Central Florida native, Austin Mercaldi, was blessed with the opportunity to explore his passion for music through the tapes his parents would give him, as well as his own self-discovery of music. With a constant growth and admiration for music, Austin, or Merc, started his music career and released Chapter 1 (Mar. 2016) and Heat of the Summer (May 2016) within the same year, gaining him instant recognition and success in 2016. Almost a year later, Merc released his junior EP, 20/20, which gives us life through the the perspective of Merc himself as he retells his life’s stories, while growing and progressing to define his sound.



Join us as we take a look at the timeline of Austin Mercaldi & what is in store for his music career.


Q: Thanks for wanting to be a part of Freelancer Magazine, we really appreciate it. So, for those who may not know you, how would you address yourself to the audience? 

A: Thanks for reaching out, and for your interest in the music so early. It means a lot, but if I had to address myself, I would start by saying my name is Austin Mercaldi, a 20-year-old songwriter, rapper, and singer from Lakeland, Florida. 


Q: What is the meaning behind your stage name ‘Merc’? 

A: Well “Merc” is actually the first four letters of my last name, Austin  MERCaldi. Everyone who is close to me or lives in the city I do, will usually call me that, so honestly the name was kinda chosen for me. 


Q: How long has music been a part of your life? 

A: Music has always been in my life, and probably the only consistent thing to ever stay. I kinda was born into the MP3 era so, my mom and dad would just load mad 70 – 80s rock and pop music onto them and hand them to me. It really all started with that, but as I grow older and transition out of different things in my life, music stays. After I began to make my own taste in music, I got a bit by the bio-hop bug in my pre-teen years, and its been that, as well as a mix of other genres, ever since. 


Q: Did you know that you always wanted to do music? 

A: Not really, kind of. I just always wanted to entertain people in some way and express myself through my work. As a kid, I would dance and rap at school functions and parties, but now I know it was just music calling all along. 


Q: Where do you currently reside?

A: I live in central Florida. I spend most of my time now in a city called Lakeland, where I was born, but I’m always all over the state. 


Q: What are some of your best accomplishments from 2016 and how do you plan to make 2017 better? 

A: 2016 was a big year for me. I gave myself a little platform to start dropping music with a slight following that is increasing little by little every day. I put out a small EP in the summer of 2016. which got me some attention in the city and gave me the opportunity to perform in the city, which was pretty cool! As for 2017, I just dropped my new project 20/20. 20/20 is going to come with my first set of visuals and physical copies. In 2017, I’m just getting better. Going from 50 jump shots a day to 100 jumpsuits a day. Ya know? 


Q: What background can you give us on your latest release, 20/20

A: 20/20 is just life retold for me. It also shows a side of me that’s seeing into the future, and knows what I have to do to make it further with my music. I have 20/20 vision. I can see clearly now. Its also just an insight of what emotions I’ve gone through struggling with progressing as an artist, and as a person hoping some can relate to my struggles. 


Q: What’s the message behind 20/20?

A: I just want it to be accepted. Whatever you get out of it, is just a bonus and definitely a personal journey with the music. It’s not necessarily for me to say what you should get out of it. I just hope you find it uplifting, creative, and relatable. 


Q: What was the process in the creation of this album? 

A: 20/20‘s process was actually a lot different than my past works. I worked with other engineers and I just had more outside perspective on the project. I was taking advice on where I could take my sound. To me,  it all starts with a beat that inspires me & usually, the words kinda just flow out of no where after that. I thank God for that talent. 


Q: What was your favorite part about creating this project?  

A: Simple creating music for people who need it, always. 


Q: What is your favorite track off of the 20/20? 

A: Haaaa it really changes everyday. Residual Effects seems to be the fa favorite though. 


Q: How long did it take you to develop this project? 

A: Damn, I stated writing 20/20 last August, I believe. I was kinda hard on myself in making songs and didn’t want to celebrate getting anything done unless it was SOMETHING. 


Q: Is this a self-produced album or did you have some help?

A: I had all outside production for instrumentals actually (alex, RDY, Penacho, Jaekown). But as far as writing, I did all of the writing, cut the artworks, from and back cover, and mixed and engineered over 75% of the album. I also had some help from Austin St. Jean on my track, Residual Effects. 


Q: How would you compare/contrast 20/20 to Heat of the Summer and Chapter 1

A: Chapter 1 and Heat of the Summer were my first experiences with recording songs. Seeing how many bars I could get off, and seeing what flows I could bust down. In 20/20, you can actually see, and hear, my growth in the arranging hooks, bridges, and better written verses. 20/20 is way ahead of any of my past work. From start to finish, it flows better, sounds better, and is just a better concept of music all around. 


Q: How would you describe the music that you make?

A: Conscious, caring, observant, and sensitive. All things that embody me. 


Q: What goals do you hope to achieve in 2017? What are some things you want to accomplish/do in 2017? 

A: I’m excited for the chance to perform my newer songs, I really love performing. I also want 100,000 views on a music video in 2017, so we will see!! 


Q: Aside from 20/20, will you be dropping any other mixtapes/albums in 2017? 

A: I’m always working and creating. I would just say, expect me to stay consistent in 2017. 


Q: If you could describe the future of your music in one word, how would you describe it? 

A: My music is truly growing with me, so I can only hope for progression. I’m just counting my blessings and am happy to able able to make music. 


Q: Is there anything you would like your supporters to know? 

If you support me, I just ask you spread my music and stay tuned, because it’s only up from here, 

Love. Thank you for your time. 


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LISTEN TO 20/20 NOW!!!




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