Some things are just meant to be and are destined to come together — and in the case of Megan DiBello and Colin Clough, one encounter over a bummed cigarette has transformed into a perfect musical match.
The two Astoria residents and poets met three years ago in Manhattan when DiBello asked for a cigarette from Clough. This led to a next-day brunch invite and a 7-hour phone call, and although Clough returned to his home in Virginia, by mid-2014 he made the move to New York.
Since then, the two have come together to create music. DiBello is the main lyricist of the duo and Clough composes the music on various instruments.
The name of the band comes from DiBello’s middle name, Elizabeth (“Lizzie”), which she said is the “sweet and nice” part of the group, while the name “Rocco” represents Clough and his more intense nature.
“They’re our personalities,” DiBello said of the names. “They are the driving forces of this album.”
Although their Facebook page categorizes them in the post-punk and rock genres, DiBello added that their music differs from song to song.
With the band’s heavy community involvement – writing the music in Queens, recording the EP at the Continental Recording Studio in Long Island City and constantly supporting the local music and literary community – she said she would call their music “Queens Rock.”
“I never heard of it, but I think it would be really cool,” she said of the new genre. “We’re a rock band but there are so many different levels, every song is very different.”
At the moment, the band consists of primarily DiBello and Clough, with contributions on the EP by guitarist and bassist Shako and drummer Tony Shing Siu Sze. However, the duo hopes to soon find a permanent bassist and drummer.
DiBello added that the music on the EP, which will consist of five tracks, shares their personal stories. For example, a song called “Jonsey Boy” talks about the transition of a boy making a move, just like Clough made the move from Virginia to New York.
“If you want people to buy it, you have to give them the reason why,” DiBello said. “We’re really living the story. [The music] is unique and completely community driven. And for myself, it’s some of the best poetry I’ve written in my life. They’re all stories about how we live.”
After the debut of their EP, plans are to release 14 more tracks by the end of the summer while also trying to play a lot of shows. They hope to perform during musical festivals and even have ideas of potentially starting their own music label to help others share their passion.
“We have a message. We want to show people that you can overcome any adversity in life as long as you’re passionate,” DiBello added.
Rocco & Lizzie’s EP release show will be at the LIC Bar, located at 45-58 Vernon Blvd., on April 1 at 7 p.m. Admission is free.