About Me

Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome.
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Artist Of The Week – Dirty Elegance
Monday, March 26, 2007

The man behind Dirty Elegance, a man who happens to prefer to remain faceless and nameless, picked up his first musical instrument, a saxophone, at the age of ten after being inspired by, of all things, a Hall and Oats song. Even at that young an age it was quickly evident that music was going to be his path in life. Dirty Elegance describes his time growing up as “a whirlwind of honor bands, European jazz tours, and intense training.” After moving to New York City in 2000 with no money, no job and nowhere to live, he continued his musical journey any way he could. Seven years later, he has a couple bucks in his wallet, a roof over his head, and he even knows a few people. This week I sat down with Dirty Elegance to find out what his work is all about and what I came away with are answers that qualify as both strange and compelling.

Adam Bernard: Dirty Elegance is an intriguing name. In what ways do you feel the name Dirty Elegance encapsulates your music and what you're looking to do?
Dirty Elegance: Dirty Elegance is more than music. Dirty Elegance is more than a name. It's how I feel. It's how I view our everyday world. It's what I see as I sit on the fire escape, sucking down cigarettes, under the hazy, dimly lit moon peeking in from behind the roof of my building in Washington Heights. The contrasting shapes and shadows of the dead tree's twisted branches reaching into the blue-ish grey sky, filled with the dark, soft shapes, gently blowing the fallen leaves with it's cold breath of autumn's soft whispers. It's being able to see the beauty in all situations of everyday life, the small details that go unnoticed by your average passer-by, and my music is just an expression of how I feel and what I see.

Adam Bernard: Finding Beauty In The Wretched is a mostly instrumental album, but you do have a few very interesting vocal samples. Tell me about those samples, who they are and why you chose them.
Dirty Elegance: Elie Wiesel and Charles Manson. Light and dark. Good and evil. Hope and despair. Contrasting souls. Dirty Elegance.

Adam Bernard: Your image is nowhere to be found on Finding Beauty In The Wretched. What was the thought process that led to this decision and what are your feelings on it now that the album is out?
Dirty Elegance: It was a conscious decision that was made long, long ago. I am disgusted and ashamed of how our society places importance on shit that is just wrong. Rape, addiction, murder, adultery, pedophilia, greed, bulimia, anorexia, theft, violence, vanity, that's what we, as a society, hold dear to our hearts, our “idols,” the crème de le crème. I just want to share my views, beliefs, and passions with as many people as there are ears, divided by two. I don't care if my face becomes immortalized. Just listen to the music, think about what's really going on and wonder what's out there, wonder about what don't we know, what do we know and what our subconscious keeps secret. Plus, it gives me a chance to use some of my photographs, a couple visual examples of what I find Dirty Elegance to be.

Adam Bernard: In what environment do you feel your music fits best and who do you see being your main audience?
Dirty Elegance: I'm not going after any of Britney Spears’ fans, that's for sure! I’m looking to reach those souls who question our existence, those who can see through the incredibly large portion of shit that’s shoved into our faces every day and labeled art, those who think outside the box, and question reality, those who chase dreams and will not tolerate anything other than their hearts desires, not those sitting around reveling in what Paris Hilton wore yesterday afternoon. I’m looking to reach real, unique, individuals, who aren’t afraid to live the way they truly feel aspired to. I would rather sell one CD to someone who really feels it than sell a million to the uninspired herd of manipulative, monotonous walking dead, relying on others for their own sense of self.

Adam Bernard: What are you biggest goals as an artist?
Dirty Elegance: I want to inspire. I want to stoke the embers that are smoldering within the creative soul, whether it’s art, music, dance, sculpture, poetry, whatever. And I want to be playing through the speakers as that creativity comes to fruition. Art begets art and inspiring to create is my ultimate sense of gratitude. What will I inspire others to create? It’s like six degrees of separation, but to the millionth degree. All of society’s greatest artists were inspired by something.

For more Dirty Elegance check out myspace.com/rickyrstix.


posted by Adam Bernard @ 7:56 AM  
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