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Our Crew

These are the cogs that keep our machine moving! Come on down to see us in person or feel free to give us a call at 800.847.8776 

Michael Nicosia

Store Manager @ Asbury Park
mnicosia@russomusic.com
With Russo Music Since:

2015

Product Specialty:

Pedals, Electric/Acoustic Guitars, Vintage/New Tube Amps, Synths

Musical History:

Fell in love with guitar at 13, with pedals shortly thereafter & have been playing in bands since.

First Instrument:

A Fender Foto Flame Telecaster that I still have to this day.

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Custom Shop Jazzmaster, Rosewood Tele, Vintage Hiwatt 100 & 200, & all my pedals.

Fun Fact:

I own 14 speaker cabinets (8 4x12, 1 6x12, 1 4x15, 1 8x10, & 3 1x18)

Special Talent:

I can cook!

Favorite Band(s):

Converge, GY!BE, Hum, Mineral, Mogwai, Pink Floyd, Swervedriver

Favorite TV Show(s):

Past: Mr. Show, Parks and Rec, & Top Gear / Present: Curb Your Enthusiasm & The Grand Tour

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight (for what I feel are obvious reasons).

Current/former bands:

Current: Category Mistakes; Terratazen
Former: Estella, Rectify the Names, Lagamasino/Nicosia/Wyche, Thunder Kids, the Laundry.

Record that Changed Your Life:

Godspeed You! Black Emperor: F# A# Infinity

Favorite Gig:

Estella's Last Show at the Lanes.

Favorite Venue:

331 Somerset St. New Brunswick, NJ

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Das Boot, Requiem for a Dream, & Spanglish

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

No

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

I'm more of a "Larry David" type.

Pre-show ritual:

Making sure all my cables work in my pedalboards.

Favorite Record Label:

Constellation

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Spending time with the people I care most about.

What else should we know?:

I am an English Bulldog enthusiast.

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Eric Collier

Guitar Technician @ Asbury Park
ecollier@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

2

Product Specialty:

All aspects of guitar repair, building, and vintage restoration. custom guitar pickups

Musical History:

been there, rocked that

First Instrument:

Festival short scale bass

Favorite Piece of Gear:

1977 Fender bass , I unscrewed from the wall of a pawn shop in north Carolina

Fun Fact:

chickens are my only pets

Special Talent:

I can name most hair medal songs in 10 seconds or less

First Instrument:

Festival short scale bass

Favorite TV Show(s):

Always Sunny , WWE, Teen Mom 2

Invisibility or Flight?:

invisibility duh

Current/former bands:

Current: B. Christopher Band, Magic Red - Former: Bell Bottom Blues Band, Matt O'Ree Band, Beggars Canyon

Record that Changed Your Life:

Lets Get It On - Marvin Gaye

Favorite Gig:

backing up buddy miles

Favorite Venue:

Flora-Bama

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Waterboy

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

bob #2

Pre-show ritual:

tune up

Favorite Record Label:

Big Bug Records

Preferred non-music related pastime:

being a dad & coaching sports I am terrible at

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Wills Weller

Drum Guy @ Asbury Park
wweller@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

7

Product Specialty:

Drums, Recording, Guitar, Bass

Musical History:

Started drums at 3. Currently in Tooth grinder signed to Spine Farm/ Universal Records

First Instrument:

Drums

Favorite Piece of Gear:

My Signature Vic Firth drums sticks

Fun Fact:

A ball of glass will bounce higher than a ball of rubber.

Special Talent:

Napping on the beach

Favorite Band(s):

The Buds Band, Jimi Hendrix

Favorite TV Show(s):

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight

Current/former bands:

Tooth grinder

Record that Changed Your Life:

Jimi Hendrix 'Electric Lady land'

Favorite Gig:

Playing The Fillmore in San Francisco, CA

Favorite Venue:

The Fillmore in San Francisco, CA

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Airheads

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

Yes

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

I sway between Ricky Gervais, Kevin, Jim, and maybe Andy

Pre-show ritual:

Stretching!

Favorite Record Label:

SpineFarm / Universal

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Baseball

What else should we know?:

I have Endorsements with Tama Drums, Vic Firth Sticks, Sabian Cymbals, Aquarian Drumheads, Vans Shoes.

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Christian Seaman

Gear Nerd @ Asbury Park
cseaman@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

2

Product Specialty:

Electric guitars and amplifiers, pedals, accessories and everything related.

Musical History:

Various original and cover bands since age 16, current guitarist for the cover band Undisputed

First Instrument:

1/2 scale Epiphone Les Paul

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Martin Custom Shop OM-28

Special Talent:

Semi-decent cook

Favorite Band(s):

Kiss, Tom Petty, Sex Pistols

Favorite TV Show(s):

SpongeBob Squarepants but only the old episodes

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight

Current/former bands:

Independent guitarist, Undisputed (cover band), Matthew Stephen and the Sweet Action

Record that Changed Your Life:

Queen Live Killers

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Happy Gilmore

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

Yes

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

Pretty solid mix of Michael and Dwight

Pre-show ritual:

Lately, finding parking

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Continuing the search for the best German beer

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Matthew Caponegro

Sales (Gibson Nerd) @ Asbury Park
Mcaponegro@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

3

Product Specialty:

Electric guitars, effect pedals, amplifiers

Musical History:

5+ years experience touring across the U.S playing Lead guitar in the Indie Rock band “Toy Cars”

First Instrument:

Guitar

Favorite Piece of Gear:

64’ Es-345 Seafoam Green

Fun Fact:

Michael J. Fox played a cherry red Gibson ES-345 TDC in the hit film "Back to the Future.

Special Talent:

Eagle eyes

Most Embarrassing Moment:

Ripping my shorts in gym class

Favorite Band(s):

Local Natives, Manchester Orchestra, Jimi Hendrix

Favorite TV Show(s):

That 70's Show

Current/former bands:

Toy Cars

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight

Favorite Gig:

A great Big Piles of Leaves @ Asbury Lanes

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

The Wedding Singer

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Running

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

None of your business

Pre-show ritual:

Brushing my teeth

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Cody Nierstedt

Asbury Park Sales
Codyn@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

2

Product Specialty::

Guitars and Effects

Musical History:

Bachelors of Science in Music Performance from Adelphi University: Classical and Jazz Guitar.

First Instrument:

Guitar

Favorite Instrument/Piece of Gear:

Suhr Koko Boost + Sano 300R

Special Talent:

I can make grilled cheese in a toaster.

Most Embarrassing Moment:

Singing and doing the dance to “I Want it That Way” by the Backstreet Boys in my Kindergarten talent show.

Favorite Band(s):

Miles Davis, Circa Survive, Chet Baker, Armor for Sleep, Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers

Favorite TV Show(s):

Dexter, It’s Always Sunny, Hunter X Hunter, Adventure Time, Trailer Park Boys, Yu Yu Hakusho

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight but low key want to say invisibility

Current/former bands:

I currently play guitar and sing in a band called Shot. Check us out on the gram, it’s “thebandshot”.

Record that Changed Your Life:

Chet Baker Sings

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Super Smash Bros

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Patrick Griffin

Guitar Technician @ Asbury Park
pgriffin@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

1

First Instrument:

Guitar

Favorite Instrument/Piece of Gear:

Gibson Les Paul

Fun Fact:

I have a set of bagpipes and I intend on learning to play them on my off time.

Special Talent:

I can lick my elbow.

Favorite Band(s):

Grateful dead, Twiddle

Invisibility or Flight?:

Invisibility

Current/former bands:

They were all pretty terrible , I’d like to start my own project soon

Record that Changed Your Life:

Long live rock and roll-rainbow

Favorite Gig:

Anything that pays

Favorite Venue:

Jones beach

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

Yes

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

Dwight

Pre-show ritual:

Figure out how I'm going to fake my way through the songs that I don't know

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Nascar

What else should we know? Tell us anything!:

English bulldogs are the best dogs.

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Bill Ahearn

Guitar Technician @ Asbury Park
Bahearn@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

3

Specialty:

Fender, Gibson, Martin, Taylor

First Instrument:

RockAxe

Favorite Piece of Gear:

1993 Fender Stratocaster Plus

Special Talent:

Able to spend an entire day off from work, at work working

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight

Most Embarrassing Moment:

Too many to mention

Favorite Band(s):

Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Pantera, Tool

Favorite TV Show(s):

Curb Your Enthusiasm, Seinfeld, Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Record that Changed Your Life:

Led Zeppelin- Houses of the Holy

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Happy Gilmore

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

Yes

Pre-show ritual:

Smoke a cigarette

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Basketball

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Scott Engel

Director of Marketing
Scottengel@russomusic.com
Specialty:

Guitars, Amps, Effects, Excel, Slack

First Instrument:

Epiphone FT-140 bolt on acoustic (currently collapsed on itself in a closet. “Mechanic’s Car” Syndrome)

Favorite Piece of Gear:

'52 Tele RI from 2006

Special Talent:

Able to spend an entire day off from work, at work working

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight. Duh. Don’t be a creep.

Current/former bands:

The Holy Mess, The Ruining ,The Beatles, The Cryptkeeper Fiv

Record that Changed Your Life:

Alkaline Trio/Hot Water Music Jade Tree Split '02

Favorite Gig:

Some warehouse in Philly with Menzingers and The Loved Ones. Anyone remember what that place was called?

Favorite Venue:

Asbury Lanes (RIP Dawg)

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Happy Gilmore

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

No

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

Never watched that

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Matt Bernard

Guitar Technician @ Hamilton
MBernard@Russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

6

Product Specialty:

Electric guitar, Acoustic guitar, and Bass Guitar, Repair & Maintenance

Musical History:

Started playing in gigging bands when I was 15. Started working on guitars professionally 6 years ago

First Instrument:

Drums

Favorite Piece of Gear:

My 78’ Fender Mustang and Music Master Bass Guitars

Special Talent:

Fret Work, Guitar Electronic Work, Guitar Playability Enhancement

Favorite Band(s):

The Bronx, MF DOOM, Baroness

Favorite TV Show(s):

The Office

Invisibility or Flight?:

Invisibility

Current/former bands:

Current: Coach’s Son Former: The Ruining, The Checkers NJ

Record that Changed Your Life:

Rancid’s And Out Come the Wolves

Favorite Venue:

Millhill Basement

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Happy Gilmore

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

Yes

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

Creed

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Hanging out with good friends

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Jeff Lacour

Sales Manager @ Hamilton
jefflacour@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

18

Product Specialty:

Guitar, Drums, PA and Recording

Musical History:

I played guitar with local original bands until being sucked into an excel spreadsheet at work.

First Instrument:

Drums

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Fender Strat

Fun Fact:

First time on a plane was to attend the winter NAMM show 2011.

Special Talent:

I can fall asleep anywhere.

Most Embarrassing Moment:

The moment I realized every band I listened to in the late 90's were not cool.

Favorite Band(s):

Strung Out, The Cure, The Beatles

Current/former bands:

Philo

Record that Changed Your Life:

Twisted by Design

Favorite Gig:

The cafeteria at my community college

Favorite Venue:

The Trocadero

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Time with my daughter.

What else should we know?:

I play guitar left handed so I may remember every left handed guitar the store ever had since the beginning of time.

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Jim Graziano

Sales Guy @ Hamilton
jimgraziano@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

11

Product Specialty:

Band and Orchestra, guitars, amps, pedals, wax cylinders, pro audio

Musical History:

I played guitar with local original bands until being sucked into an excel spreadsheet at work.

First Instrument:

Alto Sax

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Bass guitar

Fun Fact:

I taught Michael Jackson how to moonwalk, but then I forgot how to do it.

Special Talent:

Finding spelling mistakes in questionnaires

Current/former bands:

Honah Lee Doctor Teeth & the Electric Mayhem Groovy Movies

Invisibility or Flight?:

Clairvoyance

Do you ever play air guitar/drums in the mirror?:

None of your business

Which Character from “The Office” are you?:

Kevin's Famous Chili

Pre-show ritual:

Scrambling to remember song parts/lyrics

Favorite Record Label:

They're still a thing?

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John Comninel

Sales Guy @ Hamilton
JohnComninel@russomusic.com
Years with Russo Music:

1

Product Specialty:

Fenders, Basses

Musical History:

Playing in bands since '09, Helping people find awesome gear since'13.

First Instrument:

Bass guitar

Favorite Piece of Gear:

2005 MIJ Jaguar bass

Special Talent:

Yo-yo's

Favorite Band(s):

Foo Fighters, Failure, Cave in, Bad Religion, Soundgarden

Favorite TV Show(s):

Seinfeld

Clowns are:

Just trying to make a buck.

Current/former bands:

Battery Operated, Louie Probably, New Politicians, Nobody

Record that Changed Your Life:

Too many to list them all, but The Colour and the Shape and Down on the Upside get honorable mentions

Favorite Gig:

Nodriza Studio in Monterrey, it was packed and sweaty and the crowd was awesome

Favorite Venue:

The Court Tavern, because it's close to my house.

Favorite Adam Sandler Flick:

Big Daddy, tragically underrated

Favorite Record Label:

Play-tone, I love the Wonders!

Preferred non-music related pastime:

Baseball, Photography, and BMX

What else should we know?:

In Canada, milk comes in bags.

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Ethan Chaplin

Sales @ Hamilton
echaplin@russomusic.com
With Russo Music Since:

2019

Musical History:

Been playing guitar since I was 15. Since then I've put together a band and have played all over.

First Instrument:

Guitar

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Gibson 60' Traditional Les Paul reissue

Favorite Band(s):

Soundgarden - Alice in Chains

Favorite TV Show(s):

Lethal Weapon/Mind hunter

Invisibility or Flight?:

Invisibility

Current/former bands:

Rust N' Stardust

Record that Changed Your Life:

So Much For The Afterglow

Favorite Gig:

Rockwood Music Hall. It was a great small venue in NYC that was packed at 1AM.

Favorite Venue:

The Chubby Pickle

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Billy Palka

Sales @ Hamilton
wpalka@russomusic.com
With Russo Music Since:

2019

Musical History:

Been drumming for 17 years and playing guitar for 13. Respected the Rock always.

First Instrument:

French Horn

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Fender Jazzmaster

Favorite Band(s):

Minutemen, Fugazi, The Jesus Lizard, Kevin Gates

Favorite TV Show(s):

Cops!

Invisibility or Flight?:

Flight

Current/former bands:

Stranger Cells, Decoration, Pinkus, Taste Wasters

Record that Changed Your Life:

We Shall all be Healed by The Mountain Goats

Favorite Gig:

The rock ones.

Favorite Venue:

In The West

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