How did you come up with the name of your new single, “Echo"?
There is a repeated line in the song, "Echo down the Hallway" which refers to our voices and their voices to be heard. I not only wanted the voices and message to be "heard" but to "echo" so it may continue on to be heard by the next person so they can hopefully be inspired and so on... so song title "Echo" it became.
Is there a specific person or event that inspired this track?
Not really a specific person other than myself and all the youth and young adults I work with that come from broken pasts, in really telling my own story of the struggles I had growing up and I wanted to speak out to the next generation to let them know that I've been there and I made it out and so can they.
What sparked your aural addiction?
Growing up, as a music listener, it gave me a way to feel understood and gave me a sense of “belonging” which later lead me to realize I was one of them so as a music creator, it gave me a therapeutic outlet to deal with and channel all my emotions in a healthy way, especially throughout all the hard times and specifically throughout my childhood. It gave me a sense of purpose to see how others also connected to me as well through my music and vice versa.
Are there any genres of music you would like to try or avoid?
Not at all. I'm always looking to create something new and I've found that in order to do that, being open to all and trying something new is the path to accomplish that.
If/when you’re lacking inspiration, how do you kickstart your creativity?
Well, I just hang out or listen to one of my youth I mentor or a stranger I meet that day, or I just tune into what's going on in the world today with all the tragedies and I can hear and feel the pain and suffering and that inspires me to share my experiences filtered into my creative outlets and in hopes that it will make a difference for people.
What was the first album you ever bought?
Michael Jackson "Off the Wall"
What is currently on your playlist?
I have such a variety of diverse artists and genres. Some include Michael Jackson, Otis Redding, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Chris Cornell, Nirvana, Imagine Dragons, Halsey, 2Pac, Wiz Khalifa, Eric Clapton, X Ambassadors and the list goes on...
How have your surroundings influenced your music?
They inspired and continue to inspire me to tell my stories and the stories of others sharing the very rawness of the experiences in the ups and downs negatives and positives, so others can connect and feel heard.
What is your favorite type of performance venue?
Acoustic and Intimate
What’s next for Monti?
I am currently getting this EP finished to have out by early next year and will continue to spread my message through this single Echo through performances public speaking and mentoring and working with organizations such as Hope Generations to provide a voice and experiences for those who feel like they are forgotten.
Anything you’d like to add?
No matter where you come from or what you've been through, you can make it, if you choose to...