Cousin happened somewhat unexpectedly, in early 2016, when Seattle guitarist John Luzzi suddenly found himself on his own again, armed only with years worth of fragmented songs and unfinished voice memos. Fast forward, now with Bay Area singer/songwriter Alex Y. by his side, Cousin is poised to be on the tip of everyone's tongues.
So just who is Cousin?
Luzzi is no stranger to the music scene. He’s been the guitarist for numerous Seattle based bands, including Lotus Crush, alongside Candlebox guitarist Peter Klett and Drummer Scott Mercado. For the last 5 years, his band Miggs (Elm City/Capitol) toured extensively, supporting the likes of Scott Weiland, Candlebox, and many others. “When Miggs went on hiatus, I had all these songs I wanted to finally complete, mostly guitar stuff and melodies. I was set on doing a solo album, I didn’t want to rely on anyone but myself. My only problem was I had very little lyrical content. That’s where, unexpectedly, Alex Y. came into play.
John and Alex met 10 years ago, but should have known each other their whole lives. “We’re actually cousins, but due to a rift between family members, we grew up not knowing about each other” says Alex. “We’ve been really close ever since, but for some reason, never ended up playing music together. I went to Seattle early 2016, around when John was starting to work on his solo material. We ended up jamming a cover of Billie Jean, and that’s when everything just clicked.”
With John’s vision of a solo project out the door, Cousin was formed. Suddenly, ideas that he’d left for dead were being brought to life by Alex’ melodies and lyrics. “I had heard her sing a million times, I knew she had an amazing voice. But she hadn't done music of her own. I never would have guessed she had the ability to write the melodies she does. I was blown away.”
Cousin pulled out all the stops to create something truly special. With friend and producer Don Miggs at the helm, the enlisted friend and Mixing Engineer Justin Armstrong (Dave Matthews, Death Cab For Cutie, Aiden) and Audio Engineer Ed Brooks (Pearl Jam, REM, Heart) to help them turn their vision into reality, and even called up buddies Andrew Joslyn (Macklemore/Blake Lewis) and Mark Rodriguez (52 Street Productions) to orchestrate a song.
They're now armed with an EP that is sure to demand attention, and the raw talent to back it. And although the name may be new to the scene, it’s players aren’t.