Gypsy Queen, the Miami based-rock outfit, is back at last with a groundbreaking new album and a renewed purpose. In a true reunion, the band came together again recently -- and from opposite coasts -- to create a beautiful tribute to their late vocalist, Pamela Mattioli, who tragically and unexpectedly passed away in 2014.
Singing solo in the band she had fronted with her sister was not something Paula Mattioli ever imagined. The overwhelming pain of losing her identical twin became the catalyst that spurred her to start writing again as a way to heal and grieve. Together with guitarist Scotty Migone, the two created 25 songs in just under three days, and that collaboration ultimately led to the reformation of Gypsy Queen and a new album -- and a way to honor Pamela.
Paula Mattioli has always been one of the best female singers in rock. Blessed with that heavy rock, whiskey-tinged sound, her sultry rasp and powerful range still showcases the powerhouse vocals the twins were known for, only this time she's carrying those duties on her own. Scotty Migone, who was dubbed by the European press as "an epileptic bumblebee" because of his frenetic energy onstage and high energy playing style, is every bit the guitar virtuoso. Joey Ojeda brings his signature style with bass lines that were referred to by a British publication as being "so heavy you could hang your leather jacket on them", in addition to adding to the bands melodic sense on keyboards. Kenny Wendland is a colorful and animated drummer who has been likened to a young Keith Moon and can belt out the vocals in his own right. Gypsy Queen were a top draw in and around their home-base of Miami and throughout the Florida club circuit and along the East Coast. However, their popularity really flourished in Europe and other parts of the world.
The band toured all over the globe, from South America to Russia, playing major festivals and venues. Of the current incarnation of Gypsy Queen, Paula says: "It's the same, but different. We're the same band. Gypsy Queen is still hard rocking, but we've grown up. Our sound has grown up. We've lived and lost and survived, and that's real. That comes out in the music. I like to say that we are electric, eclectic and eccentric. We have more flavor now. More facets. Our shows are about energy and emotion, and we're fun. But, we're coming from a place where we've all lived. We're seasoned, but we're not old. All the stuff you go through in life, it comes out in the music." The new music tells the stories of love, loss and heartbreak, pain, anger and awakening. These relatable themes of the messiness of life are wrapped up in music that is intricate and interesting. The songs evoke the emotion and intensity of life that knocks you down, and the resolve of getting back up again. And, oh yes, some rocking, high-energy tunes round out the mix. "Out of suffering, gifts emerge that you didn't even know were there," says Paula. "If you had told me a year ago that we'd be here, I wouldn't have believed it. I feel like I'm back with my family. It feels good. We all just slipped right back into our old roles like no time had passed. And I know that Pam would want this. We’ve all been through so much together. Some of the best times of our lives were with Gypsy Queen. Our Angel Pam is looking down on us, smiling -- because here we go again!”