Eric Gorza started his relationship with music at a young age by listening to his father’s LP records and started his musical journey studying popular guitar at the age of 12 when he had his very first lessons with Fernando Vieira, a well-known jazz guitarist from his hometown – Vitória. Quickly, Eric turned into one of Fernando’s best students, his understanding of rhythm, harmony and melodies were above the average level and in a few years Eric was helping Fernando on his educational concerts where Eric had a chance to play with a band for the first time.
“Since I was young I had this huge passion for music. My mom told me that when I was a kid, like 3 years old, I used to spend a lot of time playing invisible drums, listening to music, pretending to be a DJ, while my friends at the time were all playing soccer or whatever. What a cool/weird kid I was. I guess it took a while for me to understand that I couldn’t do anything with my life except music. I think the city I was born in has a huge influence on why I took many years to actually accept that I want to be an artist/musician. People there are usually conservative and they don’t accept that music can be more than a hobby. But looking back I can tell that I always knew that, I just took a while to accept it.” Says Eric.
Few years later, Eric formed his first original band, Silken Feast. With that band, Eric had the opportunity to play in a lot of small pubs/venues around his city. The band’s best achievement was to play in the biggest venue from Vitoria – ES, called Spirito Jazz, that was a stage for renewed national and international artists. Approximately one year later, Eric decided to quit the group and form another band, called Pelados. With them, he started playing not only in venues but also in festivals. With Pelados, Eric recorded a live videoclip of their first single “Ela é Sexo” which was his very first experience in a professional recording studio. This episode gave him a new overview on the process of creating, producing, recording and sharing music with people.
Eric got really into music prod so he started taking music production classes with Sergio Benevenuto – a latin grammy nominee producer, graduated in the Berklee School of Music (Boston, MA). This experience was important in teaching him better how to apply music theory in a functional and practical way. The classes gave Eric enough knowledge to produce his first Album “Saco Cheio – Pelados”.
At the time, Eric also started to study vocal, having weekly lessons with Alza Alves – a singer from Rio de Janeiro who worked for major artists like Tim Maia, Gilberto Gil, Chico Buarque and Beth Carvalho. This experience too gave him a wider view and contributed to his understanding of the musical universe.
Even living in a small capital that does not care about artistic expression in general – with few opportunities and incentive, Eric put all his effort to be an outstanding musician and, one day, he was invited to enter the surf music group Pura Vida Original. The invitation came along with a call for an emergency rehearsal for a tour in Rio de Janeiro, which was about to start four days after the call. The tour was a success, Eric’s first experience with Pura Vida Original was to play for a huge audience, out of his hometown. According to Eric, that experience was mind blowing.
Since then, Eric has been active as a permanent member of Pura Vida. They made a lot of concerts in Vitória and Rio de Janeiro, playing together with important groups from Brazil (Falamansa – SP, Ponto de Equilíbrio – RJ, Maneva – SP, Armandinho – RS). Pura Vida released one EP (2016), one studio album (2019), 05 videoclips, 05 singles and 01 live concert recorded at the University of Espirito Santo’s Theatre (2019). His work with Pura Vida had definitely opened a lot of doors for him. The opportunity to produce an album with a Latin Grammy winner – Rodolfo Simor opened his mind even more about the music production industry.
Although happy with the progress of Pura Vida and Pelados (that made one original song get into Spotify official playlist “Indie Brasil”), Eric still wanted to take his career to the next level so he moved to Los Angeles to study guitar/audio engineering at Musicians Institute – Hollywood.
“The fact that LA has a very successful story when it comes to artists making it, turns the city into a perfect playground for dreamers. So, the industry here is actually very competitive. Like me, a lot of people come here with a dream and they are willing to do anything to make it true.
The industry in general is super professional and there’s no time for bullshit. You have to be productive, you have to do your best, you have to be professional, otherwise someone is gonna get your position, someone is gonna get the record deal that you wish is yours.” Explains Gorza.
In his first year in Los Angeles, he focused on studying electric guitar. At the end of the first year he realized that his focus should change to sound engineering and musical production because of his passion and also the wider working possibilities in the music industry.
Throughout his two years at this Musicians Institute, Eric got the chance to expand and apply his knowledge as a guitar player – playing in renewed venues like The Hotel Cafe – Hollywood, The Lexicon – Downtown LA; working as a session guitarist for Minna Amanda; musical producer – producing Gabriel Franzese, Steep Gradient and Karlee Shannon; and sound engineering – organizing recording sessions, mixing and mastering songs. He also got a degree in audio engineering from Musicians Institute – Hollywood.
Nowadays he is working as a producer and freelancer recording/mixing engineer. He has been busy working for Thyphoon Music Group (LA/California), Gabriel Franzese’s (D’addario/Music Man endorsed artist), upcoming EP and Zé Maholics’ (brazilian group from Vitória) Quarantine Sessions. He is also still remotely collaborating with Pura Vida Original and Pelados, which changed the band’s name to Rosa Chá. The band just started a partnership with a major radio station from Brazil, Jovem Pan, and the band is working on a brand-new album that will be produced by Rodolfo Simor, Latin Grammy winner producer.
Eric says “although I’m not hitting the stage as much as I used to, I think I’ll keep playing live concerts forever. I never stopped playing. It’s something that I love to do, it brings so many positive things to my soul, it makes me really happy. Since my first concert I realized that it would be a mistake to live a life without playing with a band, in front of people. My goal is to find a perfect balance between production and live concerts. I want to keep working behind the scenes. It’s a very good way to exercise my creativity, collaborate, and make art. A lot of magic happens inside the studio, I love it. At the same time, I want to play live concerts with a band that I have a deep connection with, I want to play something that I think is real, something that I believe in. That would be the best.”
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