Vincenzo Martinelli aka Odeeno was born in Naples, Italy on the 5th July 1991. Having been introduced to hip-hop music properly in 2003, he became interested in music production, experimenting with sounds on Reason and FruityLoops. This is where he began making music as Odeeno, and the rest is history. His music contains smooth samples and incredibly soulful compositions that provide soothing soundscapes for our ears. Having released his new album Paintsens via Berlin-based label Dezi-Belle Records, I wanted to catch up with him and talk influences and vision for the future among other things. Read the interview below. In addition to all this, please check his music out and support. A few of his releases have been reviewed here.
Martin: Hi Vincenzo, thanks a lot for agreeing to do this, I’m a fan of your music. I was just curious to know more about you and where your love for music originated from.
The first time I fell in love with music was in after watching a movie. The piece was by Louis Armstrong, “What A Wonderful World,” in the credits of an Italian film. I liked that piece too much and when my father told me the name, I listened to him every day. I was about 7 or 8 years old but it wasn’t that song that made me fall in love. I fell in love with the jazz, blues and funk of an Italian artist Pino Daniele. He made me seriously fall in love with music. Then when I was 12/13 years old, that’s when my love for hip-hop started. It was love at first sight for me. I approached the music with breakdance and then I began writing. I tried to do rap when I was small, but the beats changed everything for me. It was 2009, I only played with programs and then man I knew how the game worked.
Interesting! And speaking of things you fell in love with, who are your biggest influences, in music and in life?
Musically my greatest inspiration is J Dilla, absolutely. He made me get closer to the beat. I listened to him thanks to a dear friend of mine named OohGI (a ‘beatmaker as well). He lived in the house in front of mine. Two years after his death in 2008, I listened to Dilla every day without ever stopping. In life, it has to be my dad. He listened to blues, funk, jazz, Neapolitan music as I said before, Pino Daniele, and he was also a great lover of Michael Jackson. Most of the music from the 80’s I discovered thanks to my father. My friends also inspire me a lot. Those who even today if they do not like this lo-fi culture, continue to support me and give me strength.
Cool, sounds great! Musically I’m interested to know – how do you approach making a whole project?
It depends, really. I don’t have a standard method, but the idea of an internal project for me when I produce comes in two ways: one with a clear idea from the beginning, that I really know where to go with the sound the mood. The other is the search for a specific sample because I know that that type of sample can give me that sound and is coherent with everything. I just continue until it comes to a point where I stop and listen to everything I have produced. When I notice that in some pieces things sound in a similar way or there is that particular that unites them, I start a new project. I tend to get emotional when I make and release new music.
And what is the process of collaborating with other musicians? Would you say it’s easier or more difficult, creatively?
I do not consider them difficult. The collaborations today as today are born for a unification of sound, in the sense that there is affinity in the sound and in that thing or that particular sound one sees oneself. All the shows I work with or featuring in I have never had any problems at work, I find it very stimulating and fun.
What is the history behind your newest album Paintsens? How did it come about?
Paintsens was born in a very special period of my life. I want it to be my first record in vinyl, it would be my dream, but it was born by chance. Dezi-Belle contacted me last year proposing this release in vinyl with them, and I was so excited by all this, they wanted Odeeno with them without listening to my new record. Taken from this and from the emotion I started recording, but as always life doesn’t put everything at your fingertips, and the realization of this record really turned out to be the most difficult part of my experience. I put it all myself in this work, and I believe that it is my most complete work. I wanted to give the listener all that is Odeeno or Vincenzo Martinelli. I put heart, love, friendship, family, women and the colors that are a fundamental part in life and emotion. I wanted to express my emotions but not only through listening but also through sight. The cover contains the whole concept of this record, in the middle you can see everything or nothing, a heart, a face, a soul, what arrives at that moment what you see on this record. I’m really excited about the success of this record.
And I’m really excited for you! So, what’s next for Odeeno? Is there anything else you are working on at the moment?
Yes! I’m working on a new record, but I can’t tell you more. It’s all a mystery to me as well. As per usual I put all of myself in it, with the sound at the heart of it all. I hope you like the next project as well. The sound in which I am bringing to the next release will be slightly different from this. Every time I produce, it is a new experience so we will see the heart and hands what they will play.
Sounds very exciting indeed. Thanks a lot again for taking the time to talk to me and all the best for the future!
Make sure check out Odeeno’s newest release Paintsens below via Bandcamp. Released via Dezi-Belle Records. Don’t forget to support!