Gigmor’s New Live Music Marketplace

I’m thrilled to announce the launch of Gigmor’s new live music marketplace. Our mission has always been to develop innovative technology that addresses inefficiencies in the music business. We started by matching musicians with compatible players in their area. Today we added a crucial element: connecting them to paying gigs. The Gigmor network now has 50,000 artists who have played at over 1,500 venues in the US and Canada.

Our team has been working hard since last summer building our new site: a next generation booking platform focused on helping talent seekers find and book qualified talent for their venue or event. (A talent seeker is anyone looking to hire musicians, e.g., talent buyers, venue managers, promoters, event planners, festivals, colleges and individuals.)

Talent seekers can now publish gig posts and when artists apply to those posts, talent seekers can see their music, ratings/reviews and gigging history before making a hiring decision. Artists can post avails, which will become a valuable directory of independent artists for consumers and industry pros alike. Members can follow each other, allowing them to track the posting and booking activity of other members. We’ll soon be adding robust analytics tools that will help quantify emerging artists’ fan bases by city or region.

We’re super stoked about the new site. But we’re really just getting started—we have a ton of enhancements in the works.

We want more people to experience the joy of live music because Gigmor has made it easy to find and book the right talent!

Be Your Own Sex Symbol: Gigmor’s Interview with Sister Hyde’s glittery frontman, Hyde

A Toronto-based, Canadian born but internationally bred Hyde of the glitter rock group, Sister Hyde, took some time to talk to Gigmor this week to tell us a little bit more his history in the music industry, the past and present trajectory of his artistry, and the stories, tips, and tricks he picked up along the way.

 

Hyde grew up as a diplomat’s son — more specifically, as the son of a Canadian diplomat to Mexico, Guatemala and Venezuela/ . In an arena of privilege and social importance, Hyde broke through with his ‘devil may care’ attitude to try and become his own sort of diplomat, one exclusively interested in sex, drugs and rock n’ roll. From a childhood that had him bouncing from Canada to Mexico to other bits of the United States, Hyde had the magic potion: the mind and freedom to figure out just what it was that could and would turn him on. He built himself around and then into the thrills to be found in acts like Bowie, the New York Dolls, Alice Cooper, and T. Rex. Gigmor sat down with Hyde of Sister Hyde to hear a little more about his history in the music industry, his influences today, and how it has all changed, or hasn’t, over time.

 

Tell me a little bit more about your background. Where did you grow up, and where did you collect these influences?

 

“I grew up in a backwater capital of Canada called Ottawa. My dad was a diplomat so I born in England but we moved to Ottawa right away. And Ottawa is just a place that is filled with civil servants and hockey players. And it was there that I got my roots, had all my first experiences and exposures. When I was 16 actually I played hooky from high school so I could go and see Alice Cooper for the first time. Hitchhiking along the road, I ended up getting picked up by the roadies for the band. With an iceberg of Peruvian cocaine in front of my face and a trunk filled with gimmicks, props  and rock theatrics in the back, this was my first exposure to a lot of things.”

 

Amazing. Found yourself in the middle of history there, eh? Were there any other scenes that you dug into?

 

“I found myself in England in 1976 at the very start of punk. I had a huge perm, like I got mistaken for Peter Frampton once. He was big back then, ya know. I saw that movement at it’s very beginning which, you know, is the best time to see a movement come to life. So when I headed back to Canada I was able to carry that with me and integrated into the band that I was in. We then became Ottawa’s first punk band. Now, presently, here, back in Toronto, Sister Hyde is doing well. But it’s difficult, sometimes it’s a matter of getting one fan at a time. It’s really a people business, there is no denying that.”

 

How is Canada treating you and your glam punk band?

 

“I’m going to stay in Toronto for a little while longer, Sister Hyde is having a lot of fun here — but it’s tough, you know, because a lot of places are closing down. Live music and rock music isn’t as profitable as having a club or dance music. There is one place in Ottawa, for example, that has just closed down.  Toronto doesn’t really have a scene flowing; I think that scenes can only ever really happen where there is low rent and where the artists can find it affordable to live there.”

 

So when your environment is failing you, you have to find something else to work with. Is that why you use something like Gigmor?

 

“Gigmor, yes, that helps because it has never really mattered where you lived now in the digital age. It’s more about being online and creating your opportunities there. But I do find GIgmor really informative too, especially with their newsletter and blog stuff. Because I’m doing all of the band outreach myself, I find all of that super helpful.”  

 

What are you and the band working on now?

 

“Right now I am working on an all analog album. It’s just pure, not a computer or another something digital in site. In my opinion, when you go too digital, you take all of the guts and goods out of a song. It can start to really sound like the best rock n’ roll you’ve ever heard.”

 

There is a darker edge that my new music will have is going to surprise some of the critics I think, and this album being all analog will reflect that, but I don’t mind. In my mind I find that has the world gets darker, so does my music. And these are some dark times. Maybe it could be even passing for something different — but it’s all still glam rock. This time, it just has more of a punk edge.”

 

Correct me if I’m wrong, but it sounds like you can from some sort of strict, posh background. Something a little bit more proper, am I wrong?

 

“No, that’s not wrong. I mean like I said my dad was an ambassador to Mexico, Guatemala and Venezuela. And, funny story here, I actually went down to Mexico for school and got into a couple of scenes down there. I joined some Mexican bands, immediately got into the rock n’ roll, sex n’ drugs sort of scene. It wasn’t until my dad’s co-workers (the police) got ahold of me that I had to leave the country. My dad never wanted to see me again after that. It ended with me in a limo to the Mexican airport with two cops on either side. And all I could think was how fucking rock n’ roll this all was.

 

So then you moved to Los Angeles to continue pursuing your musical and artistic career, right? How did that go? What was it like to be surrounding by a lot of other someones pursuing a similar dream?

 

“I think of  performing as an art, and that’s the difference between a lot of people and me. What I find to be the most lacking in musicians and artists today is a little thing called attitude. And you can’t really buy that thing. Some people try and buy it, but you can’t.”

 

No I think you’re right, it’s not something you can acquire — it’s organic. You either have it or you don’t. And everything that you’re saying, I can see how Bowie became such a huge influence for you. Everything that Bowie did and said put artistry hand-in-hand with his music.

 

Oh yeah, Bowie is a huge influence. I met him and Jagger at the same time. And, you know, I remember, Bowie did this thing where whenever or whomever he was talking to he would never take his eyes off of you. He never broke eye contact. You were the most interesting person in the room. This was when I was living in L.A., and I met Madonna around those parts at that time, too.”

 

Amazing, absolutely amazing that you met Bowie. And Jagger. Madonna, too. You really were in the right place at the right time.

 

Yeah but you know you never really get anywhere without being a little bit of prick. You know, all of these people had a truly inflated sense of ego. And here is how I can think about that. And I think I always knew I had a final destination of being a rock star, I’ve always sort of thought that that was what I always wanted to work towards. But lately, especially, I’m realizing that that isn’t what is going to make me happy.”

 

Are you referring to the false god of fame?

 

Sort of, yes. A lot of people don’t realize that fame isn’t going to be the ticket to happiness. They are always trying to say you know ‘I’m going to be finally happy when I make it. And so I asked the question then, ‘Well, what if you don’t.’

 

Oh really? You were asking that question.

 

Yes, I’ve definitely started too. But when I was living in Los Angeles I used to ask the same question to everyone, ‘what advice do you give to a young person starting out in show business?’ And over time I got quite a few really good responses. One of my favorites was, ‘Do it. But make sure you’re having fun while you’re doing it in case you don’t make it. At least you had fun.

 

That’s great! And you could look at anything with that sort of perspective. If you give up and give in to whatever may or may not happen, but you’re still working towards that final goal AND finding happiness or having fun, then you won’t regret a thing. It won’t matter what happens in the end.

 

Yes, and that’s the reality that we’re finding more and more. Who is to say who is really happy? Was Prince really happy? It’s easy to imagine but that’s not always the truth.

 

You’re right, you’re so right. Only they could know. You have to still find happiness in it.

 

Yeah, yeah exactly.

 

Tell me more about the theatrics you use in your performances. Glitter punk calls for a lot, and I want to know what kind of tools you’re using to turn people on while on-stage.

 

Well you’ve got to do a lot — you’re really trying to keep people’s attention for a pretty long amount of time — but I have never found it too difficult. I try to do anything that I think will scare the someones in the audience. Anything that is counter-intuitive, counter-culture. If  you look down and get on your phone I will call you out, I’ll come trailing after you for that and put my guitar between your legs. Literally.

 

And do you ever find that when people are more conservative, or when people are almost tangibly putting up walls to something, that you’re even more motivated to turn it around and mess with them? I’ve only ever felt that in a sort of personal context, but I think that it reigns true for a lot of people.
Oh yeah, I find that to be really true with me. I do a lot for an eyebrow raise. I’ve performed on-stage in sequined black mini-skirts with fishnets and then a top hat and a navy pirate jacket on top. So the top is kind of male still, even though I have makeup on, but the bottom is kind of female. So anyone walking into to that is going to think ‘what the fuck?!” It’s all about that Bowie button, that kind of thing. I understand what you’re saying. I have to restrain that instinct sometimes, but I find that that is never what I want to be doing. I’d always prefer to be controversial, something sour. I always say, be your own sex symbol. You’ve got to turn yourself on before turning anybody else on, ya know? 

A Gigmor Interview with a D.C. soul band, The Levee Music Group

Gigmor was lucky enough to chat with Michael K. Potts (who goes by Mike) and Ainsley Delissaint (who goes by Saint) of the Levee Music Group to sit down and discuss what it’s like to be an up-and- coming soul artist, how they (successfully, I might add) survive the gig economy that consumes the life of a musician, and how they see their music in the national landscape of today’s divided political schema.

Where and when did you and the rest of the band get started in the music? Where did it begin? 

Saint: Mike and I were both musicians before we met. A year after my former band’s break-up, I (Saint) placed an ad online – the band broke up when it got hard when we started to make waves on the scene, getting national airplay and opening for established acts.  Michael’s response to my ad was, if I’m remembering correctly, the first I received.  At that time, I was either in relationship, or somewhere in the middle of a break-up, contemplating the possibility of moving to California or New York.  Once the two of us met, however, we knew we were on the exact same page when it came to music.  We were looking to be original and at the same time make a statement.  We wanted to be dynamic, better than good: for the both of us, this was our legacy.  We started in December 2012 and added a guitar player in our previous band but we felt his longevity was not best suited to our passion.  Mike and I then went into creative frenzy- keeping our heads low so to speak and building up a repertoire of new music- which took about two years.  We then started to build to actually build a band in 2016.  This was however, a different process.  We knew anyone we would have audition with us would be fans of the music- but we needed the right people.  We painstakingly culled through our knowledge of artists and professionals to reach the right people- in other words people who would be on our level of talent.  You’ll be surprised to find the number of “musicians” out there that need a little work.  So when I say it took- almost 11 months of auditions and meeting people it definitely was a task but we got it together!

Mike: I responded to an ad on Craigslist for vocalist looking to form a band. At the time, I was playing with a contemporary jazz group who had an excellent sound but no room to express my compositions. Along with jazz, I’ve always has a fondness for progressive rock, the blues and funk. I have played every type of music, except opera. I’m a self-taught bassist and in the beginning, I started listening to Motown (the great bassist, James Jamerson), The Beatles, particularly Paul McCartney’s singing and playing, Sly & The Family Stone (Larry Graham) and Jimi Hendrix. I kind of put them all in a stew to develop my finger style playing.

What was the music that inspired you? I can tell, in listening to what you have sent me, that you hit a range of type of artistry in your music. What kind of music has guided that? 

Saint: Excellent question.  The true beauty of it all is that Mike and I have the same exact feeling about music.  We are not genre specific- we love blues, soul, rock, funk, R&B, theater, ballads, classical….. Performance-wise my favorites are Otis Redding and Jackie Wilson.  As a matter of fact, many don’t realize that Elvis gave a lot of credit to Jackie Wilson for helping him create his style performance (both his dancing and singing.) Some of my truest influences are Prince, Hans Zimmer, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan are a few- but I literally believe every genre has great music.  I’m a big Adele and Amy Winehouse fan too.  Oh and Lauryn Hill – oh my god, yes.

What is your gig schedule like? How many gigs do you play and what cities are they centered around? 

Saint: At present we are slowly working on a gig schedule.  We did a gig in November 2016 and had an immediate call back to perform every week but we are prudent.  As a matter of fact, news already spread about our one show and had another club actually offer us standing weekly gig as well. Our goal is to reach as many different people as possible. When it comes to gigs, it’s not really about financial gain.  We agreed to do another show in January- on the night of the inauguration.  It would be fun to see how our music translates with people that night.   We will most likely start to get really busy right before spring.  They are currently centered in DC at the moment but we are destined to tour.

Mike: We are currently booking shows in the district, Maryland and Virginia, but we are looking to tour regionally as the band gains traction. We love playing out as the interaction with our fans is truly priceless.

Your music is great — soulful and moving. The lyrics and music is classically soulful yet interesting. Who is the lyricist in the band, and how do you typically collaborate when making your songs?

Saint: Mike and I are whores of collaboration.  So I love making music, composing, melodies, thought patterns and lyrics.  Typically, I will come in with a song idea to present to him (record it) and he would go mull it over and comeback with some sick bass line that then makes me think differently about the song.  I typically will have lyrics assigned but that edge he puts into makes us become even more creative so that we end up not sounding like anyone else.  Mike will also come to be with songs and I would do the same in return.  As a matter of fact, Mike came up with Loneliness Code- I restructured the song and worked on a separate bass line at the end.  Then Mike ran with it and the new bass line and added a kick butt ending.  Mike is a very, very unique bass player- following the norm be damned.  His bass lines are so melodic and different. As a matter of fact you heard the almost final version of Loneliness Code, the new version has slightly different chorus lyrics edge.  I do write the majority of lyrics. Poetry was my go to as a kid.  My second grade English teacher (Mrs. Singer) would let little me recite a poem in front of the class every week- I’ll never forgot her.  But most importantly, our friend Curt is probably one of the sickest engineer musicians.  He is as good a drummer as he is guitar player.  When it came to riffs and such he would add so much to our music. We try and incorporate him into our compositions as much as we can.

Mike: Ainsley writes the majority of our lyrics. I often times, on songs that I bring to the table, will have a few lines or idea of what I want the lyrics to say. Sometimes each of us will have a complete song but most often we will present musical ideas to each other and we go back and forth, adding or subtracting things musically until we get what we want. The majority of lyrics are by Ainsley, he’s an excellent lyricist. Then we present the finished song to the band.

Where do you see your music taking you? Do you have any planned next steps for the year 2017?

Saint: Festivals, festivals, festivals.  Building an audience in DC as it’s ideal to be in a place that technically has lots of entertainment but not many bands get build a rep and get into the mainstream.  So as difficult as it will be, it will be just a fun.  Eventually, opening for large acts then center stage in 3-5 years.

Mike:  We are looking to release music for downloads, finish our first CD, “Epitome,” and push for airplay and hopefully get some mini tours in our area and the rest of the east coast.

Do you the seemingly dire state of the world having any effect on your music?

Saint: Absolutely.  We are essentially ego-driven tribal creatures with a minimal lifespan compared to the rest of nature.  We lost so many people in 2016 and we forget that it’s not really about the accumulation of things but instead love.  I’m not Left nor am I Right.  I am also not in the middle- I’m a person who empathizes with each person’s unique experience.  Everything we are is learned.  We need to unlearn a lot of idiocracy.  If you’re racist- there’s a reason- you’re not born that way.  A homophobe?  There’s a reason.  We must not believe our own lies.  Afraid of commitment?  Think you’re unintelligent?  There is a reason for everything so I rarely get heated- I get deeper.

Mike: Absolutely. Even before the current US election cycle, the world was becoming a dark and sometimes distressing place, to the point I sometimes have to shake my head and say silly human race. My message through music is that there is still light and hope, but you have to be ready to give serious push back to the people, institutions and forces that may not have everyone’s best interest at heart. I think in r reality, ALL of us are not really that far apart in our hopes, dreams and aspirations. If we can make you think and feel something with our music, what more could we as artist, possibly ask for.

 

 

Album Review: Vulfpeck’s The Beautiful Game

“Some say the unexamined life is not worth living. Well, the unexamined thought, it’s not worth thinking” – Jack Stratton

Let’s try and forget about all that comes with Vulfpeck besides their music. Let’s try and ignore for a moment the genius of their branding: the impeccable attention to detail and genius in creating their own typography. Try and forget their heavily acknowledged success in crowd-sourcing all of the finances for their albums. Let’s try and forget that they (but mostly Jack Stratton) have a treasure trove of hilarious, eccentric and character-based YouTube videos to match their music that make them so goddamn lovable. Let’s try and forget that Joe Dart could be (is) one of the best bassists of our time. Let’s just try and ignore Theo Katzman’s extraordinary, repeated ability to write a nearly perfect pop song. And let’s try and ignore that Woody Goss is a walking, talking funky carnival pianist who plays for perfection. Let’s not let Jack Stratton’s gorgeous kneecaps distract us. Let’s try and forget about how magical it feels to show someone to Antwaun Stanley and “1612” for the first time. Or what “Rango III” can do to your nerve-endings, try and ignore that, too. Or that Bernard Purdie — THE Bernard Purdie, THE world’s most recorded drummer, THE inventor of the world-famous “Purdie shuffle” — played with them at two of the band’s four sold-out shows at Brooklyn Bowl and Summer Stage in New York City this summer. And, with all our might, let’s try and forget about that  first-round review of the album published by the Michigan Daily earlier this week.  For a moment, let’s just try and focus: let’s talk about why Vulfpeck’s most recent masterpiece, The Beautiful Game, is a nearly perfect album.

Let’s go song by song, beginning with the Klezmer clarinet solo in The Beautiful Game’s first track,  “Sweet Science.” Found here is one of the most hauntingly beautiful album openers to be found on a 21st century album. Michael Winograd, a klezmer music aficionado from Brooklyn, NY, draws listeners and fans in with what avid fan and OG Vulfpeck aficionado, Madeleine Chone, calls “a mournful, beautiful Jewish tribute to open up a deliciously funky musical present.” A better description can’t be found. It’s also important to note here to recognize how truly awesome, or rather how applaudable and original it is, to see the inclusion of such a niche musical genre enter a popular music space.

Tempo change, we’ve arrived at “Animal Spirits.” It’s the cute, older cousin of another one of Theo Katzman’s lyrical pop hits, “Back Pocket.” Woody Goss with the tingaling keys, Dart’s giving us the deep, deep bass. The Jackson 5 inspiration cannot be denied. Stratton said it himself in a recent YouTube video: “You don’t need a PhD to know that this is similar to the ostinato rhythm that Louie Shelton is playing on the Jackson’s 5 ‘I Want You Back.’” No, no you don’t need a PhD to realize that, in the same way that you don’t need a PhD to realize this song is nothing sort of pop greatness. There are quippy, kind-of strange lyrics about astrology charts and mutual Facebook friends, sure. But isn’t that half the fun of any other song? Production aside, isn’t music about making something that is given to everyone your own? Aren’t we allowed to assume what we want about the meaning of the 16 mutual friends they share? Yes, yes we are. Vulf graduated from the same high-bar university as the writers of this paper did: they are smart, and they are clever. So expect something original that is also in line with their branding. Or just put your headphones in and groove, goddamnit.

“1 for 1, DiMaggio” is similarly strange in its conception and lyricism. I don’t know anything about baseball, but I know the passion that lies within it (go Cubs). The back and forth between Vulfpeck-regular,  University of Michigan native and one of the best soul voices around today,  Antwaun Stanley, and Jack Stratton is quippy, clever, fun and backed by an instrumental that Vulfpeck has been teasing for too long. It’s a sports disco song – what a fantastic thing.

With “Dean Town” all the ladies and men in the room drop their pants and jaws.Here we get the man, the myth, the legend: the Joe Dart, a bassist god serving up some deep-dish dirty traveling basslines for three minutes and thirty three seconds. In this song you find the funk that makes Vulfpeck so beloved. The drums in the back, Woody’s keys bouncing in halfway through, mind-exploding by the three-minute mark because Dart is still going, still carrying that bassline. Here is a song that many are categorizing as one of the best Vulf tracks yet, and I agree.

From just one listen it’s easy to assume that “Conscious Club” is the brainchild of the band’s informal leader and hopefully the father of my children, Jack Stratton. An instrumental of “Conscious Club” was previewed in Vulfpeck’s 2015 album, The Thrill of the Arts. In its full conception, Stratton’s song is marrying Cheryl Lynn to King Floyd to  some fantastical groovy operatic dream he once had of a German funk club with the entry password, “Ich bein Dart.” Laura Mace, a destined-for-greatness soul singer, makes her Vulfpeck debut in this track, balancing out the rich monotone of Stratton’s explanations. Historically, funk isn’t a magnet for storytelling. The best funk was first made for the foot-tapping, hip-shaking, and buttcheek-slapping. But somehow, in a way that only Vulfpeck could, this song does both.

Lovechild of the Vulfpeck boys, fellow University of Michigan grad and a phenomenal musician in his own right, Joey Dosik appears on the album as well. His alto sax solo highlights the high tempo, James Brown-esque seventh track, “Daddy, He Got a Tesla.” This one is a funk lover’s dream: Dart carrying some sexy bassline, Pegasus Warning and his intermittent, perfectly pitched scatting, Goss and that piano solo at minute two… we’re sitting there whispering “yes,” “oh,” “baby,” “give it to me.” Sexual innuendo implied: good funk is for some the sonic equivalent to getting some.

“El Chepe” is one of the two funk trance tracks on the album that we haven’t seen from Vulf before. Here is a low volume exploration of a track that is diving into something a little less funky than we’re used to from the Vulfpeck boys. “Margery, My First Car,” is similar in this, highlighting the variety of funky smoothness that Vulf had been hiding. Christine Hucal’s ethereal vocals ease us into a low tempo, layered track that brings back instrumental fourth track from the band’s 2013 EP, My First Car.

“Cory Wong” is funky as all hell. In the classic Vulfpeck fashion, it sounds too good to be true: too natural and free-flowing to be anything other than improvisational. Just like “El Chepe,” and frankly every other track on this record, there are educated musicians who have honed in on technical skills to create Donald Fagan-like levels of perfection.

Any critical review of artistic expression will always and forever require context. Forming an argument around something when you aren’t educated in it, especially when it is something that is highly respected and enjoyed, is a disservice to both the artist and critic. Because how are you to judge something you don’t understand? Constructive, respected criticisms aren’t based on feeling alone.

You don’t have to like Vulfpeck, and whether or not you listen to them at all is completely your prerogative. You have your right to free speech and all. But help yourself out and walk into the lion’s den with a chair.

Also if you don’t like Vulfpeck, you’re wrong. Ich bein Dart! – MZ

A Gigmor Interview with Brother Mynor, a lo-fi hip-hop musician

Gigmor talked to Sam Johnson, the 23-year-old Aussie behind the lo-fi hip-hop/electronic – or rather, just eclectic and cool –  music of very interesting track names. Read below for the interview and his music:

1. How old are you, how long have you been doing music, and when did you decide to start diving into the possibility of a music career? 

 I’m 23 and have been making music since my first day off after I finished high school, so just over 5, pushing 6 years. I think I started taking music much more seriously during my time doing an Audio Engineering Degree at JMC Music Academy, although it was the reception I got on the track “Tom Cruise Eats a Continental Breakfast” that really pushed me into the music scene. I guess I’ve never really thought about music as a career, more as a passion project. I spend more time making music than actually working in my career so I guess it probably is one now whether I like it or not. 

2. How did you find your sound? You are electronic music  but you tap into (or at least sample hip-hop and rap in a way that’s reminiscent of Tomppabeats and Doc Heller) a lot of different genres. How did you get there? What musicians inspired/inspire you to get there and stay with it? 

Defining the genre I make is always a bit of a challenge, but I would say my foundation is more in hip-hop than electronic. When people ask me how to find more music like mine, I usually tell them to google lo-fi hip-hop, so if you had to call it anything I’d say call it that. The fact that there isn’t a concrete name yet is an awesome thing though, it shows how new, exciting and broad the genre is. Like any genre you get a lot of people who make similar stuff, but I am constantly amazed with the depth, complexity and variation I hear from everyone’s music. I guess it’s one of the reasons I feel so free to play with any genres or sounds I feel like using, because the community is so accepting of anything as long as you’re carrying the spirit of hip-hop with you. 

I had been jumping around a few different genres before I found ‘my sound’. I had been experimenting with dub and more straightforward electronic music before a friend of mine suggested I play around with some hiphop rhythms as he thought my tracks would really suit it. I straight up called him an idiot and even felt a little insulted as I had no intention of doing hip hop at the time. But, being bored and not having many other ideas, I gave it a go and I instantly fell in love. It was one of the most important lessons I ever learnt in music, that even if you don’t like the advice or criticism someone gives you, you have to take a step back from your feelings and really listen to what everyone has to say. As much as you make it for yourself, music at the end of the day is for everyone, or at least anyone who wants to listen.  It was a couple years of playing with some different sounds until I released “Tom Cruise…” which was the first track I felt really encapsulated what I wanted to do with my music. 

In terms of inspiration I’d say one of my earliest inspirations was Hominidae, who I pray everyday comes back with some new music soon. Some more well known inspirations include Teebs, Ras G, Flying Lotus, Lapalux, Tomppabeats, Saito/Fumei, eevee, Bilo 503, bsd.u….the list is just too long! I’d have to give the biggest thanks to Borealism though, as not only was his music one of the biggest creative explosions for me, but he has been one of my biggest supporters from day one. Honestly I wouldn’t be where I am today without him and his belief in me and the music I make. 

3. Explain the song names, please. They are brilliant. 

I’m not too sure when the idea to make an album with those names initially came from, I think it started when I was looking at how big an influence anime is in the scene, and I thought it would be a cool twist to direct that theme back at the western entertainment world. My design brief I presented to Inner Ocean Records was that I wanted to humanize people who feel so distant from us, remind people that celebrities are humans, with human needs, desires, jobs, chores, goals, problems etc. I also think it created a story right off the bat that the listener could run with in their head. It kind of grounded the tracks somewhere a bit physical, since the nature of vocal-less instrumental hiphop can sometimes feel a little ephemeral and disconnected. Also celebrity names are eye catching! The benefit it gave to promoting the tracks was a nice side effect I didn’t plan. 

At the end of the day I make music because I love the process of creating a cohesive album with its own themes, story and vibe. I try to transcend the ‘what you hear is what you get’ and give the listener something to dissect a little more. Seeing how Flying Lotus and Lapalux create themes around their full length LP’s is super inspiring and the Celebrities idea kind of let me run away with my own theme. 

4. Where do you see yourself going next? Touring? Is this a side job?

Lately I’ve been mainly focusing on finishing my next album Passionfruit Falls, which is 98% done and will be released on vinyl, cassette and digital through Inner Ocean Records and Nekubi towards the end of 2016. On the side I’m also prepping some new singles and releases to be dropped in the coming months. I’m also playing live shows in Melbourne through most of November and will be playing with Tomppabeats and Where Two for their awesome Australian tour (big thanks to Beat Lab for hooking that all up). I’m looking into traveling to America early next year too as I’ve been offered some shows up there, but I don’t earn much money through music so we will have to see how my wallet is doing around that time. 

If you love music it’s always gonna be full time. Everything else is a side job.