Interview with Founder of ‘Violectric and Fretless Rock’

mandipaige (1) ‘Violectric and Fretless Rock’, An amazing collection of seven classical musicians who know just how to rock the hell out of a stage!  Aerosmith to RollingStones covers, from pop to metal and custom arrangements. Their sound is independent in their genre with added of course the pure beauty of string instruments. This is a band to take notice of! This past week I caught up with Lead Violin and Founding member Michelle Jones to speak about this unique musical project and here is what she had to say: Violectric ShowWhat made you want to come together in a group like this? I created the concept of Violectric in 2007 and invited other musicians to join and play modern and classic rock music with me.  Since that time, the original concept has evolved into what it is today:  a full 7-piece instrumental rock band comprised of a string quintet plus keys and live drums.  We create all of our own arrangements of classic and modern rock tunes, and play them live (no backing or click tracks) on traditional classical instruments, sometimes using digital and looping effects. When the situation calls for something on a smaller scale, we go by the name “Fretless Rock.”  Fretless Rock is a string ensemble up to a quartet with or without a DJ, and with or without backing tracks.  Fretless Rock also can do more modern, dance and electronic music with a DJ using colorful, electric instruments and visual effects with costuming. Now, l love your sound and the rock influences, but how would you describe the group’s sound?MJViolinVersaceSolo Thank you for your very kind words!  I think our group’s sound is best described as “rock with a touch of class.”  Violectric mostly uses the traditional acoustic wooden instruments with pickups to amplify the sound.  Although the instrumental sound is familiar, the style in which they are played is definitely different from classical music.  Much of the music is usually harsher, so our playing itself is harsher.  But, we have to remember to keep the ballads sweet and mellow with emotion in every note.  Since we do not use live vocalists, the instruments must become the voice of the musicians who play them.  This includes all the subtle nuances that a human voice projects, just on an instrument.  The audience usually knows the lyrics to every song we perform.  We like to say to the audience “the voice in your head really can sing!” Fretless Rock uses a mix of acoustic wooden instruments and electric instruments, thus allowing us to use even more effects with our playing.  I love to use guitar pedals to create varying effects on the overall tone and sound!  When we partner with our DJ, it brings this to yet another level.  The DJ mixes in sounds and beats while we play instrumental lines on top and create new melodies and harmonies. With both Violectric and Fretless Rock, no two performances are ever exactly alike since we improvise each and every time, and our song selections are widely varied with each show.  We learn new songs every week and are constantly rotating our song lists to match each event’s unique audience. Michelle Jones Foundation For Foster Kids 2What has been your proudest musical moment, so far? There are so many wonderful and memorable moments, it is difficult to narrow down to just one.  We love to entertain, but my personal favorite moments are when audience members come up to me after a show and tell me something personal about themselves and how our music impacted them.  Some have told me how that performance took them back in time to a memory, a place, an event, and how that was a defining moment in their lives.  Others have come to a show several years later and shared a story of how that earlier show changed their life.  People have met their soul mates at our events and gone on to be married with children, and were thanking us for creating the opportunity for that to happen just by doing what we enjoy – putting on the best performance every time.  I know that those moments would not have happened in that specific way had it not been for a live band with a live audience.  Each needs the other in order to thrive and survive.  This continued symbiotic relationship will forever create memories for all involved. Are all of you native to Central Fl? Three of our musicians are native to Central Florida.  The remainder either moved here for college or for other professional musical work in this thriving entertainment climate.  I moved here after college, and have lived here longer than anywhere else.  I love it here, and I am proud to call Orlando my home! Do you have a favorite song to cover during performances? Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.”  The audience sings along every time, and loves to head-bang with our cellist.  It’s always our favorite and is the audience’s favorite, too! How would you define your band name? Violectric is a mix of two names:  Viol and Electric.  The “viol” is the predecessor to the violin/viola and is the namesake for each of our modern day string instruments.  Violin, Viola, Violoncello (usually shortened to cello), and Double Bass Viol (usually shortened to bass).  Since we have electrified each instrument through amplification, I created the name “Violectric” to define our band and the instruments we use. Fretless Rock is a play on the word fretless, meaning “without frets.”  Our stringed instruments do not have frets, unlike guitars and most electric basses.  We use fretless instruments.  Since we play all rock, modern, dance and electronic music, it seemed appropriate to lump the categories together to just “rock” and describe the instruments we use.  It also applies to our attitude – we don’t fret about an event; we just love to put on a great show! What are your hopes to achieve in the near future? Bite Night 2014 Wow!  We have accomplished so much in just this short amount of time, and are truly grateful to our fans for their kind and generous support.  Our next hopes are to continue to tour on a more frequent basis, perform in even more cities and countries and continue to educate people who are interested in careers in music.  Through Violectric Educational Programs, we have introduced students to the real world of being a professional musician.  Our workshops range from management, touring and contracts to technical direction and riders, as well as a whole host of other topics that are not traditionally taught to music majors in school or university.  We have taught students throughout China and the USA and hope to continue sharing our love of music with people and students across the globe. Anything you would like to tell our Orlando readers? Please continue to support local artists, bands, musicians and entertainers in every genre!  We have a unique culture in Orlando that is unlike any other city in the world.  We have world-class entertainers who have decided to make Orlando their hometown because of the support of the community.  We need people to attend live concerts and shows to maintain the balance between the music and the listener.  The musicians feed off of the energy of the audience, and vice-versa.  Although technology has made music more attainable, nothing replaces seeing and hearing it live and sharing that experience with friends and family at that exact same moment together.  Who knows?  You might meet your soul mate and be able to tell that bandleader about it years later, too! Thank You so much! For more information on the band:   PR Contact: Ilene Lieber, Passion PR Communications Consulting,

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July Band of the Month:

Idyllic Descent “Alternative Rock seems like too broad of a catch all these days. We are rock with progressive, metal and many other elements.”

FBBand of the month July

Say Hello to… Jackie Ramieri – Lead Vocals, Rob Pescatore – Guitar, David Bisaccia – Bass, David Hindman – Drums

idjfjfjfjfjWhat advice would you give to other artist/bands trying to get momentum in the industry?

Don’t look for short cuts. Take your time, write good material and connect with other bands with similar goals.

What have you done in the past year that you would say has definitely helped your project grow?



Taking our time and saving the money for a professional-quality demo.

Can you tell us about your band title?

We see the name Idyllic Descent as a juxtaposition of positive and negative. Things are going down, but you have to enjoy it on your own terms while it lasts.

Who writes the Lyrics, is it a group effort?

Jackie Ramieri, vocalist, primarily writes the lyrics.

What is the last song you played in your car?

Rob Pescatore: Isolated Incidents by Animals as Leaders

Jackie Ramieri: Change (In the House of Flies) by Deftones

Besides social media, and flyers do you practice any unique methods of promoting upcoming shows?

We also send individually written emails to our diehard fans.

Is there anything you would like to tell our Reader’s about upcoming events or new tracks?

Come check us out at these shows in July and August.

Haven Lounge, Saturday, July 26, Doors open at 8:00 PM, Show runs 9:00PM – 2:00AM… 6700 Aloma Ave, Winter Park, FL 32792

Second Saturdays in Sanfard

West End Trading Co.

7:00PM – 1:00 AM

202 South Sanford Ave

Sanford, FL 32771

Like our facebook page for up to date notices on new song releases, events and contact for pre-sale show tickets.

Download our songs on iTunes, Amazon, CDBaby, Reverbnation


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OTown… Reunited and back to the music! (Q&A)

mandipaige (1)Y77A7480-color-3OTown is the boy band formed from the first season of the MTV-produced reality television Series Making the Band in 2000. Originating out of Orlando, Fl ( hence the name of course)  the guy’s achieved Platinum success with their debut album but broke up in 2004, Now nearly a decade later the remaining members of the group (Trevor Penick, Jacob Underwood, Erik-Michael Estrada & Dan Miller) are back with a brand spankin’ new single and a new record due out in August.So I caught up with the guy’s and here is what they had to say to all of you about everything they have been up to:

Why was now the perfect time to release New music? Erik -  Now was the perfect time because the timing was right for each of us individually. The minds, the voices, the cumulative  approach has all clearly matured for the better. Truth be spoken, we’re not getting any younger, but we feel we have a lot left in the tank. Especially when it comes to our stage show. 

As a band you were developed by the Reality show ‘Making the Band’ do you have any reality show’s you can’t help but watch? Erik -  I’m a sucker for cooking shows of all the various types. Especially when I visit me mum back in Florida. We “ham” over those shows. Fun O fact: Over the course of the bands hiatus; I did production and AD work for food shows on Food Network, Fox, and Bravo.

Are there any surprises on this upcoming record, guest appearances? otown_linesandcircles_albumart2 Trevor - We don’t have any surprises… Working in a band like ours every song is a collaboration because we are 4 very different artists. I think the surprise will be the growth that you hear from the record and a lot of songs that may surprise the listener.. 

How would you say your sound has changed or progressed since the last record? Trevor - Our sound has mostly changed because we’ve been away from each other and we all grew musically as individuals. We all honed in on who we are as artists so the growth of each of us is great to hear when we bring it all back together…

Now, as a band is there something that you just can’t agree on, you just have to walk away and say ‘oh Hell with it’? Jacob - Actually, we’ve never agreed as much as we do now. This process has been incredibly easy and rewarding because we are so much more mature. Our outlook on life is a healthy one and we enjoy every day. Making music together is a choice we make because we enjoy it so much. 

What can we expect from this New album? Jacob - This is the first album I actually show of to my friends. I’m not knocking the past music as much as I think the for the first time O-Town music reflects our personal tastes. This album is truly a product from us. One we put on in our cars and show off to our friends. 

On this tour is there a place your most looking forward to revisiting? Our first 2 tours back are special because we visit 2 places that we feel were our beginning. Orlando, and Germany.  

Is there anything you would like to tell our reader’s?  Jacob - We thank everyone who has supported us in the past and who are giving us this opportunity now. It’s a blessing to us and we are enjoying every second of it. 

Thank You Guy’s Look forward to seeing the show in Orlando!

And you can catch OTown live on tour this Fall


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Your former BFF is the person you swore to be BFFs with forever. That’s a lot of forevers. But now, I’m guessing, at most they are just one of many entries in that ever growing social media newsfeed that you scroll through each day looking for the latest buzzfeed quiz. Things change. People grow apart. If your best friends from your school days are not your best friends now, my case for having a band agreement is made. But if some doubt remains…

A group approached me about copyrighting their latest works. They’re full time musicians, touring a solid 8 months a year and they have no band agreement. “Nah, we don’t need one. We’re tight. We’re all friends.” I cannot say this enough – A BAND IS A BUSINESS. And every business needs an operating agreement. If the band were a bakery and even if the owner hired a good friend, no one would expect the baker to buy the flour and sugar without expecting something in return. No one would expect the person at the register to work for no money…unless they agreed to. (cause that’s how much they love cupcakes?)

As an attorney in the entertainment field, it’s my job to imagine how things can go wrong and then try to help artists, actors, and athletes avoid the worst case scenarios of my imagination. I’ve seen disgruntled keyboardists hold merchandise hostage; lead singers on the way out demand that all the cash they put into the band over the years, be paid back with interest; and a drummer who called every sales outlet to try and stop all sales of music on which he played.

These scenarios suck for sure but they’re more common than a band who remains best buddies for decade. The, “it can’t happen to us” mentality does nothing to avoid the inevitable drama. Too often that drama unfolds in front of the fans online in the comment sections – a public record of your inability to manage your business. But there is hope.

A. Be a Business: With 1-2 owners, an LLC should do the trick. Not every member needs to be an owner. If you have multiple owners, then an S-Corp or C-Corp might be the better way. **** Speak with a tax professional before making these decisions as each entity type has its own tax implications.

B. Get an Operating Agreement: When registering the business/band with your state’s department of corporations you often fill out a very basic operating agreement. It addresses none of the issues that emerging artists often face.

Band agreements help friends remain friends. You might have the closest family in the world but the second Aunt Rochelle kicks the bucket see how tight and friendly they remain. There will be fights over used coffee mugs and that rusty el camino in the barn. That’s why Aunt Rochelle has a will. Death may be more likely than a band lineup change but not by much. Name your top 5 favorite bands you had in middle school that got popular at that time. Are they still around?

It’s not planning to fail. Its planning for success. So when those Rock Ross dollars start rolling, every member knows what’s going to happen and how much of that they will see and when. And should the “unthinkable” happen, it will hut less.

DDIY: Don’t do it yourself when it comes to drafting contacts like a business operating agreement. A good attorney is more than a typist. They will sit wth each member to make sure all their needs are met in the creation of this agreement. Some people are not business minded. A good entertainment attorney will be able to translate artist to business and business to artist. Plus we’ve seen it all. Is gas money for the van a loan to the band? Who has access to bank accounts? Does gig money get divided each night or does it go to another purpose? Sometimes you need an outside professional to help bring up and help answer these questions. You can’t DIY all the time.

D. Lawyers Are the Bad Guys: Let a lawyer or manager bring these issues up. Let the outside help be the bad guy. We get pad for the privilege. Just don’t let the business go bust because you were afraid to tell your BFF bandmate that the money he shelled out for studio time was a donation or that you expect to use all the art you create for your solo project as well.

Band agreements are as unique as the project themselves. Each time I create a band agreement, it is specifically tailored to fit the needs of that group. It’s really a document that can’t easily be yanked from the internet and still cover what the band needs.

Yes, a lawyer costs money, but it’s well spent to know that the passion you have for your project will be protected. And should that project not last or bandmates rotate out, like Aunty Rochelle, everyone will know who’s paying for the funeral.

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BAND of the MONTH: Akazia

FBBand of the month JuneSay Hello to ‘Akazia‘! Female-fronted Popcore band straight out of Orlando, Fl. The band started writing a collection of songs together back in 2013 which soon became part of the bands set list, Now a five-piece act and ready to take the spotlight this Summer!

1557696_246090312249471_25204906097287315_nHi guys! We’re Akazia! We are a five piece band from Orlando! We have Hannah on vocals, Rene on lead guitar, Matt on rhythm guitar, Josh on bass, and Mercy on drums.

What advise would you give to other artist/bands trying to get momentum in the industry? Our advice to other bands in the industry is to support other local bands! If you support them, they’ll support you! It’s a great way to help each other make it in the business! It’s also important to promote your band; Hand out business cards everywhere, talk to people, post flyers, utilize resources like facebook, twitter, instagram ect… and make a website!  

What have you done in the past year that you would say has defiantly helped your project grow?Well, we started this band within the last year…so that really helped! (Haha!) In all seriousness, we’ve practiced as much as possible, completed professional recordings of our music with the help of Venture Studios run by KC, played as many shows as possible, and also found the perfect members for the band!

Can you tell us about your band title?Our band name is actually derived from the word ‘acacia’, which is the name of a tree. We played with the spelling and eventually agreed on Akazia.

Who writes the Lyrics, is it a group effort? So far Hannah has written all the lyrics for our songs. She wrote the lyrics for our song “alone” several years ago. They have all been drawn from personal experiences in Hannah’s life.   

What is the last song you played in your car? We all listen to a wide array of music, from Rock, to R&B, Classical, Rap, and everything under the sun. Rene can’t stop raving about the new Black Keys album, while Mercy grooves to some old school Eminem, and Sum 41. Josh also enjoys multiple genre’s, but really enjoys Pierce the Veil and Sleeping with Sirens.

Besides social media, and flyers do you practice any unique methods of promoting upcoming shows?We strongly believe in the old school method of building a grass roots base. Talking to as many people as possible and word of mouth are important ways to get people out there. Who knows? A friend could be a very motivating catalyst for finding great local bands.   

What genre would you really describe the band as?Matt affectionately calls us Pop-Core. Akazia is without a doubt a Rock band. It’s hard to specify too much further than that though. We all have so many influences, and don’t want to be restricted by the “stamp” of the all mighty genre. It’s hard to say where future albums may take us.  

Is there anything you would like to tell our Reader’s about upcoming events or new tracks?There is a lot of exciting new things coming up in the works. Physical hard copies of our first 6 song EP This is Personal will be available for sale in the next month. We are competing in the Ernie Ball Warped Tour Battle of the Bands competition. You can visit to and cast a vote! The Haven is hosting Grunge Fest on June 20th, which will be our first show back as a 5 piece! We are also planning on playing a new song for the first time there. Thanks again for everyone that has helped us a long the way so far, and Orlando Bands for selecting us as band of the month!  


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Mary Lambert ‘Interview’ 2014

mandipaige (1)

CSP_9667_v1A copymedI had the opportunity to speak with the beautiful and courageous singer-songwriter Mary Lambert this Week,  Not only is she one of the most talented up and coming acts in the market but also has her word and amazing heart that will be getting her miles father in the industry. Check out what she had to tell all of ‘You’ about her fall Record and unbelievable Grammy Performance!

Me… “Hey Mary How are you”

Mary… “I’m really good, I’m going through kinda some things through twitter yesterday, so I have like a ‘twitter hangover’!”

Me… oh Okay I understand.

Mary… “And Like an online Shopping hangover!”

Me… Oh I’ve been there…yeah online dress shops my enemy,  never mind! Okay to the Interview

Mary… ha, Yes!

Ok, This is something that not only our readers would love to know but myself included During that amazing Grammy Performance with Madonna, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Queen Latifah,  What were your first thoughts walking onto that stage?              

Mary…Yeah well like it’s different the first time you meet everybody and then you start working because like that happened like four days before  and that moment started days before the performance and then for the performance you have to be in some way completely confident, when I first met them, these are Queen Latifah and Madonna! I was like shaking in my boots, I was Oh my God I can’t believe I am meeting both of  these incredible you know  female icons that I really look up to and have done a ton for femininity umm and  I can’t believe I’m here and were talking and were friends ya know and then to go from that to being on stage is just another level its just a performance so part of it is being professional  and owning it and you have too! And you have to pretend your supposed to be up there ya know!  

Me…That was such a Gorgeous performance!      

Mary… aww Thank You        

I love the work and organic quality you have on the EP your PR sent ‘Welcome to the Age of my Body’ is this a preview of the fall record we can expect?

Mary… Thank You! We were originally going to make the EP sort of a snipet of the full length but as we were looking at the full length we were like ‘ this is an entirely different record’! And I was the one that sorta pushed for us to just make a whole new record, lets make a whole new record statement. And you know  I had wrote ‘body Love’ when I was 19 and that was a statement that I had at that time in my life and ‘She Keeps me Warm’ was an extension of that light I think I’m ready to say other things and I’m ready to umm make another record.

Now, I over heard from someplace that you performed at a big White House a few days ago, is this true? :P

Mary…Yeah, Yeah that was true it was more like the West Wing, but yeah it was broadcasts as the White House ( Harvey Milk) first gay icon on the stand which I think is a really big deal for our society and community it was an incredible experience for sure! I was like sitting next to Nancy Pelosi and Tammy Baldwin and my new friend is the Post Master the United States Post Master hes like my best friend now!

I must admit I love your spoken word and how you place your lyrics so honestly, do youCSP_9103_final copy have a track off the up and coming album you’re most proud of?

God, it’s hard right now we’re sorta in the process of narrowing things down to make it manageable track listings, I think we wrote too many good things, we wrote too many good things that its like ” Oh my God we can’t get rid of this song!” and it’s departure. I don’t think people are going to expect this record from me, umm it’s a pop record but soft pop record, I really say things that are important to me, I don’t feel there’s a moment where I’m like ‘am I sacrificing my point of view or my integrity as a writer’? I haven’t felt that for a minute and its just like there’s so many things I wanted to say that I got to say in it so I can’t right now, I Love All the tracks so Much!

Personally, I feel you should love all of your tracks and as a writer myself at least feel that connection with each on haha…

Mary… I mean its like having kids “yeah I do like the oldest better!” right now were in the process of releasing a single so all our time is going into a newborn ha!

Oh okay, the attention is on the newborn. Got It!

And you are supporting the Gaving Degraw / Matt Nathanson tour this summer how do you enjoy touring with the guy’s?

Mary…Well, I’ve only met Matt, we’re going to jump on that tour June 15th. Haven’t met Gavin but heard really good things, and Matt and I did a show together probably about a month ago and we were backstage as soon as we finished the set and hugged it out and just like talked about our feelings and I was ‘ah this guy is my new best friend!’ I think it’s going to be a really really fun tour! I’m really excited to take my whole band with me, gonna be in the element.

Alright Mary Is there anything you would like to tell our Readers!

Mary… I love Orlando…Yeah It’s important to have a message, I’m so grateful for the platform I’ve been given, to your reader’s too, I’m honoring this platform, I’m honoring my gift. I guess I’m just thankful and excited to do more for sure!

Thank You So Much!

Follow Mary Lambert @marylambertsing





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Introducing: Eddy Davis

mandipaige (1)What am I supposed to say when I hear something that is absolutely unpredictable? Well, that is one way to explain what happened when I heard some of Eddy’s samples with this gritty/rich texture in his voice I was blown to realize  Eddy is only 14 but that talent has other things to say. A voice clearly matured past its years he most defiantly has a world of musical opportunities ahead. He as well has been playing guitar for over 10 years with musical influences by The BeatlesThe Beach Boys, and The Eagles; and current indie rock bands Ca10268621_269858863192900_5142646098028269439_nge The Elephant, JET, and Arctic Monkeys.  So I recommend you all give his music a listen while you read the interview with this young talented artist this past Monday:
What was your first reaction when you found out you would be working with Producer, Matty Amendola?
I was ecstatic! I never thought that I would get discovered as fast as I did. Even though it was my main goal, I never thought it would happen. So in the end, I was pretty speechless. We started recording in November of 2013, and he signed me to an artist development deal shortly after. We’ve already cut 6 songs that are being used as an “album sampler” to present to labels, and other big wigs.                                                                                                          
Right now, how would you describe your personal musical style?
Rock and roll… Remember that? (haha) It’s got a lot of melody and harmony, but it’s also got a ton of balls and grit. I’d prefer to leave it up to others to determine what I sound like though. My focus is writing and performing nothing but what comes most natural and honest to me.                                                                                                                                
 Now how would you place music in your life, is it your whole world or more of a Hobby you’re justeddy really good at?
Music is my whole life. I would never consider it a hobby. It’s a passion and a lifestyle for me. Playing and singing is my way of spiritually communicating to people, and even myself on the deepest level. Depending on the mood of a song or riff, I can either portray that I love something, hate something, or everything in between.                             
 When was the first time you realized “Huh, I think I wanna do this!” when it comes to music?
I realized I wanted to do this the first time I saw “The Beatles Live at BBC.” I still have it and watch every once in a while to remind me of my roots.                                            
Now, what musicians/artist would you say inspire you the most?
Joe Walsh, Randy Rhoads, and George Harrison. They were the guys who’s inspiration helped shape my style and feel on a guitar.  It’s funny, but the character of Guy Patterson from “That Thing You Do” influenced me when I was young too. I did start out playing drums, and the character’s attitude and showmanship were awesome. When it comes to singers, I love Matthew Bellamy (Muse), Chris Cornell, Rod Stewart, John Lennon, Robert Plant, and Matt Shultz (Cage The Elephant).                                                                                                                                                  
 Who would you love to work with or open for in the near future?
Well, Joe Walsh inspired me to play guitar. Of course, I’d love to work with the guy that influenced me to let it flow and say “f#ck sheet music.”                                                                                                                                                                           
What word’s do you have for artist your age hoping to make it in the industry?
My advice would be to always keep playing, be patient, and be yourself. Then again, I don’t know if anyone should be taking advice from me. (haha) I’ll be 15 next month with a long road ahead of me! 
I remind myself not to ever lose sight of reality. Don’t get caught up in yourself or forget where you came from and turn into a Morissey or Ynwie Malmsteen. I think eventually you’ll get the respect you deserve.                                        
 Is there anything you would like to tell our reader’s? :)
Thanks for reading. I really hope I did not waste 5 minutes of your life. I hope I didn’t offend or scare you. I’m sorry for cussing but I can’t f#cking help it. 
If you’re chuckling at this point, please come by my Facebook page and say hello… Every time we hit the 50 mark on the page “likes”, we’re posting a teaser from my album sampler. Every time we hit the 100 mark, we’ll post that full song for 48 hours. So feel free to come on by and keep in touch! 
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