From Trogir to New Jersey – Meet Tommi Mischell, Croatian Singer, Artist, Patriot

Total Croatia News

From Trogir to New Jersey.

As an activist in the Croatian American community, I am endlessly impressed by all the talent and incredibly interesting Croats within the national American community.

Meet Tommi Mischell, a Croatian patriot through and through and a true artist that embraces her musicality and singing talent in so many unique ways. It was such a pleasure to interview her last week, and although Tommi now lives in Southern New Jersey, her heart remains in Croatia, and especially in Trogir where she grew up.

Tommi’s singing career began at age four at the Catholic “Our Lady of the Angels” (Gospe od Andjela) Church in Trogir. She has such fond memories of singing at this church and it inspired her to pursue more singing opportunities. Tommi also feels there’s a spiritual omen with her August the 2nd birthday connection to the same date of the church holiday which was celebrated at this church every year on her birthday.

Tommi as a young girl singing at church, accompanied by her brother on the accordion


Tommi went on to sing for a few years in an A cappella group, a true Dalmatian specialty where the sound of voice without instruments and with the right words really matter. Tommie was fortunate to have an older brother Miro Mise who was a talented pianist and was a member of the Croatian band, Tutti Frutti.

By her teenage years, Tommi was energized to sing in a band that could even perform in the summer for tourists on the Adriatic coast. That’s where she was introduced to so many types of music, from rock to pop from the likes of Whitney Houston, to Tina Turner and even jazz with ballads from Ella Fitzgerald. The summer gigs and learning popular cover songs was a real impetus to embrace so many popular types of music.

It was a strange twist of fate that on her first international singing tour to Australia in 1991, the war broke out in Croatia. It was a surreal and anxious time and Tommi and her bandmates went on to raise 150,000 Australian dollars before she left her four week tour down under to return to Croatia in strife.

Tommi did find a way to even have a big Croatian hit with Vinko Coce in 1992 entitled: Da je meni s tobom kroz Pasike! This duet with Vinko, a Croatian pop and opera singer also from Trogir, was a real career highlight from her early music career. You can find this song on YouTube and the lyrics and music are by Nenad Nincevic.

She’s very proud of the single “One Thousand Hopes” that she wrote the lyrics to and composed with Drew Rason and which is dedicated to the war and all veterans in Croatia. Vince Martell, the lead guitar player, was a guest on that record and he’s a former member of the famous American band, Vanilla Fudge.

Tommi has spent a lifetime singing to support Croatian causes, near and dear to her heart. During the war years, Tommi estimates that undertook over 100 singing performances during 1991-1995 to entertain children or to cheer up soldiers, like an American service USO tour. She has performed so many fundraisers to help Croatian firefighters, to help rebuild a Croatian Church or to support the special needs of Bishop Franjo Komarica last October in New York City.

Tommi’s music has been described as a mixture of “adult contemporary and funky groove” in a fun pop, rock or jazz style. She had one CD in the 1990s recorded with the “Average White Band” and has had a wonderful collaboration over the past ten years with a Grammy Award winner, Allan Slutsky. Tommi was proud to arrange to bring Allan to Croatia twice, including last summer. Tommi and her talented American musician friends performed at the Sibenski Festival, and Allan was a conductor with the orchestra. Tommi gives credit to all the wonderful collaboration she has received with her Sibenik performances, including that of concert organizer, Branko Viljac and Dusko Sarac, artistic director of Sibenska Sansona and Zelimir Babogredac with Croatia Records.

Tommi’s new song “Modri Kavez” from her recently released Vrime Je (It’s Time) CD, produced by Allan Slutsky, will soon be introduced with a new YouTube video featuring this beautiful song filmed all around the Fortress of Sv. Nikola near Sibenik.

Tommi is quick to say “God has given me a talent and it’s such a joy to share it with any audience.” She fondly spoke about some of her most memorable shows she did for children in the 1990s from Split to Rijeka, from Dubrovnik to Medjugorje and ones that will last forever as special memories. A few years back, she visited the Catholic Church near Sibenik which her singing and fundraising efforts had helped to rebuild, and it was a wonderfully rewarding return visit.

Tommi, like so many artists, has another profession and she brings all her talents and stylistic flairs to her work as an interior decorator. She has created her own brand “Beautiful Dalmatia” inspired by her own childhood and the Adriatic sea’s history of mariculture.

The fact she worked for a number of years with an architect brings a special perception to her design and interior decorator’s work with her company, K Gallery Art & Design. Also, having a husband Nikola Kacic, who is an incredibly talented sculptor who comes from seven generations of Croatian granite craftsman from the Trogir area, broadens her artistic perspective. Nikola’s new work “ Blue Visper” dedicated to the victims of Communism and to the victims of “Huda Jama” will be showcased throughout 2018, hopefully in New York City at the United Nations this fall.

On top of all that, Tommi is also a proud mother of two daughters, Tedi, who recently married, and Ella, who was one of the Croatian American community’s first group of “40 Under 40” winners, another family member with artistic songwriting and musical skills.

Lastly, you can find Tommi’s musical CDs on Amazon, and you can find more information on Tommi herself here.


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