Boosweet Records the independently owned and operated label based in California since 1999, recently created history in the country of Argentina with its “Guitar Power” guitar competition. The “Guitar Power” program is the brainchild of award winning guitarist/producer/actor and label CEO Vernon Neilly, and Marcelo Roascio who is a partner with Laura Goldar in Todo Guitarra Y Bajo Magazine, the major guitar/bass publication in the Argentine market. Vernon has traveled the world not only as a solo artist, but in the past has worked with legendary artists in the entertainment business. “Guitar Power” was held in the city of Buenos Aires and was sponsored by Boosweet Records, Todo Guitarra Y Bajo Magazine, Seymour Duncan, Xotic Effects, Morley Pedals, Giannini Strings, Tecniforte Cables, Antitodo Guitar Straps, and Guitar Global LLC. 10 finalists were selected to perform live before judges at the historic Bauen Theater in Buenos Aires from multitudes of entries that were received from all over Argentina. The winner Chowy Fernandes received an all expenses paid recording contract with Boosweet Records, as well as gear donated by the sponsors. There were also second and third place winners who received products from the sponsors of the event. Major media outlets in Argentina supported the historic making event such as video channels MTV, CME, and powerhouse Rock & Pop 95.9 radio located in Buenos Aires. Vernon also did countless interviews with major press supporting the “Guitar Power” event. This historical event was a huge success and will be continued due to the attention Boosweet Records and Neilly garnered for the event. This was not the first time that Vernon Neilly and Boosweet records partnered with major brands in the music world. Previously he was recognized for his “Six String Extravaganza” contest with label CEO and guitar icon Steve Vai. Boosweet Records, Guitar Global, and Vernon Neilly are currently running another “Custom Guitar Giveaway”. To be eligible interested parties only have to go to Vernon’s facebook.com fan page at http://www.facebook.com/vernonneillyband like the page and then forward an email to the director of promotions at
http://metalfoxweb.com.ar/new/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1902&Itemid=219 (Visit This Link to view the Full Interview in Spanish)
MFW: How do you get to Argentina? What do you know about our musicians?
Last year was my first vist to Argentina, but for many years it has been one of my dreams to come here. Due to the rich cultural history that this country has. So last year we did a show at the Teatro Santa Maria, in addition to clinics in the Ciudad de La Plata. In both cases I was well received. I know Argentina is famous for tango and folklore. From this I met Walter Giardino de Rata Blanca, Daniel Telis, Pappo, David Lebón, Pablo Soler, Carina Alfie, Miguel Sigales, Ricardo Soulé, and some more. I’m here to meet more!
MFW:In your work you discover a multifaced man: production, sideman, radio announcer, even actor. You have worked with Pat Metheny, Jaco Pastorius, Herbie Hancock, Etta James, "Narada" Michael Walden among many, what is your next project and with whom?
Pat Mehtny, Jaco Pastorius and Narada Walden were at the University of Miami at the same period as me, so that is were I met them. I worked with many top artists in the U.S. such as Etta James, Steve Vai, Greg Howe, Mark Whitfield, The Temptations, and Howard Hewitt. Yes, I was in three big budget films. For Universal Sudios “Along Came Polly” with Ben Stiller and Jennifer Aniston, for Warner Bros: “Starsky & Hutch” with Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughan, Snoop Dog and Antonio Fargas, and for Sony/Columbia Pictures: “Walk Hard” with Tim Meadows and John C. Reilly. My new CD is called “ A Tribute to Stevie Wonder”, where I have such guests as Greg Howe, the brasilian guitarist Kiko Loureiro(Angra), Miguel Mega (Brasil), Bill Hudson (USA), the french guitarist Unam, and the bassist Juan Nelson, winner of of a Grammy, from the band of Ben Harper and Innocent Criminal Band. Actually I am working on another project with Greg Howe, George Lynch (Dokken, Lynch Mob) and with Victor Johnson, guitarist of Sammy Hagar.
MFW: Is there a new area that you would like to venture?
I am always looking for new projects. I run a record labl called Boosweet Records. I have another company named Guitar Global that works with musical instruments and distributes them around the world. So I stay pretty busy.
MFW: How were your beginnings in music? Did you have support?
I come from a musical family in the Bahamas. My mother is a pianist and violinist, my sistr was a music professor and she played pipe organ, besides being a classical pianist. My brother was a professional classical and jazz musician, and he won many awards for his music. Yes, my mother provided support with all my musical projects. She still does it with everything I have accomplished.
MFW: What is your preffered guitar and the musician(s) that you admire?
I have to say that my favorite guitar is the one I play, and that was designed for me by Tagima Guitars of Brasil. It is my signature series guitars, which are made according to my specifibt cations. Also I have pickups made especially for me by Seymour Duncan in the U.S. My acoustic guitars are made by Giannini, also from Brasil. They were the ones responsible for making instruments that created samba, and bossa in Brasil. My favorite musician is without a doubt Jimi Hendrix, and even today, is still a big influence on guitarist around the world. His style and music still attracts me.
MWF: A Final Message….
Playing the guitar is an art not a competition. The guitarist should develop their own voice with the instrument. They should continue evolving and never be satisfied. To try to challenge themselves to learn more and play better. Besides they should enjoy this process, as they grow as musicians. It has to be something fun. If its not fun they should find something else that they are more passionate about. This advice could apply to guitarist, vocalists, bands, etc.
Thank you for your time and your interest in my career
Thank You, Vernon.
http://www.biendeabajo.com/noticas/varias/concurso_guitar_power_por_primera_vez_en_argentina/ ( CLICK HERE TO SEE THE FULL INTERVIEW - SPANISH VERSION)
It is public knowledge that this year Argentina has been choosen as the seat of th important contest of guitarist “Guitar Power”. In it, contestants send an instrumental of their own to be judged. The winner will be awarded with the opportunity to record a CD for the U.S. label Boosweet Records.The president of the panel is nothing more and nothing less than Mr. Vernon Neilly. This virtuous guitarist born in the Philippines, currently based in the U.S. Aside from being a musician and producer, he’s th owner of the mentioned record label. His style is a combination of classical music, jazz, blues, rock, funk, R&B, and hip hop. In his extensive career that dates back to 1967, he’s the recipient of multiple awards and recognitions. Among them having his own guitar model (Tagima VN-1), the strings (Giannini “Power Strings”) and he’s shared scenaries and studios with famous guitarist such as Slash y Jerry Horton.
Taking advantage of his visit to our country, Arterias de la Ciudad dusted his suit, practiced his English, and in a grand international experience had a chance to ask some questions.
Arterias: Why was Argentina elected for the new contest “Guitar Power”?
Vernon Neilly: Last year during my trip to Argentina, I noticed the lack of opportunties for guitarist here in Buenos Aires and Argentina, and for music to go past boundaries to an international level. I talked with my friend and fellow guitarist Marcelo Roascio.Who is a well known and respected guitarist and educator in Argentina. I discussed with him the idea of making a guitar contest.Top of FormHe informed me that it had never before been done in the history of music here in Argentina.I was surprised by this, because I've done many competitions before in my career. For me it was an easy decision to give Argentinian guitarists the opportunity to record their music with an international distribution label. My label in the U.S. Boosweet. Marcelo then undertook the task of putting the contest together and October 12, 2011 in the Auditorium Bauen in Buenos Aires. The people will see 10 finalists who were selected from throughout Argentina to compete for the opportunity Listen….
Arteries: What expectations do you generate for the next contest?
Vernon Neilly: My expectations are high because the music that was chosen is from very talented people in Argentina. Who will do their best to have the opportunity to record for an international label in the U.S. I know that the contestants are prepared to do their best. The "Guitar Power" has generated much interest here in Argentina, because once again this has never been done before in the history of the music in this country for guitarists. So they have the opportunity to be part of music history from your country!
Arteries: What do you have in mind when judging a guitarist? Vernon Neilly: The other judges, Marcelo Roascio, Daniel Teles and I judge the contestants on performance, sound, composition, stage presence and communication with the public. It's not just about how they are technically!
Arteries: What advice can you give to young guitarists? Vernon Neilly: Preparation, patience and perseverance! To believe in themselves and their talent. To work hard because the music business is a very difficult business. It’s even harder these days, so one must be focused on their objective of achieving your dreams! Arteries: We are looking forward to hearing more from you. Thank you very much for your time. We are always at your service. Vernon Neilly: Thanks Cristian is a real pleasure for me and I look forward seeing you at "Guitar Power"!
Producer, recording artist, seasoned touring musician, songwriter, arranger, business owner, endorser, all of these titles apply to guitarist extraordinaire Vernon Neilly. While many artists would be happy to be successful in one of these fields during their careers, the multi-talented guitarist thrives on having his irons in many fires, with consistent positive results. Not only has Neilly developed a reputation as a world-class performer, writer and even actor, but he was one of the earliest businessmen to realize the potential of selling music on the internet. A realization that has sparked his many endeavors into the business side of music, culminating in Boosweet Records, which he founded in 1999 and which is still going strong today.
Neilly’s latest musical output is the record A Tribute To Stevie Wonder, which features the guitarist alongside many great guest artists, including the virtuosic Greg Howe, paying tribute to one of the greatest songwriters and pianists of the 20th Century. Coming at the project from a guitarist’s perspective, Neilly wanted to provide listener’s with a fresh look at Wonder’s familiar songs, and his mission was definitely accomplished. The album is a tour de force that not only pays tribute to Wonder’s genius as a songwriter, but it also adds new twists and interpretation to songs that we all know and love. Not to mention that the guitar playing on the record is smokin’, definitely a record worth adding to your home library.
Guitar International recently caught up with Vernon Neilly to discuss A Tribute To Stevie Wonder, his time in Brazil, gear and get his thoughts on the music business.
Read the full article at guitarinternational.com.