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Judge for Marissa Levy

New York, NY
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Portrait of Marissa Levy
Marissa Levy started writing songs because she needed an outlet for her emotions and therapy was just too expensive. She was born and raised in Bethesda, Maryland, then transplanted to the big bad streets of New York City. Armed with a mind for music and a 1963 Favia classical guitar Marissa began to express herself through song in a thoughtful if slightly scattered manner.

Eventually, the Favia (may it rest in peace) broke and Marissa moved on to a new guitar and a more serious attitude about songwriting. She sought spiritual guidance from the folk and pop troubadours (Bob Dylan, Tom Paxton, Christine Lavin, and Billy Joel) that Marissa truly believed were kids singers as a tot, as well as modern chick rockers including Lisa Loeb, Dar Williams and Jill Sobule. Through this combination of influences she emerged with a sound that falls somewhere not so neatly in between.

In 2003, Marissa released her first full-length album adorned, lookmanohands produced and engineered by David Perlick Molinari and mastered by Drew Lavyne (Elvis/JXL, Sting-Brand New Day, Santana-Supernatural, Dave Matthews Band-Before These Crowded Streets). It was representative of her folksy background but never really captured the rocker she knew was inside her.

The long awaited sophomore album from the singer/songwriter/pop finally arrived in 2007. With its energetic rock/pop anthems, Charmed & Dangerous is a departure from LookMaNoHands. The songs are an eclectic mix of Pop, Rock, and Country with a hint of electro R&B snuck in there. It’s a record sure to have 13-year-old girls pining over the life they’ve yet to experience and leave adults tapping their feet to its contagious melodies.

Marissa’s witty lyrics and charming tunes are not to be missed. Teaming up with producers Mike Skinner (Kevin Devine, Scissor Sisters, Bloc Party, Diana Ross) and David Perlick Molinari (French Horn Rebellion), and mastering engineer Paul Geluso (Sufjan Stevens, The Animal Collective, Antony - of Antony and the Johnsons) Marissa and her band has birthed a surprisingly aggressive record. It shows significant growth, mixing mature lyrics and themes and a wide range of musical styles. Charmed & Dangerous outlines the life of a New York wild child, living the charmed life in her early 20’s having fun, raising hell and stumbling though the potentially dangerous consequences of those actions.

Marissa is currently touring and dreaming up ways she can get her new album out into the world.

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