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Chasing Creativity with Marcus Trana

In Brief
City of residence: Sturgeon Bay (native of Oslo, Norway)
Occupations/Instruments: Producer, engineer, songwriter, drums, guitar, bass, keys
Currently playing with: S ö NAMUND, Basketak, Faenskap (solo projects), Genevieve Heyward & the North, and Eric Hagen & Red River Revival 
Type of music: Americana, folk, country, indie
Door County connection: Married to a Door County native
Last Door County performance: Door County Brewing Co. with Nick Orlock (The Blum Dogs and The Wildness)
Latest work: S ö NAMUND featuring HIXON (Let’s Run Away), S ö NAMUND featuring Claire Kelly (Every Time I Fall), Basketak (Sundown Sentiment), Genevieve Heyward (The Norway EP)

Vanessa McGowan (VM): What first got you into music?

Marcus Trana (MT): I started a band in fourth grade with my best friends before even knowing how to play an instrument. [We] sucked at sports, so we needed a way to get the girls’ attention! My father played a little guitar, so he taught me my first chords and songs. Lots of Stones and Beatles.

VM: How would you describe the music that you typically create?

MT: My solo projects are very different from each other. I come from an eclectic background, and I can’t seem to settle on just one genre. I write under three different monikers right now. I also cowrite a lot, and I’m currently writing with an English artist in Brighton while coproducing and cowriting Eric Hagen’s EP.

VM: If you could open a show for any artist, who would it be?

MT: Living – Miley Cyrus! No longer – Led Zeppelin!

VM: When you’re not making music, what’s your day job?

MT: I have a couple of side hustles now during the pandemic, but I’m about to start construction on a new studio, and as soon as it’s safe, I’ll be moving into [being a] full-time musician/studio owner.

VM: What have you missed the most with the lack of gigs in 2020?

MT: People! Music! People! And money.

Photo by Cody LaCrosse.

VM: What exciting projects do you have on the horizon?

MT: I’m working with an up-and-coming artist, Eric Hagen, and we’re releasing an EP [Cross Roads Hotel] in April. I’m also about to start construction on my own recording studio [Green House Studio] on our property in the Steel Bridge Creative District in downtown Sturgeon Bay. I will be offering cheap studio time, along with lodging in our Airbnb and live concerts with artists from all over – even Norway.

[We’ve] previously hosted shows with Norwegian acts: Darling West, Cortex, Friends & Neighbors, Aiming for Enrike and Wisconsin’s Jon Mueller (Volcano Choir, Pele) and Chris Rosenau (Bon Iver, Pele, Volcano Choir, Collections of Colonies of Bees). In other words – lots of fun in the making!