chat with a local :: Monica Rizzio

12322651_922796764478884_2 copyWashashore Cowgirl is the perfect title for Monica Rizzio’s debut album, launching March 4 and available for pre-order with all sorts of special perks until February 5. Then you’ll be able to find the album on Monica’s website or at the many local gigs she plays around the Cape. We encourage you to pre-order though – read on to learn the compelling reason why!

What brought you to the Cape? And what keeps you here?
When I lived in Nashville in the early 2000s after graduating from Belmont University I met {local Cape musician} Demetrius Becrelis and we began songwriting and performing. We formed the band Tripping Lily. Cape Cod became our base as we toured the folk circuit for the better part of 10 years. I ended up starting West Bend Music in 2008, a roots-based music school on Cape, and solidified my own roots here.

When you’re not playing out locally and recording albums, what else keeps you busy?
The nonprofit I started with my husband called Vinegrass. Let me tell you about why I started this non-profit and my hopes for it … When I grew up in Texas we were hit extremely hard in the early 90s recession. We almost lost it all and if it was not for the kindness of our community I never could have afforded to go to music camp. As a music teacher, I saw a need on Cape Cod for kids whose families were struggling with payment for lessons, affording instruments, and just overall general support of a young music scene. There was also a major void in affordable year-round live music on Cape Cod. Most artists in the Roots Americana genre never even thought about playing on the Cape. So we created Vinegrass to bring affordable live music productions in order to raise money for grants, instruments, and scholarships. We have produced shows with Mandolin Orange, Slaid Cleaves, Jeffrey Foucault, Mark Erelli, Parsonsfield, and many more and have also hosted two major music festivals. 

You’re a long way from home … do you ever miss it? 
I miss Texas all the time. I miss living on a ranch and riding my horse. I miss the small town vibe. I love going to O’Sheas when I’m missing Texas. It’s (got) that hometown community that brings me back there.

How did amazing artists like Mark Erelli and G. Love come to be on your record?
Mark Erelli and I have known each other for years. He summers in Barnstable with his wife’s family. I had a song that I had been working on for a few years and decided to give Mark a call to see what he could do with the song. We got together a few times and finished writing “On My Way” which is the closing track on the record. G. Love and my producer Jon Evans {of Brick Hill Studio in Orleans} have a good relationship so when I was talking to Jon about this song I wanted to do a remix of we were tossing names around about who I could have and G Love’s name came up.  We both knew he would be the perfect fit for the remix of “On My Way” that will be released as an ITunes bonus track.

Why did you choose to launch your album via PledgeMusic?
PledgeMusic encourages you to choose a charity in hopes that if you raise more than your goal a percentage goes to the charity of your choice. I picked Vinegrass. This is such a labor of love for me. It’s time to saddle on!

We can’t wait to hear Monica live at O’Shea’s Olde Inne on March 4 {you can get your exclusive ticket by pledging today}. You can also follow her on Facebook and Instagram. And mark your calendar for the 3rd Annual Vinegrass Music Festival at Truro Vineyards on October 2, 2016!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>