Writer. Musician. Actor. Academic. Volunteer.
Universo founded the rock band Red Carpet Rats serving as its frontman, lyricist, and rhythm guitarist, and has had the privilege of touring internationally and recording with countless industry luminaries. As an owner of Chauffeur Entertainment, a company housing both a record label and publishing division, Universo was instrumental in getting Red Carpet Rats signed to a subsidiary of Universal Music Group. He also facilitated the band’s premiere of their release, The Year Of The Rat, on Touch Tunes jukeboxes in venues across North America and Europe.
Universo's songs have been placed in film and television soundtracks receiving Academy Award and Emmy consideration, and his music has been heard on channels including MTV, VH1, E! Entertainment, and Oxygen. His tune “Going To Hell" attained Top 10 status internationally, getting its start at 104.3 FM “The Buzz” radio in the U.S. Virgin Islands and leading to a 85-date tour of the territory. As a result of some of these accomplishments, he secured a deal as a writer for Universal Music Group’s MasterSource music catalogue, the industry's leading provider of original music for film, television, and multimedia.
Cast in the National Broadway Tour of the hit musical Rock of Ages, Universo performed more than 300 hundred shows to sold-out theaters, arenas, and amphitheaters across the United States and Canada. His portrayal garnered raves and led to countless television performances and live appearances.
Universo was asked to participate in "A Tribute To Smokey Robinson," and a live rendition of "We Are the World" to celebrate Motown's 50th Anniversary in Los Angeles. In a series of commercial spots for Verizon Wireless, he played the "Man in Black" character, then performed as part of a rockabilly trio alongside celebrated Musicians Hall of Fame members. Universo then reprised the role live across North America on Verizon's Rock N' Rollout Tour.
As an On-Air Host, Universo was instrumental in the launch of the lifestyle channel Back9Network and made regular appearances in its daily programming. Additionally, he served as Music Director and Band Leader for its nightly talk show while providing both pre-recorded and live musical accompaniment for the network.
Universo has degrees from The University of Edinburgh (Master of Music) and Duke University (Bachelor of Arts). At the former, he was chosen as Student Orator to deliver the closing speech at the university's graduation ceremony at the iconic McEwan Hall in Scotland. He has taught popular music history to students as part of an outreach program in conjunction with The Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, lectured university business students in Italy and Spain on the music industry, and is a Representative Committee member for the International Association for the Study of Popular Music.
A participant of Musicians On Call, which brings live and recorded music to the bedsides of patients in healthcare facilities, Universo is honored to have served as a spokesman for the Tennessee chapter of Prevent Child Abuse America.
He is most proud of being the companion of his rescue dog, Freddie.