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The Hot Sweat
Stephen Jerzak
Alexx Calise
By Spencer Abbott-- II Assistant Regional Head, Midwest

Fort Lauderdale, Florida native and Los Angeles, California resident Alexx Calise takes time out to talk with us while driving home from San Jose. Her second album recently dropped in April as a digital copy and there are plans to release a physical copy in the near future along with showcases on both coasts and perhaps even the Midwest.

Spencer:So first can you share a bit about how you got into music?
Alexx:Sure! Well I've been singing, playing guitar since I was about eleven or so. So, it's kind of broad since I've been doing this for such a long time...

Spencer:Well, was there a specific moment where you were just like, 'this is what I want to do forever?'
Alexx:Yeah, I guess you could say that. I was always into bands like Silverchair and stuff like that when I was a little kid. I was really into this one record in particular by them, it was called 'Freak Show', and there's this one song in particular called “Suicidal Dream” that I was just totally in love with them and I even played it at my middle school talent show and scared the crap out of all the students and teachers and stuff like that. It was from listening to them and stuff that I knew I wanted to be a musician.

Spencer:Had you been playing guitar before then?
Alexx:Yeah, I started playing when I was about eleven or twelve. I had formal training for about two years but the rest of it I just kind of learned by myself from like playing Blues and stuff like that.


Spencer:Do you ever feel like people are judging you harsher, being a female rocker as opposed to all the male bands that are out there?
Alexx:Ya know, sometimes I guess I feel like that. I kind of judge other rock musicians the same way. I think to some degree because you're a female, it's not a handicap by any stretch of the imagination, but you have to work a little bit harder to be considered incredible amongst your male peers because it's a male dominated profession for the most part. You really have to be super talented in order to be considered incredible.

Spencer: You're album has been out for a little while now, right?
Alexx: It's been out since April, so it's been out for about a month or so.

Spencer: Is it doing well?
Alexx:Yeah, yeah! It's doing really well. Right now we're just doing a digital release, but we're prepping to do a physical release really soon. So it's kind of a soft release but it's doing well. Things are really starting to ramp up, which is great. I've had a few TV placements over the past few months which has definitely helped things out a lot. We're gonna start preping to do some showcases in the next few months.

Spencer:What was it like recording it and just the whole process of putting out another album like?
Alexx:As far as recording and everything it was done over the course of three years or so. I was writing and recording it kind of at the same time. It's always kind of a brutal process to say the lease. There's a lot involved with it but it's a lot of fun. I recorded the album with my producer Luigie Gonzalez, and he's just a really talented dude. He's worked with a lot of talented people like Madonna and The Killers and Shakira. He's super talented and a pleasure to work with so it was great.

Spencer:If you could tour with any band either past or present, who would you want to tour with?
Alexx:Um, that's a good question. You know, probably Silverchair just because they've always been my favorite band ever since I was a kid. I think that would be awesome. In terms of artists of the same genres as me, I don't know, Paramore would be kind of cool or Hailstorm they are really talented female fronted bands.

Spencer:Where do you get inspiration for the songs that you write?
Alexx:For the songs that I write it's kind of all depends on my mood and how I'm feeling and everything like that. I tend to write on the more introspective side. I'm kind of an existential kind of person, very thoughtful, my writing reflects that. I live inside my head most of the time so it all depends on the mood I'm in and stuff like that. There are a few different themes that I touched on on my new record. There's a song I have called 'Anything Goes' and it's kind of social commentary about the 'me' generation and I find that a lot of people that are in my age group tend to put people up on a pedestal who aren't necessarily talented and don't have anything of substance going on and they tend to glorify that. Also, they expect things to come easily and everything and it was kind of social commentary about that. The other songs, 'Break Me' and 'Good Enough' were both songs about a past relationship that I had that was just a toxic relationship. This particular person always tried to make me feel like I wasn't able to measure up. The songs have a triumphant end where I break free from all that garbage and move on. It's kind of championing the underdog.

Spencer:Nice. I really like 'Break Me', I think it's one of my favorites.
Alexx:Oh, did you see the video for it, or...?

Spencer:No, I went to your site and it started to play and I was just like 'Oh my God' and sending it to my friends like, 'Listen to this! It's so good.'
Alexx:Awe, thank you!

Spencer:You're welcome. Do you have any plans to go on a tour anytime soon?
Alexx:Yeah we are just kind of planning the logistics of it. We're gonna be doing some showcases. Like next month we may even go back up to San Jose, which is where we're actually driving back from there to LA. We might do an east coast run, because last year we went to the Boston area and that was just awesome. East coast is the bomb, it's where I'm from, I'm actually from Florida so we'll probably hit up all those areas.

Spencer:So where do you see yourself with your music two years from now?
Alexx:That's interesting, I usually get like five years or ten years, that's cool. I see myself doing all the same things I am doing now on a much larger scale. I'm hoping over the next year or so we get more TV play and appearances and touring. I have a feeling it's going to be a really good year this year, and that it will open doors for much bigger things. I'm hoping that you'll see us on The Carson Daly Show and all these different programs and maybe we'll even be doing something with Paramore, that'd be awesome. That'd be really cool.

Spencer:One of your songs was on the CW right?
Alexx:Yeah, it's a song from my first album, it's a song called 'Morning Til' it was on One Tree Hill it was a promo that was playing for a couple of weeks. It was in October of last year. That was pretty cool. I don't know if you're a big One Tree Hill fan but it's a pretty cool show.

Spencer:Yeah, my friend was all stoked she was like 'I've heard it! I watch One Tree Hill all the time!'
Alexx:Oh really? That's cool!

Spencer:Yeah. So how'd that happen, like, how did you get that?
Alexx:A lot of it is done these days through music licensing agencies. I'm affiliated with several of those. What they help to do is get artists music into television shows, commercials, movies and stuff like that. Yeah, I've gotten a few other placements from some of the other licensing agencies, like on MTV. So yeah, that's music licensing agencies and that's basically what they do is they help to place every body's music into all these different media.

Spencer:Is there anything that you'd like to say to the people who have read this?
Alexx:Yeah! Check out the new album, that'd be great! You can get it on alexxcalise.net it's a pretty good deal it's like $8.91 or something so you're not gonna break the bank. It's a good collection of songs. They are very danceable so you can go hit up the club with it or bang your head to it. Whatever you want to do.

The Hot Serat
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