Tampa singer-songwriter goes national with hometown pride

- Singer and songwriter Johnny Maio didn't have to look far to find inspiration for his song "Hometown."

"It mostly started with the piano," said Maio. "I came up with the lead melodic idea and I just thought about what it reminded me of and it reminded me of where I grew up: Tampa."

Maio worked with videographer Caleb Oosterling to come up with a video concept.

The two wound up traveling around Tampa for days. Maio played a different instrument at every stop.

"I originally thought it would be nice to record me playing every instrument but I wanted to think of a special way to do it. A lot of it, we were just improvising. We were just driving around looking for things we thought were important," said Maio. "We got Curtis Hixon Park. We got to film outside the Amalie Arena, the outside of the Bucs stadium.”

The Tampa Theatre was one of the ones we really wanted to get in there," said Oosterling.

They released the video on YouTube and caught national attention.

"It's doing really well. It's won a lot of competitions. It's been entered in a lot of festivals around the country," said Maio.

"The response is bigger than what I initially thought it would be," said Oosterling.

It's made Maio a bit of a hometown ambassador.

"Visit Tampa Bay saw it and they had me play at their Fourth Friday event," said Maio.

It's a catchy tribute to Tampa.

"Everything about it is just comfortable and welcoming and supportive," said Oosterling.

"Seeing how much it meant to me back then and how it still means a lot to me now," said Maio.

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