Roberta Raschellà: ten of the best from the new Italian flame

Roberta Raschellà 

Roberta Raschellà is based in Italy and has been to the Lizard Music Academy Torino, Milano Professional Music Center (CPM) and works at the Music Academy Avigliana Lizard - Lizard Giaveno. With great touch and tone Roberta'is about to embark on a solo record and we caught up with her to ask her our ten questions... so here goes

[Shreddelicious] When did you start playing guitar?

[Roberta Raschellà]
I started learning the classical guitar, but really only because I had never seen an electric guitar... I started classical studies at 12 years in the school of my country [ Italy ]. I had this innate passion and I kept telling myself that I absolutely wanted to be a great guitarist, but playing the classical guitar it felt that I was missing something still ... then at the age of 15 I discovered the power of the electric guitar and it was love at first sight, I had no more doubts. So, after finishing high school, I enrolled in the CPM in Milan and then to 'Lizard Academy of Turin, graduating at both schools under the guidance of Tony De Gruttola, fabulous guitarist and teacher to whom I owe a great deal.

Roberta Raschellà with Tony De Gruttola
[Shreddelicious] What made you decide to take guitar seriously?

[Roberta Raschellà]
The love and passion. The love for music and for this instrument. It’s a love I felt inside practically forever: my mother tells me that at the age of two years old I said that I would be a great guitarist. I do not think you can describe a moment, give a rationale or say why you love something, you love it and that's it. I was just looked inside and I followed my heart.

[Shreddelicious] What are your favourite albums?

[Roberta Raschellà]
Definitely love rock music! The two albums that made me approach the electric guitar and I have “consumed” years ago are “Van Halen” (1978) and “Van Halen II” (1979) I am particularly fond of both of them.

Another band I really love is Mr Big and their “Lean Into It” album which is the one I prefer from their releases. I love instrumental music too Jeff Beck and Andy Timmons and the album that I always recommend to listen to is “Resolution” by Andy Timmons, because I think it's one of the few instrumental albums that really could listen for hours and hours and not tire, there is poetry and thrill in each track!

Watching the artists of today, I can also mention John Mayer and his “Where Is The Light”, a dazzling live musician, a complete musician and really full of heart and talent.

In fact, my list is really still very long, the band Queen, Sananda Maytreya (formerly Terence Trent D'Arby), Toto, Michael Jackson, Stevie Ray Vaughan and so on ... but to name them all would be far too long.

Roberta Raschellà ripping it up on the Strat.
[Shreddelicious] What do you think of the use of social media for promoting your work?

[Roberta Raschellà]
It’s a lot of “gentle speech”, it is not easy to talk without being, perhaps, misunderstood. In part I can understand who does not like social networks or channels like YouTube and SoundCloud, but personally I can only be grateful to these methods of communication, as they have given and continue to give me the opportunity to get my message out. You see, for example the fact that I am being asked these questions is very much thanks to social media channels. This method is "simple" and quick to get your music known. Much of what I do, most of the collaborations that I have, are the result of the Internet and electronic meetings. It 's true that now a channel like "YouTube" has pretty much everything, from professional to amateur, and that makes it difficult to stop and try to look at all or, even more difficult to get noticed. But I think that having an environment so full of ideas and concepts is a great stimulus, and the more likely to progress faster and to find out what's new on the other side of the world.

ROBERTA RASCHELLA' - Accademia LIZARD TORINO "Cause We've Ended As Lovers" - Jeff Beck

[Shreddelicious] If you had a chance to play with anyone who would you pick?

What a difficult question .... and how do you choose among all the world's great musicians?
Well as if I were on stage with guitarist Andy Timmons and John Mayer I think after the first few minutes feeling like I’m having a heart attack, then I would be the most satisfied girl in the world...
The rhythm section I'd like to have my dear brothers Jeff and Mark Porcaro with beating heart assured ... while the voice stay at home with quote Mina, an Italian artist for me unique and unparalleled, few in the world like her.

Now that you mention it, I have to say I'd be really curious to hear what would come out like, although I think I would probably get off the stage and watch the band from the audience. Heh heh ...

Roberta Raschellà: with Fender Stratocaster

[Shreddelicious] Have you ever had any live show disasters?

I hope not ... heh heh. Well playing live is always a challenge you never know how it will work out actually, really a lot of variables. The night that you feel great, you actually might not sound so good, and on the evening when you think you didn't sound so good, you can then be surprised. Some live shows have been worse than others, but I've certainly have had some “oh no! “ moments, but have not had anything remotely disastrous, at least I sincerely believe and hope not! Heh heh ...

[Shreddelicious] How do record your guitar videos?

Well I did not use any make-up :) and indeed, the last video posted, "Purple Rain", was actually created without the intention of actually making it public. I was in rehearsal with my band (Flame Cardani - drums, Daniela Marelli - bass and Alessia Castelli - rhythm guitar) and Flame's father, Armando Cardani, a great lover of music and recordings both audio and video. He always keeps track of all the tests we do and we often hear them again to fix what's wrong. So covering the evidence of Purple Rain, we liked it and we decided to make it public …


For that recording we were all miked, the guitar amplifiers, and all the drums, while the bass was in direct. The video was shot with a professional camera, but I am not sure which brand and model... and then I did the the video editing by myself at home, with one of those free programs downloaded from the Internet. All …

I sincerely believe that when doing these things, you do not use any video editing tricks. It is very important to maintain your own sound, using your own equipment, so that if it all goes well, the video will easily come out.

Roberta Raschellà: with an Ibanez

[Shreddelicious] I was talking to Milan Polak the other day and he was telling just how bad it has got... one guy said to Milan "Hi, Milan Polak, can You give me some link of torrent where can I download You music? tnx" I think Milan’s reply summed it up for me. Milan said “What's next? Asking me where I leave my car keys, so you can steal my car or where I keep my guitars to steal them because a guitar is too expensive for you...?!? Are you actually aware of the fact that making a CD costs MONEY? It's because of shit people like you that the music industry is dying because you want the music but you don't want to pay for it. Are you going to a restaurant to eat and drink and then don't pay because it is "too hi price"? Are you using Internet or your telephone but don't pay because it is "too hi price"?"

So What do you think of illegal music downloading?

I am in complete agreement with Milan Polak, Milan has already said everything that I agree with. I can only add that those who have the duty to prevent and stop illegal downloading, should do better. I mean, as long as there are sites, torrents and ability to download music illegally, people will continue to do so. Do not blame only those who steal, but also, and perhaps even more, those who basically let this happen...

ROBERTA RASCHELLA' - Accademia LIZARD TORINO "Non c'è Ancora" di Roberta Raschellà

[Shreddelicious] Can you tell us a bit about your Guitars and Amps?

Whether it's live or whether it's when I study, let's say that my equipment is unchanged. I do not love those who use a disproportionate number of pedals or amplifiers because I believe that to find one’s own sound, its tone, and to make it recognisable, is one of the main features of a real guitar player. Of course it takes some time for this to happen, but it's always part of my goal.

Roberta Raschellà: the pedal board
Concerning the amplifiers, I have collaborated for some years under the brand name Torinese LAA-Custom from Carlo Sorasio, using the tested model DUAL MONO and a stack that mounts one greenback and one vintage 30. The main reason that I decided to tie these amps is the great dynamic that they have. It was a sound decision, it has a nice crunch when pushed and the amps are capable of delivering both great clean or lead tones, but using only the one volume pot, so I like that a lot.

About the guitars, I mainly use a Fender Stratocaster Deluxe Plus and a Ibanez Jem (Steve Vai model). The first one is definitely my faithful traveling companion, has exactly the colour and smoothness of the sound that I love the most, and the second memory I have after purchasing it, when I did not understand about a lot of sounds, I wished I could go back in time probably not do that again. Although, I must admit, that for a lot of things "Jennifer Batten" style, I do this style in the tribute to Michael Jackson Band, to which I belong, called the KING OF POP, it's just perfect!

Roberta Raschellà with the KING OF POP tribute band
In the studio, I need access to a Fender Telecaster and a Gibson Les Paul (which was shamelessly stolen from my teacher Tony). I love it almost as much as the first guitar and secondly, I find it is necessary to use these guitars for certain types of rhythm sound, but I love this a little less...


[Shreddelicious] 10 Can you tell us about your latest recording?
I can say that I'm working on my first solo album. Some songs are ready while others are in the process of composition and processing. I hope by next summer to be able to sell it on iTunes and for you to buy it … heh heh …

I like to mention my band too, with Flame Cardani on drums and Daniel Marelli on bass, as these musicians will also be on my record, and Alessia Castelli on my right arm for the rhythm guitars for our live shows. The production for the album is being handled by Tony De Gruttola.

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