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Music Mondays: iRealHousewives Exclusive Interview with Santino Noir

Santino Noir is a rocker, a rapper and overall a music lover. Santino has been in the music business for many years and now he's taking a new direction as a solo artist with his debut album “They’ll Never See It Coming…”. Santino talks about his debut album, music influences, his life, upcoming projects and his collaboration with RHONJ's Melissa Gorga exclusively with iRealHousewives

iRH: Hi Santino! Welcome to iRealHousewives. How are you?
SN: Pretty snazzy! Just on a train leaving NYC, had a great night with lots of tequila & awesome company, so I can't complain!

iRH: Where you from originally?

SN: I'm originally from NJ, spent about 10 years on and off in South Florida as well. And I'm currently relocating to NYC while traveling to LA a lot. Trying to be bicoastal (laughs).
iRH: You’ve been performing since the age of 13 in several rock bands. Were your parents always supportive of you?

SN: Fortunately, I've got awesome parents who always supported my musical endeavors, even before I had any actual talent (laughs). But it wasn't until a couple years ago when I started to see some real world success that they stopped urging me to have a "Plan B", so I must be doing something right.

iRH: I know the music genres that you usually do is rock, pop and hip-hop. When did you first discovered to rap or "spit" as they call it?

SN: Actually at a pretty young age I accidentally fell in to it. I started out in metal and rock so I had a little musical ability, but never dabbled outside of that style. But at 16, when my cousin Luke passed away, he had been getting in to hip hop himself. When my family visited his home preceding the funeral services we found the last lyrics he had written sitting on his dresser, so his friend and fellow hip hop artist "Gust" and I decided to lay them to tape in his memory. We also ended up writing our own memorial song of sorts for him, and I just never stopped writing in that genre on the side of my numerous other projects.

iRH: You reached success with your rock band Scarlet Carson. How was the group formed?

SN: I moved back to NJ in 2007 and put together the band with some musicians I had worked with in the past, over a year or so the line up came together and Scarlet Carson got to work.

iRH: While being on Scarlet Carson you shared big stages with some rock music icons such as Motley Crew, Godsmack to name a few. How did it feel to perform on the same event with such big names as they are?

SN: Motivating. I don't like feeling small, like the unknown little guy, I wanted to be on the marquee. I'm working on it. ;) But it’s also a great affirmation of my ability as both a front man and the bands manager, plus what we knew we were capable of, you know, to be recognized by players on that level in the game.

iRH: At what point did you decide to peruse your own style of music as a solo artist?

SN: I took a stab at it back in high school, but I wasn't quite there yet as a musician, a songwriter, or a performer. The 5 years or so I've spent in Scarlet Carson helped me to finally get there and give it an honest chance this time around. I only started seriously focusing on myself as a solo artist this past summer.

iRH: Was it hard for you in the beginning going from being in a group to solo artist?

SN: It's definitely an interesting shift from being part of a unit to being the main focus, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't like it (laughs). I'm a front man, I have fun in the lime light. I enjoy the freedom of making all of the decisions and being in full control of the final product, because then at the end of the day if it works or doesn't, it's all on me. I think it's been more of a shock to some of my fans than anything though, but the response has been unbelievably positive, I'm glad so many of Scarlet Carson's fans have been so open minded and receptive.

iRH: What is the best and hardest part of being in the music business?

SN: Making money! Because it’s essential of continuing to build and grow. Recording, promoting, filming, photos, wardrobe, equipment, producers, traveling, hotels, lawyers, it all adds up really fast!

iRH: Who were some of your music influences as a child?

SN: I've always been all over the place. High school it was a lot of nu metal, rock, and rap. Mudvayne, Slipknot, Rammstein, Static X, Dope, Eminem, 50 Cent, Tonedeff, Immortal Technique, Reveille, Rage Against the Machine, Soil, Drowning Pool, Disturbed, then off the beaten path with artists like Imogen Heap, Alanis Morisette, and Yoko Kanno. Im still super eclectic in my musical tastes from dance metal like Asking Alexandria to UK based acoustic duo Bitter Ruin and then Top 40.

iRH: The Real Housewives fans know you from your collaboration with New Jersey Housewife Melissa Gorga. How were you approached to collaborate with her?

SN: My family actually knows Melissa and her family outside of the show. I'm super close with her sisters and brother in laws too since they live so close by. During the hurricane after some unfortunate property loss, I lived with Kimmy and Joey for a couple of weeks. I love them all. The collaboration just sort of came together at the strong and frequent suggestion from Missy's sister Kim, since she was a big fan of the demo tracks I was churning out at the time working on my album. A family dinner, a few drinks, I went home at 2am, wrote the song.. The rest is history lol.

iRH: Have you ever seen The Real Housewives of New Jersey, if so what are your thoughts on it?

SN: I hadn't watched it prior to working with Melissa, I don't watch a lot of reality tv ironically. But it seems to be around me and my family a lot lately! Heh my little sister is actually the owner of Sniptease Hair Studio in Toms River, NJ and they're the official salon of JWoww and Sammi from The Jersey Shore. So as a result I've gotten to know them as well, JWoww has actually been a huge supporter of mine.

iRH: Did you write your signing parts for Melissa’s song "I Just Wanna"?
SN: I actually wrote the entire song. Lyrics and all. The original music however was written by Alex Je, and my boy Jeff Wallace co produced, engineered, and mixed the track as well as all of my other music.

iRH: How was it working with Melissa Gorga?

SN: Great. It's always tricky navigating business and personal relationships, but she's a doll, once the lawyers are out of the picture and the business portion is settled lol we have a blast! Especially at shows, it's always a good time,

iRH: If you could collaborate with any artist who would it be and why?

SN: Oh thats tough... Top of the list? Eminem. He did it. I know, how expected (laughs) but I don't give a shit. Dude is crazy talented and it would be a blast. I know the final product would be sick, I hold out hope for the possibility. It would also be very cool to work with Kanye, I'd love to do some crazy anime inspired track and video with him. Stylistically B.o.B would be a perfect match for me. (laughs) Linkin Park would also be sick. Oh and Adele on a hook would be beyond words. She murdered it in Skyfall.

iRH: Congratulations on releasing your debut album “They’ll Never See it Coming…” How long did it take you to create the album?
SN: Thanks! I spent about a year or two before releasing it. But all of what eventually made it on the record was done within the past year.
iRH: Why did you choose that title name for your album? Is there a hidden message behind it?

SN: Were all judged on what we show on a surface level, not many people expect me to sound like I do or even write in the genre I do. Plus, none of my existing fans from Scarlet Carson had a clue I was working on this lol. I like to surprise and hopefully impress people, sort of disassembling their initial assumptions about me.

iRH: I listened to our album and the sound has rock, hip-hip and pop genres. Was that always the intention?

SN: Originally I had actually intended to just do rock and electro-pop and not rap at all. But once I reincorporated that back in to my writing, everything just sort of came together. I listen to it all, so I wanted to make it all.

iRH: Is there a particular song on your album that is very special to you or your favorite song?

SN: "Believe" is probably the one I hold closest, it's the most recognizable form of me from my previous projects, it's high energy, fun as hell to perform live, and lyrically it keeps me motivated.

iRH: My favorite song on your album at the moment is “I Don’t Give A Fuck” I’m so digging the song, it has high energy to it which I love. So the questions is do you give a fuck? (laughs) JK! Was lead you to write this song?

SN: I sure fucking don't. Lol I realized at some point that it was time to Do ME and stop worrying about what everyone else wanted, expected, and thought of me as an artist. I wanted to put that as bluntly as I could but while not taking myself too seriously so I made it more of a campy and situational type track. It's all good fun. :)

iRH: Was there a particular song that was a challenge for you to record?

SN: I still to this day fumble a single line in Break Me Down because of its speed and just the formation of those exact words in that exact sequence, I trip on my own tongue (laughs). It was also tough for me to write and ultimately record Letter to an Ex in a way I felt did the lyrics justice, but I'm very happy with the final product.

iRH: Do you have any upcoming projects in the works that you can tell us?

SN: I'm currently releasing an Elvis Xmas cover of Santa Claus is Back in Town. Writing a couple of new tracks for my next release. Planning on some more music videos from my new album. And I’m about to record a song inspired by and to benefit victims of hurricane sandy, a sort of I Was There perspective type track.

iRH: Anything you would like to say to you fans?

SN: I fucking love you all. :) see you on the road!

iRH: Thank you Santino for doing this interview with

SN: Thanks for having me!

Stay connected with Santino:
Twitter: @SantinoNoir

Purchase Santino’s Debut Solo Album "They'll Never See It Coming..." on iTunes here and on Amazon here

Purchase Melissa Gorga feat. Santino Noir on iTunes here

Enjoy Santino's music video "Feelin' Good" and "I Just Wanna" with Melissa Gorga

Photo Credits: Facebook/Video Credits: YouTube

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