I first met Tony Lucca at a birthday party for a friend who booked me as the opener. I hadn’t met Tony, but he taught me alot at that show. He may not remember talking to me, he may not remember my set… but what he did for me has made me the artist that I am today.
It is 2008. I barely have an acoustic ep out. I haven’t done much, but I’m meeting a ton of people and all they can talk about are local and LA artists like Ernie Halter, Curtis Peoples, John Hull, Bushwalla, and I was just barely trying to meet all of them!
I’m booked for the show, and have only played with Ernie at that point at my birthday party in ’06 and I get to the gig which is a condo in one of those group of condos… (yeah… I got pretty lost…) I sit down and chill with everyone. The party is all buzzing because “Tony” is coming. (This is my first experience of people being startstruck by the headliner, and trying to talk my ear off about him… heh… it happens all the time now…:-)
He gets to the show and the whole room drops in volume…. Everyone can’t wait to talk to him, meet him, etc… We meet for the first time, and he shakes my hand and says, “Great to meet you! Looking forward to hearing you play!”
We play the show, and we’re waiting to leave afterwards, and he and I get to talk. He tells me some things that I had never heard before… and here they are.
1. “Your song “Pocket Change” is great!” – What this told me was that he actually cared about other artists and what they were singing. He was one of the first “Legit” artists that I met that actually took the time to listen to me, and give me pointers. There are so many artists that literally don’t care, or don’t “have time” to listen to other artists. But Tony did. That meant a ton to me. I had gone through a lot the year before, and that was an incredibly kind thing to do.
2. “We should play a show sometime again!” – Now a lot of artists may “SAY” things like this, but Tony is one of the only ones who actually meant it. He would invite me to play with him in San Diego a few times afterwards, and he was always the kindest and most gracious host. He talked to me about touring, gave me tips on how to get better, and was always genuine. I even met his wife at one show and she was so kind, letting me know that Tony had said many great things about me. Wow…
Tony has been criticized by Christina Aguilera a few times for having “Celebrity Friends” that are helping him out. Well here’s the thing… He earned every one of those friends. Tony has been working his ass off for years, playing venues that were empty, traveling and hustling every night, and has been a huge inspiration for me. I model much of what I do off of how hard he has worked and how he treats others.
So here’s my 2 cents. Vote for him. He worked his way to where he is now. He deserves this. Many artists have completely changed their perspective on these types of TV shows because Tony exemplified how working hard and keeping a good attitude will help you get far in life.
Thank you Tony, for showing me how to be an artist who works hard and laughs harder. Good luck, brotha. Kill it tonight.