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Exclusive Interview: Rhett Repko

Rhett Repko has only ever had one goal in the music scene; “Music has the ability to deliver raw unfiltered emotions from one person to another.” Rhett goes on to say, “Records today tend to be produced to perfection, but those aren’t the ones we love.” He’s delivering classic rock songs with his guitar, strong voice and backing from his amazing band.

Rhett found his place in the world of music at age 15 when he took a guitar class in high school. In love with his new passion, Rhett turned to the music of the Beatles, with their classic style of sound it fueled his passion for lyrics, which developed his desire to be a songwriter. It wasn’t long before he started to dabble in production. Rhett studied production under Alan Wonneberger at UMBC, where he earned his BA in Music, and also formed his band. Rhett has signed multiple TV licensing agreements with networks including MTV, Netflix, Discovery, NASCAR, E!TV, Oxygen, A&E, TLC & Fox Sports. Rhett has been named 2018 Songwriter of the Year by Warlock Asylum International News. Rhett has been recognized by the International Song Of The Year Songwriting Contest as a Semi-Finalist for his rock song “A Little Loving” in July and “About Last Night” in December of 2016. Rhett also earned a Top 20 Finalist spot for his song “Say Goodbye” in the SongBuilder Studios Songwriting Competition in December of 2016.

With so many accomplishments to his name I decided to chat to this up and coming artist and discover more about Rhett Repko;

1.) For our followers here at OLC! tell everyone a bit about yourself?

Hey I’m Rhett Repko.  I write and sing alternative/pop songs.

2.) How did you discover music as a passion?

I’ve always loved music, I just didn’t know that I wanted to create it myself until a few bands impacted me while growing up.  

3.) Which artists growing up inspired you?

Growing up, the first band to have a major impact on me was The Beatles. I loved their early album’s, their songwriting, and enjoyed watching videos of them perform on stage. Music didn’t become the main focus in my life though until I was handed a guitar and found out about a band called Nirvana. It gave me the other more moody, teenage angst, and heavier rock elements of music while still being basically pop songs which was a fantastic thing. There’s been hundreds of artists since then that I take inspiration from and I try to mix my inspiration on a song by song basis when I write. But without those first 2, this whole thing might never have started.  

4.) Tell me what’s involved in your songwriting process, where do your ideas stem from?

My ideas always stem from an emotion I’m feeling in that moment. It’s usually a mix of emotions as well, not just one standard blanket emotion. At that point I either start humming to see if anything comes up that feels right, or I play my piano or guitar. It always starts with the melody, and grows from there.  OK got a verse melody, let’s get a chorus. Alright got that, let’s add the bridge, finish the lyrics and boom now I have the song in it’s raw form completed. Time to teach it to the band.

5.) I watched your video called “The Process”, how challenging is it to be apart of every process involved in your music?

It’s very challenging, but I think it’s also very important. Music is so important to me that I don’t want any elements to be hidden from me. I want to be aware of everything that is going into it. I think it makes for stronger and better songs in the end because they’re not just standing up on one good part.  

6.) Where has been your most enjoyable place to perform and why?

I don’t know really. I enjoy a bunch of different shows for different reasons. I enjoyed the chaos of SXSW, trying to find my stages and getting our gear in and out of it alive. I enjoyed driving through the insane storms in the night on the way to Florida (I tell myself that anyway). My most recent show I played and enjoyed though was at the Sidewalk Cafe in New York City. It was a lot of fun to play our hearts out and then hustle back to the train station so we could make the last train back home to Maryland.  

7.) I read that you have signed multiple TV licensing agreements with networks like MTV, Netflix, TLC, Fox Sports and more. What does this mean for you and your band?

They’ve licensed my songs to be possibly used in their upcoming shows which is a huge step for us. I hope that some of them get placed as it could definitely be a game changer in terms of the size of our audience.  

8.) Tell me about your latest track, “A Broken Song”? What’s it about and how did it all come together?

That’s a personal one for sure. They’re all personal of course, but that one was never intended to be released as I didn’t even consider it a song. That’s why it’s called “A Broken Song”. But I think that’s why it became the lead single from my new EP “Songs of the Night”. It just had something that was so captivating because it was honest. I wrote it because I was just sad and wanted a song I would always be able to sing when I was down to make me feel better.  Now other people can have it too.  

9.) Can we expect an EP or album later o this year?

My new EP “Songs of the Night” just came out February 5th! I’m very excited to have that new music out for everyone to listen to. It’s got a nice assortment of different tracks that I think will all be perfect theme songs of the night. See what I did there haha?

10.) What else do you have planned for the rest of 2019? Any gigs you have lined up?

At the moment, lots of promotion for my new EP “Songs of the Night”. It’s been out for one day and it’s already entered the College Radio Charts at #133 which is insane as it’s never entered that quickly before let alone that high on the first week. Our touring schedule isn’t set yet besides a few dates in New York. So stay tuned and follow me on the socials @rhettrepko for more updates!

What do you think?

Written by Neill Frazer

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