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Flipping the Script: A Journey from Struggle to Success in 'Down Side Up' 

Thomas Foschino’s (aka Roman.), latest track, "Down Side Up," vividly captures the unsettling, recurring dream-like anxiety of feeling unprepared for graduation and the looming aftermath. It resonates with the all-too-familiar fear of not meeting the expectations set for such a significant milestone. More than just an academic rite of passage, the song delves into the formidable challenge that comes after: applying the lessons and insights gained over four transformative years into real-world scenarios. This song is not just a reflection on academic completion but a deeper contemplation on the daunting task of navigating the complexities of life post-graduation… “But now the down side up I look to make a change. Now the glass half full I’m tryna get paid. Ain’t no more messing around.”


"Down Side Up" paints a vivid portrait of personal growth and determination against a backdrop of struggles and societal expectations. The protagonist songwriter, reflects on his journey of self-improvement and overcoming distractions to focus on his future. Despite initially bypassing the calls and responsibilities while grappling with his direction in life, he shifts his perspective from pessimism to optimism ("the down side up"). He's motivated to achieve financial success and no longer wants to waste time. His determination to graduate and put his years of college to work is heartfelt and genuine.


I been learning how to smile

It ain’t all bad

I just need to take a bit of time to myself

Take a piece of mind and put it into my health

But now the down side up I look to change

Now the glass half full I’m tryna get paid

Ain’t no more messing around­


The song title "Down side up" itself holds significant meaning within the narrative, acting as a metaphor for turning adversity into opportunity and viewing challenges from a new perspective. This theme of reversal—from downside to upside—mirrors the personal transformation as depicted in the lyrics. He articulates a journey from neglecting his own well-being and ignoring responsibilities, to recognizing the importance of self-care and proactively making life changes. The phrase "down side up" cleverly encapsulates the essence of flipping one's hardships into stepping stones toward a more optimistic and fulfilling path.


Throughout the song, he recounts his experiences in Back Bay, highlighting his tough environment and the challenges of balancing academic challenges with his dreams of financial stability. His verses delve into the pressures of college life, the need for personal space to improve mental health, and his creative pursuits in music production. Additionally, he expresses a desire for meaningful relationships and the strength to push forward with his ambitions. Ultimately, he is determined to make the most of his remaining college time, turning his pennies into dollars without compromising his integrity, underscoring a narrative of resilience and hard-driving ambition.


Roman. launched his debut album titled "Own World (20 Pages) in 2022," a musically diverse and emotionally rich 12-track collection. This album seamlessly blends various genres including rap, hip-hop, pop, alternative rock, and lo-fi, presenting a narrative tapestry that delves deep into themes of love, loss, self-reflection, and personal growth. Each track is distinct, likened to a unique page in a book, making the entire listening experience continuously engaging and fresh.


"Own World (20 Pages)" is not just an album; it’s a journey through Roman’s personal and artistic evolution, demonstrating his ability to craft songs that resonate on multiple levels, ensuring a strong connection with a wide range of audiences. This debut sets a promising path for Roman’s career, highlighting his commitment to authenticity and musical exploration.


The album begins with the title track "20 Pages," setting a high standard with its smooth hooks and introspective lyrics about isolation that transition into a robust rap showcase. Roman's ability to switch between genres is further demonstrated in tracks like "I Don’t Know What to Tell You," which mixes pop melodies with old-school rap vibes reminiscent of legends like Notorious B.I.G. and Ice Cube.


"Rain and Snow," the third track, is a standout with its pop influence shining through stunning vocal melodies, illustrating Roman’s experiences and emotional transitions. This track, along with others like the pop/R&B "I Take a Hint" and the hip-hop focused "Down," highlight Roman’s versatile musical style and deep lyrical content.


The album also features "Mortality," a collaboration with Ella Shreiner that showcases powerful vocal performances, and "Avenger," which brings an atmospheric, almost ambient style, adding depth to the album’s narrative arc.


Roman. has consistently demonstrated a knack for blending deep personal experiences with a wide array of musical styles. In his latest release, "Down Side Up," he continues this trend, offering a raw and introspective look into overcoming personal and academic challenges while eyeing a future of growth and success. This narrative of transformation and determination vividly complements his earlier work in his debut album "Own World (20 Pages)."


"Down side up" portrays Foschino's journey of self-improvement amidst life's chaos and overwhelming expectations. He describes his environment in Back Bay, his struggles with academic pressures, and his side-step from responsibilities to focus on his mental health and musical aspirations. Through his lyrics, he shifts from feeling overwhelmed to adopting an optimistic outlook—symbolized by his view of the "glass half full" and his resolve to make meaningful changes in his life.


In "Own World (20 Pages)," Tommy delved into a variety of musical genres ranging from rap and hip-hop to modern pop and alternative rock, creating a musically diverse collection that echoes his multifaceted personal and artistic growth. This debut album was an emotional and heartfelt journey through love, loss, and self-discovery, wrapped in beautiful melodies and sophisticated rhyme schemes. Each track stood as a unique page in this elaborate musical narrative, inviting listeners into Tommy's introspective and often isolated world.


Together, "Down side up" and "Own World (20 Pages)" encapsulate Roman.’s ongoing evolution as an artist. From the basement sessions crafting beats and lyrics to headlining his album release event, Tommy's journey is one of relentless pursuit of his artistic vision and personal growth. His music does not just tell stories—it invites listeners to experience the emotions and reflections of a young artist navigating the complexities of life and artistry.


In "Down side up," Roman. infuses his lyrics with vivid imagery and introspective themes, which are particularly poignant in lines like "Sorry if you hit me and I ain’t call you back, I been learning how to smile, it ain’t all bad." This lyric exemplifies the focus on personal growth amidst challenges. He speaks of taking "a piece of mind and put it into my health," highlighting his journey towards mental wellness and stability. Further, the recurring refrain "But now the down side up I look to make a change, now the glass half full I’m tryna get paid, ain’t no more messing around" serves as a powerful declaration of his newfound optimism and determination. These lines not only underscore his shift in perspective but also his resolve to pursue success and change his circumstances, echoing the themes of resilience and transformation that permeate both "Down side up" and "Own World (20 Pages)." Through these lyrical expressions, Tommy reinforces his commitment to overcoming adversity and seizing control of his narrative, crafting music that resonates with authenticity and emotional depth.


The song masterfully delivers a rapid-fire flow of candid lyrics and intricate rhymes that seamlessly weave through the haunting melody of somber beats and deep bass riffs. The music gradually builds, swelling and shimmering into a crescendo that leaves listeners with an 'aha' moment when the narrative shifts. At this juncture, the protagonist resolves to confront life with vigor and determination. The rhythmic flow and twinges of ache in his voice intensifies around the 1:50 mark, masterfully escalating the emotional intensity, driving the narrative forward, and culminating in a state of resolved challenge and heightened awareness that he will come out stronger on the other side. In the end, he successfully sculptures a galaxy of hopeful thoughts in his lyrics on his success to graduation.


Selling my soul and working just to survive

I want that comfortability

Depends on my ability

Change directions agility

Running races, round bases, crowded places

20 pages, 40 stages

And never thought I’d graduate

Musically, the production is meticulously crafted, with the clear vocals seamlessly aligning with the song’s tempo, capturing the essence of Roman’s distinctive style. This masterful orchestration effectively conveys the emotional journey, resonating deeply with listeners.


His fight to reverse his mindset resonates throughout the song.


I Been learning to smile

It ain’t all bad

I just need to take

A bit o time to myself

Take a piece of mind

An put it into my health


Roman is an unequivocally authentic songwriter, performer, and producer, celebrated for creating music that resonates deeply, marked by its raw emotion and honesty. His compositions wrapped up in compelling and introspective lyrical flows, not only spark hope but also instill a powerful sense of resilience in listeners, steering them toward brighter futures. His relentless dedication to expanding and refining his song catalogue underscores his commitment to crafting music that connects and transforms, making his work not only relatable but also revolutionary. Latest release “Down Side Up” is an anthem of self-love and overcoming personal challenges and concerning mindsets, and the power to seize control of one’s destiny.~Performers On The Go

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