Q&A Scene: Guitarists’ Special ~ Michael Dolce

Tell us about your new single/ album/ tour?

My new Masterclass tour ‘Melodic Choices’ starts on 31st July and finishes in November.Its a 40 date schedule around Australia and NZ I’m very much looking forward to it here’s a promo clip:

I’ll be covering my approach to creating melodic ideas while soloing.

My new single “Most days” was written in January 2018 to celebrate my calibration with Ibanez guitars.I thought it would be a great way to start a whole new adventure with a great brand so i captured it on camera.

Here’s an edited version:

My Album ‘Everything til Now’  was recorded 8 years ago it features some of Australia’s finest musicians who also happen to be close mates.

How long have you been playing guitar?

I started at the age of 6. My professional career spans over 27 years

Why did you first start playing?

It started at a very young age I was 5 years old. My parents bought me a ukulele. I’d always grab a stick that resembled a violin bow and i’d play the ukulele like a violin. At the age of 6, I was given my first 3/4 size nylon string acoustic guitar as a Christmas present. I was very excited but also a little disappointed because the guitar was to big to put under my chin to play it like a violin. But I quickly grew in love with it. When I was growing up, my dad played a little bit of guitar as a hobby and I would love watching him strum his acoustic guitar. He loved playing and still does play Italian folk songs from the region of Calabria. I would watch him play and pick up on the chords he was playing. I spent hours practising in my room and then on family gatherings my dad would force me to play in front of the family and he would sing along. This has now become a family tradition and we now do it all the time. Growing up I didn’t like playing in front of others but am now glad my father persisted in making me play in front of others. Looking back that was the best introduction to playing in front of a live audience it gave me the hunger and passion to pursue guitar for the rest of my life.

Which guitarist most influenced your playing?

My dad was my biggest influence At an early age I was listening to my dads records, Johnny Cash, Elvis, Jim Reeves, Chuck Berry and Italian music as well I was always surrounded by melodic music. I was very lucky to have an Uncle that introduced me to the songs of “The Shadows”. He had a great collection of their music which inspired me to start using my ear to figure out melodies they were playing. I still love listening to their music Hank Marvin was a big influence on me. I remember seeing one of their album covers and they were holding black and white “Burns Guitars”. I aspired to be like them, so much that my first electric guitar had to be Black and white like The Shadows. Their music still inspires me it has a classy quality, its unique and is filled with melodies and structure ,just beautiful.

In my teen years I was introduced to Joe Satriani. When I initially heard “Surfing with the Alien” for the first time I still remember thinking that’s not a guitar, a guitar doesn’t sound like that! I could relate to his music instantly ,it had strong melodies that you could sing along with and incredible guitar playing that I’d never heard before.
I then discovered the REH instructional videos and I got into players like Vinnie Moore, Paul Gilbert, Richie Kotzen, Tony Macalpine and Malmsteen. That period of players was heavily driven by technique. I would read articles in Guitar Player magazine every month and most players that were interviewed would say they would be practising 8 hours a day so I did the same and thats where I developed my technique. Once the neo classic period had died down I found myself moving onto players that had more of a jazz sensibility such players as Brett Garsed , Frank Gambale, Scott Henderson, Allan Holdsworth, Robben Ford, Larry Carlton, Don Mock, Pat Martino, George Benson. Listening to these players trained my ear to hear the changes in the jazz fusion genre. At that time I also learned a lot by listening to bands like U2, Midnight Oil (Australian Band) Stryper, Choir Boys(Australian Band) all these bands have incredible guitarists that place priority on incredible written guitar parts and sounds.

Describe your favourite guitar. 

I’m an Ibanez endorsee they are a big part of my playing now and I love them .But my favourite guitar will always be my first guitar given to me by my parents which is a Fender Musicmaster.

How do you prepare for a show?

Regardless of what gig I do, I make sure my preparation will consist of learning the songs inside out and over preparing for the gig.I’ll make sure all my parts and sounds are bang on.The Voice Australia is a whole different beast.It stretches over 5 months with a 5 week break in the middle.All the initials rounds are all filmed live in front of the studio audience then played back on TV several months later. We start in January with the ‘blind audition round’ that consists of learning 130 songs .We normally have 3 weeks to learn them.Those songs and performers are filmed over 4 days .Then we move into the next couple rounds, ‘Knockout round’ and ‘battle rounds’ which consist of 50 songs in total and we have approximately 2 weeks to learn those songs. The month of May is when we go live to air on national TV for 5 weeks performing 1 live show a week.The lead up to each show consists of the band working very long hours .We can average between 60 to 80 hours during this week .

What, or who, inspires you?

 My family are my inspiration.They give me the drive to keep going.

Which song do you wish you wrote?

For the money I’d have to say ‘stairway to heaven’ lol… for the heart ,Apache by Jerry Lordan recorded by The Shadows.

How would you describe your sound in food form and why?

Pizza cause I love adding all sorts of flavours to my playing.(Except pineapple lol)

What’s next for you?

My Masterclass tour around the Australia and NZ.

What’s your scene?

Staying home with my family and making my Naples style pizza’s in my wood fire oven.

Catch  Michael at the Melbourne Guitar Show at 2.30 pm on Sunday 5th August at Caulfield Racecourse during FRACTAL AUDIO WORKSHOP in WINNERS CIRCLE WORKSHOP ROOM Level 1 Escalator West.

Tickets are on sale NOW!

Online ticket prices when pre-ordered:: Adult day pass $20, adult weekend pass $30, family day pass $35, concession day pass $10, concession weekend pass $15, premium ticket** $40




Australian Music Association announced the 2018 return of the Melbourne Guitar Show, set to rock Caulfield Racecourse on August 4 and 5 – and this year, it’ll be bigger than ever.

Proudly presented by Triple M and Australian Musician, the lineup boasts an impressive haul of both local and international artists, and featuring amongst the bunch is none other than UK guitar legend Albert Lee.

In addition to some killer performances from the artists on this massive lineup, #MGS2018 will also hold a monster exhibition that will feature a gigantic variety of electric and acoustic guitars, effects pedals, amps and more state-of-the-art guitar technology, both home-grown and from around the world.  It will continue to be Australia’s biggest guitar pop-up shop, and that’s not all.  The Melbourne Guitar Show will host information seminars, demonstrations, and live performances from Australia’s most talented guitarists.

This year will be extra special as the Melbourne Guitar Show welcomes UK guitar legend Albert Lee.  Lee’s work with The Everly Brothers, Eric Clapton, Emmylou Harris and The Crickets is renowned within the music world and cemented his place as one of the most respected and renowned guitarists in history.  Speaking on Lee’s talent, Eric Clapton enthuses, “(He is) the ultimate virtuoso.  His skill is extraordinary and he’s gifted on just about every level,” while Emmylou Harris says, “(Albert Lee) is a brilliant guitar player…his sound is unmistakable, never qualled.”  The British-born country-rock artist started his long and illustrious career during the emerging rock ‘n’ roll scene of ‘60s London, when he played in bands with the likes of Jimmy Page and Chris Farlowe.  He has received countless accolades for his work, and has been named Guitar Player Magazine’s Best Country Guitarist five times in a row.

The first lineup announcement for #MGS2018 is a big one.  Joining Albert Lee is Daniel Champagne, a prolific young guitar virtuoso with the world at his feet, and Jeff Lang, who has been described by Rolling Stone as “Australia’s best roots music artisan.”  Melbourne Guitar Show favourites Nick Charles and Shannon Bourne will also be returning this year, alongside some seriously talented women Fiona Boyes, Alison Ferrier, Cat Canteri, Nat Allison and upcoming punk rockers Rackett.  Not to mention a whole host of additional artists are set to be announced over the coming weeks.

Drawing over 5,500 guitar lovers and enthusiasts to last year’s exhibit, the Melbourne Guitar Show is growing year on year and is gearing up for the biggest event yet.  The voice of the Australian music products industry, the Australian Music Association (AMA) will be teaming up with australianmusician.com.au and presenting sponsors Triple M, 3PBS and Aon to present this year’s guitar-centric weekend.  At last year’s MGS, punters not only enjoyed scheduled performances and demos from the awesome artists on the lineup, but also witnessed surprise on-stand appearances from some of Australia’s finest artists, including Ian Moss, Darren Middleton (Powderfinger), Paul Dempsey, Oscar Dawson and Ali Barter.  Both the promoters of the show and the exhibitors are constantly wrangling acts right up until the very last minute – and who will be joining the all-star jam this year? Come on down and find out!

Thrilled to present #MGS2018 once again, AMA executive officer and MGS organiser, Rob Walker says, After an awesome show last year, we’re looking forward to continuing the tradition the show is creating.  We’re very pleased to present Albert Lee on his 75th birthday tour, as well as the usual host of wonderful players we present.”

Not only will the 2018 MGS provide a hands-on chance to see, hear and play a broad range of the world’s favourite brands, it will also see exhibitors offering great show deals, plus an opportunity to get close to some hand-crafted, locally made instruments and epic guitar and gear collections.  Describing the exciting developments, Rob continues, “Our exhibition welcomes back some big names this year and the learning opportunities are plentiful.  If you’re in the market for guitars and gear, great live music from some of the best players. the Melbourne Guitar Show is the place to be.”

The first artist line up announcement includes: Albert Lee, Daniel Champagne, Jeff Lang, Nick Charles, Shannon Bourne, Fiona Boyes, James Ryan, Phil Manning, Nat Allison, Brett Kingman, Alison Ferrier, Cat Canteri, Scott Darlow, Rackett, Van Larkins, Justin Bernasconi, Rohan Stevenson, and more to be announced over the coming weeks.

The Melbourne Guitar Show will be held at Caulfield Racecourse on August 4 and 5.

Tickets are on sale NOW!

Online ticket prices when pre-ordered:: Adult day pass $20, adult weekend pass $30, family day pass $35, concession day pass $10, concession weekend pass $15, premium ticket** $40




WEBSITE                 FACEBOOK              #MGS2018            TWITTER                 INSTAGRAM

About Mary Boukouvalas 1612 Articles
Mary is a photographer and a writer, specialising in music. She runs Rocklust.com where she endeavours to capture the passion of music in her photos whether it's live music photography, promotional band photos or portraits. She has photographed The Rolling Stones, KISS, Iggy Pop, AC/DC, Patti Smith, Joe Strummer, PULP, The Cult, The Damned, The Cure, Ian Brown, Interpol, MUDHONEY, The MELVINS, The Living End, Foo Fighters, Smashing Pumpkins, Rage Against The Machine, The Stone Roses –just to name a few - in Australia, USA, Europe and the Middle East. Her work has been published in Beat magazine, Rolling Stone magazine, Triple J magazine, The Age Newspaper, The Herald Sun, The Australian, Neos Kosmos, blistering.com, theaureview.com, noise11.com, music-news.com. She has a permanent photographic exhibition at The Corner Hotel in Richmond, Victoria Australia.