💿 Hi, It's a pleasure for us to have on Hardrockheavymetal Alex Cole, a well-known name in the US "Retro Rock"! Thank you for having me here and a big salute to you, your staff and the HRHM readers. 💿 Let's start talking about the early days of your career. You come from Milan, where you lived and played your great music before going to Los Angeles, Is that correct? When did all of this begin? Which bands have influenced you? I grew up listening to American Blues and Rock 'n' Roll. I started training my voice at an early age, which lead me to perform in clubs around Milan. One day, I went to record some of my vocal tracks with the well-known Producer Enrico Santulli. It was during one of these recording sessions that Mr. Santulli placed an "open tuned" guitar in my hands and suggested that i should learn an instrument. I took the guitar home and began to study it. Two weeks later Mr. Santulli said, "you're ready for your own guitar", and together we went to buy my first electric guitar. Mr. Santulli then introduced me to one of the greatest blues musicians in Italy, Claudio Bazzari. For the next ten years Mr. Bazzari was my teacher and trained me in the Blues, as well as other styles of music. He taught me to read and write music. During this time I was attending rock and roll concerts such as AC/DC, Ted Nugent, Zz Top, Molly Hatchet, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Tower Of Power, Deep Purple and many others. I became passionate about the energy delivered by these bands. It wasn't too long before I started to develop my stage presence and to create my own songwriting. 💿 Why, in your opinion, was it so hard in Italy to become a professional musician? What's the matter of your choice to going to the US? Three years ago, I moved to Los Angeles and I can say I'm living a Rock'n'Roll dream. It's not easy. It's harder than I thought, but here I'm free to do what I do the best. People in the US understand and support my style of Retro-Rock music, They understand what I want to create because Rock n Roll started in America. I was discovered and signed by the record label Allied Artists Music Group. I've been playing in the most important venues in Los Angeles, The Whisky a GoGo, Viper Room, The Mint, Rainbow and so on. I'm looking forward to playing larger venues and being an opening act for other bands who share my similar style of music. If they'd like me to play in Italy, I'm open to that too - just contact me. I will be at NAMM 2018 as a recording artist for the record label, Allied Artists Music Group. I own a music publishing company "Unleash The Beast Music Publishing" that allows me to personally offer my music that I write for T.V. and Film. If someone wants to purchase my music, or have me write custom music for their project, they can go directly to my music publishing company unleashthebeastmusicpublishing.com and we negotiate the deal together.
💿 The real "news" in music industry is the return of vinyl; What's your feeling about this classic format and the current music business? Now days I see more vinyl records in the stores. The past is coming back. The younger generation likes Retro and the older generation likes remembering those times when they purchased an album and sat down with friends to listen to them over and over again. When you hear my music it will sound new, but pleasantly familiar and remind you of the classic hits from AC/DC, Ted Nugent, George Thorogood, Deep Purple and Whitesnake. It's all original material aptly fitting into the new and cutting edge genre of "RETRO-ROCK". 💿 You're working on your new album. Can you tell us something about this work? What inspired my new album, "Unleash The Beast", is the feedback from journalists and fans. Everyone wants more Rock 'n' Roll music. They want music that makes them want to drive their car or motorcycle fast. Music that makes them want to dance, run and workout. Music that reminds them of their best times, seeing concerts and going to festivals. Those were great times, when there was excitement, fun and sexy Rock 'n' Roll musicians on stage. Where people in the Midwest and other areas gathered in big arenas to see their favorite bands. It was a happening and people still want that. I'm inspired by those times. 💿 How important is it for you to play live? When I perform, I get into a sort of a trance. I unleash a beast who takes control of my body. It's something quite undefinable. It's the power of the music. It's Rock 'n' Roll. The way I attack the stage and send my dynamic energy out to the crowd is something to be experienced. My vibe is timeless. 💿 If you could choose a musician to work on with, which one would you choose and why? I'd like to collaborate with Ted Nugent. He is very inspirational to me. He was the first to mix the sound of the Blues with Rock 'n' Roll. The first to turn a jazz guitar, the Gibson Byrdland, into a rock instrument. He's a great guitar player and his stage presence and energy on the stage is exceptional. He's in his late 60's and still performing with the same passion and love for Rock 'n' Roll music. George Thorogood too. I recently saw him at The House of Blues and he had tremendous energy and such a great Blues/Rock vibe. I'm still inspired by them and I know we'd create some great music together. My next concert will be at the Viper Room on November 3rd. I'd love to have them jam with me on the Viper Room Stage!
💿 Can you tell us about your favorite equipment? Vintage or new? I'm a Marshall and Gibson guy. I own several Gibson guitars. The power of my sound comes from the finger picking, bending and tremolos, which give more expression to the phrase and allow the notes to be clear and hard, with a blues flavor. My guitar pickups are important for my sound. I'm proud to be endorsing Roberts Guitar Pickups. I have a pair of Bob Mizek's custom pickups on my Gibson Es-137. Bob is a genius of sound and he created the "Nuge Sonic Baptizm" PAF humbuckers. I also endorse Wedgie Picks, because I love the Super Grip on the Nylon XT 1.0mm. It has a laser etched texture for extra grip, a perfect surface to place and hold your thumb while playing. For me, dynamic is everything. At Vol.2 you can hear every single note smooth and clearly. At Vol.10 you can call the cops because my guitar screams "I'm not gonna take it slow". I wear beautiful custom jewelry designed by Silverbone. On stage I like to wear a little bit of clothing from the seventies - not too much, just enough to get the feel of where my music gets inspiration. I mix the old with the new. It's what my Retro Rock look and music is all about. 💿Thank you so much for your time! See you soon on Hardrockheavymetal! I'd like to thank you Giovanni for this interview and my fans and supporters. For my new fans, check out my website www.alexcole.rocks, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin