College musician takes her ‘Act’ north
Story by Jake Kaiser
Annabella Gelmetti is a second year student at CCC and is the lead singer and guitarist of her band, The Act.
The Clackamas Print: How long have you been playing music?
Annabella Gelmetti: I started playing music when I was five years old. I took guitar lessons and my guitar teacher Tim Uker would sing and play guitar so I was really influenced by that. He was a really big Bob Dylan fan, and I never really listened to Bob Dylan, but I’ve still got that inherent Bob Dylan influence stuck in me for the storytelling.
TCP: Other than guitar, what instruments do you play?
Gelmetti: I play saxophone, the soprano, and alto saxophone. And then I play the piano.
TCP: Are there any instruments you want to learn how to play?
Gelmetti: There are so many, and I know my mom would smite me if I came home with any more instruments. But, I would want to learn how to play the harp. I love the harp.
TCP: How old were you when you wrote your first song?
Gelmetti: I was seven, it was like a three-chord song. And I was like, “I’m gonna be a rock musician.” But I think the first song that was like, ok this is a game changer, I wrote a song called “Consequences” when I was 10 years old, and “Consequences” was really representative of life-altering things that were happening in my family life. Still to this day my mother will bring up and say, “I think you really channeled something there, and God was involved in that
TCP: Were you ever in a high school music program?
Gelmetti: I was always drawn to instrumental music, so I’ve been in band since fifth grade, and that’s when I started playing the saxophone. I was in the Jazz band all through high school, and I joined the CCC jazz band and I play the first alto. Tyrus plays drums in the jazz band, and Carson plays bass in the jazz band, and Raine played Trumpet in the jazz band at one point.
TCP: Who influences your music the most?
Gelmetti: I would say we’re influenced by a variety of jazz, folk and funk music. We all have such different backgrounds but what I love about us is that we don’t really sound like anybody.
TCP:Do have any cultural musical influences? Like Indonesian music or Cuban music?
Gelmetti: I would say Tyrus Friedstrom, our drummer, he is really into Afro-Cuban. And I would say for me, I got into salsa for a while.
TCP: Were you influenced by anyone who plays music in your family?
Gelmetti: My dad has been playing in a lot of bands. I mean he’s probably been in five different bands since I was born, and before that, I can’t even put a number to it. I remember hearing my dad and his band practicing in the basement and think my dad is a rockstar. I would even go to school and tell everybody “My dad is a rockstar and I’m gonna be a rockstar.”
TCP: When did you decide that you wanted to play music professionally?
Gelmetti: I feel like I’ve always known it, like the minute I started writing music, I felt like ok this is something no one can take away from me, and I feel that it’s important that everybody has something like that in their life, that one talent that nobody can take away from you.
TCP: How long have you and your band been together?
Gelmetti: We formed in December 2018.
TCP: What would you say is your favorite venue to play at?
Gelmetti: I would say the Brickhouse Bar & Grill in Vancouver has been the kindest to us. We’ve played there a lot, this will be out fourth show coming up on Nov. 6, and that will be our release, since our first show as a band was there we’ll be having our release show there.
TCP: Who would you personally say is your favorite artist or group?
Gelmetti: I would say right now Lianne La Havis, she’s alternative, I really love her music. But like all-time favorite musician in the world is David Bowie.
To see more of Annabella and The Act, be sure to go see The Act on November 6, at the Brickhouse Bar & Grill at 8 p.m. It’s an all ages show with free entry. You can find other shows on their Facebook page at The Act, and their website at tiny.cc/theactpdx.