Tag Archives: Nita Strauss

Angel Vivaldi’s New Album, Synapse, Will Be Out On October 6, 2017

Angel Vivaldi is a guitarist, songwriter, producer, philanthropist, and environmentalist. Voted 3rd “Best Guitarist in 2014 by Prog-Sphere, he began his solo career in 2003. Vivaldi has self-released five records, RevelationsThe Speed of Dark, Universal Language, Away With Words- Part 1, and The Speed of Dark: Revisited. In 2015, he released a cover of Joe Satriani‘s Crystal Planet single. He’s known for his virtuoso guitar playing style and cinematic music videos.

Guest appearances by Gus G (ex-Ozzy, Firewind), Nita Strauss (Alice Cooper) and Oli Herbert (All That Remains).

The new, full-length conceptual opus, Synapse, is set for an Oct 6th release. The album consists of eight songs, each written for a particular brain chemical, which incites a different emotion. For full immersion, the studio was painted eight times during the writing of each song in its associated color.

Nita Strauss And Her Rise To Stardom

By Andrew Catania

With an outrageously exceptional talent, astounding skills, brilliant pieces of work and an incessantly growing fandom, Nita Strauss is a renowned name which has gained immense talent and expertise within a short span of time and a relatively young age. She is smart, gifted and knows her job.

Hailing from an ancestry comprised of a hierarchy of prominent and highly prized musicians of their time, this is from where Nita has derived her passion, and this is what makes the music flow in her blood.

Born on December 7th, 1986, in Los Angeles, Nita Strauss is also known by her stage name Mega Murray. Her initial exposure to music started in the early years of her childhood. Belonging to a family of musicians, she began to play and learn music a long time before reaching her teens. This allowed her to test her skills and explore her passions on a variety of music and instrument, before finally landing on playing guitars and taking it further as her passion and profession.

It is worth noting that unlike her contemporaries, Nita has not attended a music school nor has she received any professional education at home. Her gifted, inborn talents have only enhanced through her self-taught learning, and this primarily is the reason behind her strong and unique style and techniques.

Nita Strauss stepped in to conquer the metal music sphere as a professional musician the year she stepped into her teenage, in 1997. She started off playing for metal music shows that not only brought her exposure in metal music communities.

Her finely carved tunes are a real treat for the ears, and her enthralling stage presence is a delight to watch. It has not only boosted her confidence but has also brought her a strong repute among mental fandom, critics as well as music gear manufacturers. She has also extended her portfolio by also testing on her vocal strengths.

Nita Strauss career profile features some associations that he has established over time. By 2009, her name was making uproars and echoes in the metal music sphere. So much that she became one of the most sought-after names in the industry. She partnered with Bamboozle West and As Blood Runs Black, for their Europe and US tours, where she made impressive performances on the stage.

The year 2010 brought a break through the opportunity that took her career to a whole new notch. She was handpicked by Jermaine Jackson, the brother of the King of Pop. During her association with Jermaine, Nita Strauss played in the leading capacity for a series of public concerts that were held in Africa in 2010.

Aside from her partnership with Jermaine Jackson, Nita has also partnered with some famous bands and music groups including The Iron Maidens, Femme Fatale, Consume the Fire, Alice Cooper, LA KISSCritical Hit, and her new all-female band The Starbreakers.

Ranked as #1 among Guitar World’s Top 10 Female Guitarists, Nita’s professional profile is punctuated with some commercials, guest appearances, and gear endorsements.

Are Female Guitarists Scrutinized More Than Their Male Counterparts?

By Andrew Catania

A guitar has been one of the instruments that make music sound great. However, these tunes depend on who is playing it. There has been a huge stereotype that guitarist has to be males. To a big point of analysis of what has been actually happening, this can be said to be plain truth.

In the recent past, the saying of “what a man can do a woman can do better” has been put into reality. Ladies have been seen to be in a revolution of taking up the roles that the general society referred as male oriented. Guitar playing has not been one of them. However, this has been coming in a handful of challenges.

Taking into consideration that there aren’t many female guitar playing role models, the unique one who stands to break the norm gets herself cornered with a lot of curiosity from examined in cases where they would want to go public and be involved in some musical bands. Be that as it may, we have to comprehend what causes this. One purpose behind young ladies not taking up the instrument is that the female guitarist has been fetishized and generalized to a degree which is offensive in its mildest shape, and intensely horrendous something else

The artists among you who visit YouTube would have most likely experienced channels and recordings of young ladies playing guitar. In the event that you look down the remark areas of these recordings, you will see a considerable measure of indecent references to their looks, the most pleasant of which would read “wed me” and much more. Individuals post recordings of themselves on Youtube for approval of their abilities. When other females who were already feeling persuaded meets this, they end up holding back since they would never wish to get themselves in such situations.

When it comes to matters performance in clubs and such entertainment halls, you may get a huge multitude not coming to enjoy the music but to just have a look at a lady guitarist. In cases where long and risky performances, women are known to be the most vulnerable. They fear the unknown that may happen.

Indeed, even at school the part of the gang persona related with young ladies who play guitar prompts them getting undue thankfulness for their abilities. Then it is like how young ladies who claim to be such a nerd. Then again, the most mainstream male clients on Youtube are in fact practically immaculate. This still leaves the big names and innovative virtuosos, about every one of whom is male.

Lita Ford broke the barrier for most female guitarists today.  In my interview with Lita, she said she endured horrific treatment from others.  We’re lucky enough today to have super talented, strong, creative women guitarists that don’t have to deal with what Lita Ford did some 30 years ago.  Guitarists like Gretchen Menn, Courtney Cox, Nikki Stringfield, Ori, Jennifer Batten, Nita Strauss among others are better players than a lot of men.

All said and done, I believe guitar playing is more of a matter of passion than any learning. An individual only needs to be self-motivated to try it out. The female guitarists of today are phenomenal.

 

 

Guitarist Courtney Cox Kicks Ass at the Debut of the Starbreakers

By Andrew Catania

The Starbreakers made their debut at the Viper Room this past Saturday.  The Starbreakers feature Jill Janus– Vocals, Nita Strauss– Guitar, Courtney Cox– Guitar, Emily Ruvidich– Bass, and Lindsay Martin– Drums. Check out this video of the Starbreakers doing an amazing cover of Judas Priests Painkiller.  Courtney Cox is kicking ass as usual on her Caparison guitar.  Shred on!

The Queen of Strings Nikki Stringfield Interview

By Andrew Catania

Young, intelligent, talented, flamboyant and high on life, the next-age music sensation, Nikki Stringfield has managed to make herself a household name. With a myriad of  accolades to her name, including a Schecter Guitar endorsement and bagging in tremendous praise from the critic’s camp. This Red Oak, Texas native is a sure sign that she’s definitely going places and adding more on her acclaim and well-established fame as she progresses in her career.

She started off by attending the University of Texas graduating with a degree in Radio/TV Film.  After interning for Warner Brothers Music, Nikki relocated to Los Angeles to join the band Before the Mourning.  With superior guitar skills, Nikki also joined the all female tribute band The Iron Maidens.  The Iron Maidens have featured guitarists such as Nita Strauss, who’s with The Alice Cooper band, and Courtney Cox, who presently shreds with Nikki on the extensive collection of Iron Maiden covers.   Since then, she has toured worldwide, joined forces with Femme Fatale, guitarist Brad Jurjens, and shared the stage with many other acclaimed artists. Nikki also won Guitar World’sModel Search” contest and was featured in the Guitar Review Guide for 2015.

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The chronology of her career is a strong validation of the mastery and expertise that she holds, with the riffs, shreds, and chords of her signature Schecter Guitar..

Being extremely busy these days with multiple projects in the pipeline and planning future tours, it was quite a feat getting the “Queen of Strings” for a brief music canvass, but it turned out to be absolutely worthwhile as we managed to gain first hand insights from her about her musical endeavors, the instruments she’s playing, and future aspirations.

Bright, talented, witty and meticulous as she is, we share the quizzy-conversation as it played out as an informative and thrilling treat for the readers and her fan base. Read on.

You’re becoming a household name with your guitar playing.  How did you start playing the guitar?

I started playing guitar when I was 14 years old. My dad had bought my first guitar when I was younger (I can’t remember exactly what age) but I didn’t really develop an interest in learning how to play it until I started listening to Nirvana. I bought a tab book of their greatest hits and learned every song and taught myself to play through that. Afterward, I moved on to things like Iron Maiden, Motley Crue, and then I heard Avenged Sevenfold’s City of Evil album. That really inspired me to start learning leads and got me into more challenging things. I tried taking a few lessons so I could learn theory, but they weren’t really for me.

What was your first guitar you had?

My very first guitar was a little starter Strat, but the first guitar that I picked out on my own was a Schecter Gryphon Diamond Series guitar. I still have it to this day! That started my obsession with Schecter guitars and I’ve been in love with them ever since.

Were you in a band during your teens?  If so, what kind?

I actually wasn’t in any bands growing up.. I’m from a small town in Texas and not many people were in bands or into the music I was. I decided to go to the University of Texas for college because I heard Austin was the “Music Capitol of Texas,” thinking I’d find people there to start something up. But still, nothing happened so I just kept posting guitar videos online instead. I jammed with a few people just for fun, but the first real band I joined was Before The Mourning when I moved to Los Angeles, and then I started playing with The Iron Maidens shortly after.

How did you get involved with the Maidens?

I actually met Courtney through the guys in Before the Mourning. They needed a guitar sub for a show, so they asked if I could fill in for a show or two. That ended up turning into a regular thing as Nita and I traded off shows since we were both in original bands at the time. And eventually it turned into a full-time position, which is a blast getting to travel so much and play Maiden tunes!

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How is it playing alongside Courtney Cox?

It’s always fun! We just like to have fun at the shows and make sure we put on a bad ass show for everyone.

Did you play with Nita Strauss before she left to join Alice Cooper?

Nita and I were both playing the Dave Murray position and rotating out shows so we never played a full show together. There was one show where she joined us for a few songs and we did a killer three guitar line up though!

Are you still playing in Femme Fetale?

Yep, still with Femme Fatale! We just played the Monsters of Rock Cruise on the west coast. Hopefully we’ll get more dates going soon!

How are you enjoying playing with the Maidens?

I love it! I couldn’t be in a band if I didn’t love what I was doing. I’ve always loved Iron Maiden, I get to travel the world with friends, and we always have fun. Plus I’ve got to make so many friends through playing these shows. Can’t beat that!

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Let’s talk about your rig.  What are you presently using? Are you still endorsed by Peavey?

I’m actually using a Schecter Hellraiser 100 amp, which I’ve been using since early 2014 I believe. The tone is amazing!  The only thing of Peavey that I still use is the Valveking slant cab until I can get something else. I’ve got a lot of pedals that I use off and on.. I have the Seymour Duncan 808 Overdrive and the Palladium Gain Stage Pedal, MXR Black Label Chorus, BBE Sonic Maximizer, BBE Boosta Grande, MXR Carbon Copy Delay, and Boss AutoWah pedals. I switch things out depending on who I’m playing with or what I’m playing.

Your’re endorsed by Schecter Guitars.  You have one nice signature guitar!  Tell me how this came about it.

Thank you!!! It’s truly a dream come true.. I still have to pinch myself haha. Michael Ciravolo, the president of Schecter, just emailed me one day and said he thought it was time to create a signature guitar for me. They had just made a one of a kind green avenger for me about a year before while I was on tour, and people had been asking about it a lot. So I decided to do something similar but still change things up a bit to make it new. When I finally saw it in person I was speechless!

What kind of strings are you using?

I’ve been using GHS Boomers, 9-42. They’re such a great company and the strings feel absolutely amazing to play!

Did Seymour Duncan approach you?

They contacted me after my signature model came out actually. I’ve always had Seymour Duncan in my guitars, usually a different one in each guitar, and my signature has an Invader. I took a tour of their factory in Santa Barbara and it was so cool to see that everything is actually made right there at that location. You can’t beat their quality!

Who are your influences?

There’s so many.. I guess the main influences would be Kurt Cobain since he got me into guitar initially, Synyster Gates of Avenged Sevenfold, Dimebag Darrell from Pantera, Marty Friedman and Megadeth, I could go on and on!

What guitarists presently do you listen too?

In addition to all of the above influences, right now I’m listening to Jeff Loomis, Andy James, Per Nilsson of Scar Symmetry, Nick Johnston, Daniele Gottardo.. the list goes on and on!

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What are your plans for 2017?  Will we see a solo album from you?

I’m really hoping to get at least a solo EP out at some point in 2017. I’ve got a few songs in the works right now and can’t wait to get them out there. I know there will probably be a lot of touring with the Iron Maidens as wells so it looks like it’s going to be a busy year!

You can view Nikki’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/xNikki.Stringfieldx/