Country Music Explosion:Thanks for doing this interview,Let's first start off by giving us a little background of your life,then we can proceed to the rest of the interview

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Country Music Explosion: Did you live in a small town or big city?

Santino Palma:I live in a city. I wouldn’t call it big though. It’s like a wanna-be city.
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Country Music Explosion: Did you attend church?

Santino Palma:No. I used to go a lot, but I don’t anymore.
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Country Music Explosion: Do you have any brothers or sisters? If so, are you the oldest, middle, or youngest child?

Santino Palma:I have two little sisters, so that would make me the oldest.
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Country Music Explosion: Where did you and your friends like to hang out the most on weekends?

Santino Palma:We mostly hung out at each other’s houses.
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Country Music Explosion: Did you finish school?

Santino Palma:Yes.
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Country Music Explosion: What were your fondest memories in school?

Santino Palma:My fondest memories are from my afterschool activities.I did a lot of theatre,and I would often attend study session for my AP courses,so it always felt like a bit of a bonding experience to see my classmates outside of class.
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Country Music Explosion: When it comes to friends at school, do you still stay in contact with them? What kind of things did you all like to do together?

Santino Palma:I stay in contact with most of them.I actually have a lot of different friend groups that don’t intermingle much,so I did different things with different friend groups.Depending on whom I hung out with,I could’ve done anything from going out to eat, or even playing video games all night long.
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Country Music Explosion: Did you ever get in trouble with your friends?

Santino Palma:I never did, but I’ve heard stories of my friends getting into trouble without me. Lol
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Country Music Explosion: What's the hardest thing you have learned in life?

Santino Palma:The hardest thing I’ve ever learned is that when it comes to improving yourself,there’s no magic moment where the change happens.It’s always a continuous process,and if you’re not diligent about it,you can lose any progress you make.
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Country Music Explosion: What is your favorite food?

Santino Palma:Spaghetti… I could eat it every day.
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Country Music Explosion: What is your favorite drink?

Santino Palma:Coke
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Country Music Explosion: What is your favorite season of the year?

Santino Palma:Summer
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Country Music Explosion: What is one moment in your life that you will never forget?

Santino Palma:The first time I ever recorded something in a studio was something I’ll never forget.It was a cover of a Ray Charles song with one of my closest friends, and the whole process was new and exciting for me.
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Country Music Explosion: If you were able to have a super power, which would you rather have?

Santino Palma:Flight.It would be awesome!
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Country Music Explosion: If you’re allowed to drink alcohol, which is your favorite?

Santino Palma:Beer,but if I want to sound sophisticated,I say red wine.
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Country Music Explosion: Is there anything you cant live without?

Santino Palma:Guitars.
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Country Music Explosion:Do you have any animals? If so what kind?

Santino Palma:Unfortunately no. I might get a dog in the distant future though.
Country Music Explosion: What else can we expect from you in the future?

Santino Palma:Expect me to keep on writing music, performing, and recording.
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Country Music Explosion: What did you like to do growing up?

Santino Palma:I loved watching YouTube and playing video games. I was always holding a Gameboy or an iPod.
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Country Music Explosion:What is your biggest goal in life? Name three of your biggest weaknesses.

Santino Palma:My biggest goal would be to be able to make enough money off of my music to live off of.Three of my biggest weaknesses are probably social anxiety, perfectionism, and laziness.
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Country Music Explosion: What hidden talents do you have?

Santino Palma:I’m really good at math. Does that count? Lol
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Country Music Explosion: Where were you born? Did you grow up to adulthood there?

Santino Palma:I was born in Columbus.I was only there until I was about two years old,I think.I ended up spending a year of college in Columbus, but I transferred back out.
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Country Music Explosion: Did you grow up at this location?

Santino Palma:I did not.
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Country Music Explosion: Where have you lived? What section?

Santino Palma:I’ve lived mostly in a suburb called Aurora.It’s too small to have sections,but it’s too big to be featured in a country song. Hahaha
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Country Music Explosion: What year were you born?

Santino Palma:1995
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Country Music Explosion: Did you go to college? If so What is your major? How supportive were your parents about you going away to college? Did you get along with your roommate? Why did you go into that major?

Santino Palma:I’m currently in college, actually.I’m studying Biomedical Engineering,and my parents are very supportive of me going to school.It was almost mandatory,but I’m O.K with that.I lived at home my first year,so I didn’t have a roommate.I chose to get into my major because I want to give people a better quality of life,and the best way to do that is by building things that improve their health.
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Country Music Explosion: How far back can you trace your ancestors?

Santino Palma:Not very far, probably to the level of my great-great grandparents.
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Country Music Explosion: Do you know if your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents were the ones to migrate to the US?

Santino Palma:My mom immigrated to the US. On my dad’s side of the family, I believe that it was my great-great grandparents who immigrated to the US.
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Country Music Explosion: Where did they come from?

Santino Palma:Italy
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Country Music Explosion: Did they come with families or did they begin family in the US?

Santino Palma:My mom came with her family.I think my great-great grandparents came here on their own,but I’m not sure
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Country Music Explosion: What was a typical weekend like growing up?

Santino Palma:A lot of laying around doing nothing, and listening to Italian music.
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Country Music Explosion: Were you or your family members involved in the community? What kind of things?

Santino Palma:My family never really got involved in the community.My sisters and I do musical theatre,and I used to volunteer at my local church,but that was about it.
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Country Music Explosion: What role did your parents play in your education?

Santino Palma:My mom always told me to do my best, and my dad helped me with my math and science homework.
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Country Music Explosion: What language(s) do you speak?

Santino Palma:Just English for now, but I’m trying to learn Italian and Arabic.
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Country Music Explosion: How was your educational experience from K-12?

Santino Palma:Mostly boring until 11th grade. That’s when I decided to start getting involved.
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Country Music Explosion: What schools did you attend? Where located?

Santino Palma:I attended Aurora City Schools, which are in Aurora.
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Country Music Explosion: Compare your junior high and high school involvement.

Santino Palma:I played football in junior high,and I did theatre in high school.I guess you could call that a 180 in experiences.
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Country Music Explosion: What kind of activities or organizations were you a part of?

Santino Palma:I did musical theatre, show choir, track and field, quizbowl, and National Honors Society.
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Country Music Explosion: Do you and/or band have social media accounts where fans can reach out to you? If so, what is the URL for them?

Santino Palma:I can be found at the following:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SantinoPalmaMusic

Twitter: www.twitter.com/SantinoSonn

YouTube: www.youtube.com/oldtimecomeback

Instagram: www.instagram.com/santino_palma
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Music Q&A

Country Music Explosion: What role did your parents play in your Music Career?

Santino Palma:My parents have been pretty encouraging of me throughout my music career.My parents paid for guitar lessons for about five years,and they’ve been encouraging of me when I go out on my own.
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Country Music Explosion: What's your most favorite thing about singing?

Santino Palma:Telling stories and showing passion for the music I play.
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Country Music Explosion: What's the first concert you attended?

Santino Palma:Maroon 5 opening up for John Mayer
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Country Music Explosion: What genre of music can't you stand to listen to?

Santino Palma:There’s not a single genre (that I know of) that I hate.I think that for anybody to rule out an entire genre of music is a petty move. There’s a song for everybody in every musical style. You just have to find one.
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Country Music Explosion: If you could dabble in another genre of music, what would it be?

Santino Palma:My music kind of fluidly moves between Pop,Country, and Jazz-Rock/Blues-Rock,so it’s hard to find new styles to try. I’d love to try doing hip-hop/rap.
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Country Music Explosion: What kind of music do you listen to today?

Santino Palma:I listen to a lot of Country,Punk-Rock,Metal,and Hip-Hop/Rap.
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Country Music Explosion: What embarrassing songs might we find on your MP3 player?

Santino Palma:California Girls… Don’t judge me.
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Country Music Explosion: When it comes to your music, do you have one that you're most proud of? If so what is the name of it?

Santino Palma:The one I’m most proud of would have to be“My Moves”.It’s the first full length song I’ve ever written, and it was me at my most genuine moment.
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Country Music Explosion: Can you tell us if there is a story behind the song?

Santino Palma:I wrote it for every girl I ever looked stupid in front of,just trying to impress her.I wrote it to say,“Hey.I really like you,and I know I look like a bumbling idiot,but please let me try again.”
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Country Music Explosion: Which of your song's do you feel most people can relate to? Can you tell us the story behind the song

Santino Palma:The most relatable song I’ve ever written is “My Moves”, but I already told that story.
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Country Music Explosion: What message are you trying to send with your music?

Santino Palma:The message I send depends on the song I sing.I talk about persevering through tough times a lot.I also talk about toxic relationships,but I think the thread that ties everything together is being genuine.Being honest about who you are is the most healthy thing you can do for yourself.
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Country Music Explosion: What age group is your music aimed towards?

Santino Palma:It’s aimed towards teens on up.
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Country Music Explosion: What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your major influences?

Santino Palma:My music flows between Pop,Country,and Jazz-Rock/Blues-Rock.My vocal influences are Frank Sinatra,Dean Martin,Elvis Presley,and probably Zac Brown.My guitar influences are Steve Ray Vaughn and Wes Montgomery.My songwriting influences are Zac Brown,Alkaline Trio,Johnny Cash,and Steve Ray Vaughn.
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Country Music Explosion: How old were you when you knew you wanted to be a singer? At the time did you know what Genre you wanted to sing?

Santino Palma:I knew I wanted to start singing when I was thirteen,but to this day,I don’t know what genre I would call my work.
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Country Music Explosion: Music-sharing sites and blogs as well as a flood of releases in general are presenting both listeners and artists with challenging questions. What's your view on the value of music today?

Santino Palma:Music is every bit as valuable today as it was yesterday and the day before.It’s something that will never depreciate,and I’m fairly confident in that idea.
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Country Music Explosion: Which instruments do you play?

Santino Palma:I play guitar, mandolin, bass guitar, and the drums.
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Country Music Explosion: What was the first tune(s) you learned?

Santino Palma:The first song I remember learning was “My Cherie Amour” by Stevie Wonder.
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Country Music Explosion: Is your family musical?

Santino Palma:My parent’s generation isn’t very musical,but both of my sisters sing,and my youngest sister is actually a very talented singer-songwriter. She even plays guitar.
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Country Music Explosion: Describe your family member's musical interests and abilities.

Santino Palma:My mom and sisters are huge country music fans,but my mom is also into old swing music.My dad listens to whatever is on the radio station 70’s on 7. Lol
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Country Music Explosion: Which famous musicians do you admire? Why?

Santino Palma:I admire quite a few musicians,all for different reasons,but there are some commonalities between them. The musicians I like are all very genuine people.They’re not afraid of who they are,and they’re ultimately happier because of it.They also seem to be very personable.I spoke with the drummer for one of my favorite bands recently, and he was extremely easy to talk to.The examples I can rattle off the top of my head are Zac Brown,Michael Bublé, Dan Avidan, Jonathan Young, Matt Skiba, Dan Andriano, and Derek Grant.
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Country Music Explosion: Which famous musicians have you learned from?

Santino Palma:I’ve learned from every musician I’ve ever listened to.
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Country Music Explosion: What are your fondest musical memories? In your house? In your neighborhood or town?

Santino Palma:My fondest musical memories are when I’m performing live shows. It’s always a thrill.
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Country Music Explosion: Did old records and tapes influence you? Which ones?

Santino Palma:I can’t name any specific old records,but I’ve definitely been influenced by old artists–Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, and Dean Martin are some great starters.
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Country Music Explosion: Who are your favorite musicians? Groups?

Santino Palma:My favorite music acts are the Zac Brown Band,Alkaline Trio,Brett Eldredge,Rise Against,Lady Antebellum
Ninja Sex Party, Avenged Sevenfold, Rise Against, and System of a Down
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Country Music Explosion: Do you attend sessions? What makes a good session?

Santino Palma:I’m not sure what you mean by “sessions”, so I’m not sure how to answer that question.
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Country Music Explosion: How often and for how long do you practice?

Santino Palma:I practice for however long I feel like. It really depends.
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Country Music Explosion: What do you practice - exercises, new tunes, hard tunes, etc.?

Santino Palma:I practice mostly new songs/hard songs, but sometimes I’ll do some exercises I learned a long time ago.
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Country Music Explosion: How do you balance your music with other obligations – friends/family, job?

Santino Palma:I use all of my free time for music. It’s hard, but that’s what I have to do.
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Country Music Explosion: Are you currently looking to be signed to a label? If you’re signed, can you give us a little insight on how you see the way things are done? Is it like a big family?

Santino Palma:I’m not signed onto any labels at the moment, but I’d love to be. Lol
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Country Music Explosion: Do you have any new releases coming out soon? If so, what is the name of the song/album and is it available now for pre-order?

Santino Palma:I have an album that’s already released.It’s my very first album,and it consists of nine original songs of mine.It’s called“My Moves”,just like the song.
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Country Music Explosion: Where can your music be purchased?

Santino Palma:The album can be purchased on iTunes, CD Baby, the Google Play Store, and Bandcamp.
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Country Music Explosion: Have you released any albums/cd’s? If so can you tell us about them and the process you did to complete it (length of time, favorite song)

Santino Palma:There are no physical copies of my album,but it’s about 26 minutes long,and not too sound too cocky, but I can’t decide which song is my favorite. I’m proud of all of them.
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Songwriting Q&A

Country Music Explosion: Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs? Do you think these topics will change over time?

Santino Palma:I write all of my music,with occasional help from my friends.There are a lot of themes I try to convey in my music,but the most common one would probably be about perseverance through hard times.These topics will probably change over time, but it’ll all depend on what happens in the future.
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Country Music Explosion: How would you describe and rate the music scene of the city/state you are currently living in and how important is it in terms of what you're actually writing about?

Santino Palma:The music scene of Akron (my current city) is a little weird.There aren’t many great places to perform at,but quite a few well known bands have come out of Akron.The Black Keys are a good example,as well as Red Sun Rising.
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Country Music Explosion: What are your main impulses to write music?
Santino Palma:Anything. If I get an idea, I’m writing it down.
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Country Music Explosion: When it comes to song writing, what are your criteria for quality? What are currently your main challenges and ambitions as a writer?

Santino Palma:My criterion for quality is flow.The chords must all flow together.The melody must flow smoothly,and the rhythm of the lyrics must flow well.
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Country Music Explosion: What do you usually start with when working on a new song?

Santino Palma:I usually start with the music. The lyrics almost always come second.
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Country Music Explosion: Tell us about the selection process for deciding on what to write about, please. What sources will you draw from for research purposes and how much time goes into research, information gathering and fact-checking in general?

Santino Palma:I don’t really do much research for songwriting,unless I’m writing a rap.I’ve written one rap,and it was politically driven,so I had to do research for that one.The songwriting process for me consists of getting an idea(usually inspired by the world around me),and immediately writing it down so I don’t forget it.There’s no fact checking that goes into it.
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Country Music Explosion: How do you see the role of a songwriter in the creative process? Should it amplify public taste, distinguish the good from the bad, inform, promote artists, or, “illuminate, educate and entertain” fans? Do you feel that, as part of your work, music needs to be explained or should it retain its “inexplicable nature”?

Santino Palma:I feel that the role of the songwriter,primarily,is to express himself or herself.Different people will relate to different messages,and will derive meaning from different artists.As far as explaining music,I feel like it doesn’t have to be explained,but there’s no harm in explaining it.The magic is still there,whether you know how the process works or not.
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Country Music Explosion: In which way does writing and reading about music change the way it is perceived by the public?

Santino Palma:It spreads information faster,and it helps keep the public in the loop as to the state of the music industry at the time.It creates this sense of responsibility for artists to remain passionate about what they do, for the sake of their fans.
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Country Music Explosion: Whom do you feel your obligation is to, other artists or the fans, and how much do you feel is songwriting restricted by external factors?

Santino Palma:My obligation is primarily to myself.I have to write about what I care about, because it’s the only thing that I can truly give a voice to.Songwriting is definitely restricted by external factors though.Certain topics are considered taboo to write about,so even if an artist wants to discuss it,they can’t write about it out of fear of public ridicule.
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Country Music Explosion: Song writing has changed considerably over the past century. What do you feel could, or should, be new forms and formats for song writing?

Santino Palma:I’m not really sure, but I’m excited to see the creative and new ways in which people compose music.
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Country Music Explosion: When and why did you start writing songs?

Santino Palma:I started writing songs because I had a lot to say that I just couldn’t put into conversation.
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Touring, Concert, Performing Q&A

Country Music Explosion: Have you been on tour? If so, what's the longest tour you have been involved in?

Santino Palma:I’ve never been on tour.
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Country Music Explosion: What are the most gigs you do a year?

Santino Palma:I’ll typically do a dozen shows in a year.
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Country Music Explosion: Where would you most like to perform?

Santino Palma:I love performing in bars with big stages.
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Country Music Explosion: Who would you most like to open for?

Santino Palma:I would love to open for the Zac Brown Band.
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Country Music Explosion: Are you currently doing gigs? If so where?

Santino Palma:I’m currently performing every opportunity I have. I perform mostly in the Cleveland/Akron area.
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Country Music Explosion: Where have you performed? What are your favorite and least favorite venues?

Santino Palma:I’ve performed in the Cleveland/Akron area,and in Hilton Head,South Carolina.I’m not sure what my favorite venue was,but my least favorite venue was a bar in Twinsburgh,Ohio.The owners don’t care much for the performers,and they let patrons physically violate the performers equipment.
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Country Music Explosion: Tell us about the selection process you go through when doing a gig or in the studio. How do you decide which song to perform or record first?

Santino Palma:I perform wherever I can.
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Country Music Explosion: Have you been in competitions? Any prizes?

Santino Palma:I’ve been in some vocal competitions, but I haven’t won any prizes.
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Country Music Explosion: Do you perform in public? Describe those occasions.

Santino Palma:I perform in public. I perform in parks, and usually a crowd gathers to watch.
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This Concludes the interview,We hope you enjoyed it.