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Willow

Rocco Deluca Rocco Deluca

'The True Burden of Killing Time'

Ironworks Music, the brand new independent record label owned by Kiefer Sutherland and Jude Cole, have just recently sent it’s first accomplishment into the world from Rocco DeLuca and The Burden this past March.

The debut album entitled, I Trust You To Kill Me is the first for both the label and the Long Beach, California band. Long-time friends and entertainment industry veterans, Sutherland and Cole originally opened their Silverlake studio Ironworks as an artist-driven recording space (housing Sutherland’s massive museum-worthy collection of guitars). “We would invite musicians that we liked down to start recording and get creative and it’s actually something that just organically turned into a label,” recalls Cole. “It was more of a natural progression, not really one that we premeditated.”

In 2004, the pair were introduced to Rocco DeLuca by a friend who saw him perform at The Gypsy Lounge in Orange County where he held a two-year residency. The bar was known more for its local biker crowd than a breeding ground for talented musicians. Yet Rocco used the nonchalant stage as a writing and rehearsal space to continue honing his unique craft on the DOBRO® steel guitar and to experiment with his impressively wide vocal range.

DeLuca had grown up surrounded by music; first with his father being the touring guitarist for Bo Diddley and then with his friends immersed in the punk scene. As a result, Rocco’s sound naturally emerged as a soulful combination of blues and rock with honest, vulnerable lyrics backed with an unsurpassed inner strength.

I Trust You To Kill Me is just that. A complex journey of passion and clarity from a man who’s seen it, lived it and experienced a life not many people will ever know or comprehend. After one listen however, you just might have a shot.

Chatting recently with Rocco, I first noted that it had been self-explained that "... the blues died when they took the 'f**k' out of it." But what exactly was the 'f**k' that they took out of it ... and why did that do that?! "WE GOT TOO SLICK. IN ANY ART A PROGRESSION BEGINS TO MAKE THINGS CLEANER AND MORE PALATABLE, THE TECHNIQUE IMPROVES BUT THE ATMOSPHERE DECLINES."

Your album title is really to the point, but what exact point where you trying to focus in on with it? "I WAS CONFRONTING MY FEARS BY EXPOSING THAT WHICH I CARE ABOUT."

Tell us more about those nights, falling asleep inside you Uncle Joe's bass drum listening to your Dad and friends in their late night jam sessions! "IT'S KIND OF A SMOKY DREAM. I REMEMBER INTERESTING CHARACTERS LOOMING ABOUT. I REMEMBER TRYING TO FIND A PLACE TO LAY MY HEAD. IT LOOKED QUITE COZY AT THE TIME."

As you grew up playing the local scene, you eventually got to play with Johnny Cash ... please tell us more about that moment in your life "I WAS HONORED. TIFFANY LOWE, JOHNNY'S GRANDAUGHTER, INTRODUCED US. MY EXPERIENCE WAS VERY ORGANIC AND CASUAL. I'LL NEVER FORGET MY GRANDMA CALLING JOHNNY AND JUNE TO MAKE SURE I GOT ENOUGH TO EAT."

Just where did your bands name 'The Burden' spring from ... and what other names could they so easily have been stuck with? "A BURDEN IS A SORROW THAT IS HARD TO BEAR. IT REMINDS US THAT OUR PATH MAY NOT BE THE EASIEST. THE BURDEN WAS THE ONLY OPTION."

For fun, and taking the titles of a few of your album tracks, please let us know:

'Gift' - What's the nicest gift that's ever been given to you throughout the years? "A PORTABLE PALE BLUE RECORD PLAYER."

'Swing Low' - What did you learn from the lowest point that you've been thus far in your life? "YOUR LOWEST POINT IS YOUR GREATEST TEACHER."

'Mystified' - What, in this world, mystifies you the most on a daily basis?! "GIRLS, THE SUN, KINDNESS."

What '80s (and possibly cheesy!) pop song would you love to cover today if asked ... and why?! "'BIG COUNTRY' - IT'S SOO OPTIMISTIC!"

Lastly, I like Penguins ... do you?! "YES, I LIKE EVERYTHING THAT SURVIVES IN THE ARCTIC!"

Interviewed by Russell A. Trunk

If you would like to win an AUTOGRAPHED copy of Rocco's brand new CD, just answer this easy question: The band, the Burden features drummer Ryan Carman, bass player Dave Beste ... but who is the percussionist?!

Send me your answers and if you're correct you'll be in the running to win one of these great new and AUTOGRAPHED CDs! Just send us an e:mail here before May 15th with your answer and the subject title 'ROCCO DELUCA SIGNED CDs' to: exclusivemagazine@flash.net

www.RoccoDeluca.com

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