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Lonepsi, rapper at heart – RFI Musique





Rapper Lonepsi releases his first record, “After the rain”.

© Tanguy Dlvt

At 27, rapper Lonepsi released his first record, After the rain. This album full of nostalgia willingly evokes the passage of time and tortured love. Presentation of this young rapper with a romantic soul, who skillfully handles words and composes his music on the piano. Sometimes at the limit of slam, Lindolfo Gargiulo signs an album with thick texts and aerial music.

On the phone that day, Lindolfo Gargiulo answered our questions with almost clinical precision. In a calm voice and a little less serious than the one that can be heard on his record, he goes back in detail on his first steps. “I started by writing without knowing that one day it was going to take a musical form. At the very beginning, I rapped because I couldn’t sing. Putting my voice on an instrumental was a way of singing on one foot. I learned to sing later“, he rewinds. Under the name of Lonepsi (Epsilon, backwards…), the 27-year-old singer makes appear After the raina first album with literary texts and hovering instrumentals.

On the first day there are poems and blackened notebooks for the young “Lindo”. Son of a psychologist and university teacher and an office manager in an embassy who became a psychoanalyst, he grew up in the 93, east of Paris. The parents fled the Argentine dictatorship, the environment is intellectual but modest. In high school, he discovers the film 8 miles, which recounts the life of Eminem, and tries his hand at hip hop battles with his group of friends. Fast, technical rap doesn’t really suit him. The click comes when the texts he has been scratching for a long time meet with a more calm flow.

First album with a romantic soul

His first album appears after two minis and the mixtape The first sounds of the rest of my life, who was compiling his first essays. It contains fourteen pieces which are, he says, “memories brought back by the rain“. The rain is a magical element here, as in the poem by the famous Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges that his father read to him when he was a child. “This title suggests something that is ending and the beginning of something else. Making a first album was an opportunity to bring together the textual and musical identity that I have experienced for five or six years. This is an opportunity to close the book and start a new one, probably less suspicious.“, he explains.

Nostalgia infuses this disc which speaks of tortured heart stories like passing time. In The two f’s of the word suffer, Lonepsi evokes those carefree moments when he smoked joints in his suburbs. “For me, nostalgia is something very positive. It’s thinking about the past with a smile rather than with regrets“, he slips. There are sometimes back and forth between a Lonepsi of today and another, which would go to the old days. The writer and literary columnist Frédéric Beigbeder lends an almost supernatural voice to this aging character, signing one of the rare collaborations on this record.

It is “the last time that I will listen to a person with all my eyes / And that same person will have the strength to make me lose my seriousness (…) The last time that I will retouch a memory / The last time that I will say to myself that escaping is not necessarily fleeing“, says the latter in the conclusion of this disc. Influenced younger by IAM, the Scred Connexion or Booba, Lonepsi seems to have detached himself from it. His flow, which carries the vestiges of his textual aerobatic exercises of the past, is sometimes located at the limit of the slam.

Rapper and composer at the piano

Songwriter, Lindolfo is one of the few rappers to write his own instrumentals. Pianist, he started playing the keyboard late, at the age of 17-18. “The first music that slapped me like hell – I almost almost fainted, it was so crazy… – was the Moonlight by Debussy. When you start with this kind of masterpiece, you think that music is reserved for geniuses. I was a music lover, I listened to music all the time, but I told myself that I was probably never going to make it. And then, there was a piano in my house, I finally took the plunge. My parents encouraged me and I continued to compose“, he says.

For his album, he composed all the titles except I already miss what I live. Co-written with the pianist Sofiane Pamart, this love song with an existential tone could well be his calling card. What did he learn from this collaboration with “the” most requested pianist in current rap? “We met three years ago. What impressed me is his virtuosity and the fact that he really understands the artist he has in front of him, a landscape or an atmosphere. He’s a very sensitive person. “, he assures. To complete his songs, the boy called on electro producer Jen Jis, remixer for Mylène Farmer, Melody Gardot or Sting.

At the beginning of next year, Lonepsi must meet its audience on stage. He has done it many times before. But he will be able to check in this element that the likes, the followers, the number of videos seen on the Internet, sometimes do a little more than the good weather.

Lonepsi, After the rain (Wagram Music / 3rd Office) 2021

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