Introducing Alex Aureo: From tattoo artist to musician

"Swear to Defend is special to me. I wrote it about the purest kind of love and how it supports you through everything"
24 June 2024

Alex Aureo debuts with Swear to Defend, a heartfelt exploration blending nostalgia with a soulful, airy atmosphere. Hailing from Albano Laziale, Italy, Alex juggled music as a passion alongside his thriving tattoo studio near Rome’s Colosseum. Inspired by international encounters and driven by a deep-seated love for music, he rediscovered his musical roots last summer.

Initially drawn to punk rock as a teenager, Alex’s dual talents in tattooing and music reflect his multidimensional artistry. His TikTok presence, amassing millions of followers, showcased his musical talents alongside his tattooing skills. Witnessing Lewis Capaldi perform in Milan reignited his passion for music, prompting him to pursue it earnestly once more.

Swear to Defend, presented in a stripped-back rendition, embodies themes of love, support, and emotional complexity. From the emotional rawness of his vocals to the sparse, cinematic arrangements, Alex wears his heart on his sleeve, channeling Capaldi’s legacy with a stirring concoction of pain and promise.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more natural segue than Alex Aureo’s leap from inking skin to creating soulful melodies, and that’s because both mediums share a common thread: the pursuit of unbridled self-expression. With every new track, Alex throws his heart into the ring, hoping to start a connection that resonates deeply with the people who matter most – his listeners.

Singing during my tattoo sessions, albeit quietly to avoid annoying clients, helped me gain control over my voice and experiment with different techniques

What made you trade in your tattoo machines for a mic and an amp again?

I didn’t really trade it in; I believe you can be a multidimensional artist and express yourself in various forms. That is my aim: to express myself and inspire people. I love tattooing and writing music. For a while, I wondered which one to focus on, but then I thought: Why not do both? It’s a lot of work, tattooing during the day and making music at night. But I strongly believe in hard work and its power in achieving dreams. I cannot wait to show more.

Your dual talents in tattooing and music are quite the combination – how did the precision and creativity required for tattooing inform your musical pursuits?

Tattooing taught me patience and the continuous pursuit of perfection. In tattooing, I learned how art can be improved exponentially through dedication and striving to be the best version of yourself. Singing during my tattoo sessions, albeit quietly to avoid annoying clients, helped me gain control over my voice and experiment with different techniques. I’m grateful for how tattooing has expanded my artistic horizons, leading me into the music world.

What drove you to start writing music again after focusing on tattooing?

I’ve always written songs whenever I felt something deeply. For me, art is a pure expression of what’s inside; it helps you understand yourself. This summer, I found myself writing almost a song a day, feeling compelled to start recording. Art is meant to be shared, and I didn’t want to regret not sharing this talent. I decided to take music seriously, driven by the desire to live and dream to the fullest.

What’s the story behind your musical rebirth – how did you rediscover your mojo?

Last Christmas, I bought a fantastic acoustic guitar and placed it in the center of my living room. After long workdays, I would play it every night, getting lost in the notes and feeling so good. This soon turned into writing my own songs. It felt like a sign, as if I was made for this. I couldn’t wait any longer to pursue my dream.

Growing up, did your punk roots shape the sound you create today?

A little bit, but I love all kinds of music. I enjoy pop, rock, and artists like Bruce Springsteen and Bryan Adams. My style is an interesting mix of these influences. I want to create my own unique sound and can’t wait to share my upcoming tracks.

What message or emotions do you hope to convey through your music?

My main dream is to inspire others, just as big artists inspired me. Recently, I played for fun in a restaurant in Thailand. The owner knew my song and insisted I perform. Afterward, he played and sang for everyone, saying I inspired him to do so after years of not playing live. That’s what I aim to do: inspire others.

How has exploding on TikTok changed the game for your music?

I don’t think it changed the game; it simply gave me more ears to listen to my music. Ultimately, it comes down to the quality of what I write, and I’m determined to create amazing work. I’m just glad people appreciate my TikToks as well.

Was there a specific moment that made you commit to music wholeheartedly?

It was the overwhelming support from family and friends who appreciated my songs. Music makes me happy; I love creating, playing, and writing it. That joy and encouragement solidified my commitment to music.

Can you describe the process of writing and recording Swear to Defend?

Swear to Defend is special to me. I wrote it about the purest kind of love and how it supports you through everything. Initially, I recorded a complex version with orchestral instruments but decided to strip it down to just my voice and guitar for intimacy. I wanted to showcase the raw emotion first, saving the more elaborate version for later.

What’s on the horizon for your music fans – any new projects or surprises in store?

A new song is in the works, and it’s going to be different. I’m recording a lot of things myself and can’t wait to share it. The song is about how suffering can lead to personal growth. Stay tuned for next month!