Nita Strauss, known for her work as a touring guitarist for Alice Cooper and Demi Lovato, discussed the use of the term “guitar shredder,” or just “shredder,” in a negative context. Strauss, who’s currently promoting her new solo record “The Call of the Void,” is often associated with faster “shreddier” guitar playing.
Speaking to Music Radar in a recent interview, Strauss said that she’s not bothered by that term. In fact, she sees it as a compliment, no matter what the commenter was aiming for. Asked on the matter, Nita said:
“I like it. Give me the shred term all day long. Yeah, I don’t see the value in belittling anybody’s vibe. Whether you are down-talking people that play more straightforward rock riffs or if you’re talking about someone playing over-the-top fast stuff, they’re art forms. Art is subjective.”
Of course, music is an art form and things get pretty subjective. As far as playing fast and
“I know the debate you are talking about, about shred being a dirty word, but who cares? If someone wants to play fast, let them play fast. If someone wants to play slow and melodic, let them play slow and melodic. There is no wrong way to make art.”
During the chat, Nita also reflected on former Megadeth guitar player Marty Friedman appearing on her album “The Call of the Void.” Friedman appeared on the closing track of the album, titled “Surfacing.” Looking back on this piece that they did together, Strauss said:
“Marty was so meticulous on the song that we did together. I have a tendency to be a bit slap-dash with stuff, like I take my time with it but I don’t go back and re-do and re-do and re-do it. If it’s good, I can move on from it. And Marty really took a lot of time with every detail.”
She also added:
“Marty was like, ‘Hey, well you’re playing this note here, I think we should bend on that note there because it leads on better to what I’m playing on the next phrase. That sort of thing. It was really an honor, truly an honour, to get feedback from somebody I have looked up to my entire guitar-playing career.”
In another recent interview, Nita Strauss also discussed some of the criticism she sometimes gets online for her playing and original music. As she explained, there’s actually one song from this new album that she dedicated to all the online trolls:
“I wrote a song about it. There’s a song about it on [my upcoming] record [‘Call Of The Void’] called ‘Digital Bullets’ with [guest singer] Chris Motionless [of Motionless in White]. And it really talks about these trolls online firing the ‘digital bullets’.”
The song came out before the album’s official release date and also came with an animated music video which you can check out below.
“They’ll never come to you to your face and say, ‘You suck,’ ‘You whore,’ ‘You money-grubbing whore,’ or whatever. No one has ever said that to my face, but you go on social media and it’s, like, ‘I hope you die in a fire.’ [Laughs] It’s just people being tough on the Internet. It’s not new. It’s not going away.”
In fact, these comments often felt “hurtful” to her. Nonetheless, Nita found a way to deal with them:
“My boyfriend said it to me personally one time… And it was hurtful — I can’t lie and say that it was not hurtful. Of course it was hurtful. But he said, ‘You know, no one’s coming and spitting on your face in the street. People aren’t coming to you, being rude to you. It’s just fake. It’s just online.’”
“People will talk online. And they have a saying, ‘Living well is the best revenge.’ So those people can keep spending their time on Facebook, talking their shit.”
“I will keep touring the world, eating fabulous food, staying in nice hotels, playing guitar with some of the biggest stars in rock and pop and metal. And I think that’s a good compromise. I’m happy with that. [Laughs]”
Nita Strauss’ new album “The Call of the Void” came out on July 7, 2023. With a total of 14 pieces, it features an all-star lineup of guests. Aside from Marty Friedman, we can also find Alice Cooper, Alissa White-Gluz of Arch Enemy, Chris Motionless of Motionless in White, Lzzy Hale of Halestorm, Dorothy, David Draiman of Disturbed, Anders Fridén of In Flames, and Lilith Czar.
The digital edition of the album, however, also comes with a total of eight new instrumentals as well.