Exclusive Q&A with Darro
What is the story behind your latest single?
This song came about as I experienced consistently similar reactions to my brain tumor battles. A lot of people congratulated me for “looking healthy” after my surgery. I know they mean well and are generally being encouraging, I don’t actually “feel healthy.” In fact I have a bunch of chronic illnesses that I have to deal with for the rest of my life because of the tumor. Most people tend to ignore that part of me now though because I don’t look sick, and it sort of feels like my everyday struggles are invalidated.
“You’re Not Insane” is a satirical commentary on how we as a society hide our pains and tend to curate and display only our best selves. It creates this illusion that “everyone else is perfect but me” and adds to the pressure to match it. Whether it’s physical or mental insecurities, we try not to let people see our vulnerabilities, but we all have our own battles.
When did you realize music was your calling?
When I was in college, I thought I would try my hand at computer science. It made sense because it would be a lucrative career and it’s what my parents would have wanted. I had been playing/practicing music for maybe 4 or 5 years at this point and figured it would just be a hobby, but I became obsessed with music. I would lock myself in my dorm room and practice anywhere from 6-8 hours a day – I wanted to become the next Steve Vai. I actually failed precalculus twice in college because of it. It wasn’t until my girlfriend at the time forced me to look at myself and realize that I needed to pursue music. So then I started practicing with the purpose of getting into music school. Somehow I managed to get accepted to Berklee College of Music, and every choice since then has been easy.
How would you best describe your sound?
Paramore meets Foo Fighters with a hint of Steve Vai
What do you hope listeners take away from your music?
I really hope that I can provide a relatable message in a nostalgic way. I feel like music and memories have an extremely strong relationship, and I want to strike feelings of nostalgia in people and sort of bring them back to a time where they can remember what it was like before social media pressured us to be so perfect all the time. My message is that none of us are perfect, and we all have struggles; let’s be real.
Who are your dream collaborators?
Paramore, Bruno Mars, John Mayer, Mark Ronson, Frank Ocean, Daniel Caesar, the list goes on…
Is there a possibility to perform your new music live?
Yes! I’m playing a show on 8/2 at The Bitter End, and another show on 9/1 at Pianos; both in NYC!
What are some albums that really shaped you as an artist?
Songs About Jane – Maroon 5
Alien Love Secrets – Steve Vai
Paramore – Paramore
Bilo III – David Maxim Micic
Black Clouds & Silver Linings – Dream Theater
In My Own Words – Ne-Yo
Moonflower – Carlos Santana
Blood – Lianne La Havas
Thriller – Michael Jackson
Channel Orange – Frank Ocean
What are some of your contenders for best song of 2019?
Oh this is incredibly hard. It’s very hard because so much music comes out that it’s hard to keep up with. Some of my most played songs from this year are:
“Sucker” – Jonas Brothers
“Mystery” – Shrezzers
“Rather Be” – H.E.R.