FR: How did you get started playing with the Black Label Society?
Dario: A while back I was playing in the band Lizzie Borden, during a hiatus, we had some mutual friends and management in common and I’d send them (Zakk) some tapes and some videos of my playing; Zakk heard the stuff that I had sent him and he invited me up to California-I went up there and that was pretty much it!
FR: What is the most satisfying aspect about playing with Black Label Society?
Dario: well I enjoy it all; I love being ‘up’ there. Everybody is so cool, strong in what they do...I'm constantly learning something new. We’re like family - I love all of it!
FR: Do you prefer playing onstage or in the studio?
Dario: Nothing compares to the energy of when you’re playing a rock show -definitely the stage. That can’t be topped.
FR: In what would you attribute to your success in your career?
Dario: A mix together of skills, drive, and motivation-with a splash of luck in there. When I was in school as a kid, I always thought, "I'm gonna be a guitar player"; like how some kids say "I'm gonna be a Doctor...or a football player". Being a guitar player was all I thought about. That was the path that led me here. From giving lessons early on to putting a band together - just laying the road to get here brick by brick...
FR: What songs represent the best “Dario” sound or writing statement?
Dario: I have two instrumental albums on Shrapnel records. Both of those express myself as a guitar player. Probably though “ Echoes of a Stone heart“ & “Demon Rum”
FR: How did you get started using Stone Tone products?
Dario: Some years back while I was playing with Janni Layne, I was out at the NAMM trade show where I met Rob DiSanto. I played a granite covered EVH Wolfgang model guitar and that guitar had such a bite - like nothing else! I played that guitar for a long time and it was such fun to play; so that’s how I met Rob…
FR: What is you favorite guitar to play these days?
Dario: The guitar that is most meaningful to me are my Gibson Les Paul and Les Paul Junior. Both of those guitars came from family members. I had that Junior refinished into a killer lime sparkle green. A friend of mine who paints hot rods hung it up in his garage and detailed the back of the neck as well, and I played that guitars on this past tour with BLS...
FR: Tell us about your Floyds...
Dario: I’ve always had a Floyd somewhere from the beginning with my guitars -always live and always in the studio. When I do my lead work, “it” always has a Floyd on them. When you need that extra flavor "it" always gives it to you. A Floyd Rose Trem has always been in my arsenal!!
FR: Is there one piece of go-to electronic piece of gear in your rig that you feel is a “must have”?
Dario: Yeah - an overdrive pedal!! Not a distortion pedal but an overdrive ... I’ve been using the Seymour Duncan 805 for a long time…since it came out. With Zakk I've always used his signature overdrive pedal. They’re in the same park. The key is having an overdrive in front of my amp pushing the signal into the head. I feel like that is a pretty vital part for me.
FR: What’s coming up for you as a solo artist or for Black Label Society?
Dario: Well we just finished up a long tour for this year. The rest of this year Zakk is doing a bunch of Ozzy stuff, and I’ll be doing a couple different things: I’m working on a new solo album which I’ll be singing on. It will be more than just an instrumental release. BLS will be coming out on tour at the beginning of next year...lots of great stuff comin' up!