My love story with music began a long time ago, exactly in September 1985, when I bought my first musical instrument with the conviction of doing something important. Despite my initial passion for drums (in the next life I’ll do play the drums), the choice fell on the electric bass, instrument closer to the rhythm section of a band.
The learning curve was very rapid. I spent entire days, at the expense of the scholastic study, playing bass. In a short time I acquired a basic mastery of the instrument to allow me, after six months, to found my first Rock-Blues band and start playing on stage. The music genre was mostly based on the blues-rock classics, from Eric Clapton to the Eagles, including the Police.
I was 17, a band, tour dates after not even a year. What could I ask for more?
Since then, music has always accompanied me in my life, passing through various genres and allowing me to know incredible musicians, dear friends, and even venues or detestable situations. Even today, although it is not my main profession, this wonderful art always gives me great satisfaction and, as I look to the future, the good times have yet to come!
Fresh Abdas (then Abdas) | 1986-’89
My first official group: bass, drums, guitar/vocals and keyboards, the music genre drew from the classics of rock and blues to Clapton, Cream and West Coast.
This experience did not last long, because I soon approached jazz and fusion, but it allowed us to make our first live experiences with some great satisfactions. In this group I met the guitarist who would become my traveling companion in music for a long time, Francesco Boschetto.
Francesco Boschetto: guitar and vocals
Marco Fedi: keyboards
Luca Lindemann: electric bass
Marco Pellegrinotti: drums
The Mark II of the band consisted of a change of musical course, approaching the Prog-Rock style close to Pink Floyd and Genesis, bands that influenced us a lot in terms of musical composition. We changed the keys player as well (Alessandro Bernardinelli). The references to the Pink Floyd’sAnimals album in the song “Fancy” or “Firth Of Fifth” by Genesis, composed by me and Francesco, are quite clear.
Agorà | 1989
The Agora trio were my second experience in the Jazz field. After leaving the Abdas, I had been part of a fairly atypical trio consisting of piano, cello and a bass guitar. The songs were mostly written by the cellist. The experience was very intriguing but quite difficult, since the classic training of the other two boys (bigger than me and graduates at the Milan Conservatory) badly fitted with my most fusion draw and soon the limits of that formation came out, bringing the trio to break up.
That experience, however, helped me to involve my friend Francesco Boschetto, guitarist of the Abdas, in a new more fusion project, with the contribution of an Indian Tablas percussionist, Giulio Patara. The trio worked well, the songs written by me and Francesco were a mix of standard, fusion and jazz. Obviously the genre certainly did not help us to find dates and then the idea exhausted in a short time.
Black Chili | 1992-’96
Black Chili is basically a personal project. No longer having a fixed band, in this period, armed with multitrack recorder and electronic drums, I start to compose music and record it without the contribution of other musicians. In fact, in previous years I had studied the electric guitar in depth. The Black Chili genre was basically a rock-blues with West-Coast influences. Many of the songs were instrumental, having never had much feeling with the vocals.
FunKey | 1997-’98
With the FunKey begins my period of Funk Jazz, a genre that has finally remained my favorite and that it’s still today, both in instrumental version and sung. This group lasted for 2 years as well, but it was crucial for me for one reason: the starting point of my musical partnership with Gianluca DiNoia, current Headfunkers keyboard player. A partnership that lasted more than 20 years and that still today resists the time and adversity given by a genre still not appreciated in Italy. The only particularity of the FunKey was the Alto Sax female player.
The Chickenfunk | 1999-’02
The Chickenfunk Gianluca DiNoia: keys Luca “Duke” Lindemann: electric bass Luciano Ferrari: electric guitar Michele Pacher: drums Andrea Failla: tenor sax
The Chickenfunk were undoubtedly the turning group. Until then, the last bands I was part of were not completely immersed in the Funk-Fusion genre, there was always something missing to take the decisive step. With the Chickenfunk myself and Gianluca, the keyboard player known in FunKey, we can create exactly what we wanted most: a band that could aspire to play tracks of Weather Report and Herbie Hancock Headhunters. Just that kind of music we still carry around with the Headfunkers.
During this period, we finally manage to record, in Moon House Studios located in Milan, a demo (“Not For Mass Amusement”) containing several songs, of good workmanship and quality. Demo that allowed us to play more often in various venues.
The Headfunkers | 2003-now
The Headfunkers Gianluca DiNoia: keys Luca “Duke” Lindemann: electric bass Andrea Maltese: drums
Saverio Zinni: electric guitar (2010) Renzo Bellebono:electric guitar (2012)
Marco Maietti: electric guitar (2017)
The Headfunkers are, for me and Gianluca, the perfect creature but still not completely resolved. If The Chickenfunk was the perfect band for that kind of easy-funk-jazz, The Headfunkers are the natural technical evolution of that band but that has never found the last key element to make them definitely stand out. Because if it is true that with the arrival of Andrea Maltese on drums the band has found the missing piece in the rhythm section, there is still missing an element of the harmonic section that can support the great work of Gianluca on keyboards. Over the years, guitarists, saxophonists and trumpet players alternated in the vain hope of finding the perfect piece, the final note.
Although The Headfunkers have often played in quartet, the trio is still the most working solution and certainly, in some ways, a bit ‘limiting.
Still active today, after several breaks dictated by personal commitments of the members, The Headfunkers look to 2018 with renewed creative and productive spirit.
F-Connection | 2013-2016
F-Connection (Mark I) Valerio “Vava” Fortunato: voice Lorenzo “Newton” Ghidini: keys
Marco “Khauna” Maietti: electric guitar Warin Boschetti: electric bass Stefano Spano: drums
F-Connection (Mark II) Valerio “Vava” Fortunato: voice
Lorenzo “Newton” Ghidini: keys
Marco “Khauna” Maietti: electric guitar
Luca “Duke” Lindemann: electric bass
F-Connection (Mark III)
Valerio “Vava” Fortunato: voice Lorenzo “Newton” Ghidini: keys
Marco “Khauna” Maietti: electric guitar Luca “Duke” Lindemann: lectric bass Andrea Maltese: drums
Simone “Martillo” Augusto: percussions
The adventure with F-Connection began in a moment of my life when I was at a sort of crossroads: either give up everything or seriously put on playing the guitar and find new spaces to express myself. New situations. The Headfunkers had ended up in a sort of limbo from which it seemed difficult to get out of, eternal unfinished and perhaps with very few gas in the tank. The meeting with the F-Connection happened through an announcement on a musicians portal: they were looking for a bassist to replace the one just “eliminated” for indiscipline and little commitment. The tuning was immediate and soon we managed to prepare a repertoire of Funk/R&B songs to be able to propose around.
A few weeks from what was supposed to be our first official release, however, the drummer decided that the genredidn’t fit properly hi style and he suddenly gave up. This dream seemed to collapse as well, however, with a great work of conviction, I managed to involve the drummer of The Headfunkers, Andrea Maltese, whom in a few rehersals, managed to prepare the repertoire and be ready for the date already set.
In a few months, F-Connection played live more than any other band in which I have been playing.
Unfortunately, the band in 2016 decided to participate to a competition, Emergenza Rock Festival, which, although it is true that the group’s performance was noteworthy, the way it was eliminated in the first round was not so memorable. Voting took place through a show of hands of the public who, in practice, was bunch of friends gathered by the single bands showing up that evening. It was the absence of our social audience that decreed the F-Connection elimination. The disappointment, although nobody had great ambitions, was such to crack the balance already a bit ‘precarious of the band related to the behavior of some elements. The F-Connection broke up just before the summer of 2016, after the vain and short attempt to continue proposing an instrumental funk music, very similar to The Headfunkers one.
I have been pursuing, since 1985, the dream of leaving something musical in the world. I have been playing the electric bass and not only with the sole purpose of producing quality music and exactly the mirror of what I am.
The music is continuous research and evolution, but the distinguishing matrix will always be, in my case, the funk or, as I have renamed it, the Cosmic Funk.
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