Interview with Guitar Hero Live drummer Francesco Lucidi
Our drumming graduate Francesco Lucidi tells us how he landed gigs with Guitar Hero Live, experimental metal act Jurojin and many, many more...
For many working musicians, an ability to adapt and play across genre can be key to sustaining themselves and few embody this spirit as much as ICMP alumni Francesco Lucidi.
From world music to alternative electronic rock, this higher diploma drums graduate performs across a wide array of projects, including the landing the gig for popular game Guitar Hero Live as drummer for alternative metal band, the Blackout Conspiracy.
With his latest collaborations including work with tabla player Simran Ghalley, Francesco's thirst for the new sees no sign of abating. We caught up with him to learn more about his experiences post ICMP and how he takes on the challenge of working across so many different musical projects…
How did you begin your musical journey?
I started to play drums when I was around 12 years old but originally, I played guitar. My brother is a keyboard player so he led me into this musical world. I even remember that first time I touched the drums he was playing 'Smoke On The Water' and I tried to play along with him. Great times!
Who are your favourite drummers?
Favourite drummers? Well ... I do have a different favourite drummer everyday, particularly as it's now so easy to discover so many amazing players all over the world. If I needed to name one, when I was kid, my idol was Mike Portnoy.
What led you to ICMP?
I discovered ICMP while reading an Italian drummer magazine. At first, I thought it was a great opportunity but my English was very bad back then. However, I gave it a shot and after eight years I am still here, loving playing music in the UK."
How did your experiences at ICMP help shape you and your playing?
It was a wonderful experience, I met so many interesting people and learned a lot about the music industry and so many different aspects of the business. In Italy we don't have any similar facilities where you can learn so many different things about music whether that be performing or the industry side. Plus, it’s always amazing to be in a place where music is considered work.
For anyone considering applying to ICMP, what would you advise them?
To work hard and enjoy it once you’re there. Opportunities like this don’t come around very often so make the most of it.
What has been the most enjoyable/creatively satisfying project you've worked on?
I have been fortunate to play with many different artists and bands. To be honest every project I have worked on has been great, as everyone has different needs and different approaches. The most important thing has been that I learned so many new things from all of them which helped push me forward.
You're part of part of the game Guitar Hero Live for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Wii U, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. Could you explain a little about this came about and what it involved?
The fact that millions of people all around the world playing the game with me feels incredible. There I am the drummer for the alternative metal band Blackout Conspiracy. Watch this video to see me in action and understand what it’s all about.
I loved every single moment of that experience especially when I was playing while two fire cannons were blasting out on either side of me. It was insane!
You've worked across a wide range of styles - could you talk about your musical journey after finishing your studies?
Yes, I grew up listening and playing rock and progressive metal. After ICMP I started to work as a resident session drummer at Hackney Road Studio where I recorded many different style of music, from pop to blues to metal. For the past year I have recorded drums for many different artists from all over the world. Recently I recorded a single for a country artist from Nashville, then the day after I was in the studio working with an alternative rock act from Finland. I also play for bands which are very different from each other. From world music (Anna Phoebe) to experimental heavy music (Jurojin) to alternative rock (Mercutio) to electro alternative rock (Hide Your Mother).
What does the future have in store in terms of musical projects?
At the moment I am doing a lot of clinics with Simran Ghalley, the tabla player, plus I am writing new music with Hide You Mother and Mercutio. We live in a world where 'you never know' what's gonna happen tomorrow, so I am always ready for new adventures.
If you had any advice for new and emerging performers/musicians, what would it be?
Work hard and make the best out of everything you do. Be nice and be professional. The rest should come automatically.
Watch Francesco’s latest video here with his long-term tabla collaborator Simran Ghalley. Visit Francesco's website to find out more.
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