Interview with Erik Himel from Made in America – Playing November 16, 2013 at the Viper Room

Made in America has their new EP out and is playing a show with Hillbilly Herald this Saturday at The Viper Room.


HMH caught up with Erik to do a second interview with him to get updates about him and his band.  

Your guitar pics are incredibly thick – when did you start using such a heavy pic?  

Those are all my signature picks from InTuneGP and they are 1.44mm… they make the best custom picks in the business, I am getting new ones made for MADE IN AMERICA, they are going to have our logo on the back — the eagle!!!

Made in America just released a new EP and now you have a show coming up at The Viper Room. This show will feature the debut of your new CO-GUITARIST, Sam Koltun. I checked out what I could about Sam online and it seems like he’s pretty young. What’s his background and what can we expect from the show?

It’s the first show with the new guitarist Sam and we are working out a double lead guitar thing for most of the tunes… like a KK Downing/Glenn Tipton thing from Priest?   So we have that and the “we‘re getting some shows under our belt” sort of vibe.    It’s the Viper Room so it will be fun…   I always love playing there.  Dave and I wrote a new song called “In Rock We Trust” that we are playing live for the first time as well as adding an older song from Dave called “Snowblind”, which is a heavy, heavy tune.

What first got you interested in playing guitar?  

Sports or music – the choice is obvious.

How did you learn?  Were you self-taught or did you take lessons?

I am mainly self taught, I did some lessons early on but it just wasn’t doing it for me!

Who are your 5 favorite guitar players?

Rick Nielsen, Glen Buxton, Marc Bolan, Keith Richards, Angus Young

And your 5 favorite bands?

Stones, Alice Cooper, Cheap Trick, T-Rex & Guns-N-Roses

What was your favorite gig?

The Playboy Mansion when I was touring with electronica artist JES… what I remember of it!!!    Thankfully, there are bunch of photos to help piece together my night!

What was your favorite concert?

Seeing Alice Cooper at the Whisky was awesome — to see a legend in such a small venue!

How about your main guitars?
I’m using all Gibsons for the MADE IN AMERICA stuff… 57 Goldtop, 08 Standard and 11 SG

And your favorite piece of gear?

My tuner!

Want to talk about the jam sessions at Lucy’s 51 in Toluca Lake??

It’s great because it gives people the chance to jam with the real pros in the business! I always wanted to jam with Kenny Aronoff — the guy is a monster drummer!!!

(Erik was featured in Blabbermouth jamming early on in the summer jamming with the all-star house band)

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