Philippe Manceau, guitarist and composer tells us about the NOVELO experience:

"I was listening to Novelo yesterday with a certain amazement (I didn't even remember this cover!)... It was such a long time ago, and so many things happened in my life since then, and it's musically so different from what i do today. You know, my principle concern when i make music is to give perpetual excitement to the listener, in the sense that he will never get bored. But in this "tandava" serie of tracks , there are a many repeating moments and drawn-out passages. Although, there are some intresting things too, sure..."

"tandava 2": (the keyboard's getting hot at 3:10!)

Op.Dop: Philippe, could you make a quick historic of your musical experience before Novelo?

Ph.M: I have learned to play violin at the age of 6 during two or three years. And that are the only musical courses i took... I'm a self-taught. In 1964 (i was 10 years old), i go to La Réunion (french island located in the Indian Ocean) to live there, and decided to learn the guitar. In 1966 i create my first band with a guy called Alain Legros, i compose all the music for this collaboration. Back in France (at La Rochelle) in 1969, I'm 15, and here I don't know nobody in the music game, my friends weren't musicians at all... Despite everything, i continue to play guitar and impose myself to make a new song everyday! I had the feeling that one day, i will have to produce a lot... In 1975, I live in Tours, I start to be a "professional" musician, playing with local bands, and in the meantime I intergrate a band (which was only playing cover songs at that time), and this band is NOVELO.

Op.Dop: Which bands were you listen to, musicians that inspired you all along the way?

Ph.M: At La Réunion, i was sensible to the specific island rhythms, it was also the years in which I discovered The Beatles , and that was a true revelation! Then came Hendrix, King Crimson, Led Zep, Todd Rundgren, Bowie and etc.... In France I was listening to Mahavishnu Orchestra, Weather Report, Hancock, S. Wonder... and the Funk from that mid 70's period. But i can say that the main inspiration to me was/is The Beatles.

Op.Dop: Has Novelo released a full album?
Ph.M: No... Actually, the band didn't last for a while.
Op.Dop: Do you know if the other Novelo's musicians recorded some Jazz-Rock or Prog-Rock materials except Novelo
Ph.M: I don't think so.

Op.Dop: Tracks from this Novelo's record (Note that it's a split double lp, 4 bands: 1 side per band) are: Tandava1, Tandava2, Tandava4, Tandava5. So let us know, is there a Tandava3 somewhere!!?

Ph.M: Well... I don't remember of Tandava3. It was probably not good enough to record it...
Op.Dop: I've learned that you are now composing jingles and soundtracks for TV and movies... So, have you recorded some libraries or soundtracks records in late 70's or 80's?

Ph.M: Composing scores for images has always been my wish, but the music industry doors weren't easy to locate and quite hard to open... The opportunie finally came by chance in 1995. See, it's all about being here at right place, at the right moment: i did somebody a favour (some guitar studio sessions) and from there the guy asked me to make music for a documentry movie. Since that moment, I have made more than 40 scores for TV and movies... Little by little, it allowed me to built my own "pro" studio with all the fine equipment necessary to produce music. I now use this studio to record myself, musicians and make arrangements for TV music scores, jingles...

Philippe Manceau has just put on line the 4 tracks of NOVELO (which actually comes from my copy, yeah he doesn't even have his own record...)

Also check his website to see what he is doing nowadays:

Thank you Philippe ;)

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