October 12, 2006
In the Mike business
Teen’s budding career is a family project
By Erica Febre firstname.lastname@example.org
At 16 years old, Mike Testagrossa is making a lifelong commitment to music.
How are his parents reacting to the rock star dream? They’re supporting him 100 percent and coming along for the ride.
Mike’s parents gave him his first guitar for Christmas when he was 10. Now, his practicing sessions and gigs last late into the night.
“We decided to let him play in the clubs and see what it’s all about before making a lifelong commitment to music, which I think he’s pretty much already made. When he comes home from school, from the moment he steps through the door, until about 11 o’clock at night, he’s playing that guitar,” said Dennis Testagrossa, Mike’s dad.
A junior in high school in Hudson, Mike Testagrossa is dedicated not only to guitar but also to his education. He’s involved in almost every music group at his high school and he’s already been accepted to Berklee School of Music.
“Music is everything to me. It means a lot to me. I plan on doing it for the rest of my life. It’s mostly mainstream music that people know but I just kind of change them around a little bit in my own way, to make them more mine. I change chords around, do different variations of chords, and my voice sounds different than the artist who may have originally done the song,” Testagrossa said.
Most venues don’t book untested young performers. But with his dad’s help, Mike Testagrossa has been getting some gigs, including solo acoustic performances at the Nashua Garden. In his shows, he plays the classics from artists such as Stevie Ray Vaughn, Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton as well as more recent songs from Dave Matthews, Matchbox 20 and John Mayer. Always looking to the next project, Testagrossa plans to form his own jazz band.
Mike Testagrossa will play Shorty’s of Nashua, Nashua Mall on Route 3, on Thursday, Oct. 19. For more information on Mike Testagrossa, or to hear tunes, go to myspace.com/miketestagrossa.
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See Tristan Park perform live at their farewell show with two performances at the Tupelo Music Hall, 2 Young Rd in Londonderry. The first show is Saturday, Oct. 14, and will start at 6:30 p.m., followed by another at 9 p.m. To order tickets, call 437-5100 or go online to tupelohall.com. For more information on Tristan Park, visit the Web site at tristanpark.com.