Having earned attention as a promising new singer-songwriter, Alexander Cardinale is now drawing an international spotlight with his debut Atlantic Records single, “Made For You.” Praised by Billboard as “sweet and unabashedly sentimental, full of clean strums, golden backing vocals, and declarations of eternal love,” the track is also receiving featured placement in Coca-Cola’s new “Break Up” spot, part of its innovative global creative campaign, “Taste the Feeling.”
“I love pop music,” Cardinale says. “’Made For You’ is all the things I love about modern pop fused with the singer-songwriter sound I grew up on.”
Cardinale began making music early, beginning with violin but soon becoming proficient on guitar, ukulele, mandolin, harmonica, and percussion. In time, the Monterey Bay, CA-native started writing songs to match his growing instrumental acumen, inspired by such iconic tunesmiths as Cat Stevens and Peter Gabriel. He furthered and refined his skill set at Los Angeles’ renowned Musicians Institute, also striking up a lasting partnership with singer-songwriter/producer Morgan Taylor Reid.
“I love pop music ... ’Made For You’ is all the things I love about modern pop fused with the singer-songwriter sound I grew up on.”
Like any true troubadour, Cardinale has spent much of his adult life on the road, performing in clubs and cafes across the US while also touring as special guest to such artists as Melissa Etheridge, Pentatonix, and more. National notice came with a series of independent releases as well as a dual triumph at the 16th Annual USA Songwriting Competition, winning both the top prize in the Pop category as well as second prize overall. His songs have since received wide ranging airplay in addition to soundtracking high profile TV series including The CW’s 90210 and One Tree Hill, ABC’s Castle and Rookie Blue, NBC's Mysteries of Laura, and CBS’s Ghost Whisperer, among others.
Much of Cardinale’s named success was seen while working entirely independently. While its clear he was able to get the job done on his own, Alexander is excited about beginning a new chapter with Atlantic Records; one which will hopefully bring him more success than ever. “It was cool to be my own CEO,” Cardinale says, “but you really need to compartmentalize. I was spending ninety percent of my time running my company and my career and only ten percent on being creative. I would have to block out my calendar, take three days or a week and go into this other mode.”
“I feel like I’ve really discovered my sound ... ‘Made For You’ showed me exactly what I want to do. For the first time I have this feeling in my gut, in my soul, like this is what I’m supposed to be doing. This is what I want the music that comes out of me to sound like.”
The “Made For You” session was as immediate and authentic as the song itself, little more than a half hour’s effort to create something timeless. “It’s so funny,” Cardinale says. “We’d been beating our heads against the wall, using all of our creative juices to craft this really detailed concept album, and then this song just comes out in twenty minutes.”
Cardinale is currently hard at work in the West Hollywood studio he shares with Reid, an intimate creative space packed floor to ceiling with gear and equipment. Recently recorded tracks are rich with big group vocals, electronic elements, and classic folk flavors that bring his work full circle. “Made For You,” co-produced and co-written with Reid (Backstreet Boys), has proven an inspiration for the artist himself, revealing a sound and vision that fuses modern pop with classic songcraft and honest content.
“I feel like I’ve really discovered my sound,” Alexander Cardinale says. “In a way, I think I was a little lost – if you’re trying to do a lot of things at once, you’re not really focused on any one place. ‘Made For You’ showed me exactly what I want to do. For the first time I have this feeling in my gut, in my soul, like this is what I’m supposed to be doing. This is what I want the music that comes out of me to sound like.”