Aliver J. came a long way to get where he is now, gathering countless experience on his musical journey. From his natal Italy to the United States, he grew as an artist, expanding its talents and perfecting his musical gift. Rapper, singer, songwriter... Aliver J. gives himself truthfully and completely to his music, with meaningful lyrics and his very own musical style (which even has its name !). He recently published his last EP on Jamendo, "Scenario di un mundo nemico". Get to know him and his music through the interview he gave us.
Can you introduce yourself ?
I'm Giordano Alivernini a.k.a. Aliver J. An Italian from Rome, who is now living in Texas. I'm a singer, songwriter and rapper. My genre is a mix of pop/r&b and rap. The rap was my first style to express myself.
Slowly through the years, I've developed a style as a singer also, and now, my style is an hybrid genre. It is a genre that I use to call "Soul mediterraneo music".
For how long have you been an artist ? When did you begin? Can you tell us more about our previous experience?
I think it's a gift from God and probably I was an artist since my first day on earth. I just had to discover the artist in me. I think everyone has a little artist within. It just has to be found. I've found that artist when I was 16 years old, writing my first rap, using the music as a type of therapy. I didn't speak much and I was kind of shy so... I thought that kind of music was perfect for me because every time I was rapping, the artist within came out through my words.
Since 1993 till 2005 I had a lot of experiences as a rapper first and as a singer later. I experienced a lot of ups and downs on big and little stages. I even had a couple of projects where I was produced by well known Italian producers. But you know, sometimes you meet the right people at the wrong moment and the wrong people at the right moment. So, once I had a clear idea of what I really wanted to do, I produced what I call my first album, "Dirapscalia", in 2007. Artistically by myself and economically by John Penate (a Dj producer from San Diego, California).
I never stopped writing and recording my songs. I have a home studio and I always have a new idea to record. I believe in what I do and I'm still waiting for the right people who can help to promote my songs. I mean, yesterday, I was waiting for something to happen. Even a little thing. Today, I'm writing for you so... Thank you for your support.
You are a rapper but also a singer. Therefore, your music has multiple facets: urban hip-hop, but also pop. Why did you decide to go both ways ?
I think that as an independent artist, I shouldn't limit myself. Why should I put a label on myself, when I'm not a product to sell? Every genre represents a character. But a genre can represent a mood too. Most of the time I wake up in the morning and I feel inspired as a singer-songwriter. In the evening, sometimes I feel like a rapper. So, I represent many sides of myself. When you hear a melody and rap in my songs, it means that I put all of myself in that track. I'm just honest with the listener. That's probably why I even sell some copies of my albums and singles without having a great promotion.
"Il Mondo Fuori" sets itself apart from the other tracks of the album, by its genre and its sound. What’s the story behind this song?
It's an important song for me. It has everything I wanted to say in this moment of my life.
The title in English means "The world outside".
Before I tell you what the song is about, I want you to know that I took the inspiration
from another song from my first album. The title is "La stanza piccola" ("The small room" in English). In that song I talk about me and my young brother, living in a small room, dreaming about a different world, dreaming of a future for us in a tough world with no money, no opportunity but a lot of hope to change our position in life. Musically it's simple, But the lyrics touched a lot of people's heart.
Then I thought I wanted to bring myself out of that small room. I wanted to open the door to see the world outside. I wanted to write about the best of what I see in others, every day, walking around. People with their different jobs and what they do to support their families.
Their struggle in every day life. And even if the world is running around with all its problems, the world still loves the people who don't destroy the earth. So, because of the theme and because of the melody, automatically the arrangement came out that way. But that's not the only version. There is another version, even slower. It's on my web site with other information (here: aliverj.com).
This album contains songs written in Italian. For our readers who are not familiar with this language, can you tell us what’s the theme of your lyrics ?
At the end of my songs, and a the end of my album - especially in Scenario di un mondo nemico ('Scenario of an enemy world' in English), the perfect word to describe what I want to say is "Respect". There is a lot of respect in everything I do, in what I write, for the people I meet and most of all for the wonderful world we are living in. I think that the most important word should be "respect" and not "love". Because "love" is a natural feeling and you can't control it. You don't have it for everything and everyone. But "Respect", is something that makes the difference when we have it.
Is there a message you would like to convey through your songs and your music?
Through the years, I wrote several songs about the "sleepers in the evil environments".
I mean, manipulators and those being manipulated. Even if our eyes are wide open, it doesn't mean that we are awake. That's what I think, and I use my the music for a good message, and sometimes I write love songs and funny lyrics too.
You also have written songs in English, haven’t you? How is writing in English different from writing in Italian?
That's pretty tough!! I have been living in the USA for 5 years but my vocabulary is still limited. You know, there are a lot of slang words and different accents, and sometimes it gets frustrating because I would like to express myself with words that I can't find. I seem to work more on the melodies rather than complicated lyrics. You can still find a story, with meaningful phrases but written in a simple way.
Do you have a specific creative process when making a song?
24/7. Really!! It's like inhaling images and sounds and exhale lyrics and melodies. Everything gives me a constant input or inspiration for a new song. I know, it sounds crazy... all day... but that's what it is.
There is this very cool song on Jamendo that is called “GoL” and that is not in the last album. Can you tell us more about this one?
It's not even "Goal" but "Gol" because I wanted to write it in the way we scream it in the stadium in Rome. This song was also released in 2 versions. You know... it's our favorite sport in Italy. I love soccer!... but even if the lyrics are funny and the melody is catchy, this song is my invitation to take soccer for what it really is and not too seriously.
Which artists do you listen to ? If you could chose one artist to collaborate with, who would it be ?
Boyz to men but the Eagles too. A lot of italian songwriters but R. Kelly, Craig David and Brian McKnight too. Also, my favorite rappers are LL cool J. and Treach from Naughty by nature. Probably I'll choose LL to collaborate with.
What are our future musical plans ?
In these days I'm reading a lot about history in general necause I have 2 songs in my mind that require some information.. I'm digging !! you know.. next stage, next level. With me, it's more about the message in the lyrics rather than "perfect"sounds. I'll let you know when the new 2 will be ready.
Thank you !
Nooo !! Thank YOU !!