By Ray Shasho
I finally caught up with the guy who had the fourth most watched music video in the world on You Tube. Eric Calderone’s explosive spin of Lady Gaga’s tune, “Bad Romance” made him an overnight sensation on the popular website. Eric has also added his metal mastery to Kesha's Tik Tok, Take it off, and Rick Astley's Never Gonna Give You Up.
Pop artists add their own simple spin to classic rock songs and usually fail miserably. Eric Calderone took a simple silly popular pop song and made it sound intelligent and extremely cool. Eric is sort of a “Heavy Metal Einstein.” The music industry should take notice; there is a new generation of artistic rock musicians, and you need to sign them.
Calderone recently graduated from the University of Tampa with a degree in music. He also completed a degree in orchestration for film and television from Berklee College of Music in Boston. He’s also a gifted Illustrator, learning the trade by enrolling in art programs at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota. Eric is 25, and although born in New York, he grew up in Bradenton.
I felt an obligation to write about Eric because he’s a gifted guitarist. And although my column is about classic rockers, I wanted to showcase a unique new rock talent, and wish him the best. Like raising a lighter up high at a rock concert, we need to keep that rock and roll flame burning before it dies out.
Here’s my interview with Eric Calderone after he arrived in Los Angeles yesterday.
You've been quite successful on You Tube with your Heavy Metal spin of Lady Gaga. Why do you like her music?
“The main reason I like her is the reason I think the video got so much attention. Simply because even though her music is categorized as pop, it has like an aura about it that it could work in another genre, so when I hear her music I always think to myself wow this could totally be a rock tune. And also she's ridiculously talented as a pianist which when I heard her song writing ability, was hooked. She's very catchy and visually unique which is why I think a lot of people like her, including me.”