The Metal Asylum Talks To……….BODYGUERRA!

Can you tell us about the origin of the band name, a history of the band and a little bit about the various members?

Guido: The band`s name has a story behind. I used to do baroque horse riding and historical fencing. It started on the island of Mallorca. A friend of mine has a stable overthere. I took lesson on a Spanish mare called ´Bodegera` , which is the name of a lady selling wine in a wine shop, the ´Bodega`. There used to be a list of all horses and this name was written wrongly ´Body-guerra`. I had no clue about the meaning, but it sounded good to me. So I kept it in my mind and a few years later the band had it´s name.

The band was founded around 2010. I got in contact to an old school mate of mine, the former singer Daniel Seebass.  We used to play in our very first band, he was 11 and I 12 years old, doing cover versions from Deep Purple, Rainbow, Whitesnake, Saxon, Priest, you know, all these great british bands that had a huge impact on my songwriting. When Daniel and I got in touch together again, we wrote ´Freddy…nothing as it seems`, a concept album about the infamous Dr. Shipman, which was released in 2013. We had a lot of line up changes, so in the end I decided to call it Guido Stoecker´s Bodyguerra, as I was the only constant member. In 2018 we toured with the Graham Bonnet Band in Europe, which was absolutely great. My first rock show was Rainbow for the Down to Earth album. And many years later I toured with the singer. Great feeling, great memory. After that I got in touch with Ela. She took over the management first, later she became the singer. She got her vocal education degree in London. We were supposed to tour with David Reece, at least due to the pandemic, everything got cancelled. So Ela and I wrote ´Fire & Soul`, which went very easy. I am always writing and recording music. So I took a bunch of ideas to Ela and the first day we created ´Stay Free`, ´Breakout` and ´Steelheart`. The next day ´Fire & Soul` followed. We had a great creative flow.

Are you all from the same area? How did you get together as a band?

No, we are from different areas. Ela is from Northgermany, near Hamburg, the bassplayer Danij Perl is currently living in Switzerland, the drummer Hanno Kerstan is from Duisburg/Ruhrgebiet and I live close to the border of the Netherlands. As the band already existed and had a history, Danij was recommended by a friend of Ela, and he recommended Hanno. They are all experienced musicians, they did recordings, they did touring. So you don´t need to explain the rules. It works very well.

Who are your favourite artists/bands and how have they influenced your own sound?

When I was a young kid, I was a real Blackmore fan. I heard ´Smoke on the water` from Made in Japan and that was a kickstart that lasts till today. I really love the musicianship of bands like Deep Purple, they needed to work under tremendous pressure and created tons of hits. You know this Black Night story? They had In Rock out and the management told them to write a single, the studio was booked for the next day. They had to deliver. I have big respect for them. My guitar sound was hughly influenced by these recordings. My favourite sound is on the Made in Europe album. I like this big, straight in your face, powerful but clear guitar tone. It´s loud ofc., but RocknRoll has to be loud. It is a feeling, an attitude, not just listening to music. This attitude is important to me. I believe in being authentic as an artist, I mean every note that I play. This is what I got from players like Blackmore, Hendrix, Van Halen, Stevie Ray, Yngwie, Uli Jon Roth etc etc. I know that Ela thinks alike.

Did you always have the ambition to be a musician and in a band or did you originally have other plans?

When I started playing around 1976 as a young kid, I painted posters for my first band. The band was called ´Rising`, ofc by the Rainbow Rising album. Painting big logos, tons of Marshall amps. So the wish to become a musician was very deep from a very early point in my life. I did a ´normal` education too, I am an industrial clerk too, but it did not last very long.

What songs or albums are on your current playlist?

Ela: The Jack – AC/DC, Proud Mary – Tina Turner, Thunderstruck – AC/DC, Jailhouse Rock – Elvis, Little Sister – Elvis, Soldier Of Heaven – Sabaton, The Light & Down With The Sickness – Disturbed

Gudio: I love the last Whitesnake album ´Flesh & Blood`, Deep Purple –Made in Europe, Rainbow – On Stage, Judas Priest – No Surrender, Deal With The Devil, Five Finger Death Punch – Blue on Black, Queen – I Want It All, Disturbed – The Vengeful One

Do you sing in the shower?

Ela: Yes, I sing everywhere

Guido: No, you don´t wanna hear that. And what I do under the shower is kept secret…..

Do you have any plans for the band for this year and into next year?

As so many bands we try to play shows, which is not easy, as so many shows that were delayed since 2020 are going to happen now. So we are working on that. At the end of the year or beginning next year, we will go back into the studio for the next album. But there is no concrete date yet.

Do you currently have any new songs/albums ready to be released?

We are writing. We are always writing songs and choose those songs that would fit into one album. That´s part of our daily work in the moment. Studiorecordings will be later this year or beginning next year. For now we are promoting `Fire & Soul`.

If you could play at any venue in the world where would you choose?

Ela: Hyde Park in London !!!!!

Guido: Yeah, Hyde Park would be a dream come true. And the London Hammersmith. That´s a venue with a certain image. Whitesnake´s Live in the heart of the city was recorded there, and ofc No sleep till Hammersmith by Motörhead. I still have the vinyl of these records. So these two are on top of the list for me.

Do you have a favourite album? If so, what is it?

Bodyguerra “Fire&Soul”, Elvis – No. 1 Hits, AC/DC – Black in Black, The War To End All Wars – Sabaton, Immortalized – Disturbed

Guido: The Deep Purple catalogue, Rainbow – Long Live RocknRoll, Whitesnake – The Purple album, Yngwie Malmsteen – Rising Force, Uli Jon Roth – Scorpions Revisted

Do you have any guilty pleasure songs/albums?

Ela: Yes sure, Guido has an album by Bata Illic, tjaaa hahahaha J

Guido: Don´t google that…….

If you were putting together the greatest show on earth, who would be playing?

Ela: Elvis Presley, Janis Joplin, Tina Turner, AC/DC, Queen, Bruce Springsteen, Disturbed,  Iron Maiden, Rolling Stones, Heart, Bodyguerra

Guido: That lineup has my permission…..

Can you remember the first album you bought with your own money? What was it and do you still have it?

Ela: I was 13 years old, and I bought my first LP from Shakin Stevens “Shaky” which unfortunately I no longer have.

Guido: Yeah ofc, 24 carat purple, I still have it

As your fans will be reading this, is there any message you would like to send out to them?

Ela: Ohhhh yes, never forget where you come from, never let yourself be defeated, live your life the way you want it and don’t let it dictate to you, enjoy it and stay correct, then I look forward to each of you.

Guido: I believe in destiny, which does not kill you makes you stronger, you have the key for your life, use it and make decisions, be respectful but don´t let anybody take you down, and never listen to nonsayers, they only wanna see you fail.

Finally, let us know all your social media sites so your fans, old and new, can find and follow/like you!

Ela: You will find me on Instagram and Facebook by Ela Sturm

Guido: On fb Guido Stoecker (Sixstringstoecker) or under Bodyguerra on fb and Instagram.

We, at The Metal Asylum, would like to thank you for your time. Is there is anything further that you would like to add?

Guido: Thanks for talking, it was a pleasure to be here. Be safe and fine and don´t let anybody make you afraid. And keep up the good work at The Metal Asylum.

Ela: Tschö mit Ö

This interview is purely the property of The Metal Asylum

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