Please introduce yourself. What do you do? Why? What do you want people to know about you?
I am an entertainer who utilizes all my past training, experiences and artistic growth in each new project I create. This includes acting, character work, comedy, songwriting, music composition, stage performances, television, radio personality, voiceovers, promotion, writing, and video editing. Years of performing in all mediums, I am now a Grammy member and artist in Nashville. I have a degree in Musical Theater and in my early years performed many theatrical productions before branching out in to comedy, improv troupes, bands , and acting and musical productions. My teachers were magnificent, teaching every aspect of acting, vocal training, dance, character study, and perseverance. I now live in Nashville and write my own American Roots music with the fabulous musical production of Bob McGilpin whose first release was 1978’s “Superstar” on Butterfly records which became a Billboard hit along with “Sexy Thing” and “When You Feel Love.” He had multiple major label record deals with Casablanca, RCA, and Butterfly/MCA and landed three #1 hits on the coveted Billboard Dance Charts. I am so blessed to create music with him. We are great friends as well as have a wonderful working relationship. He takes my far out ideas and jumps right in the musical arrangements to create my music. I sing, write and perform all genres, pop, country, rock, blues, alternative, Broadway, and mix a lot of sounds. My voice is powerful, bluesy, and emotional, and I like to create sounds that sound like no one else. I also help promote other artists in many ways that I believe have talent, and pass on my teaching to them and guidance. Many people just need a boost to their confidence and a vision, so I am not selfish in passing on my knowledge, resources and encouragement. I have produced music videos, helped with music publishing and radio promotion of artist friends and love to see them succeed. I am an “artist angel” connecting people that I see a common talent and drive in, and who I think might work together. I’ve hooked up radio hosts with radio stations, artists with opportunities, and helped many independent artists behind the scenes. However, I still enjoy performing more than any business or promotion job. I am a powerhouse on stage, comical, serious, emotional, and always with some element of surprise. As an entertainer you can create whatever you want and feel free to be artist and daring. The sky is the limit and I like that when I announce a new radio release, that radio dj’s and fans are excited to hear “what’s next.” Radio hosts have fun with me on air as I like to make people laugh and I rarely say no to an interview. I will never just stand there and sing, and challenge myself to keep adding these layers to each new performance. I started exploring this in videos and was awarded Best Music Video Concept and Grand Jury Prize Gold Best Music Video at the 2021 Los Angeles Motion Picture Festival for my music video “Color Blind”, as well as Best Music Video for the 2021 Global Non Violent Film Festival, Artist of the Year in 2021 Red Carpet Holland Awards, 2019 awards for The Gran Royale Music Awards and LDM Radio Awards. Select singles are also released on Bongo Boy Records and were for consideration on the 1st ballot for the 61st, 62nd, 63rd and 64th Grammy Awards. The past year I have also established myself as a personality and have been invited to The Soiree, a music industry networking event the night before the Grammy awards in Vegas. I’ll be doing red carpet interviews with labels, artists, nominees, winners, industry foks, and bringing that silliness, big personality, humor, and unpredictable entertainment on the red carpet. You have to step out of your comfort zone to entertain a crowd of people and be confident as well as have a powerful presence, and bring people with you in the performance. Always be professional, daring, innovative, and always say yes to opportunities, but also don’t take any crap either. For those that don’t believe in you, you simply keep moving onward and upward. I find that the more successful you become, the more you might be judged by those that feel threatened or jealous. Everybody has their own special qualities and there is never a competition when it comes to uniqueness. Make your own noise, forge your own path never compromise your artistic vision and enjoy the ride. The journey is ours to make and take!
What qualities make you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?
I am extremely versatile in musical styles, and my voice can be sensitive, raspy, bluesy, and powerful. Most people are surprised when I sing on stage as my voice is full and rich. They are also shocked because I may be very quiet before a performance as I mentally prepare and focus my energy. Sometimes I go for a character and interpretation that changes the flavor of the vocal, and shows the attitude of the perspective of the character singing. My theater and acting training I have been incorporating in to my musical performances and music videos, and it creates a vocal quality that comes across with imagery in the studio and live. There are no boundaries in what I sing about either. It may be funny, angry, sad, sarcastic, and about comical situations to serious topics of war, suicide, love, but always with a message and a point of view. I usually do not tell the other performers or crew all I will do on stage, as I like that element of surprise. People have commented they were shocked I was so quiet before, then take the stage with such energy and passion. I had a lot bottled up for years, and now the stage is my home. My mind goes a mile a minute, and most nights I fall in bed exhausted with my brain calculating “to do” lists of all I want to do creatively. Money , and we all know big money is needed to get to big levels, has only made me be more inventive. I think I am respected for what I do, maybe even a little intimidating. But my heart is big for helping others as well, and when I can’t see certain things in myself, I will then do things for others to make them shine or smile. It’s “what I do.”
Describe THAT moment when you realized you’re doing what you were born to do.
It’s like I was in an out of body experience watching from the audience a 5 year old child singing her heart out on a stage with her face through a big daisy for kindergarten graduation. The shy, quiet little girl was already a star on stage. The teachers would have me up in front of the class to sing or play, and they recognized my talents. Outside of those performances, I was bullied in school, and did not have a happy childhood. But my teachers were so incredible and influenced me greatly, along with mentors throughout my career. I loved to race over to my neighbors and play her upright piano. I played violin, saxophone, ukelele, guitar, and absorbed everything I could of music and singing. My parents did not reallly think that I would do any of it as a career, but I continued on through school and professional jobs after college, and am still doing it. I remember every performance, in my mind as if frozen in time, and the euphoria of feeling emotion and joy, sadness, and the audience feeling me back in return. My voice, music, writings, and the ability to make people cry or laugh within seconds of each other fulfilled a hole in my heart that was from childhood and carried to some of my adult years, but the feeling is fresh every time I step on a stage and express myself. The gifts of comedy came in later years, and I also write artices, poems, stories, scripts, as well as plan on putting my original music in a theater production. This kid found a home on stage, and never plans on leaving it.
What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve had to go through and how did you grow through it?
My life has been full of challenges. The road has not been easy, from being called “the black sheep” of the family, to leaving behind abusive relationships, to feeling very alone. I will never settle in love. I give my heart, and have also lost loves to addiction and suicide. My only solace is writing about these things in my music. In 2016 I suffered vertigo blackouts, and fell several times causing great injuries . I’ve had fractured necks, broken noses, jaws, hip, ankle, and surgeries trying to repair, and chronic pain I deal with every day. The neurological damage remains and must be maintained. When I broke my face I was in the middle of a recording project. I couldn’t breathe, and I waited months because of work and insurance. I wrote a song about people coming together called “Bonfire”, and the artists I invited on it came in the studio and we magically created a beautiful inspiring song that was on the first ballot for the 61st Grammy awards, as well as winning in 2018 Best Musical Collaboration at The Josie Music Awards. The friends I made on this project were wonderful artists, and it kept me going with my heart uplifted. The chronic pain and depression from these accidents and injuries still affect me, but it is these talented and inspiring people I have met in my musical journey that keep me going in my creative pursuits. I firmly believe that when it comes to my music and art, the best is yet to come. I look back on all my trials, and see how much stronger I have become and how far I have come. And when I am gone, my music will be remain there with all my history and stories.
Who are the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could elevate your career or business? Why these specific individuals?
1) Lady Gaga – she is a warrior queen. Huge talent, voice, creative mind and she doesn’t give a fuck. She creates art.
Inside she has to be very deep and emotional to create what she does. I would love to meet and perform my music with her and have her on a video.
2) Dolly Parton – a sassy, strong woman and business entrepeneur besides being a phenomenal entertainer and prolific songwriter. Clearly she has a patent on being kind, generous, brilliant, and a force to be reckoned with if you are an idiot. lol She posesses a skill and likeability that is genuine and no nonense and I’d love to sing with her.
3) Santana!!! The Best of Santana album is my go to playlist that makes me sing at the top of my lungs, dance, and I relish every note of his masterful arrangements. I have an original unreleased song mixing English and Spanish that needs his magnificant grooves and beats that will involve artists around the world. He is the man to produce it. I would love to be on stage surrounded by that energy and wall of sound that vibrates to your core.
Drop your social media links.
Official Website: annemariepicerno.com
Band Page Facebook: facebook/AnnemariePicernoOfficialMusicPage
IMDB Directing Acting Credits: www.imdb.com/name/nm4987298/
IHEART RADIO: www.iheart.com/artist/annemarie-picerno-31501864/
INDIE COLLABORATIVE: www.indiecollaborative.com/icmembers/annemarie-picerno
GLOBAL FILM STUDIO: globalfilmstudio.ning.com/members/AnnemariePicerno