Interview Done By Mike Wilkerson
MW: Please introduce yourself?
V: My name is Vladdy and I am the lead singer and guitarist for The SixxiS.
MW: Tell me about The SixxiS?
V: Well…its a project that began in 2006 as a college band. I was a
music major, and some of my fellow music major friends and I decided to
get a band together. Since that time, this project has undergone various
member changes as well as style changes, and the music kept on evolving
until we finally got a solid and stable lineup of musicians…we had to go
through what every band goes through as far the little things that
generally break bands up…there were some good lessons learned, and in
the end they were definitely things that only makes you stronger. We are
now a core 3 piece group, but recently, we began adding some more
musicians to our live shows to enhance the sound and power of the
MW: When did The SixxiS get together?
V: We initially got together on June 6th 2006 (06-06-06) which was a
complete coincidence…hence The SixxiS…
MW: Tell me about your new CD?
V: It was tracked at Warner Brothers Studios in Nashville, TN and was
produced by a Grammy Award winning producer, Malcolm Springer. Our sound
went through many transformations before we got introduced to Malcolm, and
the final work that was crafted with him is a good culmination of the
power trio sound that we possess. We definitely get our collective
influence from bands such as Rush, Muse, Soundgarden, Alice in Chains and
System of a Down, and Malcolm helped us hone in on a more powerful sound
like this as opposed to our previous sound which was a bit more eclectic.
He definitely helped us find a solid direction with what we were going
MW: What is the first single from it?
V: The first single from this EP is the first track entitled “Believe”.
Its a track that we all feel is the strongest among what we have recorded.
Each song has its own strengths, but this one embodies the overall power
that we like to display.
MW: Will there be a video?
V: We have a live performance video out on our youtube channel. We shot a
live performance DVD at 12th and Porter in Nashville, TN. The music video
will be out soon as well.
MW: Please describe the sound of SixxiS?
V: Our sound has always been an enigma to those who listened to our music.
Some get it immediately…some think they get it…some dont understand it
at all…People generally have a hard time placing our sound…its not
alternative enough to be alternative…its not progressive enough to be
pure progressive rock…its its own thing. Sure, there are several bands
whose influences can be heard in the music (i.e. Rush, Muse, Soundgarden,
System of a Down) but overall its independent. Our sound is really what
makes us unique. Of all the shows we have played there has always been
that moment where we look out into the crowd and we see a few puzzled
faces…not in a bad way either…we can tell that they are hearing
something new that was not expected…but they like it and cant turn away.
They are intrigued and are trying to figure it out.
Each member has his own influences that define him as a musician, and when
you have several influences (including classical, jazz, gospel, funk, rock
and blues) combined together in a perfect blended balance of sounds, the
outcome is very special. Our sound demands power and emotion. The lyrics
are written as allegories and are never spoon fed. They might mean
something at face value, but contain a deeper meaning within the words.
The sound contains a powerhouse rhythm section, great guitar riffs, a
unique vocal style, and soaring vocal harmonies. Its everything rock and
roll can offer in a very unique and original blend.
MW: What tour do you have coming up?
V: We are the direct support for The Winery Dogs (Mike Portnoy, Billy
Sheehan, and Richie Kotzen) on their European tour in 2013. We are very
pleased and excited to be offered an opportunity like this, and look
forward to every minute of it. This opportunity is any musicians dream
come true…being on the road with such established musicians that are all
about making awesome music and being amazing at their own respective
instruments. They definitely command our respect.
MW: What can we expect from The SixxiS the rest of 2013?
V: After we are done touring, we will be spending the last few months of
2013 working on our full album and its release. We already have the
material to get it done (some of which will be featured on this upcoming
tour), and look forward to finishing the album and begin a new phase of
touring in 2014.
MW: What would you like to say in closing?
V: As a band, we all come from very different races, cultures, religious
affiliations, lifestyles, musical training, and musical tastes, you name
it…its different among all of us in the band. Our individual musical
tastes vary from classical to gospel to jazz fusion to blues and
everything in between. When we are on stage, the live audience is not just
hearing the songs we wrote, but they are experiencing all the individual
traits of every member that makes them who they are, yet blend to form a
cohesive sound that is unlike anyone else’s sound. This is not to say that
its better than anyone else’s sound…but its most certainly different..
We recently toured Germany with Wishbone Ash, and we played many smaller
towns, as well as the bigger ones…but we consistently got strange looks
from the locals there. We asked Wishbone Ash’s tour manager (Holger) about
why we were getting these looks…and the answer we got was that some of
these people have never seen Americans before, and we happened to be the
first ones they see. You could imagine the looks on their faces when they
see a Jewish guy with long hair (fully equipped with a skull cap and “tzitzit”,
which is a special and distinguishable undergarment), a black guy with
dreadlocks, another guy who looks like Russel Brand, and a really tall
white guy with a buzzed hair cut and giant beard walk into a room…and
then go on stage together and make music…people are very curious to know
how this meeting ever happened! These are AMERICANS!?!?!!?! We don’t
necessarily fit the mold of what the non-American world thinks of when
they think “Americans”.
The unity that music offers us is a testament to its power. Again, coming
from different lifestyles, cultures, races, and religious affiliations,
music is the one thing that helps unify all these experiences together and
present them to our listeners as a unique blend. At our live shows, our
fans really do get a first hand glimpse of who we are as individuals, and
how we blend as a cohesive unit.