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Rata Blanca Biography

Last updated: 03/25/2003 01:56:08 AM

During 1985, after his brief participation on the band V8, Walter Giardino (guitar player influenced by Ritchie Blackmore, Deep Purple, and also Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Pink Floyd, J. S. Bach, A. Vivaldi, N. Paganini, W. A. Mozart, L. V. Beethoven...) decieded to do a demo tape to send it to the Abbey Road Studios (England) and try to move from Argentina to England. He had help from Gustavo Rowek (drums), Rodolfo Cava (vocals), and Yulie Ruth (bass), Rodolfo and Yulie were with another band at the same time, they just helped Walter to do the demo tape.

The result was a 4-songs demo, but Walter liked it a lot, so he decieded to stay in Argentina and see what could happend with that band. He wanted to find exactly the sound that he like, for that reason the band was rehearsing 2 years before his first concert on August,1987 playing for 600 people.

In 1988 Rata Blanca released his first album "Rata Blanca" featuring Walter Giardino (lead guitar), Gustavo Rowek (drums), Guillermo Sanchez (bass), Saul Blanch (vocals), and Sergio Berdichevsky (rhythm guitar). With 2 singles, El sueño de la gitana (gypsy woman's dream) and Chico callejero (Child from the Street), and 2 instrumental songs, one of them called Preludio Obsesivo (Obsesive prelude) that took Walter Giardino to the top of the latin american guitar players. The record label (Polydor) told that they have to sell at least 4000 album on a year to release a second album. They sold 4000 copies in 6 months and at the half of 1989 they reach 12.000, but Saul Blanch decieded to left the band.

Adrian Barilari took Saul's place as vocalist and Hugo Bistolfi joined the band on keyboards. With Mark II Rata Blanca had his best moments. In 1990 the band released their 2nd album called "Magos, espadas y rosas" (magicians, swords and roses) They introduced the album and then play as opening act for Ian Gillan's band and in front of more than 5000 people. This album includes his inmortal, powerful, and well-known epic-romantic story, La leyenda del hada y el mago (the legend of the fairy and the magician)And his very popular ballad, Mujer amante (Lover woman) With this album they sold more than 1.000.000 copies all over latin america, Mexico, and Spain.

During 1991 they released their 3rd album called "Guerrero del Arco Iris" (Rainbow warrior) making tribute to Greenpeace's sunk ship. With songs like,Guerrero del arco iris (Rainbow warrior)and Los ojos del dragon (Dragon's eyes). They introduced this album at Velez Sarsfield Stadium, performing to more than 30.000 people. This concert is reminded as the biggest heavy metal concert ever made for a local band.

Touring for 2nd time all over Argentina they ended that tour playing 3 nights at the Opera Theatre in Buenos Aires with a chamber orchestra recording a live album but no released until 1996. In 1992 they went touring all over South America, Mexico, and played at the Whiskey a Go Go in Los Angeles, USA.

In 1993 they went touring Portugal and Spain, and during his staying on Spain they recorded their 4th album, now under BMG company, called "El Libro Oculto" (The hidden book) a 5-song EP with songs like Asesinos (Assasins) and Agord, la bruja (Agord, the witch). At the end of that tour Hugo Bistolfi and Adrian Barilari decieded to left the band. Hugo Bistolfi is replaced by Javier Retamozo and they introduced the album at Buenos Aires' Obras Stadium, after that show Adrian Barilari left the band.

Adrian Barilari and Hugo Bistolfi formed a band together called Alianza (Alliance) and they released 3 albums Sueños del Mundo (World's Dreams) on 1994 Alianza (Alliance) on 1997 and Huellas (Traces) on 1999 In Argentina with Walter Giardino (band leader, productor, composer, and foundator) but without his star singer, Rata Blanca start losing popularity.

With Mario Ian replacing Adrian Barilari, things would never be the same. On 1994 while touring again through Mexico, Los Angeles and Spain, they recorded at Spain their 5th album called "Entre el cielo y el infierno" (Between heaven and hell) (Also with BMG label) With a notorius more heavier style, the album includes songs like, Jerusalen (Jerusalen), Bajo Control (Under Control), and Sombra inerte del amor (Inert shadow of love) Introducing this album with a latin-american tour they play at the Mosnters of Rock on Sao Paolo, Brazil, sharing stage with Megadeth, Alice Cooper, Therapy?, and Ozzy Osbourne, performing for more than 100.000 people.

While being successfull on another countries, in Argentina no newspaper, channel television, or radio station said anything about them, so most of people (not including their really fans, obviously) started to forget Rata Blanca. During 1996, they released a live album called "En vivo en Buenos Aires" (Alive in Buenos Aires) Which includes songs like, Quiza empiece otra vez (Maybe I'll start again)(from Guerrero del arco iris), Solo para amarte (Just for loving you) (from Rata Blanca 1988), and a new band version of Preludio Obsesivo with the chamber orchestra, and begining with a new intrumental song called Capricho Arabe (Arabian caprice) This album is played by Mark II with Adrian Barilari and Hugo Bistolfi because it was recorded at 1992.

During 1996 Mario Ian left the band because his problems with Walter Giardino. Gustavo Rowek and Sergio Berdichevsky wanted to left too but Walter Giardino convinced them to do a new album and see what could happend. After doing a casting for more-than 100 singers, Gabriel Marian joined Rata Blanca and during 1997 they released their 7th album called "Rata Blanca VII". Including songs like,Madame X, Rey de la revolucion (King of the revolution), and La historia de un muchacho (The story of a guy) It was introduced performing 2 nights at Astral Theatre in Buenos Aires but the album didn't have enough promotion.

During April 1998 Walter Giardino announced their broke-up. Gustavo Rowek and Sergio Berdichevsky formed a band together called Nativo (Native) with a more new metal sound, they released their 1st album on 1999 called Consumo (Consumation), and the 2nd one called Futuro (Future) in 2001.

Walter Giardino went on a solo career. At the end of December 1998 Walter Giardino introduced Walter Giardino Temple, his 1st solo album. Playing all over Argentina during 1999 he ended the year playing at the Coliseum Theatre with Glenn Hughes (playing Deep Purple's "Burn" together at the end of the show) After this conocert, his singer, bassist, and keyboardist left Giardino's solo band to do their own band. With Fernando Scarcella as drummer he reformed his solo band with Daniel Leonetti on bass, and Miguel De Ipolla on keyboard, and after 9 months, they played again during August 2000, but now with Adrian Barilari as guest vocalist on Temple.

More than 5000 people went to the concert in a place that just allows 2500. After 7 years they were sharing a stage again, and between Temple's songs they played 4 Rata Blanca' songs, Chico Callejero (street child), Dias Duros (Hard days), a new, emotive, and incredible acoustic version of his well-known ballad Mujer Amante (Lover woman), and they ended the show with Rata Blanca's inmortal song La Leyenda del Hada y el Mago (The legend of the fairy and the magician).

After that night the new bass player left Giardino's band and people started to ask about a Rata Blanca's reunion. On September 2nd they had to play on Bolivia, Giardino called Guillermo Sanchez to play bass. That was the first concert on 3 years under the name of Rata Blanca. When they came back to Buenos Aires Hugo Bistolfi joined again the band on keyboards but Gustavo Rowek and Sergio Berdichevsky refused to come back.

As a quintet (with just 1 guitar and Fernando Scacella on drums), with 4 of 6 members of the Mark II, the Mark V went touring South America and 17 concerts at Mexico On December 19 2000, Rata Blanca played on Buenos Aires as first time in 3 years, and they released a greatest hits album called Grandes Canciones (Greatest Songs) released also at Spain, Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia and Japan including the acoustic version of Mujer Amante (lover woman) recorded at studio. After that show they continued playing all over Latin America and Spain for a year and a half.

In April 2002 they recorded the first Rata Blanca's new album in 5 years. The album is called "El Camino del Fuego" (The Path of the Fire) and is going to be released the 1st monday of June 2002 wich is going to be introduced with another tour...

... The legend continues and the story still has to be written...