On Ninja Tune
Clifford Gilberto, the unknown lovechild of Astrud Gilberto and Stan Getz, was born 28 years ago in the middle of nowhere...
When he was only 9 years old, his parents moved from the middle of nowhere to Germany, where he lived until he was 16. He moved to the U.S. to go to high-school and worked on a junkyard and a farm until he had enough money to buy a beat-up GrandAm (pictured on his debut album) and went on a half year trip across the U.S.
When he was 19, he moved back to Germany to study product design in Frankfurt. Bored by his school's design approach, he decided that designing spaceships for movies was much more fun and started to work as a production designer and 3D-animator in a german film company. He now lives in London where he runs hi-res! (hi-res.net), a graphic design company.
Clifford has been a classically trained pianist since the age of 8. When he was 13 he started to get into Thelonius Monk and Charlie Mingus and drove his piano teacher up the wall by trying to improvise on top of Rachmaninoff preludes.
He played in several bands, being influenced by both old school-jazz and nitzer ebb, but eventually decided that he could achieve more by himself. Actually, he never thought about releasing his material, until his girlfriend made him send a demo tape to his favourite label and a week later, sitting in an L.A. hotel room (now that's what I call rock'n roll), he got a call from Ninja Tune. And so The Clifford Gilberto Rhythm Combination was born...
Clifford released his debut album 'I Was Young and I Needed the Money' in October 1998 and went on an extensive tour through the UK, Europe and Australia. He has since written two soundtracks, performed all over Europe and played both the prestigious North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague in 1999 and the first ever North Sea Jazz Festival in Capetown, South Africa, in March 2000.
His music has taken a sharp turn from the hyperactive beats of the first album into a more relaxed, accessible and more musical direction. it is essentially a soundtrack to an imaginative film. it emphazises on the contrast of 70's funk and 00's digital datamanipulation, or as Clifford describes it : "It's like playing pong on a dreamcast while listening to a curtis mayfield-CD with dropouts, or like wearing a really funky shirt with lots of pens and a calculator in the shirt-pocket... " Whatever that means.
Next year will see the release of his new album "Shift!" and the single "The 10th Victim" and, of course, his own website.