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Sevenstring.org Interview: Steve Bello
Sevenstring.org's Jerich interviews guitarist Steve Bello.
Published by Chris
03-11-2005
Arrow Sevenstring.org Interview: Steve Bello

<div align="right"><img border="0" src="http://www.sevenstring.org/newsimages/bello/bello_xlogo2.gif" alt="Steve Bello">
<b>Interview: Steve Bello</b>
<font size="1"><i>By: Jerich</i></font>
</div>
<img style="padding:20px;" align="left" src="http://www.sevenstring.org/newsimages/bello/1.jpg" alt="Steve Bello" />
<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">Jerich</span>: Name, rank and serial number, and who are your influences?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">Steve Bello</span>: Steve Bello, Steve Bello Band, Westwood, New Jersey. As far as influences, Jimi Hendrix, Ritchie Blackmore, Yngwie Malmsteen, Steve Vai, Uli Jon Roth, Prince, Led Zeppelin, Living Colour, Rush, tons of heavy metal bands.
<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: How long have you been playing, and What is your practice routine like?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I started on guitar at age 9; I'm 35 now. I don't really have a routine, per se. Sometimes I just throw on a cd and play along to it and pretend I'm 16 again. [laughs]

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What's your main guitar and string setup?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: An Ibanez Universe 7-string U777PBK. For strings, I use DR Strings Tite-fit .009-.052; Dunlop Jazz picks, medium or heavy, depends on my mood. he vibe of the guitar just suits me perfectly. I've owned Strats, Kramers, and various other models, but the Ibanez's have always worked the best for me.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Tell us about your rig.
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I use an Ibanez TB100 half-stack; my effects are Ibanez Weeping Demon wah, Ibanez FL9 flanger, Digitech Whammy and a Voodoo MicroVibe.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Who do you think is pushing the envelope in the 7 string guitar community?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I totally dig Jeff Loomis of Nevermore, Chris Broderick of Jag Panzer, the guys in Meshuggah, the guys in Unearth.. I wish Steve Vai would do more with the 7-string but for some reason he chooses not to. Ah well.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Who are you endorsed by?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I'm endorsed by Ibanez and DR Strings.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: In the studio, do you prefer Micing or direct recording? What about live?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I definitely mic for studio; sometimes I use a Line6 Pod for more tight signal path. For live use, I use a Sennheiser E609.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: At what Point in your career did/do you feel at ease with your guitar playing?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: Lately, I've been the most comfortable I've ever been with my playing. I think I found my niche with the 7-string guitar. I'm still learning new things everyday.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Do you consider yourself more of a technicial or a feel player?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I used to be purely technique-for-technique-sake; you know, typical "he-man "shredder! [laughs] But I needed certain techniques to achieve certain "feels" in the music, so, yeah I think I'm a decent balance of style and speed.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What's your music education background?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I am purely self-taught. I went to Bergen Community College and received and Associate's degree in Music in 1991.

<img style="padding:20px;" align="right" src="http://www.sevenstring.org/newsimages/bello/2.jpg" alt="Steve Bello" />
<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: How would your other band members describe you?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: Well, right now it's just my bassist Courtenay; our drummer Darren quit and we're auditioning a couple of people. How would Courtenay describe me? Probably "intense". You'd have to ask her; I can't speak for her.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What makes you crazy in the music world?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: God, there's so many things I can pin-point! [laughs] But you know what? Instead of wasting my energy on what drives me nuts, I'd rather channel that energy into something positive, like the new music I'm writing.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What would be your dream gig?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: My dream gig? Play in front of 100,000 people. Just one time.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: How do you warm up for a gig?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I warm up by doing slow repetitive scale runs and playing jazz chord changes to help me limber my fingers up. Sometimes I may even grab a pair of drumsticks and tap out beats to loosen my wrists.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What song or riff or lick that you've written are you most proud of?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I'm proud of the All Wired Up CD, but I cannot wait to lay down the tracks for the new songs! My fave tune is "Schizotherapy", from AWU. It's just so slammin'!

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What is your favorite guitar technique, and what guitar technique do you feel you need the most work on?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I love sweep-picking! My legato isn't as smooth as I want it to be; I was always better at speed-picking, ala Al DiMeloa/John McLaughlin. One day my legato will be where I want it to be.

<img style="padding:20px;" align="left" src="http://www.sevenstring.org/newsimages/bello/3.jpg" alt="Steve Bello" />
<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What does the future hold for Steve Bello?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I don't know. I leave it up to God and just go about my business.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What do you think the general public's view of 7 string guitars is?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I think people are afraid of a 7-string initially; I should know because I was one of those people. But once I tried it, I never looked back. I sold all my 6-string guitars as a result! [laughs] The people that say comments like "Oh 7 strings is just plain stupid!" are just afraid, that's all. A lot of guitarists have this 'purist' mentality, I think. Bass players seem to be more experimental than guitarists. But I'm glad I tried the 7-string.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What would people find strange that Influences you?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I love Living Colour, Prince, James Brown...I used to play in a funk-metal band back in 1990, and that experience forced me to work on my rhythms and chord voicings more than my soloing techniques. Once I learned how important groove is, I couldn't stop! But of course it doesn't hurt to write a Slayer-type riff at 320bpm once in a while.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Your Solos are they written beforehand, or improvised?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I completely wing my solos. I hate planning solos out. I always got off on improvisation.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: To you, who has the best guitar tone?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: Best guitar tone? Brian May definitely, followed by Ty Tabor of King's X.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: What cd's would I find on you if your were on a desert island?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I listen to a lot of stuff, depending on my mood. Some days I will put on Elliot Fisk (classical guitarist) and other times I feel like Led Zeppelin. Whatever works...

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Steve Vai has a new cd comming out (is out now) what do you think about it?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: Gotta be honest, I wish Vai would put away the show-tunes crap and put out an album that flat-out ROCKED! He hasn't done that in a long time.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Guitar related Magazines or MTV for your source of Info?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: Guitar World definitely is my source of information. MTV used to be when I was 13.

<span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;">J</span>: Any last words?
<span style="color:orange;font-weight:bold;">SB</span>: I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak my mind. For some reason, I enjoy doing interviews! I also want to thank anyone who took the time to read this! Cheers!

<div align="center"><a href="http://www.myspace.com/stevebello"><span style="color:red;font-weight:bold;text-decoration:none">Steve Bello on MySpace</span></a>
</div>
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  #1  
By StevieHimself on 04-12-2005, 08:43 AM
Just wanted to give an update since this interview was conducted:

1) We have a new drummer, and his name is Evan Prettyman. He made his debut with us at the Underpass, in Elmwood Park, NJ (which a certain Jerich attended!!) and fortunately, everyone in attendance like Evan's playing and personality.

2) I am working on a local endorsement deal w/Peavey amps, especially the JSX head. I am still endorsed with Ibanez guitars...that will NEVER change!! I spoke with my Ibanez rep about using Peavey amps live and he was very cool about it. I will still use the Ibanez half-stack for clinics; that is not a problem. But the JSX head works perfect for me, in a live situation. Wish me luck!

3) Working on the next cd as we speak; got three new songs down and we're gonna work on three more soon, and then another two. Can't wait to torture everyones' eardrums again!!HAHAHA!!

Steve Bello
  #2  
By WayneCustom7 on 04-12-2005, 09:09 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by StevieHimself
Just wanted to give an update since this interview was conducted:

1) We have a new drummer, and his name is Evan Prettyman. He made his debut with us at the Underpass, in Elmwood Park, NJ (which a certain Jerich attended!!) and fortunately, everyone in attendance like Evan's playing and personality.

2) I am working on a local endorsement deal w/Peavey amps, especially the JSX head. I am still endorsed with Ibanez guitars...that will NEVER change!! I spoke with my Ibanez rep about using Peavey amps live and he was very cool about it. I will still use the Ibanez half-stack for clinics; that is not a problem. But the JSX head works perfect for me, in a live situation. Wish me luck!

3) Working on the next cd as we speak; got three new songs down and we're gonna work on three more soon, and then another two. Can't wait to torture everyones' eardrums again!!HAHAHA!!

Steve Bello
Ah wow man, this is cool...I'm finally rubbing shoulders, well kinda, with some big name talent over here at SS.org...nice to have you posting Steve..congrats on the new roomate (that's an old drummer joke ) Looking foraward to hearing your tunage...keep up the shreds!
  #3  
By Jerich on 04-12-2005, 12:06 PM
No problem Steve I was there, the two 1/2 hour trip was worth it. If the other guys on the board were closer i would be willing to do a hang out with anyone from the board. The JSX should and will fit your sound better. My only problem with the Tone Blaster is it has one tone...Nothing else, But when you drive it with a thousand different pedals etc...it just get seriously muddy!! but man i think it sounded fine that Night!!! I am sorry you were so nevous about the new drummer thing that night ....all's good. I would come out again. I am putting together a Gigging three piece guitar instrumental band right now and I too would come up there and jam man...talk to you soon steve...
  #4  
By StevieHimself on 04-13-2005, 09:10 AM
Thanks guys! Your support is greatly appreciated
Yeah the Ibanez head is cool but not for what I'm doing. I still would recommend it to anyone looking for a cheap LOUD head...it's good for that!
Onto the Peavey JSX head...
  #5  
By Metal Ken on 04-13-2005, 09:52 PM
Wow, i got your old setup now.. Lol. UV777PBK into a TB100...
  #6  
By StevieHimself on 04-18-2005, 03:30 PM
Just got the call from Peavey...they are getting me my JSX head tomorrow (Tuesday the 19th) so....chalk me up as a Peavey regional endorser dude!!!
  #7  
By StevieHimself on 04-21-2005, 10:04 AM
GOT MY PEAVEY JSX HEAD AND MAN DOES IT SMOKE!!! Forget about going to 11...this baby goes to 77!! Oh man, it just sounds so good!!!
Stevie and Peavey...together again
(Still got my deal w/Ibanez though, so don't worry about that!)
  #8  
By Jerich on 07-17-2005, 01:42 AM
Steve That is an Understatement..Brother... WE NEED MORE STEVE BELLO!!!!
  #9  
By Chris on 07-18-2005, 10:57 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerich
Steve That is an Understatement..Brother... WE NEED MORE STEVE BELLO!!!!
Agreed! Welcome back Steve!
  #10  
By StevieHimself on 07-25-2005, 10:57 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris
Agreed! Welcome back Steve!

Well, you shall get more Steve Bello in October, when the new album comes out, along with a couple of Ibanez guitar clinics in the NJ area. Keep your ears and eyes open for new details.
  #11  
By Jerich on 07-28-2005, 07:43 PM
F yeah!! Steve Keep Us Posted..If you expect us to come out?...are you going to get your hands one one of those new Ibanez Heads?
  #12  
By StevieHimself on 07-30-2005, 11:23 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerich
F yeah!! Steve Keep Us Posted..If you expect us to come out?...are you going to get your hands one one of those new Ibanez Heads?

I'm supposed to try one out the day of my clinic on October 15th. I'm very curious to hear how this puppy sounds!
  #13  
By Jerich on 10-30-2005, 05:44 AM
Any updates Steve? do you have a list of your Clinics yet? what do others have to exspect from your Clinics? We all wanna Know!!!!!
  #14  
By StevieHimself on 12-04-2005, 11:33 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerich
Any updates Steve? do you have a list of your Clinics yet? what do others have to exspect from your Clinics? We all wanna Know!!!!!

Did one clinic on October 29th @ Victor's House of Music and it went well. STEVE BELLO BAND's new cd is out called JUPITER RETURN!! So far, the reviews are pretty good
I am back with IBANEZ amplifiers, since Peavey neglected to help me out (and apparently they neglected a lot of other WELL-KNOWN metal bands lately...their marketing sucks!)
Looking to do more and BIGGER shows in 2006, so I'll let everyone know the deal when I get more info!
  #15  
By Jerich on 01-26-2006, 06:46 AM
keep us informed Steve...rock on...the Ibanez amps seem like they will rock!!
  #16  
By StevieHimself on 03-15-2006, 09:27 PM
Another update! We are currently working on new material for the 4th cd; so far we have four songs down and 135 more to go! Just teasing there, but I do have at least 7 more I want to show my bandmates. Also did try the Ibanez Thermion tube head and I must say I was genuinely impressed. And yes, the good folks at Ibanez want to see me play it live, so once I get the $$ scrapped together, I can do so. For now, I've got my Dragon TB100 half-stack and man I dig it!! LOOKS friggin' cool (people think Ibanez built it solely for me, so I let then keep thinkin' that HAHA!)
  #17  
By StevieHimself on 04-07-2006, 09:31 PM
**Update April 7, 2006:
Steve Bello Band v2.0 is history. Our final show was on March 24, 2006 @ Vincent's Ear in Wallington, NJ. Bassist Courtenay Penick left the band shortly after our show (but she will be playing on the next cd) and drummer Evan Prettyman and I parted ways two days later. I am working with a session drummer so that I can get the new songs ready for recording them this summer; I hope to have the new cd out by late fall 2006.
Thanks to everyone for their support and encouragement. I promise you all that the new music will be harder, faster, scarier, and weirder than ever!! As for a new trio? Nothing yet...
  #18  
By StevieHimself on 04-23-2006, 11:48 PM
QUICK NOTE:
New album already being worked on as of this writing. Courtenay will play bass on it. Music is guaranteed to make your teeth jump out of your skull. I'm not kidding
  #19  
By StevieHimself on 03-18-2007, 10:15 AM
New line-up is now together!!
STEVE BELLO: 7-string guitars COURTENAY PENICK: 5-string bass DANNY BARKMAN: drums (yep, the new guy!!)

I've got at least nine new songs written. I'm eyeing towards live shows sometime in June/July.

STEVE BELLO BAND IS BACK!!
Last edited by StevieHimself; 03-18-2007 at 10:17 AM.. Reason: Hit "return" key too soon!
  #20  
By distressed_romeo on 03-18-2007, 03:41 PM
  #21  
By Jerich on 03-19-2007, 08:56 PM
Steve it is good to hear you are still chugging away at what you do best...make some Cool tunes.....cannot wait to hear the new tune-age!!!!
  #22  
By StevieHimself on 03-20-2007, 12:19 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerich View Post
Steve it is good to hear you are still chugging away at what you do best...make some Cool tunes.....cannot wait to hear the new tune-age!!!!
Yep, chugging away on the low B (and the other 6 strings) is what I do best!!

And I just got the new Ibanez catalog and...my name is on the back
I could be famous after all
  #23  
By StevieHimself on 10-05-2007, 03:42 PM
Another update...I have a brand-new line-up!! Joining me on drums is the incredible Clarence "CJ" Jackson and 5-string bassist Kosaku Nakamura. These two gentlemen also have their own original band, Brokensoul (Ko is the guitarist in that band).
Also, the long-talked-about new album is finally being recorded!! We started on it last Sunday. Got all the drums done in 3 hours, and most of the rhythm guitar parts. New album will be called ABOUT TO EXPLODE! and I am purposely not setting a release date. Why? I'm tired of jinxing myself LOL!!
  #24  
By Desecrated on 10-06-2007, 04:55 AM
good luck
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