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iHeartRadio On The Verge

iHeartRadio On The Verge

Emerging artists to hear before they hit it big

 

Atozzio: iHeartRadio On The Verge Artist


Photo: DOMINIC FONDON

The voice remains the most dynamic instrument of all. Emotions echo through even its subtlest inflections and nuances. Atozzio wields his impressive range with the control of a master musician, manipulating the highs and lows with confidence and projecting just the right amount of Jacksonville grit. After penning music behind-the-scenes for everyone from Mario to Chris Brown,the Florida-born and Atlanta-based force of nature amplifies the full scope of his talents on his solo debut for MUSE GROUP.

“My voice is the lead instrument,” he affirms. “I conduct all of the harmonies and background vocals and leave space for it to breathe. You can vibe to the record without any other instruments. It comes down to the tone and how it sits in certain pockets. I also speak and sing differently, because I’m from Jacksonville.“

Mom shipped out to Iraq to serve in the U.S. military during Operation Desert Storm, and Atozzio initially absorbed music through his grandma who played gospel constantly. When his mother returned, she introduced him to R&B and the likes of Lenny Williams and Prince (“Adore” remains a personal favorite). He honed his talents in children’s choir at church and during elementary school plays. In high school, he joined various youth choirs. Through a serendipitous turn of events, he met the legendary Isaac Hayes.

“Isaac asked me what I wanted to be, and I said, ‘I want to be a singer, songwriter, and producer,’” recalls Atozzio. “He said, ‘If you don’t believe you have the abilities to be everything you want to be, you’ll never be it.’ That stuck with me for all of these years. I knew I just had to believe.”

Through MySpace, he connected with producer and songwriter Christopher “Deep” Henderson [Jamie Foxx, T-Pain]. Henderson recognized his talent and became a mentor, opening the door for Atozzio’s career as a songwriter and producer. He notably wrote “Kryptonite” [feat. Rich Boy] for Mario’s Go, “Officially Over” for New Kids On The Block’s Billboard Top 200 #2 comeback album The Block, and “Sing Like Me” for Chris Brown’s chart-topping gold-certified Graffiti. Plus, his discography expanded to include Jay Sean’s international banger “I’m All Yours” [feat. Pitbull], cracking the Billboard Hot 100 and reaching double-platinum status in Australia. He powered “Love Me Some You” and “K.I.S.S.” for Mýa as well. Plus, he collaborated with Lady Gaga, Enrique Iglesias, and Brandy in the studio. Simultaneously, he cooked up a simmering style of his own as a solo artist, leaning into nineties R&B on early independent releases like “Situationship.“

“Women are still playing all of the great music from when I was a kid,” he says. “We all love that sound. It’s missing right now, so I’m trying to give you the vintage R&B you want that nobody else is willing to give. I’m putting my own spin on it.”

He does just that on the 2022 single “Cure.” His fiery falsetto resounds over a laidback bass line and airy cymbals. It builds towards a climactic chorus ignited by vocal fireworks.

“It’s real shit,” he explains. “Every time I’ve leveled up in life, it was because of the words of a woman. ‘Cure’ is me being vulnerable. At the time, I was in a relationship where I was considering marriage. We were having a moment and an issue. I was addicted to her. This was the first woman I couldn’t let go of. She was the cause of my pain and the cure at the same time.”

Signed to legendary music executive Vince Herbert’s MUSE GROUP now, Atozzio’s primed to connect worldwide, because he’s real.

“When you listen to this, I hope you relate,” he leaves off. “This is all honest. I’m from the hood, but I’m vulnerable, fly, and a grown man. I want men to be comfortable enough to be vulnerable. This is real energy, real feelings, and real music.”