Note: This week, Second Stage is featuring artists from the RPM Challenge, 'The Wire' magazine's annual open invitation for musicians to produce an entire album in the shortest month of the year, February. Check out the website to learn about this year's challenge.
Mark Longolucco of A Relative Term
Mark Longolucco of A Relative Term Victoria Mariani
Often quietly recording late at night in his bedroom to avoid waking his roommate, Mark Longolucco appropriately sought to make a quiet "collection of moments" instead of focusing on "a heap of verses, chords, and hooks." The resulting album, Intertwining Locks, combines his earnest, world-weary vocals and beautifully earthy and intimate instrumentation.
Though Longolucco reports being sick for more than a week in February and even losing his voice for a while, his typical approach to song writing makes him a perfect candidate for the RPM Challenge. Instead of agonizing over songs for an extended period of time, Longolucco says he prefers to write and record songs in the same step even when he is not under such strict time restraints, so his songs typically come to fruition in a single day. Longolucco also attempted to participate in the RPM Challenge last year, but he ended up deciding not to submit his songs because he didn't feel they were cohesive enough, so Intertwining Locks is his first complete RPM album.
Though Intertwining Locks was initially recorded for the RPM Challenge as a solo project, Longolucco also performs songs with a circle of musicians in Buffalo, NY and says he plans to record an album with them at the beginning of the summer, along with the solo album he is currently compiling. After reportedly having such positive experiences with the RPM Challenge the last two years, Longolucco looks forward to participating again next year.
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