-Interview- Heavy on the Heart (4/27/23)

Heavy on the Heart talks their Alternative Rock/Pop Rock style, upcoming plans and much more.


From: New York
Sounds like: Alternative Rock

1. How did you get started with music and how did you develop your sound? Who thought of the name "Heavy on the Heart" and is there any meaning behind it?

I (Costas) started playing guitar and piano when I was 10 years old. I was playing in a band known as PRSNA for 14 years. We just finished recording 2 new records and then abruptly split before they were released. Around this time Nikki and I began writing some music. I was a huge fan of her voice and she comes from a classical background with singing. When the band split, we decided we wanted to form a band and veer away from the pop stuff we were initially writing.

The name, heavy on the heart. Actually came from Nikki. We were in my backyard talking one day and I was telling her how hurt I was losing my band and my best friend. I said something like this weighs so heavy on my heart. She looked up at me and goes, that’s it! The name of the band! Heavy on the heart. I remember looking back at her like wow, that is huge, haha.

2. What do you want people to take away from your music?

To us, the best music makes you feel something. It brings you back somewhere. We want people to honestly connect with the song and tune in whatever emotion or memory it brings back. We want people to not only feel what emotion we are trying to spark. We want them to relate to it on a deeper level. We want people to know and understand they are not alone in what they feel. Others feel it to. Lets bridge that gap and find comfort and solace.

3. How would you describe your sound to the average listener?

Our sound is a blend of alternative rock, pop rock and pop punk. We try to incorporate elements from all that we listen to and are inspired by. By our common core and roots is alternative rock and pop rock.

4. Who are three bands you’d like to tour with?

Third Eye Blind, blink-182 and Hot Mulligan.

5. How has Covid affected what you do?

I think Covid honestly just changed the landscape. We are still doing what we do and love what we are doing. I would 100% equate Covid to my former band breaking up and losing momentum. But I would credit Covid for giving me the time to explore other avenues musically and artistically. I think Covid is the reason Nikki and I began working on music in the first place.

6. What’s your take on the current state of Alternative Rock?

I think Alternative Rock is making a serious comeback. Little by little. Sometimes I find myself in an airport, coffee shop or department store and it’s like woah that song is on the radio! That song is being played, wow. I think it is a good time to be playing alternative music. While other genres are thriving, I believe alternative music is finding its footing once again in more of a mainstream light.

7. What's the current music scene like there in New York?

The music scene has always been iffy here. It has its moments of glory and its moments of tragedy. Its a very close knit, friends helping friends and only friends and shunning less known talented bands. But fortunately there has been plenty of good promoters and just good people reviving the scene here. The ones who are trying to correct what is broken in our scene. They are doing a wonderful job and I respect the hell out of all of them.

Another thing that seems to be spreading like a virus in New York is cover and tribute bands. While I have no problem with people paying homage to their idols, I do see an issue when there is like 10-15 bands paying homage to the same band and that same band just so happens to still be touring. It’s quite comedic. I think venues, bars and event halls should be focusing on showcasing more of the talented original bands that are home grown. I also think this will change in the near future. Only so many people can hop on the same bandwagon before the wheels fall off.

8. What’s your take on the royalties that streaming services pay out to artists?

Streaming services are crooks! Haha. I think while they serve their purpose in making music easily accessible, it’s downright disgusting what they pay artists in streaming royalties. We put so much blood, sweat and tears into this and to be given peanuts and basically told this is the best that we can do is quite shameful on their part. But this has been an ongoing dispute and I do believe it will find resolve at some point. Hopefully in our lifetime.

9. What's next for Heavy on the Heart?

We will be steadily touring and playing throughout the United States. We will be releasing 2 more stand alone singles followed by our debut record in September 2023. We will also be heading back to the studio in September for 3 weeks to record the follow up record which will be released sometime in 2024.

10. Any shoutouts?

Shout out to the best producers and engineers a band could ask for! Gary Cioni at Sound Acres Recording Studio and Gary Cioffi Jr. at Maximum Sound Studios.
Shoutout to the best business partners a man could ask for! Tom Angenbroich, Shawn O’Connor and Peter Dragone!
Shout out to Atlas Brady (Nikki’s Son).
Shout out to Matt Lagatutta for keeping me sane throughout the beginning and the start of this band.
Shout out to anybody who has come to a show, followed us on social media, bought merch or shared us with their friends.