played.

So, music and science – what could be more united?

Creativity can reach many different corners of our lives. Do you feel as though writing or performing a piece of music is inherently different from something like making a great cup of coffee? What do you express through music that you couldn't or wouldn't in more 'mundane' tasks?

Well, personally I think with music I can express something that I can not express with words. Maybe because words are elaborated by our lower level of mind. Music touches another level of us that perceive in a different way!

Writing music or make a great cup of coffee are different in terms of their complexity of course. But they can have the same value if both were created with deep love!

Music is vibration in the air, captured by our ear drums. From your perspective as a creator and listener, do you have an explanation how it able to transmit such diverse and potentially deep messages?

We are psychic beings. I think our soul sees perfectly our nervous system, which, in turn, is linked with the senses.

So, what we catch with our senses, in this case hearing, is translated into messages, good or bad, that come directly to our soul's attention!