Sweden’s Robex Lundgren Interview

Posted by on Mar 17, 2015

 

What´s the name of your band? 

Mike Campese

How was the band formed?

After I was with other bands, I decided to write my own music and put together my own band.

Where are all band members from?/Who does what in the band?

I do all the guitar and vocals, sometimes I just play solo. I just have a bass player and a drummer in the band. Since it is a solo project, I may use different members. But, they are from NY.

What was the ambitions of the band when you started?

To write and perform my own music without someone looking over my shoulder. I’m in complete control of everything.

Could you explain your music to someone that haven’t heard you?

My music is in what I call, the rock fusion vein. I mix rock, blues, jazz, classical and other styles together. There is instrumental tunes as well as vocals.

Where was your first gig?

My high school and then right to clubs.

Where was the latest gig?

Just finished up the NAMM show in Anaheim, CA.

Who writes your songs?/Who writes the music who writes lyrics?

I write all of the music, lyrics and arrangements.

Who has the best since of humor in the band?

Hard to say, but I like to work to with people with a sense of humor. I like to joke around myself and have a good time.

What’s good/bad with the band?/What genre do you feel you are?

Being a solo artist sometimes you have to use other musicians. It is not like a regular band. You just have to make sure the musicians have there parts down. It can be good when they put their feel into the tunes and I consider my style what I call rock fusion.

Why did you pick that particular style?/What are your songs about?

This style just kind of happened from all my previous experiences and being open minded and versatile. My songs are mainly about true experiences.

Do you write your own material or mainly covers?

I write all my own material. Sometimes live, I may throw in a few covers.

Have you made any albums?/If yes what are they?

Yes, I made 8 Cd’s so far and working on the ninth.
Total Freedom
Full Circle
Vibe
The New
The Meaning of Christmas
Hidden Treasures
Electric City
Chameleon

Do you have any clips on YouTube?

Yes, you can go to my YouTube channel at www.YouTube.com/mcmgmttv

What got you started in music?

I have always loved music and I was heavily into Black Sabbath and other heavy metal bands at the time when I was a kid. At first I wanted to play drums and then my sister and her boyfriend at the time got me a bass and then I traded it for a guitar right after. My Dad was a violinist and my brother strummed a little guitar. It just kind of happened.

At what age did you start playing?

Around 13 years old

How old were you when you first stood on stage?

I was about 14 or15 when I began playing on stages in public.

Best/worst gig you’ve played?

That is tough cause, I have played some great gigs and I have played some bad ones too.

What places will you be playing in in the imidate future?

Right now there is stuff in the works for Europe. The best thing to do is to keep checking www.mikecampese.com.

Witch band is the best you´ve seen?

I have seen a lot of bands, it would probably be Black Sabbath with Dio.

Is it always the same songs live?

No, I usually like to mix up the set and add new ones here and there.

What has been the best/most promising gig so far?

That is tough to say, I had some big ones opening for major bands. Defiantly opening for Motley Crue was one of the highlights.

How big crowds do you usually play for?

It depends, but it can be from anywhere to 20 people to 20,000.

What are the plans for the rest of the year?

Right now I have been working on a new album, it will be primarily acoustic. I’m planning on doing some touring this year in Europe. Also, I will continue to write my own guitar column in Italy’s premier guitar mag, Axe Magazine.

How do you get psyched up for a gig?

I usually like to get warmed and play guitar, go through some of the tunes. I like to listen to great music too.

When did you decide to go all in for the music?

Since the beginning when I first started playing.

Is it easier to get your inspiration from older bands or from bands more modern?

Older bands.

What are your sources of inspiration?

Real life situations can be an inspiration. Also, writing and listening to great music can as well.

What’s the first step when making a new song?

The small ideas come and then I will work on it to get more sections. It will come together like a puzzle.

How do you feel about the downloading of music instead of buying albums?

I like having the product in my hands and the booklet inside etc. The quality is not as good on downloads.

Besides your own music, what genres and bands do you listen to?

I like to listen to other types of music. I like classical, fusion, funk, blues, Indian music etc. I jump around with my listening and I do like listening to Hendrix and players like Al Di Meola. I even like artists like Prince and Michael Jackson.

When you are on stage, what do you fear most then?

I usually have no fears, but I would say equipment failure. I use great equipment so that is usually not an issue.

Have you been in any other bands?

Yes, I been in other bands before. One of them was the Trans – Siberian Orchestra.

What do you work with outside of the band and the music?

I teach guitar as well, privately in person and with Skype. I also write for several magazines.

What would you do if there was no music?

Not much of anything really.

How important are your fans?

The fans are the most important, without fans bands can’t survive. Whenever I meet someone that likes my music, I will give them my full attention and very interested in what they say.

How often do you rehearse?

It depends, as a band if there is a gig coming up we will try to play a couple times a week, sometimes once. It is not easy getting everyone together. But, I play guitar everyday and I rehearse the music a lot before a gig.

Name 2 of your own songs you like at the moment?

I like the song “Closer to the Sun” from my Electric City Cd and “To the 9’s” from my Chameleon Cd.

What drives a band that isn’t all that famous and renowned to try to make a living on their music and to keep playing?

It is important that the musicians are versatile and to get themselves out there. Also, if the musicians are schooled and know their stuff they can teach on the side.

Do you have any webpages?

www.mikecampese.com
https://www.facebook.com/Officialmikecampese
https://twitter.com/MikeCampese

Any pearls of wisdom for all other bands out there?

Keep playing and be sure to be yourself a much as possible.

How do you view the music industry of today?

The music industry is not like it was, I think it is poor. It is really up to the bands now to get themselves out there.

What are the biggest obstacles for a band?

Making sure the band gets paid and keeping everyone happy.

What is best/worst with playing the clubs?

Sometimes the sound system can be bad in clubs, or the house sound guy. Also, getting money from club owners can be a pain. The good thing is you are close to the audience and right in their faces.

Tell us about upcomming gigs and why we should be at them?

Well, we are putting together some stuff in Scandinavia this year, so keep an eye out for that. It would be great to see you guys.

How would you describe your sound in one sentence

Rock Fusion.

What is your favorite crappy instrument?

I have a few crappy instruments laying around. I had this old classical guitar that played good, I don’t think it works now. Other than that I just bought a crappy Ukulele and a nice one in Hawaii recently.

Whats your Pre-show ritual?

I like to eat pasta and bananas before a gig. Separately of course and to make sure I’m warmed up.

Do you have anything to add?

Be sure to visit www.mikecampese.com for all of the latest news. Don’t forget to check out the new website and all of my Cd’s.

 

Mike Campese Kauai, Hawaii 2015 11.32.30 AM