Christina LaRocca
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Christina LaRocca

Astoria, New York, United States

Astoria, New York, United States
R&B Soul

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"Local Noise: Christina LaRocca"

Christina LaRocca calls herself a confused New Yorker, owing to the fact that she was born in Brooklyn, raised in Staten Island and now calls Astoria home. Confused though she may be, she has a definite handle on her musical career, with a new album called I Stand Tall With My Eyes Wide Open, just out through LRock Entertainment.

Christina has been performing around the area since 2006, both on her own and with the band Heavy Weather. She’s hit prestigious venues such as the Rockwood Music Hall, the Knitting Factory and the Bitter End, as well as numerous others, both large and small. Her musical style encapsulates a variety of styles, but she gives it all her own unique flair. “It’s Rihanna meets KT Tunstall with a heavier R&B sound, and a New York attitude,” is how she describes it. “It has an old school, radio friendly pop sound, with an intellectual folk twist all while being soaked in soul, trying to think outside the grid.”

Influences such as Amy Winehouse, Janis Joplin, Aretha Franklin, Lauryn Hill and Fiona Apple inspire Christina, who has an affinity for what she calls “real women that sing from the gut.” But she also loves bands such as Incubus, the Foo Fighters and The Black Keys.

For the title of the new CD, Christina’s inspiration came from one of the songs. “It’s the first line of track 10 on my new album, ‘Early Is The End,’” she says. “In life you are going to deal with people that don’t agree with everything you’ve done or are going to do. Well, if someone is giving you grief about who you are, or what you are doing, don’t let them knock you down. As long as you aren’t hurting anyone or yourself, you should always remember to stand tall, keep your head up, and your eyes off the floor.”

The album was produced in a basement studio, The House of Dreams, in association with Josh Glazer at J Glaze Productions. Christina played guitar and handled all the vocals, while Josh, affectionately known as “Glaze,” handled trumpet and beats. There were some other guests who contributed as well. “Playing this album live is a completely different story,” Christina states. “At the moment, my guitar player and most trusted capo regime is singer/songwriter Satchel Jones. On keys, Aussie keyboardist Jackson Twain. Rockin’ the bass is the lovely Caitlin Gray. On drums and security, Sean Pokress. Singing backup is rapper/singer, and my consigliore, Kat Pac. What, you’ve never seen the Godfather? What’s the matter with you!”

Along with Satchel, Christina works at the club Wicked Willy’s on Bleecker Street, both booking live music and performing there herself. It allows her to often join in with other artists, including Satchel’s band, who have an eclectic sound, melding Bob Dylan and Flava Flav. She also has a history with the other musicians in her band. “Jackson was also in Heavy Weather, and has been playing with me for years,” she explains. “Even though he likes to waste the band funds on whiskey, I forgive him because he’s so badass on the keys. I have had a rotating crew of drummers, including Elliot Jacobson who plays for Ingrid Michaelson, and bass players and singers that join in on shows. Basically, after working at Wicked Willy’s since 2006, it has become the breeding ground for how I’ve met the members of my band. Sean, my drummer, used to be a bouncer there, and Caitlin is a regular bass player for many of the bands that come through, including Satchel’s. It’s kind of incestuous, but awesome. When we get on stage and everyone knows each other’s songs. Then even better when we have poker parties and were all just singing and passing guitars around, drinking and having fun. I think it’s important to be friends with the people you play music with.”

Initial reaction to the new album has been extremely positive. With a varied sound, it has songs that speak to different people in different ways, which is something that Christina is happy about, rather than have one song that stands above the rest. Two that have turned out to be particular favorites are “Freddie” and “Silver Bullets.”

Christina plans on going to the SXSW conference later this year, and doing some touring in the South. She also hopes to record acoustic versions of some of the tracks. But whatever the future holds, she knows she will be keeping busy. “As well as being a musician, I own a booking agency called L Rock Entertainment,” she says. “This year we hosted CMJ events, and I currently book several venues. It isn’t easy doing both, but though I’m tired, I love it all. I want to eventually not only write music for myself, but take it to the next level and write for artists that have hits on the radio. I am also honing in on my guitar skills, I want to be able to shred like Slash!”

For further information about Christina and the new CD, check out christinalaroccamusic.com, facebook.com/christinalaroccamusic, and lrockthepartybooking.com.
- by Hal B. Selzer, January 18, 2012


"Marathoner Mike Day 2: Christina LaRocca, Netherfirends, Lisa Bianco, Automatic Children"

Day number two finds me in the Caribbean-themed frat bar Wicked Willy’s. I’m not entirely sure how I ended up here, but I had heard a bunch of artists were playing stripped down sets without their bands, and this wasn’t something you get to see a lot of at CMJ.

First up was Christina LaRocca. A Brooklyn staple with powerhouse pipes. Backed only by partner Satchel Jones, she projects a warm R&B flavor either when singing in French, or when covering classics like ‘Ring of Fire.’
- Deli Magazine


"Marathoner Mike Day 2: Christina LaRocca, Netherfirends, Lisa Bianco, Automatic Children"

Day number two finds me in the Caribbean-themed frat bar Wicked Willy’s. I’m not entirely sure how I ended up here, but I had heard a bunch of artists were playing stripped down sets without their bands, and this wasn’t something you get to see a lot of at CMJ.

First up was Christina LaRocca. A Brooklyn staple with powerhouse pipes. Backed only by partner Satchel Jones, she projects a warm R&B flavor either when singing in French, or when covering classics like ‘Ring of Fire.’
- Deli Magazine


"Staten Island’s Christina LaRocca goes solo with ‘I Stand Tall with My Eyes Wide Open’"

STATEN ISLAND, NY — After five years of Heavy Weather, the forecast appears crystal clear for Christina LaRocca.

Since ending a stormy collaboration with her aforementioned jam-funk band — a popular, steady presence on stages around Staten Island and the tri-state region — the singer-songwriter with a powerful belt is going her own way.

LaRocca’s first solo recording, “I Stand Tall with My Eyes Wide Open,” will be released Tuesday on iTunes, Amazon, eMusic — and everywhere else. AWE scored an advance preview of 10 tracks — and we’re please to report they are rock solid; making good use of her LaRocca’s flexible voice and increasingly mature lyrical skills.

Our favorites on first listen: The soulfully horny (in all senses of the word) “Freddie” and bass-driven club-thumper “Call Your Name.” On the other end of the aural spectrum, “Early is the End” and “Tonight” are languid, beautifully restrained pleasures.

Hear them for yourselves and Oct. 22 at Wicked Willy’s in Greenwich Village. Mention LaRocca at the door to score a free download card of the album.

Now, not to dwell in the past, but LaRocca served triple duty as artist, booking agent and manager for Heavy Weather. It’s hard not to speculate: Did a cold front of ego precipitate Heavy Weather’s demise?

“No, I’m pretty sad, actually, cause I love those guys — it was the first band I ever played in” says the raven-haired 26-year-old Wagner College grad, who grew up in New Springville and Great Kills. “Everything I learned about the music industry was with them. I traveled with them and wrote music with them. I was definitely a little nervous, and wondering ‘How am I going to do this all again?’”

The self-proclaimed “crazy workaholic” offered this final word on the band’s breakup: “They are super talented. We all just started to grow in different directions artistically. I still miss them.”


Recently relocated to Astoria (her parents reside in Annadale), LaRocca is now collaborating with new musicians and Josh Glaze of J. Glaze Productions.

“This was a two-year process and really, for first time, I felt that this was me,” says LaRocca. “Josh really was able to understand my style and what I was going for; translating it so beautifully that I’m really excited by this record.”

LaRocca released “I Stand Tall with My Eyes Wide Open” on her own indie label, LRock Entertainment, which also doubles as a booking agency for acts around NYC. There are traces of Heavy Weather funk and soul in her new sound, with much more of an modern ear.
AWE Christina LaRoccaCD.jpgThe new recording, out Tuesday everywhere

“It’s Rihanna meets KT Tunstall with a heavier R&B sound,” LaRocca says. “It still has that old school feeling but it’s more radio-friendly pop with an intellectual folk twist. “

But wait. Don’t be scared off by all this talk of original music. LaRocca and her new crew still crank out plenty of comforting covers for more conservative live music lovers.

“We definitely do both — you have to for paying gigs unless you really have a large following that will pay $10-plus every time you do a show,” says LaRocca, who recently played Play Sports Bar in Annadale. “And I’ve found, to get that reaction from folks with originals, you can’t play every week. If you love music and wanna play every week, you do covers.”

The biggest difference from the Heavy Weather days of playing the dearly departed Martini Red (“That was the joint where I hung out and where I learned how to do what I do”) in Stapleton?

“Now I’m doing more songs that I love. With this group, I’m able to have more of an opinion without getting a hard time from anybody. Like, ‘Let’s try this song! No, I don’t want to do Katy Perry or an obscure blues song from 1975’ (laughing softly).

“I’m enjoying it.” - Rob Bailey- SI Advance


"David Sonenberg Quote"

"Sophisticated & talented" – David Sonenberg, DAS Ventures (Manager of Black Eyed Peas, Disco Biscuits and The Fugees)


- David Sonenberg, DAS Ventures (Manager of Black Eyed Peas, Disco Biscuits and The Fugees)


"Brooklyn is Back"

“Heavy Weather closed out the evening with a performance not to be forgotten. Their lead female vocalist captured the audience with her soulful and perfectly pitched voice. They had excellent compositions aided by instrumentalist of the finest quality. Unique to the other bands they had a percussionist who not only played the djembe, but also used his feet to keep beat with a tambourine. They closed out the evening with a funk reggae vibe as they slipped into the next round of Emergenza shows this winter.” (September 30th, 2006)

-Sophie Creole, writer for the Emergenza Festival

You can find this article at:

http://www.emergenza.net/document/news/news.asp?id=2220
- Sophie Creole, writer for the Emergenza Festival


"100% chance of funk"

Posted by A W E May 31, 2007 05:20
Entertainment - Music Index Print | Email

By BEN JOHNSON

...Heavy Weather is always getting wet.

When it came time to play its first gig last winter at Greenwich Village staple The Bitter End, the Staten Island quintet got caught in a snow storm. Of the five gigs after that, three were rainy, blustery nights, and the band claims it's been pretty much the same way since.

Instead of being discouraged, though, Heavy Weather's members chose to take their name from their environment, turning the curse into a charm.

"If the weather's good, we get worried," says bassist Dave Demarzio, 23, of Dongan Hills. "Now, it's got to be bad weather for the show to go well," chuckles percussionist Dorian Lake, 26, of Stapleton.

Pray for rain when Heavy Weather heads over the Verrazano Bridge Saturday, to compete in the third round of the Emergenza Music Festival at The Hook.

The grove-oriented band scored first place in the first two battles of the competition, and with some more practicing and gigging under their belts, the band members hope to again emerge victorious this weekend. If they move into the final rounds of the competition, they could win everything from new equipment to choice slots at international festivals and all-expense paid tours.

Considering they might never have formed at all, that's a pretty good forecast.

"I was solo for a few years," says Christina LaRocca, 22, who graduated from Wagner College in 2006, where she'd been a self-described "choir dork." "Then I met the guitar player and he asked me if I wanted to start a band. At first I said no. I thought he just wanted to be a cover band, and I wanted to write my own music."

Luckily, LaRocca discovered she was wrong, that the other players were cool with doing originals.

Now, LaRocca's Heavy Weather originals are thoroughly fleshed out by Demarzio, Lake, guitarist Carl Gallagher and drummer Rob Morisi. They do covers as well " Lake does a pretty solid rendition of Muddy Water's "Hoochie Coochie Man." LaRocca says the band can play for as long as 3 hours and have some 40 tunes down pat.

But really it's about the originals.

Heavy Weather's own material is based in the simple grooves of funk and blues music, with LaRocca's vocal moving from whimsical scatting to full-throated, emotional belting. But there's plenty of complex jazz harmony showing up in the average Heavy Weather song as well, with diminished chords, tri-tones, and other interesting tonality.

"We've been playing for about a year now " mostly here in my basement," says Morisi, 24, of Dongan Hills. Behind the rest of the band, Morisi and Lake's drumming and percussion forms a strong, in-the-pocket foundation for the other members' music.

"It's like, Mingus meets No Doubt," jokes Gallagher, whose father, also named Carl, provided the band with two home-made guitar amplifiers based on old Fender amps. It's true though, that members of the band display a good bit of music theory knowledge as well as a wish to rock.

LaRocca says that as a writer, she looks to bands and artists like Incubus, Fiona Apple, Alicia Keys, and Sublime. She's a big fan of Ben Harper as well, and recently, the songwriter has picked up an acoustic to play as well as sing along with the band.

As far as Heavy Weather's chosen subject matter, LaRocca says she tries to mix it up "she doesn't understand how people can pen whole records full of break-up songs.

"We've got the unrequited love songs, the political songs, the 'I want to party and have a good time' songs, the bluesy 'I'm having a bad day songs,' I try and keep it different."

Right now, the band is trying to finish a recording that has been a long time coming. They've got six songs tracked in the recording studio, and hope to complete a full length in the coming months, augmented with LaRocca's newly added acoustic contribution. Members of the band admit they're not sure when the recording will be released, but they're definitely chomping at the bit.

"We're trying to sort of pick things up and get a lot done this summer," says LaRocca, who notes the band's upcoming gigs at Westerleigh Park (June 5), Cargo Cafe (10 p.m. June 13), and Wicked Willy's (July 7).

What about the five-year plan?

"Things will always change, people's lives will always change," says the lead singer. "But we're just trying to get to the point where we're self-established enough to have this be our only job. We're trying to break into the college circuit because they pay really well. Basically I just want to have fun and enjoy being young, being a musician, and I love to travel. Hopefully we can get to the point where that's all we have to worry about."


Contact AWE music reporter Ben Johnson at bjohnson@siadvance.com.

To see this article online go to:

http://entertainmentmusic.blogs.silive.com/default.asp?item=611256
- Ben Johnson


"Brooklyn Semi-Finals Wrapped Up"

Saturday, June 2nd

"Heavy Weather played next and blew away everybody. What a tight and musically talented band these guys are. "

Max Power - 6 Jun 2007

To read full article:
http://www.emergenza.net/document/news/news.asp?id=2585

- Max Brown, Emergenza Writer


"Making Noise- Heavy Weather"

Current IAR student, Christina LaRocca, is a singer and songwriter and performs with the soul and funk group Heavy Weather. The Brooklyn native is joined by Dorian Lake (percussion/vox), Carl Gallagher (guitar), Danny Gallagher (bass), Josh Steinhart (keys) and Mike Sutton (drums). They formed in 2006 and the group’s unique blend of musical styles and compelling lyrics has brought them popularity in the New York City venue circuit, with performances at Crash Mansion, CBGB’s, The Knitting Factory, Arlene’s Grocery, and The Bitter End. Their debut album, ‘Miles of Mud,’ will be released on October 16th, 2008 with a CD release party and show at The Bitter End. Christina comments about the album: “There’s no specific theme except that life will have its ups and downs and you just have to laugh, eat an orange, and not let it get to you.” Heavy Weather was a New York City Finalist at “Emergenza,” the international battle of the bands competition. They were also the winners of IAR’s Next Level 6 Competition at Arlene’s Grocery and used the prize, a 1,000 CD package from Disc Makers, to manufacture their debut album. Christina decided to attend IAR because, “I hated being in the studio and not knowing how everything was working. It’s like taking your car to a mechanic and paying him lots of money to do something you know nothing about. If I’m going to be a recording artist, I should know how to record live music. I want to super thank IAR for helping Heavy Weather. I am extremely grateful to them for not only teaching me a lot of cool stuff but for helping me jump-start my career in the biz.” For more information on Christina LaRocca & Heavy Weather, visit heavyweathermusic.com.

To read in Full Text:
http://www.audioschool.com/about/latest-news/2008/10/01/making-noise-heavy-weather/
- IAR Records


"Heavy Weather Wins Next Level 6 Competition"

On Tuesday, April 15th, IARecords hosted its sixth Next Level competition at Arlene’s Grocery in Manhattan. The Next Level showcase is a two-part event open only to IAR students. First, students submit their original music to be evaluated by IAR staff. Those selected compete live on stage at Arlene’s Grocery in lower Manhattan. The winner is determined by audience votes and receives a $1,000 credit towards either Disc Makers or Guitar Center. The second part of the Next Level brings all of the students who performed at Arlene’s Grocery into the recording studio to record a song for IARecords’ Next Level 5 album, which will be mixed and released later this year.

Arlene’s Grocery was packed with IAR faculty and staff, the artists’ friends and family, and students. Nine competitors took the stage to perform one song, with the genres ranging among rap, R&B, pop, heavy metal, and soul and funk. The variety of performers and high level of professionalism and talent distinguished this event over previous Next Level competitions. IAR student and Next Level participant Jer-Z remarked afterwards, “I just wanted to thank you guys so much for the opportunity to showcase my work in such a positive environment. I thoroughly enjoyed myself up there and the fact that the other acts were so impressive made for a well-rounded show!”

The winner of the Next Level 6 competition was Christina LaRocca and Heavy Weather, who performed her song ‘Fire.’ The Next Level competitors were T-Flame$ and the Funky Fresh Band, Unikson, Young & The Briz, Jer-Z, Christina LaRocca and Heavy Weather, Y.O. & B-Nice, Nameless & MindState Productions, The Crowning, and Karmen Michael. Congratulations to all competitors and thank you to all IAR student-artists who submitted.


http://www.iarrecords.com/
- IAR Records


"Bright Forecast for Heavy Weather"

Bright forecast for Heavy Weather: Island jam band meshes its disparate musical backgrounds for signature 'groove' sound

Friday, June 23, 2006
By ERIN FEEHLEY-MAUS, ADVANCE STAFF WRITER

Batten down the hatches. A funk storm is lingering over Staten Island -- and it's about to pour.

Dave DeMarzio, Dorian Lake, Rob Morisi, Carl R. Gallagher III and Christina LaRocca call their band Heavy Weather -- and for good reason. The musicians claim there are crazy atmospheric conditions every time they play. Perhaps the musical gods are smiling down on this foot-tapping fivesome, their applause disguised as thunder claps, gusts of wind, and torrential downpours.

Heavy Weather left many concertgoers at the recent Irish Heritage Fair feeling caught up in a jam storm, drenched by a serious funk/blues baseline, compliments of DeMarzio, with interesting percussion by Lake and a rocking beat from drummer Morisi.

At only 21, singer-songwriter LaRocca is something of an old pro. She's been singing publicly for more than 16 years and is trained in many styles: Jazz, pop, and even classical. Her soulful, bluesy vocals are an evocative complement to the band's rock-solid instrumental performance/ LaRocca attributes the intensity of her lyrics to her creative writing background.

"I started writing poetry before I started writing music," she says.

Guitarist Gallagher III exudes casual rock star confidence combined with the sense of humility and fun that could only come from being an undiscovered talent.

"Carl is like a walking songbook," says LaRocca, laughing. "He can play pretty much anything you ask him to."

All of the band members exhibit tight timing, impressive improvisational skills and solos that could make the jaws of even the harshest critics drop to the floor.
DeMarzio has played bass since he was 12 years old and attributes his musical influences to artists ranging from Led Zeppelin and Bob Marley to Miles Davis. His bumping bass sound gives the band a retro-disco feel during more upbeat numbers, but opts for a more modern, sensual-swing tone for the more mellow tunes.

Morisi has more of a rock background than the rest of the jazz/blues/soul-oriented band members. He has played in several garage bands, cranking out everything from big band to death metal.

Lake gives Heavy Weather a completely different sound than any other local band. His ability to play a variety of percussion instruments makes each musical number unique. From timpani to cowbell, this multi-talented marvel is not only a sensational percussionist but is also a solid composer and vocalist.

Together the ensemble has merged their disparate musical backgrounds to create a signature sound. They are calling it "groove." It certainly does not qualify as "easy listening," but it sure is easy to listen to. There is a little something for every kind of music fan: A little rock, a good dose of blues, a heaping helping of funk, and a whole lot of soul. Original tunes like "Love Me or Leave Me" and "Burning December" draw listeners in like the open door of a dim-lit, smoke-filled blues bar. Covers of "Little Wing" by Jimi Hendrix and Van Morrison's "Into the Mystic" are a testament to the band's versatility.

Not only does the band have an incredible amount of courage and competency to take on these classic pieces of rock history, its members possess the talent required to make them truly their own. Heavy Weather usually rehearses about once a week but assures its fans that most of what happens on stage is spontaneous.

"A song is never the same twice," LaRocca says.

The band is prone to mid-song jam sessions, sometimes entirely instrumental, which are impressive not only because of the way they intrigue the ears of the audience but also because of the band's almost Grateful Dead-like ability to keep all the solos meshing and the improvisation continuous and melodious. Perhaps the band summed up their sound best: The bio on their 'sonicbids' website reads:

"Everyone in this band brings about a color and shape that has been encompassed by their own love of music and readiness to rock out."

And that, in a nutshell, is the essence of Heavy Weather. A collaboration of unique backgrounds meshing together to form one flavorful, groovy sound.
END
- Staten Island Advance By: Erin Feehley-Maus


"Dec 2008 Review & Podcast"

"After our break the featured artist, Christina LaRocca and Heavy Weather played their set. This is their 3rd time performing but with a much different line-up then before and I must say that they really nailed it. Band sounded great and Christina sounded bigger and more aggressive the ever. Their set included some great soul tunes which sounded great live. "

To check out the free podcast:
http://www.msplinks.com/MDFodHRwOi8vcGhvYm9zLmFwcGxlLmNvbS9XZWJPYmplY3RzL01aU3RvcmUud29hL3dhL3ZpZXdQb2RjYXN0P2lkPTI5NDM3ODA1OA==

To read full Blog:
http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=64547028&blogID=453447290

www.fromthepenthouse.com
www.myspace.com/fromthepenthouse
www.sonicbids.com/artistloftseries - Patrick Shaw, Executive Producer & host of


"CDs OF NOTE"

CDs OF NOTE
Thursday, February 12, 2009
BY SHAUN E. KREIDER

'Miles of Mud' by Christina La Rocca & Heavy Weather :

Meta-musical jazz rocker Christina La Rocca is a powerful force to be reckoned with. La Rocca & Heavy Weather can bring the house down and does not fail to deliver the party it plans to bring in "Funk Da IV Chord." Able to switch between the saucy and the somber, "Sky Full of Rockets" shows a painfully honest view of a world threatened by the fear of heavy artillery and war. The disc reaches its climax, both sonically and by way of innuendo in the track "Oh Yeah." A perfect penultimate track, it gives one final burst of energy and excitement before the well-crafted dulcet finale that is "Bird of Prey."

To see full article:
http://www.pennlive.com/music/patriotnews/index.ssf?/base/entertainment/1234298421111850.xml&coll=1
- www.pennlive.com


"WRXP's Rich Russo: Beyond his wildest dreams"

WRXP's Rich Russo: Beyond his wildest dreams
By Ben Johnson
April 01, 2010, 12:51PM
Rich Russo is this week's cover boy. Photo by Dave GiordanoSTATEN ISLAND, NY--He has a picture of himself standing next to Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong on his iPhone. Recent concerts he’s curated have been attended, he says, by 900-person sell-out crowds. An ownership stake in a new rock club opening in the West Village is in the works. In many ways, Rich Russo is doing exactly what he always wanted to do, in Manhattan.

But the 101.9 WRXP DJ just can’t quit Staten Island. He still regularly plays local unsigned Staten bands on his Sunday night show, “Anything Anything.” On Record Store Day — April 17 — he’ll release a limited edition 10-inch vinyl compilation (500 copies) that features performances by both The Seconds and Christina LaRocca and will be sold in record stores from Bleecker Street to Hoboken.

Perhaps most strangely of all though, Russo still looks back fondly on a stint of shows he put together a year ago on Staten Island that were the source of some controversy, and he says wants to come back.

“Those shows taught me a lot, and changed the direction of how I do things,” said Russo last week, hanging out in a mostly empty bar after a sold-out RXP show at Irving Plaza headlined by Strokes singer Julian Casablancas. “It got me used to being on stage, talking, knowing about a backline for gear and whatnot.”

'THE NEXT SEATTLE'
His several-week encounter with the borough’s insular music scene was supposed to do even more. Spurred by Staten’s response to an on-air open call for unsigned bands in early 2009 during his free-form “Anything, Anything” show on 101.9 — arguably the city’s only real mainstream station playing contemporary alternative rock — Russo dubbed the Island “the next Seattle,” and Terrible Tim its “Patron Saint.”

“The intent was, I wanted to be the guy who just walked in and watched, and got CDs from bands,” said Russo, a Jersey native who works in media advertising but has a giant vinyl collection, and enough Pearl Jam ticket stubs and show posters to deserve serious fan boy status. “As weird as those nights got, I sat and watched every band.”

And he still does. Recent shows at city clubs like Santos Party House and Webster Underground, played buy local and locally-connected acts like Plastiq Passion and The Seconds, see Russo holding court. He says Moby jumped up on stage recently, and that Green Day made an appearance — the result of what the radio DJ says is his all-inclusive, old-school show philosophy.

The bi-weekly shows Russo was throwing at Dock Street were similar in style if not scope. He was emcee-ing them, and asking bands to come with both original material and a cover to perform, and even get up for a group jam at the end of the night.

RUSSOSPREAD.JPGDesign by Mary GarrisonDave Giordano and Advance File Photos THE TERRIBLE TIM ISSUE
But things didn’t go quite as planned on Staten Island. Russo was an outsider from New Jersey, with funny ideas about bands playing for merely experience, and not getting paid even though there was a charge at the door. Attaching himself to a polarizing figure like Terrible Tim, and even singing the praises of Staten Island’s infamously foul-mouthed songwriter, became a potential liability in converting the suspicious. It was hard to get people to buy in.

“I think his heart is in the right place,” said freelance writer Joe Tacopino, who has covered music for PopMatters.com, and has a Staten-centric blog called Staten Island Dump. “It’s important for people in his position to find niche audiences they can cater to and help develop into a scene. However, this is also a keen marketing strategy, and Staten Island has seen their share of carpetbaggers in the past. So it is inevitable that some will see him as exploiting the Island for his own gains. And making Terrible Tim the ‘patron saint’ of the scene only reinforces the notion that Staten Island is just some weird, redneck sideshow.”

Russo admits he wasn’t prepared for the way he was received locally. And he says that after a disagreement with Terrible Tim got ugly a few months ago, the two have parted ways.
“Listen, I want the best for Terrible Tim,” said Russo. “In terms of somebody who can write a hook, a bridge, and put it into a song, a lot of writers lack that, and he doesn’t. He is a very good jingle writer.”

Russo also says that at the end of the day, his credibility or lack thereof depends on how bands feel about him. In the case of The Seconds, whose irreverent career ode “Garbage Man,” may be the best track on Russo’s limited vinyl pressing, Russo has gained some fans.

“He brought us into Soundwaves Studio in New Jersey to record the song after we played one of his Jersey Showcases,” says Seconds’ lead singer John DiSalvo. “Everybody there was really nice to us and relaxed, especially for three in the morning. I think it’s good that he’s still trying to - SI Advance By Ben Johnson April 01, 2010, 12:51PM


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

“One of the hardest working women in the music industry.” - Dan Grigsby, Grammy Award Winning Producer and Engineer

Native Brooklynite Christina LaRocca is no stranger to setting standards. Her voice and talent have been heard across the states and overseas in festivals such as CMJ 2010-2012, SXSW 2012 and opening for acts such as UK pop star VV Brown, and Danielia Cotton. You can catch her at the Black Paint Music Austin Showcase Friday March 15th, 2013. She has also been seen singing the National Anthem for several stadiums in the NYC area like Red Bull Arena and SI Yankee Stadium. Her innovation as a singer-songwriter echoes rich vocals with a haunting infusion of Folk and R&B. Committed and driven, Christina draws her inspiration through one simple and profound act- creating excellent music. As a result of her passion and experience, Christina has expanded her expertise by creating "L Rock Entertainment." L Rock Entertainment" is a NYC based company dedicated to live performance and recorded music through musicians committed to creating art in their music. Whether on stage singing, or as a business woman, Christina continues to be an element of opportunity and possibility in today's Music Industry.

Christina LaRocca grew up under her mother’s musical influence, hoping to one day to sing as beautifully as her. With the record player constantly spinning Stevie Wonder, Natalie Cole, and Aretha Franklin and it’s easy to see where Christina got her soulful and smooth sound. After moving from Brooklyn to Staten Island, during her teen years Christina found herself listening to listening to female radio stars like No Doubt, TLC, Fiona Apple, Alanis Morsette, and Lauryn Hill. She started auditioning for plays and realizing theatre wasn’t satisfying her musical impulse, she picked up a guitar and following her father’s beatnik poetic ways, dug into the deep dark mass throbbing inside her heart and began writing her own music. By 2005 Christina had caught the ears of local musicians such as Carl Gallagher and Dorian Lake. After jamming at a hurricane Katrina fund-raiser, they decided to name their newly found project Heavy Weather.

Christina LaRocca & Heavy Weather released “Miles of Mud” in 2008, which has been receiving attention internationally since. Christina was a part of 101.9 RXP’s Record Store Day in April 2010 and was placed on Rich Russo’s Anything Anything Vinyl Compilation Record and came into #69 on records sold in NY. They won the IAR Next Level Competition in 2008 where they got the attention of Grammy Award winning engineer, Dan Grigsby and recorded their second release, the “Fire” EP which was released in June 2010.

In 2011, Christina released her solo project with J Glaze Productions, "I Stand Tall With My Eyes Wide Open." She currently has a deal with The Orchard and is currently released digitally world-wide. You can download all these albums on her website www.ChristinaLaRoccaMusic.com