INTERVIEW: MARCO SPIEZIA
Born amidst the sun-kissed landscapes of Southern Italy and raised in the enchanting embrace of Cornwall, Marco Spiezia's creative journey is a tapestry woven with threads of Mediterranean warmth and the rhythmic allure of British surf. Influenced by the resonant sounds of icons like Hendrix, Battisti, and Nina Simone, Marco transformed his passion for music into a life's rhythm, birthing a genre-defying fusion of pop, soul, and swing – a vibrant symphony of good vibes.
Now, in the year 2023, he's poised to unleash a series of songs that unveil the kaleidoscope of his musical psyche. The anticipation reaches its zenith as Marco unveils the first chapter of his sophomore album – a highly awaited instalment crowned by the soul-pop opus 'Feelin Set.'
Drawing on the mesmerising allure of retro soul, this dynamic single encapsulates Marco's very essence. A harmonious marriage of pop and soul intricacies, woven together by enchanting melodies, 'Feelin Set' resonates deeply and we sat down with Marco to learn more about his journey, the single and what's next for him, exclusively for FLEX!
Hey Marco, welcome to FLEX! How are you doing?
Very good thanks, and thank so much for taking the time to interview me!
Sum up your new single 'Feelin' Set' for us in 3 words please?
Retro-soul good-mood summery tune! Did I cheat with the double words?
How did you first get involved in music, and what inspired you to pursue it as a career?
I’m told I started showing an interest for the guitar at age 4, but I didn’t seriously start playing properly until my early teens. Both mum and dad played instruments and enjoyed singing so I guess it’s always been a part of my family growing up.
As I finished my GCSE’s I remember falling in love with hard rock and that’s when I thought “all I wanna do is music”. Life hasn’t quite turned out that way as I have a day job, but I guess I can’t complain about music either having managed to release a few albums and played anywhere from dingy pubs to large festivals over the past 2 decades.
Your music seems to draw from a diverse range of genres and influences, ranging from retro soul to funk. How do you go about blending these different elements to create your unique sound?
I really love listening to all sorts of music so I think that’s where the blending comes from. Music is rarely “new” when you consider that most (all?) of western music is based on only 7 notes! So I’m pretty sure that an artists writes whatever sticks the most in his/her deeper state of mind which eventually comes out as a blend of it all. Last 5 bands I can remember listening this week have been:
The Black Keys
Which is a pretty wild mix… can you imagine a song that has a part from each? Would be pretty hilarious.
What was the recording and writing process like for 'Feelin' Set'?
The bulk of the tune came one afternoon many moons ago while I was messing around with Motown chords. The lyrics came the day I was travelling to France to visit my girlfriend at the time. I really was late for a flight!
I was mad enough back in those days to finish work early on a Friday, rushing into my old banger and driving to Bristol airport to get to Reus (northern Spain) and be picked up my my lady to head to her place (Perpignan in France) for the weekend, twice a month! True story.
As I got into the plane I imagined a soldier or people like me who were far from home, and how listening to the right song can help anybody through the hardships of life. That’s the essence of it.
Could you highlight any specific challenges you've faced in your music career and how you've overcome them?
I guess the hardest hurdle for any artist is getting anywhere with your music. I’ve been lucky enough to meet some big artists in my life (bigger than me for sure), and it always seemed like their story was a mix of being in the right place at the right time together with persevering.
I’ve had some real hard times getting and keeping bands together, as well as finding ways to keep feeding funds into music.
I’ve had patches where I almost stopped making music or performing because it wasn’t getting anywhere, but I’ve never managed to pull the plug. Music for me is a way of letting my emotions out, and performing live knackers me out but also gives me an immense sense of accomplishment.
It’s a love-hate relationship for sure! But I ultimately can’t live without music. So trying to make it as an artist has been immensely tough over the years, and I’m nowhere near where I’d like to be, but I’m also very grateful to life for having played live for 20 years and released a few albums. It’s something I’ll be able to show my grandkids.
And finally, what is the plan for Marco Spiezia for the rest of 2023?
I’m mega busy trying to finish the rest of the upcoming album which I expect will be out in early 2024. Then I’ll hit the road with a few shows between Rome and Cornwall, maybe London if it all works out as planned.
On the production side (which is where I am right now), going from the song idea to the finished product can take weeks! You have bands who get together, practice a song a gazillion times and then hit the studio. But I’m doing this on my own with a (great!) partner in crime who’s helping me arrange the tunes.
The process (for those interested) is:
Recording the demo,
Choosing what instruments will go in,
Discussing with the parties involved what the finished song should sound like,
Finding the session players who will record each part (for the instruments I can’t play myself)
Getting it all recorded
Then get to work with creating mixes until you get to the one you’re really happy with (or one that you accept because you’ve run out of cash! )
When that’s done you need to master the track to get it to a “radio standard” if you want it to sound like a professional thing.
When thats ready you need a platform to release the single to places like spotify and Apple Music
And if you have any money left you need a PR agency to get the word out
Then if you have a band you need to start trying to get gigs.
It’s a long windy road, but I guess that’s also why it’s so fulfilling when you get to the finished product.
Stream 'Feelin' Set here: