An Incredible Year for Instrumental Rocker AM Dandy
Alessandro "AM Dandy" Meynardi is an Italian guitarist and composer based in Boston (MA), USA. Born in Mondovì, a small village in North West Italy, AM Dandy has been playing guitar since he was nine years old. AM Dandy already has an impressive musical repertoire under his belt and is strongly influenced by iconic artists such as Steve Vai, Frank Zappa, Pat Metheny, Guthrie Govan, Santana, and many others. His diverse musical background is a consequence of these influences and raw ambition.
This year has been incredible for AM Dandy so far, from releasing his debut 16-track album “Secret Garden” to receiving the prestigious Jimi Hendrix Award and many more accomplishments in between. He truly is a natural-born artist and a future household name. To gain traction for his debut album, AM Dandy also released a music video for his single “Eva’s Song”. The music video is beautifully done and further showcases Am Dandy’s gift as a performing artist. With a productive year behind him, AM Dandy still has plans to release another project titled "ἔραμαι" in December 2019. We’re always looking forward to hearing more from one of our fan favorites, Am Dandy. Look out for his new release this December! Listen to “Secret Garden” here and read more with Am Dandy below!
Hey AM Dandy, welcome back! For those who aren’t aware, how did you first get into music production and composition, and how would you describe your approach to making original music?
Hello team and readers of Buzz Music! Composition and production are something that strongly fascinated me since the beginning. The idea of being able to physically listen to something coming directly from your head, heart, feeling and experience literally blows my mind, still today! Original music in a way describes an intimate aspect of the author/artist. I like to say that when someone listens to my music, it discovers a little part of me, and on the other hand it is my favorite way to introduce myself to the people. As regards my approach to making original music, the situation becomes really hard to explain since it is something so personal and unique tune by tune, that any description wouldn't fit a hundred percent. In general, even if it sounds like a cliche', I just notate melodies or harmonies that plays in my head in a specific moment. That may also sound like Mozart or whoever else, but the truth, in my opinion, is that listening to a lot of music for years or even for a lifetime, makes that not so uncommon.
We're completely captivated yet again by “Secret Garden”, you have such a strong and warming presence throughout your tracks. Can you tell us more about your intentions when you first began to curate this project?
Believe me or not some of the tracks on Secret Garden, like Pro Logos and Modern Urban Midnight, were composed when I was fourteen! They obviously evolved during the years, but they are very old. Because the story of Secret Garden started years ago. As you know, self producing an album as a young artist it's tough. Some tunes have been recorded three times in about four years! But fortunately, when I moved in Boston I found at Berklee the perfect people and the right environment to finally do it. My intention was to create something that could talk for me about me, my life, my family, my vices, love and so on. As a debut album, I think this is fundamental. Second point, I wanted to create an album with really outstanding musicians. The incredibles Euan Leslie on drums and Jack Schwenke on bass are still the "muscled" rhythm core of the Group (now with Jason Park and Riccardo Gresino on Keyboards, Piano and Synth); Donghwan Seo and Riccardo Belletti (keyboards) use to be part of it, and some incredible collaborations such as Lorenzo Stif Meynardi (best progressive drummer I know); Pedro Lobato; Kento Tsubosaka, my dad Federico, Alexis Soto, etc.
We also thoroughly enjoyed the music video for “Eva’s Song”! Where did you draw inspiration for this particular track and video?
Well the inspiration for the birth of the track is, of course, my beloved partner, Eva Sita, and the music narrates some shades of her character and soul. Stylistically, I think this kind of music well describes my playing in terms of language, approach to the instrument and composition. About the video clip, I wanted something pretty clear and that could simply represent the meaning of the tune in the best way possible. Then, of course, the playing scenes, in my opinion, inevitables in an instrumental music video clip, with Jack Schwenke on Bass and Alexis Soto on Hand Percussions.
What would you say is the most useful piece of criticism you’ve received thus far within your career? Do you typically take criticism to your advantage?
Fortunately the majority of the feedback I am receiving are pretty good, just a few critics about the amount of notes. I usually try to understand and learn from constructive critics, they are gold. But some of those are about "playing fast equal no emotions" and I strongly disagree with that. As long as you are satisfied and happy, anything you play works for yourself, and it's absolutely fine if this is your goal. If you play also to communicate something, as long as you do it with Pathos, joy and honesty, you are good, no matter at all how fast or slow you are playing. I actually believe that many of the most expressive and passionate musicians are also known for their incredible technical abilities, see Steve Vai; Guthrie Govan; Joe Satriani; Malmsteen; Eric Johnson; Gary Moore and so on. Without mentioning other instruments!
You mentioned back in August that you are working on another project! What can you tell us about that and "ἔραμαι"?
Of course! Actually, I am working on three releases. The earliest one is "ἔραμαι", a love orientated 3 tracks EP that I will release in December 2019. I am recording a crazy Rock and Roll album with a band called Thunderpets, recently founded by me and my brother Stif on drums and lastly, I am working with the AM Dandy Group at the second album, which we are going to release hopefully next summer. I suggest any way to check my socials or my official web site for any possible change of schedule
Thank you so much for chatting with us again! Do you prefer the more intimate recording process over live performance? How do you personally feel when you're performing your music live?
I really do not make a difference. As long as I am playing with good people and musicians I enjoy both at the same level. Performing my tunes live is the biggest gist and joy that music can give back, so I feel blessed. We just started to build our schedule, since the season is starting, but at the moment I can tell you we will perform on December 17th at the Cafe 939 in Boston; March 7th 2020 at Rockwood Music Hall in New York and July 2020 we have a couple of sets at Umbria Jazz Festival. As I mentioned, keep an eye at amdandy.com.