giovedì 26 settembre 2013

BLEBLA, the rapper made in Tuscany

by Ilaria Gelichi

1. Could you tell us something about yourself?

My name is Marco Lena and I live in Prato, where I was born 29 years ago. In addition to music, I like football (I'm an Inter fan) and girls…! I play football with friends as a goalkeeper and last year we won the provincial championship.

2. How your passion for music was born? And how did you start your career as a rapper?

I have always had a great passion for music, since I was 6. When I was 10 I started making the first recordings at home, then in 2000 I started working as a DJ at parties inside and outside Tuscany. One night the vocalist was missing, so I went up on the stage and I started singing... This was the beginning. In 2002 I recorded some rap-dance music, then in 2007 I finally started recording real rap music. I write the songs myself, for the music I’m supported by 3 producers.

3. How did you get the idea of singing in dialect and of the name “Blebla”? And how many albums have you recorded?

I love my city, Prato, and my dialect. But I only wrote 2 songs in dialect, “Prato” and “Ikkettadetto?” (which means: “what did you say?”, in Italian “cosa hai detto?”). The other songs are in Italian - I wrote almost 70-80 songs and recorded 3 albums. I thought that my song “Prato” would have succeeded only among locals but unexpectedly it had a great success also outside the city of Prato.
As for my name... One night I was drinking with my friends and I was a little tipsy. I tried to say something but I forgot what it was and I just mumbled something. From that day on my friends gave me the nickname Blebla, and I decided to keep it!

4. Is there someone who inspires you?

Nobody in particular, I like almost all kinds of music – both Italian and foreign music. When I was younger I loved Articolo 31, 883 and Elio e le Storie Tese. I had the honour of opening a concert of J-Ax (vocalist of Articolo 31) and Frankie hi-NRG MC.
My last album is called “Satirap” and it explains quite good which my intention is: making satire with rap. Of course I also write more “serious” songs, but I think that what people need is having fun!

5. How is the music business in general?

It is a very difficult world and you have to pay attention. Most people further their own cause and tend to take advantage as much as possible of a person and then move on. I always read very carefully all the contracts to avoid bad surprises – for example, being bound to a bad agent for years! It’s not easy to hit the big time, you need to find the good idea. One day you can have a great success and the days after a great flop. You can earn something with lives, concerts or as a special guest. In the rap music world unfortunately there is not too much space;  but recently something is changing, thanks to the web.

6. Do you have contacts with your Florentine colleagues? How is being a singer in Prato?

I know some Florentine singers and I made some songs with some of them. With some others I collaborated and we are still keeping in touch. Anyway, starting a career as a singer in Prato – or Florence, I suppose – it’s not easy and quite stressful. People are snooty and you need to convince them; but for now, I cannot complain about my achievements.

7. How do you manage the contacts with your fans and the social media?

I daily use Facebook and Twitter, but I have some guys who help me managing my profiles and fan pages. Anyway, I personally reply to private messages – I want to have a direct contact with fans. Beside the TV, these media are the only way to keep in contact with my supporters.
I notice different people at every concert, this means that the audience is increasing. During a concert in Piazza Mercatale in Prato and another for New Year’s eve in Piazza del Duomo there were nearly 8-9,000 people, I’m really satisfied. Being on stage is always exciting, even when you get used to it.

8. What are you doing now and which are your plans for the future?

My next single will be released soon, the prelude of the new album due out next year. So I’m currently shooting the video for the single and preparing the new CD. I have 3 dates planned for the near future: one this Saturday, 28 September at J’Adore in Prato and other 2 in October, in Siena and province. Obviously my expectation for the future is to hit the big time. Being Tuscan is both an advantage and a disadvantage: on one hand you look really funny but on the other hand, when you speak, your dialect makes you automatically unserious even if you are saying serious things.
Anyway, I go on step by step always keeping in mind which my target is.

Blebla’s fan page on Facebook:

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