Singer, songwriter, drummer and bandleader, Tedi Brunetti has come a long way since discovering music as a youth in Pittsburgh. She grew up listening to her transistor radio and banging along on a hamper and hat boxes. In fact, Tedi has pretty much seen it all as a touring drummer with notable national and international acts like Eloise Laws, Isis’ Carol MacDonald and Witch, and the Debbie Harry/Mick Jones-produced, B-Girls. She has since formed the Tedi Brunetti Band, and is seated upon her “throne” as the bandleader and reigning “Queen of Pittsburgh.”
This summer, Tedi Brunetti will release her 2nd solo album, aptly titled “The Queen of Pittsburgh.” Scheduled for a July 20th release date through Sony/The Orchard distribution, the album was co-produced by engineer and co-writer, Dean Sarg.
How long in performing arts and some experiences to share about being drummer ?
I’ve been making music since I as 11 years old. That’s 58 years! Music is something you can do your entire life. The thing I like about drumming, besides the concussion, is that it challenges me physically, mentally and spiritually. It’s good for the brain to learn new co ordinations and I honestly believe drumming keeps me sharper mentally than most people my age. Playing music with others challenges me spiritually to trust that what I am able to express has universal value and requires me to let go and forget my ego and just let it fly musically.
How is it like playing for others in comparison to your own musicals?
When I’m playing for others I support _their _visioning give them what they wanted need to get that across. If they have a specific sound, beat or groove in mind I try to make that happen for them. When I’m playing my music I ask my musicians to express themselves and bring their creativity to the party as we develop the arrangements of my songs. I usually have a groove or beat in minding, a feeling of what the song should sound like. I may want certain instruments to play something specific and through my drum parts I orchestrate the basis of
the arrangements. I’m thinking of the recording, the production of the song as I develop my drum parts and I play my songs alone, singing the different instrumental and vocal parts to myself as I work on my music.
What was most attractive part for you to be in this industry ?
I would say the most attractive part of the music business for me is the opportunity it gives me to connect on so many levels but ultimately spiritually to a wide audience through my music and videos.
Share some experiences good or bad any that made you grow in life or profession?
I come from a big Italian family. I’m the oldest of 10 children. I had our first son when i was 30 years old. I think having children changes you in ways you never dreamed of. The emphasis changed immediately from everything being about me to everything being about our children. With children the impact of any thing we did or were planning to do and its impact on the children was the primary concern. Our children came first. Now that they’re grown and parents themselves my husband and I can concentrate on ourselves and our music again. For me
raising two boys and having a successful marriage of 44 years has helped me mature and given me some wisdom. I now have a stronger character, a deeper soul, and a larger heart I can share through my art.
Who inspired you ? How do you work on creating your own signature style ?
I draw on the strength of the women who came before me. My grandparents on both sides immigrated to this great country. Both of my mother’s parents came from Gamberale, a mountaintop town in the Abruzzo region of Italy in the early 1900’s. My grandmother came here at the age of 16, charged with raising her younger siblings. She learned the language,
taught herself math and opened a neighborhood grocery store. My Father’s mother was born in Moscow, Russia and came to this country at 2 years of age, smuggled under her mother’s dress, during the Bolshevik Revolution. My great grandfather was an architect in Moscow and the Bolsheviks took him away. His wife was able to find passage for herself and her two daughters in the bowels of a freighter headed for the United States of America. They were crammed in the bottom of the ship with may others making that long miserable journey. When I think
about the fear, the suffering and sacrifices my people went through so I could have the life I have today, it makes me realize how luxurious my problems are today.
My signature style is first recognized by the unique tone and timbre of my voice. I see it as a blessing today. I didn’t always feel it was a blessing because I didn’t sound like the other girls growing up with their sweet soprano voices. I am a soprano but with a rich, deep, cutting tone. My husband Jim Mason who plays lead guitar, Michael Henegan producer vocalist and bassist, and Dean Sargent producer vocalist and guitar encouraged and supported me as I grew accustomed to my vocal sound while recording this album. We worked together on my
first solo album 30 years ago so they know my voice and how it has changed naturally with age. For me, it is what it is (laugh). My voice has a little raspiness now, which is a change from the pure piercing tone I had in my youth. They helped me accept myself and be natural in
delivering the lyrics. I’m more focused on telling the story or getting the message of the lyrics across nowadays. I feel it’s a more mature and meaningful approach as opposed to vocal gymnastics for me. My unique vocal identity helps me get my message across (I’m a lyricist
as well as a composer) and share some of that wisdom I’ve gained.
What do you want to convey through your music?
I’d like to see people enjoy the ride when they listen to my songs. If I can get them to smile, chuckle, or maybe go “hmmm“ and they have enjoyed being immersed in my music for a few minutes I feel like I succeeded in helping make the world a nicer place.
Story behind making of your new album ? ( idea of making , some interesting inspirational facts to share)
The story behind making the “Queen of Pittsburgh” album began when I started writing again and knowing that nothing stays the same. There’s that wisdom again (laugh). We have our health, the ability to perform and the means to do it. I wanted to record again so our grandchildren would someday look back on this time and know grandma and grandpa were
cool once. I was able to fulfill some long standing wishes by having two of my 6 sisters, Mary Brunetti Parke and Anita Brunetti Philips, sing background vocals on a few tunes as well my friend Nicole Belli Lysiak. Another wish fulfilled was having our son James T. Mason play
on this album. The title track “Queen of Pittsburgh” has a father/son guitar solo section. My husband, Jim Mason a master of iconic lyrical guitar lines, plays the first half of the solo section followed by our son James T. Mason who plays an outstanding original, explosive guitar solo to finish the solo section. Having family and fiends on this album brings joy to my heart every time I hear it!
Any interesting trivia about making of songs ?
Legendary NYC recording engineer Tommy Uzzo, a lifelong friend of my producer Dean Sargent was a consultant throughout the recording of this album and mixed the first album track “Eat, Sleep, Repeat”. He was beginning the mixing process on the title track “Queen of
Pittsburgh” when he passed away. That mix fell into the capable hands of another platinum record producer and recording engineer Dan Malsch who also mastered the album.
People who you would like to thank ?
I am thankful and grateful for the exceptional team of exceptional people behind me. I am honored and give thanks to all the musicians and vocalists who performed on this album. Jim mason, Michael Henegan, Dean Sargent, James T Mason, Billy Baltera, Kenny Blake, Steve Ertle, Pierce Dipner, Luigi Cafara, Mary Brunetti Parke, Anita Brunetti-Philips, and Nicole Belli Lysiak.
I would also like to thank the wizards behind my videos, the production crew of Abe Urquilla and Chris Rodriguez of B-MHAC and my technical, all things internet/computer genius William S McDuffie III.
People who you would like to work with and people you idolize to be like professionally ?
I’m a drummer, so I like to work with great bass players. That being said, I think I would start with Sting. He’s a bass player, singer, songwriter and I love his music.
Another idol of mine is Paul McCartney. He’s a basset, singer and songwriter. Maybe you have heard of him? !
Where do you see your music 3 years from now ?
Well, I’m hopeful that this album will be an international success. I would love to tour outside the USA. I also think in three years I will be in the studio creating more music and maybe producing other musicians.
How would you like to stretch your boundaries of genre in future projects ?
I’ve done some genre bending on this album and have gotten great response on my jazz influenced rock songs so I will probably explore doing more of that. I have an experimental mixed genre thing I would also like to delve into.
Have you already started work on next project ? Anything you want to disclose about it ?
I have lyric ideas I am cataloging and maybe a song in that experimental mixed genre I talked about. Our son James T. Mason is a very creative songwriter and I am hoping to work on material with him.
Message for Fans and listeners
Hello fans and listeners! I am trying my best each day to be an authentic, loving, and entertaining artist. When i see someone who is truly, unashamedly being themselves, it gives me permission to truly be myself. There’s room for everyone in every way! So, To Thine Own Self Be True! I need you and so does everyone else.
Shoutout for CarryOnHarry Show …. listeners/readers
Hey there CarryOnHarry Show peeps! How lucky are you to have Harry searching out talent to share with you??!! And how awesome are YOU to that this stuff is important??!! Blessings to you all and Love Always, Tedi
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