Christina LaRocca
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Christina LaRocca

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012

Los Angeles, California, United States
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Americana Rock





Christina LaRocca’s These Are My Whiskey Dreams is a vocal tour de force for an artist with only her third two full length album and two EPs. The evolving songstress is restless, relatively genre agnostic, and courageous enough to vary her palette confident that her strong, soulful vocal pipes will carry her through. She originally hails from NYC but is now based in L.A. Growing up in family of musicians and singers, she was an active blues and soul musician in NYC but has become more of a pop and rock singer since relocating. You’ll hear strains of both of those as well as touches of Americana and reggae.

The repertoire might be too diverse for most but LaRocca claims it’s a solid representation of who she is as an artist. For an album with only eight tracks (plus two bonuses), there are four guest producers – Grammy Award winning Andros Rodriguez (Pharrell, Justin Timberlake, Christina Aguilera, Florence + the Machine), Alex Arias (Cher, Santana, Joe Cocker), Gene Micofsky (Composer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist) and Khalid Philips AKA Lid (Republic Records/Interscope). Apparently, it wasn’t planned this way but came together this way through chance meetings and changing schedules. The breadth of artists listed gives some idea of the range of her project.

On the mix of influences, LaRocca comments, “I’m not afraid to be who I am anymore. I don’t like the idea of labels or a linear path –‘she’s this kind of artist, or that kind of artist, or this album isn’t enough of this or has enough of that’—I’ve been inspired by so many different kinds of music and experiences in my life. You will truly hear a little bit of all on this record. I’m glad I did it this way.”

She begins with a western-influenced “A Man Like You,” about putting faith into a relationship and moving across the country for the commitment. It plays like a road song with producer Rodriguez at the helm. “Capsized” is an alt. rocker where LaRocca absolutely wails. “Home” was written three years after LaRocca left NYC. It’s more restrained and nostalgic with Micofsky adding a gentle slide and Jake Pinto (of the Yeahtones) a piano solo. The nuances of LaRocca’s voice are evident in the gentle, string-backed opening “Hard to Trust in Love” that morphs into a much grander sound.

Understandably, LaRocca was bit worried about the reaction to “Smoke Marijuana,” not for its subject matter but for the reggae stylings which separate it form the other songs. This was a purposely light tune to break up the others which are more serious. It was released as a single on 4-19, just in time for 4-20. The title track is the oldest song; one she’s been playing for several years live. It’s another that begins sparsely and builds to powerful instrumental and vocal passages – “You only say you love me/When you been drinkin’/Whiskey and soda in your glass Man I’m sinkin’/I do not make a sound/As you order another round/’cause….I like what I’m hearin’/It takes two to play the game I as I pretend to feel the same/But it’s wrong, so wrong and you know it.” She ends with two rockers in “Hearts Beat Faster” and “Breathe.” The two bonus tracks – “Child of the Sun” and “I Am Only Human” are from 2017 EP Child of the Sun.

This an album that packs one huge vocal punch. It certainly comes off as the next big chapter for LaRocca who relates this story which is too compelling to leave out. “I’m pretty sure my last full-length got people laid a lot,” she jokes. “My new songs are different, a bit more empowering. There was a pint while I was living in los Angeles where I stopped playing music and was working a soulless job, hating my life. I decided enough was enough and found an incredible voice teacher, Tania Solomon, who brought me back to life, and now I’m vocally stronger than I’ve ever been. I booked a show at Genghis Cohen in Hollywood, and coincidentally, Annie Lennox was in the audience supporting her daughter’s band who played before me. I poured everything I had into that set. Annie took notice right away and stayed for the entire set and sat down right in front of me. Like, right in front of me. Afterward, we chatted, and she insisted I pursue my music. After that, I quit my job, and started working on this record.”

It’s fair to say that Annie Lennox’s words were more than enough inspiration but some of Lennox’s fire seems to also have been sent LaRocca’s way. - Glide Magazine

"REVIEW: Christina LaRocca Transcends Genre On ‘These Are My Whiskey Dreams’"

When you see an artist listed as something like Americana/soul/alternative, you have to wonder if he or she really lands in all of those categories. On the new album These Are My Whiskey Dreams (produced by Andros Rodriguez), Christina LaRocca shows that an artist can land firmly in a variety of categories – and deliver the goods in all of those categories.

Soul is a big part of this album – due mostly to Larocca’s vocals. She shows that she can really belt out some notes on “Whiskey Dreams” and “Breathe”. You can hear a lot of soul in the instrumentation of “Capsized” particularly in the organ part played by LaRocca and the bass line of Leanne Bowes. Add LaRocca’s vocals on top of that – especially at the points where her vocals are part shouting, part singing – and what you have is a song that drips soul.

You also hear a significant country component on this album. It is evident at the beginning of “Home” when you hear a strummed guitar and some claps to provide the beat. As you get deeper into the song, Gene Micofsky lends some twang to the song by spacing some bent notes on the guitar, while Jake Pinto adds a bit of honky-tonk piano. The way she amplifies some of the lyrics of the song make you think that she could just as easily sing a chart-topping country anthem.

“Hard to Trust in Love” is yet another song that is different than the others. The muted tone of the song makes LaRocca’s soulful vocals even more powerful. You realize on this one that she doesn’t to belt out any notes to have a powerful delivery. Perhaps the most striking thing is how it is made so achingly beautiful by the addition of Simone Vitucci’s cello part.

This album even contains a reggae-influenced song entitled – fittingly – “Smoke Marijuana”. This leans more toward a trippy dub sound – particularly in the reverb on the vocals that makes the sound similar to Nattali Rize. If you need to add a song to your chill-out playlist, this is a good choice.

It’s not easy to categorize this album. Someone could ask you, “What kind of music is it? Country? Soul? Rock?” You can simply answer, “Yes.” Her vocals and the musicians behind her are strong enough to bounce effortlessly between genres. These Are My Whiskey Dreams will be available everywhere on July 12. Order your copy here. - Americana Highways

"Premiere of Christina LaRocca’s ‘A Man Like You’"

A Man Like You’ is the first single from Christina’s upcoming album ‘These Are My Whiskey Dreams’ (out on July 12th) and in the lead up to the album release you can see Christina on the road here in the UK and Europe – here are the dates:

6/4 London, UK – Covent Garden

6/5 Southampton, UK – Sofar Sounds

6/6 Cardiff, UK – Sofar Sounds

6/7 London, UK – Sofar Sounds

6/9 Schattin, DE – Schattiner Kunst und Musikfreude Festival

6/11 Cologne, DE -Kulturcafe Lichtung

6/13 – Amsterdam, NH – Jitterbug Saloon

6/14 Paris, FR – Sofar Sounds

6/16 – Culemborg, NH – byANDRIES

6/20 – Berlin, DE – Thursday Live Series at be’kech

6/21 – Laatzen, DE – Festhalle Freundschaft SofaConcert

6/22 Thyrow Trebbin, Germany – JanzWeitDraußen

6/27 – Geisingen, Deutschland SofaConcert

6/29 – Volkmarode, Braunschweig SofaConcert

Christina LaRocca:

“A Man Like You” is about falling in love while having a life on the road. I’ve always loved traveling, and now touring. I meet a lot of people but I know despite all the folks I meet and the cities I perform in, I know he is the only one for me. The love of my life also spent many years on the road, and the road is how we came together. I moved from NYC to Los Angeles and took the biggest chance of my life to be with him. He still joins me on the road and any chance we ever have to hop in the car and go, we do. I wrote this song not too long after moving to Los Angeles in 2014.

The producer of the song, Andros Rodriguez, melds the east and west coast vibes seemlessly. He also made the move to LA from NYC (although he’s back again), where he was a top engineer & producer at infamous studios like Quad and has worked with some of the biggest names in music. Gene Micofsky on the guitar also brought out the Philly to LA flavor. When I think of a location of where this song might have taken place, there isn’t one. It’s in my heart, it’s in my soul, it’s then, it’s now. It’s north, south and everywhere in between.

‘A Man Like You’ has a wonderful Americana vibe, Christina having a fantastic ability to blend country, soul and a rock sound into a perfect mix. Check out the change of pace three quarters of the way into the song – just when it appears the song might be coming to a close, a whole new dimension is added to the track.

As a fine first glimpse of the upcoming ‘These Are My Whiskey Dreams’ album, we’ve all got a lot to look forward to! - Belles & Gals

"Christina Larocca, These Are My Whiskey Dreams. Album Review."

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 8.5/10

We are actively urged to change the world and yet how many of us find the direction in which to pursue these goals, to keep on the straight line and absorb the bumps in the road that have been placed to throw us off course; it is enough to make us throw away the keys to our own success, ditch the vehicle we are driving and head on into the bar of existence and breathe in the fumes of our neighbours favourite dram.

It is easy to get waylaid, we need affirmation, we find ourselves needing to embrace trust, but knowing if it is broken it will somehow lead into a great riff and a song which will grab the attention of others but we talk to the bartender, the agony aunt with a cloth and an easy smile and in place of a declaration, the vow to which we have strived to keep, instead we fall into the charms of the one who tells tales and who suggests we might instead be engrossed, fall in love, as they impart knowledge to us in These Are My Whiskey Dreams.

A singer-songwriter might be considered the finest of these bartenders, thy hold the truth and listen to the statements of others, like scribes and playwrights, artists and actors, they have it within them to clear the haze and offer the world an easy stool, a coaster and a double shot of intricately drawn scenarios in which the muse and the music are open to suggestion and the sweet draw of expression is virtuous and sensual.

For Christina Larocca, These Are My Whiskey Dreams is the invitation shown in which the listener is the plus one to the party, a private affair, small perhaps in numbers but exceptional on delivery. Across songs such as the early single A Man Like You, Hard To Trust In Love, Smoke Marijuana, Whiskey Dreams and Breathe, trust in the bartender is absolute, the music that plays out across the bar of time has others swaying in time as they sip on their own favourite tipple and allow the single cube of ice to melt away and take their cares with them.

To blend or to have a single malt is a sign of inquisitive creation, one that sits beautifully in Christina Larocca’s new album, one that is distilled with patience and love; These Are My Whiskey Dreams and they give substance for the journey ahead. Â

Christina Larocca releases These Are My Whiskey Dreams on July 12th. - Liverpool Sound and Vision

"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,, and
- 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:
- 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


...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

To see this article online go to:
- 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:

- 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

To read in Full Text:
- 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.
- 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

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.
- 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:

To read full Blog: - Patrick Shaw, Executive Producer & host of


Thursday, February 12, 2009

'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:

"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.”

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, 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


These are my Whiskey Dreams... (Full-length, 2019)
Child of the Sun EP (2017)
I Stand Tall with my Eyes Wide Open (Full-length 2012)

previous with Christina LaRocca & Heavy Weather
Fire EP (2010)
Miles of Mud (full-length, 2008)



Christina LaRocca Bio

Los Angeles based international touring artist Christina LaRocca is not only a recording artist, she is a renaissance woman, and activist who has pushed boundaries of what it means to be a woman in the 21st century. 

She has toured all over the USA, as well as Europe, the UK, and Canada, and performs over 200 shows a year, most of them not in her hometown. Many of them with an acoustic guitar on her back, a tank full of gas, and a voice that turns anyone who see her live into a fan. 

In July 12, 2019 LaRocca released her highly anticipated full-length album, These are my Whiskey Dreams…. The album has songs produced by Grammy Winning Producer/Engineer, Andros Rodriguez (Pharrell, Justin Timberlake, Florence & the Machine) as well as Alex Arias (Cher, Santana, MRK, The Strumbellas, The Mowglis), guitarist and film composer, Gene Micofsky, and republic records artist LiD. 

The album has been reviewed as a "vocal tour de force" (Glide Magazine) that "transcends genre" (Americana Highways) for "people with a ear open to the future" (Midwest Record) she has the "fantastic ability to blend country, soul, rock [and even reggae] into a perfect mix" (Belles & Gals) with "her powerful and passionate voice as the driving force of the songs" (Michaels Music Blog). 

Christina switched coasts from New York City to Los Angeles, CA in 2014, finding much of her newfound inspiration from her trek out west, along with musical influences from artists like Lana Del Rey, Lauryn Hill, Elle King, Fiona Apple, Janis Joplin, Patsy Cline, Alanis Morissette, Bishop Briggs, Natalie Rize, and The High Women.

Since diving back into the scene in 2017, she has performed at Echo Park Rising, St Jude Rock N Roll Marathon Nashville, EAA Hops & Props, Mile of Music, Mesa Music Fest, SXSW (unofficial), Far North Festival, Craft Beer & Art Festival (Germany), Schattiner Kunst und Musik Festival (Germany),  BMI Acoustic Showcase, Women’s Freedom Festival, Dyke March, and more. She has performed 20 Sofar Sounds in cities such as LA, NYC, Chicago, London, Paris & more. Over the years, she has also been seen on stage with artists such as Rachel Platten, Billie Joe of Green Day, Bailen, Misty Boyce (BORNS, Sara Bareilles), VV Brown, Lisa Ramey, Mendeleyev and is a voting member of the Recording Academy.  In March 2018, Christina composed, performed, and recorded music for Chelsea Clinton’s audiobook “She Persisted Around the World: 13 Women Who Changed History”, a children’s book for future feminists around the world.

Christina also has several previous works available digitally worldwide as well. Child of the Sun EP was released in November 2017, produced by Robb Torres and became her first recording in Los Angeles. Prior to that, her first solo album, I Stand Tall With My Eyes Wide Open (2012), was produced by J Glaze Productions. Her first two albums can be found under her former bands name, ‘Christina LaRocca and Heavy Weather’. The Fire EP (2010) was produced by Grammy winning producer Dan Grigsby, and prior to that, her self-produced debut album, Miles of Mud (2008). 

For more information please visit 

Band Members