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On Beat: Rocky LeRoe

Rocky LeRoe performing on stage, courtesy of Millie Bugler

Performance is something Millie Bugler, whose stage name is Rocky LeRoe, has always been interested in.

“I like sounding more raw than produced. My first EP was all live recordings, because I think it’s best for the way that I perform and the way my band works,” Bugler said.

Writing music is often a therapeutic experience, she said.

“My brain and body can tell me when I need to vent. You get to a point and it’s just hard for you to carry on with your day, and some people go on a walk or a nap, but sometimes to get there I need to get those thoughts out on paper,” she said.

While these songs aren’t necessarily pretty songs, they are necessary songs, she said. Sometimes they’re too personal or eclectic, but these songs are for her, not for her audience.

At Belmont, commercialism is taught very heavily in the music program, Bugler said.

Being graded on this art that she creates for herself has been difficult, she said. But she often finds solace in the idea that her and her professors’ mindsets are different, and that feedback always has the potential to be positive.

When music is being graded in an objective sense, she has learned how to still consider this feedback subjective.

When she received some negative feedback from a professor on a song she was proud of, she found comfort in her classmates reassurance about how they really enjoyed the song.

“I think that is just because my story is different from my professor’s. It’s just the audience that matters. The audience will always find you,” she said.

Rocky LeRoe will be playing two songs, each song containing immersive storytelling and themes at the Belmont Vision Office Concert.

“Red Rocks,” Bugler explained, is a more of a rock song that is about a man who is lost in a canyon.

“It’s kind of a song about him, trying to find answers when there’s nothing provided,” she said.

“Stunning Mountain Cult,” the second song she will be playing, is a bit of a juxtaposition to the previous song, Bugler said.

She laughed as she explained that it’s about being in a cult and being blind to the world, while also being aware of that blindness.

“I’m not going to lie to you, I think it’s really cool.”


This article was written by Ben Burton

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