Writer, Player, Keen Observer, Performer
Singer-song writer/performer and keen observer, Marc Douglas Berardo combines songs that mine the deep feelings and lessons gleaned from real life characters and situations along with an onstage presence that uses humor and deft storytelling to rally an audience and lead them into a deep and almost spiritual experience. It’s an adventure that brings to mind James Taylor, Jimmy Buffett, Guy Clark or Steely Dan with a touch of Mark Twain or Hunter S. Thompson for good measure. It’s a night of laughter and emotion that works to send an audience home with a renewed sense of possibility.
In what amounts to song length works of fiction, Berardo’s sharply drawn, award winning song portraits cast a net on unusual and beguiling characters and places. With a painter’s eye for detail, and music firmly rooted in the great American sound, Berardo sings about circus retirees, expatriates in Florida rum bars, union iron workers, old poets, aimless New York City debutantes, near death car crashes, hard-nosed fishermen and of course, the changes that experience brings to everyone. He does this “simply and well” with what Rambles Cultural Magazine calls: “careful images and great tunes”.
I try to write about people and situations that interest and entertain me. Subjects and places that I feel a connection with and that are unique in a quiet way. Real people and places caught in the moment, almost like a documentary film or a novel. At the same time, I need the music itself to take me somewhere…to make me feel something. The words have to sing and the music has to work. The kind of song that does those things is my idea of a good time.” - MDB
Berardo people settled in Rye, NY. He is listed as a "notable alumni" of The Iona Preparatory, New Rochelle, NY along with some other accomplished and colorful attendees including: Don Mclean (American Pie, Vincent), Frank Mara (Co-Owner of The NY Giants), Frank Abagnale (Bank fraud perpetrator and subject of the film Catch Me If You Can) and actor Bud Cort (Harold and Maude). After a failed attempt at college at Boston's Northeastern University (where he learned to play guitar and performed publicly for the first time), Berardo hightailed it to Florida where he eventually earned a BA in English and Creative Writing (pieced together at several schools Flagler College, U of Florida and The U of North Florida).
I was not as interested in going to class, so, after contemplating a Hertz Rent a Car map of Florida that was hanging on my wall in my cold apartment in Allston, I took off south in search of a place that I could sing, play and lay in the sun. I ended up in the ocean town of St Augustine, Florida and on my first day there I wandered up the long stairs to a very special music venue named the Milltop Tavern and Listening Room. The first music I heard was songwriter and Florida legend, Don Oja Dunaway. I hung around the Milltop for months listening to songwriters and trying to figure out how to make up my own songs. When I finally worked up the nerve, I played my earliest attempts for Don Dunaway and he gave me a job singing twice a week in the club. It was a big deal and a real break. The great songwriters that passed through town were fascinating and inspiring characters. From my point of view, it looked like songwriting and performing as a profession was a noble pursuit and a club. It was a big deal and a real break. The great songwriters that passed through town were fascinating and inspiring characters. From my point of view, it looked like songwriting and performing as a profession was a noble pursuit and a club I that wanted to belong to. I have never stopped since then. In truth, it has felt like one long day since that time. - MDB quote from a Boston Voyager Interview
Berardo's first steady music gig was in a biker bar in Butler Beach, Florida in 1988 and since that day he has never stopped singing made up songs, performing an average of 150 nights a year everywhere from bars and coffeehouses to theaters and national festivals and venues such as The legendary Towne Crier Cafe (NY), Narrows Center for the Arts (MA), The Fairfield Performing Arts Center (CT), Tupelo Music Hall (NH), The Bluebird Cafe (TN), Snapple Sunset Concert Series (RI), The Emelin Theater (NY), The Hamilton (DC), Mile High Concerts (CO), The Opening Bell (TX), Caffe Lena (NY) , The Mansion on O St (DC), Zelda's (CA), The Freight and Salvage (CA), The Ramshead Onstage (MD),The Katherine Hepburn Theater (CT), Jonathan's (ME), The Evening Muse (NC), The Wildflower Art and Music Festival (TX), The Historic Cooper House (MD), The Living Room (NY), Hard Rock Cafe (MA), Anderson Fair (TX), Fiddler's Dream (AZ), Smokin’ Tuna (FL), St Anne's Chapel in Vatican City, Italy.
Along the way he has shared the stage with a variety of national acts including The Doobie Brothers, Peter Rowan, NRBQ, Guy Clark, Vassar Clements, Ralph Stanley, blues legend Chris Smither, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame members The Buffalo Springfield, Brooks Williams, Martin Sexton, Kim Richey, Amy Speace, Buddy Mondlock, Norman Blake (Oh Brother Soundtrack), Steve Forbert, Mustard's Retreat, Justin Townes Earle, Eric Anderson, The New Riders of the Purple Sage, Red Molly, Garnet Rogers, Eilen Jewell Band, Greg Trooper, Cliff Eberhardt, Ruthie Foster, Cheryl Wheeler, Lucy Kaplansky, Livingston Taylor, Catie Curtis, Kate Taylor, The Pousette-Dart Band, Kevin Welch, Eric Taylor, Will Kimbrough, Kenny White, David Olney, The Kennedys, Eric Taylor, Jimmy LaFave, and John Hiatt among others.
As a member of The DesBerardo Band with his brother Chris, Marc has been a part of shows with classic rock acts including Little Feat, America, Foreigner, The Marshall Tucker Band, Badfinger, David Allen Coe, Levon Helm, Dickey Betts and Great Southern, Reckless Kelly and others. In recent years Marc has participated in several well-regarded song workshop and performance excursions in exotic locations including Costa Rica, Islamorada and Bimini, Bahamas.
Berardo's fifth CD entitled WHALEBONE was released in Sept, 2013. Recorded in NYC, Woodstock, NY and rural Connecticut and produced by Brother Chris Berardo, Whalebone is a supremely crafted collection of songs about change, reemergence, strength and survival. Guests include the legendary Jon Pousette-Dart (The Pousette-Dart Band), Abbie Gardner (Red Molly), Lincoln Schleifer (Rosanne Cash, Richard Shindell, The Allman Brothers Band, Gov’t Mule, Donald Fagen).
No Depression Magazine called Whalebone:"a highly polished personal collection with songs that are on the delicate trapeze of poignancy.”
In May of 2014, Berardo won the coveted Michael Terry’s People’s Choice Award at the 2014 Wildflower Art and Music Festival Song Contest in Texas. The following week he performed as a finalist in the legendary Kerrville New Folk Contest at the Kerrville Folk Festival. In early 2015, Berardo's feature appearance on Sirius/ XM Satellite Radio's The Village was voted one of the best of the year by listeners. Berardo was nominated as "Best Americana Vocalist" by the readers of Motif Magazine in early 2017. In 2023, the RI Music Awards nominated him as best singer-songwriter. He has been nationally recognized for his music and performances (Rocky Mountain Folks Fest Song contest, Telluride Troubadour Contest, Sisters Folk Festival, 2013 Rams Head Onstage Rammie for Show of the Year.)
Marc's s current record project, "Temporary Things" is planned for release in 2022
AWARDS and RECOGNITIONS
2017 Nominee Best Male Americana Singer-Motif Magazine
2015 Finalist South Florida Folk Festival, FL
2015 DJ "Top 10 best of" Year End Pick- The Village -XM/Sirius Radio
2014 Kerrville New Folk Finalist, TX
2014 Winner Wildflower Arts and Music Festival, TX
2014 Solar Fest Showcase, Tinmouth, VT
2013 "Rammie" Award-Show of the Year with Bob Sima, Rams Head Onstage, MD
2011 Nominee-Best Male Vocalist-Motif Magazine
2010 Finalist-Sisters Folk Festival-Sisters, OR
2010 Honorable Mention-Rocky Mt Folks Fest-Lyons,CO
2010 Honorable Mention-Telluride Troubadour Contest,CO
2007 Tri-Centric Showcase Artist Northeast Regional Folk Alliance
2007 Finalist-Plowshares Song Contest, PA
2006 Finalist-Rocky Mountain Folks Festival, CO
2006 Honorable Mention-Telluride Troubadour Contest, CO
2006 Finalist-Wildflower Arts and Music Festival, TX
2006 Finalist-Suwannee Springfest Song Contest, FL
2005 Mid-Atlantic Song Association-Contest Award, VA
2005 Finalist -Plowshares Song Contest, PA
2004-2005-2006 ASCAP Song Award
2004 Just Plain Folks Music Award Nominee, Los Angeles,CA
2004 Finalist -Plowshares Song Contest, PA
2003 Finalist- Rose Garden Song Contest, MA
2001 New Artist Showcase- Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, NY
2000 Winner- Suwannee Springfest Song Contest, FL
1989 Employee of the Month-Crab Shanty, Mamaroneck, NY