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Solo to the Next Level with Local Musician John Muccino

Performer part of kick-off to Ocean County library's seventhreetwo series of concerts

In Toms River Patch's ongoing feature on local bands and musicians, this week is an interview with John Muccino, one of the performers kicking off the concert series for young adults, featuring up-and-coming local musicians. Here's more about John Muccino.

Give us some straight-up "About Us" type stuff. A brief history of your band.

Well I've been performing sets from my current batch of solo songs since the fall of 2010. Going to school meant the dissolution of my old band, Foxes & Lions, so I started focusing more on classes and working on new material in between. Towards the end of that freshman year my music had gone through a huge transition, and I knew I had to accommodate that with nothing to spare and with no hesitation. So I decided to put 110 percent into writing and playing shows so that I could bring this venture to the next level. I’m going to be doing this for a very long time.

Q: What is the current line-up of your performance, and when did you start?

It's myself: piano, guitar, vox. Fall, 2010

Q: What genre would you describe your music as/what bands have you been compared to?

I’d describe my music as a melding of impressionism, folk, and jazz. There’s a lot of weird harmonic things happening in all of my new music, one of my goals as a musician is to familiarize the public ear with more unorthodox chord types and sonorities, it adds more depth and color to the songs, and gives me the opportunity to attain a whole new level of clarity in the music as a whole. I’ve heard people drop names like Ben Folds, Sufjan, Bright Eyes, Radiohead, Say Anything, and I definitely feel that my original music has traces of all of the artists that influence me as a writer. But I hope that more often than not, people have trouble finding acts to compare mine to.

Q: What is your favorite place to perform at on the Jersey Shore and why?

The Shed in Toms River. Best people, best hang, best shows. Unfortunately they don’t happen as often anymore, One Win Choice moved to Philly.

Q: Any recent news to share: new music, big shows, upcoming tours?

A new EP is currently in the process of being recorded at Drexel Mad Dragon Studios with the help of my friend Sean who’s engineering the sessions, and lots of others helping me lay down more additional tracks. The songs are going to be a lot more fleshed out on this record than on the demo. Will be out sometime next year. And January I’m working on a upstate NY tour, and February I’m going to be traveling down to the Virginias and the surrounding areas with my friend and fellow songwriter Cranston Dean. I’m really really excited for everything coming up in the near future.

Q: What can we expect from a live show?

You can expect every ounce of my musical identity thrown forth with unhindered conviction mixed in with lots of sweat and sincerity.

Q: What are some of your biggest musical influences?

Claude Debussy, Radiohead, Punch Brothers / Chris Thile, Frank Turner, Samuel Barber, Maurice Ravel, tUnE-yArDs            

Q: What does your upcoming show calendar look like? Where can we hear your music?

Nov 18 we’re throwing a solo acoustic show at our house in South Philly, which is gonna be really fun, and then after Thanksgiving December 6 is my next gig at Strange Brew Coffeehouse also in Philly.

Q: How do we find out more about you?

You can check out my website which is going to be changing again very soon so don’t fret if it starts buggin out. And also, don’t get discouraged by the format, there’s lots of hidden stuff. It’s all about the journey…my music’s chillin here: www.facebook.com/johnsounds and here: www.soundcloud.com/johnmuccino

Q: Anything else to add?

Be ready for more. Much more.

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