Marlon. 60s rock ’n’ roll and blue-eyed soul vibes – the Florentine way.
Rock ‘n’ roll, blue-eyed soul and the 60s have a lot to do with Florence based trio Marlon. With their most recent song “Mykonos” recorded, mixed and mastered at the Fuseroom Studio by Alberto Rizzo Schettino in 2015, we had a chat with Giovanni Manetti (vocals & guitars), Leonardo Innocenti (drums), and Davide Cinci (guitars, bass & keys).
Giovanni = G
Q. Marlon is an interesting name for a band. Does it have any further significance for you as a group? Or maybe it has something to do with your uncanny resemblance to Marlon Brando?
G. Thanks, but the real Marlon Brando look-alike is my dad! We just wanted an iconic name that was easy to recall. Obviously we are mega Marlon Brando fans, especially those roles where he plays the outsider or the foreigner.
Q. As we already started in a flattering tune, can you guys tell me a bit more about yourselves? How did you start up as a group?
G. We are a three piece band based in Florence and we were all into the same gigs in the city. I was friends with Leonardo’s band and I asked him to join the project as a drummer, then Davide came on board to complete the line-up.
Q. How do you view this project for now? Does it head off towards a potential career or is it more like a passion project in development?
G. The Italian music industry is not very welcoming towards Italian artists singing in English so as long as we keep on singing in English we can’t really think about a proper career there. We are just trying to do our thing and trying to make it better.
Q. Obviously when we talk about 60s rock/rock ‘n’ roll, we’re all thinking The Doors, (Jimi) Hendrix, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Who and so on. Then again, this might be very limiting – what are your main influences in terms of music?
G. We are heavily influenced by The Beatles, The Doors and The Who. At the same time we are fascinated by other kinds of music like modern blues, britpop, indie rock and northern soul that you may not instantly recognize on the record.
Q. What kind of places do you prefer/dream of performing at?
G. We definitely prefer playing smaller shows to an enthusiastic audience than bigger venues that don’t quite get our music.
Q. Where about in Italy do you guys perform most or where would you like to?
G. Since we all are busy with studying and work we’re playing mainly in Tuscany. The moment the EP is out we’re planning to tour in France, Italy and the UK.
Q. Is going international an appealing prospect for you? Are you planning to tour in the UK regularly in the future?
G. Of course an international following sounds like an attractive prospect to us, but considering how the English mind can be hesitant to give a credibility to foreign artists, as well as how strictly the UK is connected with its own subcultures, we would prefer going for a more European scenario.
Q. The artwork for the cover is quite an eye catcher – can you tell me a bit more about your choice and the artist?
G. The song “Mykonos” is about a disillusioned love affair in a confused state of mind. We wanted the artwork to be psychedelic and ancient at the same time. It was made by Jonathan Tegelaars, an image seeker and collagist currently working in Florence.
You can download “Mykonos” here for free!