Aldo Leopardi on Modern Rock Bands
Aldo has straightforward ambitions for his latest EP, Villains and Heroes: “What I want most is for as many people to hear this record as possible,” he says. In fact, he’s donating the proceeds from the EP’s sale to Paulina’s Promise. But just because money’s no object doesn’t mean that Aldo’s goals aren’t big.
As a veteran musician with over 20 years of experience playing in cities across the globe, Aldo has learned quite a bit about the challenges that face an independent artist. A perennial fan of respectable rock and roll, Aldo’s admiration for successful musicians has changed slightly now that he’s a musician. “It’ll always be about the music,” he explains. “But one thing that I’m really impressed with now is the utter tenacity of these bands that make it. You’ve got to be incredibly talented, incredibly persistent and incredibly lucky to get anyone to notice you.”
This is particularly true today, where the music industry stacks the deck heavily against emerging artists. But while struggling musicians have it rough, it’s ultimately the fans that suffer. A&R departments of traditional recording companies aren’t doing the job the same way they did decades ago. Instead, everything’s market-driven, which results in a pervasive lack of originality within the mainstream.
“Those sons of bitches in Congress have made a real mess of things,” says Aldo, referring to the legislation that deregulated the broadcast markets in the 1990s. “Now, there are just a few major players deciding what 300 million people listen to on a daily basis. Because of that, there aren’t many ways for the masses to experience new music. It makes me want to throw up.”
Aldo hopes that innovative musicians and independent artists can help reverse that trend. He wants to help build the foundation that will allow good musicians to circumvent the music industry machine. “I’m offering music that puts a different twist on the genre,” he says. “Something different that’s quality and has a good message. In most music, there’s not a whole lot of movement that makes you feel good. It’s prefabricated rubbish.”
In spite of the inhospitable climate for fresh musicians, Aldo has hope for intrepid modern rock musicians who wish to further the genre. Acts like the Foo Fighters, Papa Roach, Saliva, Crossfade, Powderfinger and Linkin Park and other bands that introduce originality to the masses top Aldo’s list of contemporary inspirations. He also recognizes and appreciates some of the exciting artists that haven’t yet become household names, such as Oh My Stars, Tickle Me Pink, 3OH!3, OneRepublic, and Carolina Liar “There are many bands in the local music scenes that have something interesting to say, but unfortunately, they never get an opportunity to share their music with millions,” says Aldo.
By heavily promoting Villains and Heroes through social media, the iPad2 giveaway video contest, and connections with local fans and artists, Aldo hopes to add more quality and diversity to the airwaves. He’s out to prove that if you stay true to yourself and never give up on your dreams, you can connect with the masses in a meaningful way.