Our October Triple R Girl of 2009 is Camille Escobedo. She’s not only the front woman of Beretta76; she’s also the songwriter/guitarist/glue that brings the band together.
They rock. Imagine an amalgamation of garage/punk/rock/sex + awesome, and there you have it. Camille is our Triple R Girl because she’s talented, gorgeous, and knows how to make it happen. She and her band are on their way, and we hope our interview with her will inspire other women to ROCK.
We, at the Rock and Roll Report, are THRILLED to have had some one on one time with Camille, and here’s what happened:
RRR: How did you segue from classical training to rocking stage presence?
CE: Initially, my goal was to study voice, to study music and come away with very strong vocal technique. As I left music school I realized I was less interested in pursuing a career in teaching, higher education, Music Theater, or go the wedding band route and that I was more interested in singing original material from my own point of view. This of course led me to write music/lyrics and to pick up the guitar for the first time (a late bloomer in that respect). It’s safe to say that my style and point of view came out intrinsically rock.
RRR: What’s the Philly rock scene like? Are there lots of local rock groups featuring women?
CE: I absolutely love the Philly rock scene. There are more than a handful of women performing in rock groups in Philadelphia which makes for a great sense of community. I think the best part about that is that there is a very diverse cross section of women instrumentalists in Philadelphia. In fact Beretta76’s newest member is bassist Liz Dalberth, she’s a great musician, very knowledgeable and a veteran of the Philly rock scene – we are very fortunate to have her playing with us. And I have to say, it’s quite nice having another female in the band. It’s always been me and the guys – which ain’t so bad either, but it’s a refreshing change.
RRR: I saw that the band formed in 2002. What gave birth to Beretta76?
CE: I formed the band with Pete Rydberg after he had agreed to demo a small portion of songs that I had written. I wasn’t sure what to do with them so it was a big experiment. I knew I wanted to record them and see how far they would go. Pete and I quickly became very simpatico and he had great ideas for the recordings. At that time I had barely enough material to start a band, so in the very early stages it was just Pete and I cranking out recordings. At that stage one of the recordings was making its rounds in the area and drew some attention from a demo contest we’d won from Jane Magazine. Not soon after, I remember getting gig inquiries from local promoters for this band that consisted of just the two of us. The beginnings of a band were certainly there and it was initially intended, but at some point it became the chicken and the egg. I think that what was a recording project quickly transformed into something else in a matter of a year and we both thought it best to find a drummer and a bass player and to finally form what would become Beretta76.
RRR: Do you find being a woman has advantages in rock music? Disadvantages?
CE: I have to be honest in saying that this question does come up a lot in interviews and I feel like I can never give a definitive answer. I certainly believe there are more and more very talented women musicians out there that are able to take advantages of opportunities that were in some way or another paved by way of Lita Ford, Chrissie Hynde and Bonnie Rait. I’ve never really felt any disadvantages in being a woman as a rock musician per se but I do have a suspicion that there may still be a stigma attached to the female performer as being perceived as someone who’s chops might be less than a man’s simply because she has boobs and a vagina. I do see the landscape changing however and I think I would eventually like to see women in bands or all women bands be seen or promoted more as simply a great band and less as a novelty.
RRR: What do you have to say to women who are looking to form their own bands?
CE: Write good material and they will come. That having a point of view and making sure to stand your ground is really REALLY important. Also, take advantage of the network of musicians around you and ask questions. If you don’t already, go to shows, go to shows, go to shows and get to know the players. Most importantly be confident and completely FEARLESS.
Check out Camille and her band at www.beretta76.com
The music speaks for itself; everyone else SHUT the F*UCK up… xoxo Allegra