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A beautiful affair
Their unique combination of sensual Latin melodies and brilliant, metal-inspired guitar playing have made Rodrigo y Gabriela a phenomenon in their adopted Ireland, with a platinum album, sell-out tours and barn-storming festival appearances already to their credit. Now, with the release of their third album, Rodrigo y Gabriela, their sights are set on the international arena. Here, this extraordinary couple explain why they swapped sun-drenched Mexico for rain-kissed Dublin – and, for the first time, talk candidly about the open relationship they enjoy, as long-term friends and lovers.
Adrienne Murphy, 20 Feb 2006
“I think you have to be very conscious of what you’re up to, really, and why are you doing it,” adds Rodrigo. “If it’s literally just for superficial reasons, be conscious of it, or if you’re doing it to get the reassurance, be conscious of it, and then if you know how to deal with that shit, it can be very exciting for your partner to share it. It’s really difficult and if at some stage if you can talk to each other about what you need or do, then you’ve reached another level. Sometimes you don’t want to know what the other one’s up to, and sometimes you do.”
I make the observation that they seem to really enjoy discussing what is a special personal and spiritual journey with one another. Is this kind of dialogue an important part of their relationship?
Rodrigo and Gabriela agree vigorously. “We have loads of identification and friendship,” says Gabriela. “I think we met in a past life or something, because there’s such a great connection, but we definitely need to respect that we are individuals. We don’t want all this bullshit of me and you together always, no. But ironically, we are still together!”
“And we have been for 15 years, though our relationship has passed through different phases,” adds Rodrigo.
Were you ever afraid that it was breaking apart forever?
“Oh yeah,” says Rodrigo. “That’s natural, that’s the painful part. But when you get to a certain level of being open or whatever, then suddenly you find you go through phases where you don’t really need it that much any more, you know what I’m saying? The main thing is we want to respect each other’s space, whether we are with others or not. We want to grow as individuals – we know we share lots of stuff together anyway. So we’re learning to be on our own and to enjoy being on our own, not just with other people.”
“Once you learn how to treat yourself well, you improve your relationships with everyone,” says Gabriela. “That’s the thing for me. The journey to self-love, but not in an egotistical, selfish way. If you have a bad self-image, then it’s going to be very difficult to relate to anybody, because all your perception is going to follow into that, and then you take everything personally. Once you really work out that way for yourself, then you’re able to improve everything in your life, and you’ll be able to manage many, many things, and be able to understand other people’s views.