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We tried to ask free-floater Cameron Stallones questions about his hairdo while he was riding a donkey in the Mexican desert. Not kidding. And it sure as hell wasn’t easy! Anyway, we ended up chatting about putting your pants on, enlightenment and licking strange monoliths. Not really what we had in mind but guess that’s exactly his way to go.
Interview by Gerlin Heestermans and Brenda Bosma, photos shot by Nicholas Haggard in Los Angeles, USA
‘I have no idea. I love that. I’m happiest when I’m not in control. I think too much to be in control.’
Are you a perfectionist when it comes to creating? Do you split hairs?
Yes, although that’s really funny because I’m mostly using stuff from the junk shop. Precision is a state of mind but I don’t have a method. I just start jamming. It tends to be a bad idea to have too many ideas beforehand.
You want it to be in the moment?
Yeah, I’m a completely present man. I’m without any thought of what I want it to sound like, without any attempt to direct it. Obviously I have those thoughts and feelings, but they’re coming out in a more direct way. They don’t need to pass through the brain-pan first, they can come out through the fingers.
So the gifts are in the present, not in the past of future?
Definitely, dude! But what about the future? The point is to not even try to know and also to realize that you already know. It’s just about remembering that you know.
What are you gonna do next?
I have no idea. I love that. I’m happiest when I’m not in control. I think too much to be in control. Putting my pants on is the last decision I make. I’m wearing blue shorts, by the way.
I read Sun Araw means ‘Sacred Rest’. How do you find rest, being as busy as you are?
I’m not sure that I do, but it’s definitely something I aspire to. We have a lot of levels we operate on, so there’s something about not letting the left hand know what the right hand is doing, you know? There are parts of yourself that need to be walled off from other parts of yourself. You gotta be undercover a little bit.
And can you also relax on a couch while being undercover?
I’m having a hard time at that. I’m a real active person. There’s a big part of me that wants to lie on the couch and listen to beautiful sounds, but halfway through I’m back up and trying to do something. I just want to put my pants on and let that be the last decision I make during the day. I’m not trying to move, I’m trying to be moved.
‘It’s a process, a ladder. I think maybe I got like the tip of my fingers on the bottom rung. That’s the beginning of wisdom, you know, knowing you’re not getting it at all.’
You’ve recently recorded with the Jamaican band The Congos. I can imagine life there is pretty different than the one we’re familiar with. What lesson did you take with you from your dreadlock colleagues?
Everything was a lesson. The way people think and act is different. Their relationship with the Earth is different. You’re out of your water completely and are bound to do their thing. But I got it the second I got off the plane. I was like: ‘Take my thing away from me, man! Zip the garbage bag and throw it away, please!’ It makes you step outside of the boxes that you’re familiar with. It was truly wild.
Did you find some sort of enlightenment?
Of course… not! It’s a process, a ladder. I think maybe I got like the tip of my fingers on the bottom rung. That’s the beginning of wisdom, you know, knowing you’re not getting it at all.
What hairstyle did you once sport in your life that you will forever regret?
No regrets, no shame in the game. Actually hair is not an important part of my daily matters.
Yeah… but which part of your body would you least like to see adorned with hair?
Have you ever seen that movie The Peanut Butter Solution? That would be it!
What if after this you were confronted with a strange floating monolith, what would you do?
I would probably look at it, touch it. I’d even rub up against it. Then I would lick it. What would it taste like? It would taste bitter, ‘cause things taste bitter when we haven’t formed an opinion on them yet. In our minds it will taste great, because that’s just a decision. Sometimes it doesn’t feel like you have one, but deep down you do.
Sun Araw and Deep Magic are at Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ’s The Rest is Noise Series on 15 April. The show is free for Subbacultcha! members.