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June 11, 2022

Interview with Will Wood (Will Returns!)

We had the pleasure of interviewing Will Wood over Zoom video.

Cicada Days is a beautiful singer-songwriter piece by the enigmatic and influential Will Wood. Once known for his manic, high-energy songs, Will is releasing next month the most...

We had the pleasure of interviewing Will Wood over Zoom video.

Cicada Days is a beautiful singer-songwriter piece by the enigmatic and influential Will Wood. Once known for his manic, high-energy songs, Will is releasing next month the most accessible composition in his new sound, one that is grounded in acoustic instrumentation with a much more mellow vibe compared to past releases. What begins as a melodic acoustic piece with lilting, gorgeous vocal lines, "Cicada Days" builds and later explodes into a sound of controlled chaos, just like the insects themselves.

From Will:

"Cicadas spend the vast majority of their seventeen-year life cycles underground. They chew on roots for the better part of two decades, crawl up trees, Cronenberg/Kafka into enormous flies, tear out of their alien shells, scream for two months, and die. I guess cicada days could either be a long time spent growing but not emerging, or they could be days spent struggling to become something new that doesn’t quite pan out so great, or they could be the two months of screaming. Or maybe it’s the height of summer, or the days when you can’t stand the noise outside.

I guess don’t really know. But the words feel kind of right to say. The big, noisy final chorus was kind of a limb I went out on while making the demo for this one. I didn’t have a bridge or a last chorus, and because I was no longer looking at songs as needing to always be some anthem-like I used to, I was willing to risk ruining it by trying something new. So I just said to myself, “what if I put another chorus here and just made it really unpleasant?”

The sounds you hear are guitarist Mike Bottiglieri (who also played mandolin and lap steel guitar on the track) in a tiny iso booth with his guitar and amp cranked manipulating the feedback. We had to put earplugs and gun range earmuffs on him for safety, and I had to give him visual cues instead of playback to track along with.

I feel like this track is a pretty essential example of the ways in which I’ve changed as an artist and as a person over the past couple of years." - WW

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Hello! It is Adam. Welcome back to bringing it backwards. A podcast where both legendary and rising artists tell their own personal stories of how they achieve stardom. On this episode, we had a chance to catch up with Will Wood. We interviewed will back in 2020 over the phone though. So this time you can see we'll over zoom video. We'll recap a little bit from his first interview tells us where he was born and raised how he got into music talks about putting out his first couple albums as Will Wood and the tape worms we hear about the success he's had with Patrion the success of his 2020 record. The one, we had a chance to chat with him about last time, the normal album, which was done all through Indiegogo, which is a crowdfunded, which is part of the crowdfunding campaign. 3 (2m 11s): He was able to raise enough money to put out the normal album. It did insane numbers. It's doing incredible. And he did the same thing for this new record called in case I make it. We talk about the, a couple of songs he's got out for that album, Tom cat disposables, and the most recent one Cicada days. You can watch our interview with Will Wood on our Facebook page and YouTube channel at bringing it backwards. It would be so awesome if you subscribe to our channel like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and tick-tock at bringing back pod. And if you're listening to this on Spotify, apple music, Google podcasts, it would be amazing if he follow us there as well, and hook us up with a five star review. 4 (2m 51s): We'd appreciate your support. If you follow and subscribe to our podcasts, wherever you listen to podcasts, 3 (2m 57s): We're bringing it backwards with Will Wood. 5 (2m 60s): Hey, how's it going? 3 (3m 1s): I'm doing well. I'm doing well. How are you? 5 (3m 3s): I'm doing well, man. Thanks for, thanks for having me on this. 3 (3m 7s): Yeah, I, well, last time I actually interviewed you on the normal album when the, when that one came out, but it was over the phone. So this is via the video. 5 (3m 18s): Yeah. Well, nice to put a face to the name of the voice, 3 (3m 21s): For sure. For sure. I'm super excited to do this. Thank you so much. 5 (3m 24s): I am too, man. It's a real honor and a real pleasure. 3 (3m 26s): Cool. So this is about you and your journey music. I know we, we chatted about that last time, but maybe we can, you know, discuss, do a little quick backlog of what we talked about before and then obviously what you've had and what you've done since that record came out, I guess. 5 (3m 44s): Sure, absolutely. Are we, are we recording now? Is what we're saying now? Canon or are we cutting? Yeah, 3 (3m 50s): Yeah, yeah, no, we're going, I mean, we can always just go with it. You know what I mean? 5 (3m 55s): If I had, hold on, let me just really quick. And I'm just, I 3 (4m 0s): Love it. Awesome. Well, you are you're from New York, correct? 5 (4m 3s): No, I'm originally from New Jersey, but I'm 3 (4m 5s): Oh, the Jersey. Got it. Okay. Talk to me about New Jersey. What part were you born and raised in? 5 (4m 10s): Oh, I grew up in a nothing little suburban town, like two square miles of, you know, myopia, but that's about it. Not too much to comment on, you know what, I don't understand my own instinct to criticize my own hometown without even saying anything of any actual substance about it. What I call them close minded. What on earth? Where am I from? 3 (4m 30s): Geez. 5 (4m 31s): I think you can see a lot of that cynicism and just immediate instinct to, you know, just criticize the world around me in my last record. I don't know what my deal is on that. 3 (4m 46s): That's all good, man. 5 (4m 48s): Sorry, beloved hometown. Whose name? I won't mention for the sake of 3 (4m 53s): Backlash? Well, 5 (4m 56s): I don't think that my hometown is gonna cancel me or anything, but rather I've dealt with some really creepy characters as of late. And I just don't like to put too much personal information out there. 3 (5m 5s): I got you, man. I, I totally understand that. Well. So when did you get into music? 5 (5m 9s): Well, I started taking piano lessons when I was like five or six years old, but I didn't start, you know, pursuing my own interests as a musician until I was, I think, around the same age, most songwriters start writing songs around like 13, something like that. 3 (5m 23s): Okay. 5 (5m 23s): When I started, you know, switching from formal piano lessons to more informal piano lessons with someone whose role was more a songwriting mentor slash unwitting therapist. And, you know, I think just, it tends to be that teenage angst is a big launch pad for a lot of people's songwriting careers. And so, yeah, I think essentially my career started with not my career, but my pursuit started with, I'm going to try to invent some, you know, some feelings I'm having and then I'm going to tell myself that whatever I write, no matter how terrible and adolescent it is is the best thing ever. 5 (6m 11s): And eventually, you know, you convince yourself you're great for a long enough and eventually you get kind of good at it. 3 (6m 18s): I like 5 (6m 18s): The notice how once again, it comes through that constant urge to criticize even con just criticized that child right there. 3 (6m 24s): It's like, self-deprecating man. I know it's all right, man. I do the same exact thing I see. And your story, a lot of myself actually, but I, I was, I was curious to like 13, you start writing, but weren't you, are you involved in, you were involved in theater right through school. Is that a big part of it? 5 (6m 43s): Yeah, I mean, I did like all the school plays when I was a little kid and I did all, you know, and through my teenage years. Sure. I think that is kind of just, I think that probably was a really important part of my eventual development into an artist was the fact that I was used to being on stage and used to being in front of a lot of people at once and you know, whatnot. 3 (7m 10s): Yeah. Yeah. Well, when you start riding around 13 a, was that something that you felt comfortable sharing with other people or was it something that you kind of held yourself? 5 (7m 19s): You know, I don't quite recall. I think some of it, I wanted to share probably other parts of it. I very much didn't, but I was very supported. My family was always super supportive of my creative pursuits. And so there was plenty of stuff that I did share and that my parents had to had to face, you know, they had to face the conundrum of, well, we want to support our kid, but we also don't want him to get the idea that he should go off and try and be a professional musician someday because God forbid terrible idea. It's a terrible idea. You know, took a long time for them to eventually like, you know, they were always supportive and they were always like, you know, there for me and always at all of my shows when I was a kid, but you know, if you're a good parent and you're going to, you know, 3 (8m 11s): Right. Kind of second guess the artistic route in life, 5 (8m 15s): Well, at least, you know, for the sake of the well-being of your child. And so like, you know, I do recall sharing some stuff with my family. I don't, I guess I probably did share some stuff with friends. Yeah. Probably. I don't remember very well. 3 (8m 27s): All right. Well like with that, like you said, you, your parents finally came around, obviously you're doing this and you're, you're successful at it. Like was there a, not to go too forward ahead, but like, I'm curious to know if there was a moment that you kind of got that validation from them that they're like, oh, okay, he's doing this. And it's working out for him. 5 (8m 46s): There wasn't really a single moment. It just kind of happened over time, you know? And they were always validating. They were never discouraging. They just never wanted to, you know, see me set down a path that was unlikely to yield positive and healthy results for me. And so, you know, they were always validating for sure though, just eventually it became, oh, okay. He's making a living and I don't have to worry anymore. 3 (9m 14s): Right, right, right. Okay. I understand now with, with that, like, did you, did, were your parents musical at all? Or like, are you kind of the only one in the household doing that stuff? 5 (9m 25s): I mean, my, my mom has some musical background and musicianship does run somewhat in my family, but I'm the only person in the family who in the immediate family who has, you know, followed it as a career path. 3 (9m 40s): Okay. And was there anything that drew you to pan out? Is that something that you were interested in or 5 (9m 45s): No, it's just when, when my grandmother passed, she, we inherited her old upright piano and I guess, yeah, I think my parents always wanted, always wanted a musical family. They always wanted their kids to have that. And I just happened to be the only one of my siblings who ended up continuing to play piano out past a certain age. 3 (10m 16s): Okay. Did you do that in the agree, were you in like the jazz band or anything like that through middle school, high school or orchestra, or? 5 (10m 24s): I played some, I tried, I tried clarinet and trumpet in middle and high school and I gave them both up and I do very much regret that because those are such wonderful instruments and they're on half of my songs nowadays. 3 (10m 37s): Right. 5 (10m 38s): Darn I could have saved some money to, 3 (10m 42s): Did you end up going to college for music? 5 (10m 44s): No. I ended up bouncing around various universities. Never actually landing on a solid major for longer than a few semesters. I ended up studying a, a made up major theater in comedy at a university in my area that really was kind of cobbled together between two disparate departments, neither of which were big enough or well-funded enough to be a major on their own. And so they decided to be innovative instead and, you know, just went with, just went with that. And I dropped out before I could complete my theater in comedy degree. And thank God for that, because that would have been such a waste. 3 (11m 27s): Well, when you were you pursuing, you must have been pursuing music full-time at that point when you were attending school or theater at least. And I mean, theater comedy, was it all kind of just in the show entertainment world that you wanted to land? 5 (11m 42s): Yeah. I, I just knew that I was pretty good at entertaining people and I knew that I had a pretty creative leaning field of interests, you know, I, I just, I, I knew what I was kind of good at and I knew what I liked to do. And so I wanted to figure out a way to make my living doing that. And eventually, eventually kind of just was that music was the one that was working. I didn't see a path to becoming a professional illustrator or artist or whatever. I don't know. I said the word illustrator and I, I, I guess I didn't see myself all that cutout for stand-up, although I do now do stand up when I tour. 5 (12m 31s): So, you know, I, I had a wide variety of creative interests and it's just, it just so happened that there was, I don't want to say a market for my music. I mean, ultimately I guess there was, but it was, it was, I didn't start pursuing my music full time until after I had put out my first record, I was still going to school with every intention of graduating and still work at a day job for a while. It wasn't until like, I dunno, late 2016, maybe in 20 10, 20 17 that I started, you know, really pursuing it. Full-time and certainly wasn't making an actual living off of it until like the height of the pandemic. 3 (13m 15s): Sure, sure. Well, with that, like, cause you, cause you have w Wilwood and tape worms, was that the first, was that record the first part of this? Or did you put a record out by yourself? Like as just, well, what, like, where does the career begin? Like tell me about that first recording and what that entailed? 5 (13m 32s): Well, the, the first record that I put out was everything is a lot, which was released under the name Wilwood and the tape worms, which I chose because I wanted to, I wanted it to be, you know, I wanted to put out a solo record and, you know, I, I had played in garage bands before and I'd played in other bands in the local circuit before, but I had never like, you know, led my own. And this was my first time leading my own band. And I wanted to put out a solo record while also drawing attention to the fact that there are other guys here that deserve some credit while also being able to, you know, tell, booking people on the local independent scene that they can get a band. 5 (14m 13s): Nobody just wants a guy and a keyboard on the punk scene. And, you know, I started playing with a band in 2015 and that band went through a ton of lineup changes. It's actually kind of funny. I never had a, I didn't have a consistent lineup between releases until after I stopped calling the project Wilwood and the tape worms and started calling it Wilwood Pain band for every Wilwood release, but every well would end the tape runs releases had different tapeworms on it, But yeah, it started with the Wilwood and the tapeworms record, which was intended to be more like a demo than anything else, something that I could like, you know, a Hawk for five bucks at an indie show or just throw around is, I don't know, at whatever at an open mics. 5 (15m 9s): And so I recorded it with the intention of it being kind of like a, almost like a greatest hits album by somebody who's never released anything before. I'm trying to pick out my favorite songs. I've written since I was a kid and you know, at least my late teenage years and was meant to kind of just be a, yeah. A show with the range that I was, you know, I guess capable of 3 (15m 36s): Sure. 5 (15m 37s): So, but it just ended up being something that worked for me. I, I didn't, I didn't expect it to turn into what it turned into. I played a show with a band. I played my first Wilwood on the tape we're in show and people seem to really like it and I just kept doing it until eventually it was like, okay, so do I do this or do I keep going to class? And it was like, well, go into classes and making me any money. So 3 (15m 60s): Yeah, let's keep doing this. And where you just staying low at this point where you living in New York? Are you still in Jersey 5 (16m 7s): Or is he, yeah. 3 (16m 8s): Okay. So you're in Jersey still. And then when you put out the second record with Wilburn Wilwood and tapeworms, are you also still in Jersey or like what did the career progressed at that point? 5 (16m 18s): That was, that was still a New Jersey because my second record only came out like a year or so after my first one, right. I started recording it like a six months after I put out the first one, I was given an opportunity to work with this producer who had some really great credits behind him, Kevin, on Tracy and from Dillinger escape plan who 3 (16m 39s): Rushed back incredible band 5 (16m 41s): Stick. And he he's incredibly talented. And he offered to do my record, you know, with, with a bro deal. But I had to squeeze it in before he left on tour. And so I was like, okay, I'm going to cobble together bits of music. See if I can turn these few songs that I have in to an album, make sure that I get all the higher energy ones out, because right now I'm on the punk scene and they want, you know, they want high energy, they want heavy stuff. And you know, I then had six months to put together this next record. So I, so some people apparently are under the impression that after my second record, I went on hiatus because I put out my second record in 2016 and didn't put out another one until 2020. 5 (17m 30s): And in reality it's like, no, that was that there was a lot of work in there. There wasn't supposed to be a second record. You know, that was, you know, it was like, oh, I have this opportunity and I have to take it. Otherwise it wouldn't have happened. Right. That was very much a product of circumstances that I was like, oh yeah. Okay, sure. Yeah. Yeah. So, 3 (17m 49s): Yeah, because he was willing to work with you basically, like you said, it was a bro deal and it's like, well, I got to take advantage of this. 5 (17m 55s): Right. And we had a limited window to do it. And, and so, you know, and so it sounds like what it sounds like because of those circumstances. And it came out when it did because of those circumstances, but you know, totally. Wasn't what, you know, what would have happened without those circumstances at all. 3 (18m 16s): And then from, well, moving forward, I mean, obviously there's a great deal of stuff you had going on in those four years that there wasn't a release, so to speak, you weren't on a hiatus, but like tell me what you had going. Like, what was like, what were you working on? Like what was the, what were those four years in between? 5 (18m 33s): It was playing shows, playing just trying to play as many shows as possible. Trying to tour. I put out a live album, I shot a concert film. I, I, I, I tried a lot of different things, did a lot of touring. I was doing a lot of different work and it just wasn't, you know, no opportunity to record had presented itself. The first time I put out a record, it was because my good long-time friend, John was working at the studio that Kevin on Tracy and works at. And he was able to offer me a deal on the second record was because Kevin was able to offer me a deal. And so since nobody was offering me a deal, I was like, okay, better go pound the pavement and get my name out there until another deal comes my way. 3 (19m 21s): I believe the last time we spoke, what I thought was so interesting is you talked about, you put the, these big, like, almost like theatrical shows together. Correct. And like, instead of having the tickets say like, so you were having to pay all these people. So the ticket price was up a bit, but that would also attract the attention of people, which I thought was a brilliant idea because it's like, oh, there's a $5 show happening at this club tonight. Like they bands probably trash, you know? I mean, like there's no, it's what way there's like that fine line there. And you're like, yeah, let's start at 25 bucks, but I wasn't because I was being greedy, but it was because I was paying out the people and people were getting a show. That was just gonna say, like, that was, that was that in those days, was that kind of where, what you were pushing with? 5 (20m 6s): It was during that period that I was just, I was still, I was trying to find my footing. I was trying to figure out how I could, you know, make enough off playing shows and selling merch to, you know, have a, a living. And I was trying all kinds of things to do it and trying to make enough money doing what I do so that I could put out another record and I could tour, and I could do these things that were very challenging to do back then. And, you know, so yeah, that period of time was spent basically doing that hustle. And then I, you know, got into Patrion, I want to say late 2017, a lot of my work ended up focusing on that, because that ended up being the first reliable and consistent source of income I had through my work. 3 (20m 58s): That's crazy to get into that, get into it early. I mean, it's a brilliant thing obviously. And I know that you're the record we just talked about last time was a funded album, correct? 5 (21m 7s): Yes. 3 (21m 7s): Yeah. So w with patron, was that just something you had stumbled upon, or you were like, like, how did you build a community within Patrion? Was it just from being out in, seen in the, in, you know, in the, in the local area or touring or, 5 (21m 22s): Yeah, it was mostly that it was, you know, doing the DIY grind and getting my name out there and making sure that everybody who I got in front of learned that I had a Patriot. 3 (21m 30s): Okay. I want to, I don't know how open your talk about it, but like, I'm, I'm because I've also, I'm an AA and I, and I have addiction issues. Like I, I did read that. That was kind of one of your things early on in your career. 5 (21m 45s): Yeah. I, 3 (21m 47s): And how did that affect, like, how did that affect you, the, the, the career or where whereabouts did that kind of, when did you realize that? 5 (21m 55s): I think that I got lucky a lot of musicians don't develop a problem with substances until the height of their career. Right. But I actually, no, it wasn't, it, it was quitting. Drinking was an enormously important part of launching my career. If I hadn't stopped drinking, I wouldn't have the career that I have. I wouldn't have had the career that I had at that time. Certainly wouldn't be where I am now, but I wouldn't even have even gotten to where I was then, you know, like, I mean, I w I was a wreck and it was the first time I played with the tape worms in 2015. 5 (22m 46s): That was the first time that I played a show on the local scene without getting sloshed first. And I never played a show drunk again. And so part of me thinks that maybe my career was actually a part of my recovery there. It was instrumental for lack of a phrase that doesn't potentially include upon, you know, 3 (23m 12s): That's really interesting. So you hadn't played a, you weren't, obviously you were, weren't doing silver shows until this one. And was that, that must have been terrifying going into that originally, right. Like, okay. How do I, you know, I don't know. That's how I would have felt. Like, how do I maintain, like, like, you know, really, like, I haven't done this before essentially, 5 (23m 33s): You know, I actually, I don't think I did feel any anxiety about that. I think I was more anxious about the idea of being, of being drunk on stage at that point, because it was my first time taking on an artistic project that meant that much to me. And so I knew full well that when I got on stage drunk, I was a mess and I was not good, you know, and I didn't want this opportunity that I had and all these people, I didn't want, I didn't want this opportunity. I had to go to waste, nor did I want to let down all the people who were then relying on me to make sure that we all had a good night together. 5 (24m 17s): There were a lot of, you know, there were, there were people whose, you know, yeah, they were, they were counting on me to not be a mess. And, and my entire, you know, all my dreams were wrapped up in it too. And it was like, okay, for the first time, I have more to lose by drinking, you know? 3 (24m 41s): So it's incredible. I mean, to, to, to see that that'd be self-aware in that sense, it'd be like, okay, like I could really screw this up. Like, I, this is what I really want. And to be able to, you know, have the willpower to, to not right. I mean, that's a tough thing in itself when it comes to that stuff. 5 (24m 59s): Well, you know, they, they, they say that, you know, a lot of, a lot of times you don't change until you have to. And I guess in that moment, I had to, you know, there were a lot of different factors. It wasn't like, it was just that, that, you know sure. When my feet, but that was definitely part of it. 3 (25m 13s): That's oh, that's incredible to hear, man. I mean, yeah. Like it's, like I said, I have the same issue and thinking when you're speaking, it's like, oh, I remember the moments the same way, where with my career in radio, like being like, oh, I thought it was so awesome and so great. But then you think back and I was like, I was trash. And then I look at like, when, when that all changed and it's like, like, how was I even doing that? Like, I don't even understand that. Like, it's just it's. So just to be, to have that, like, you know, standard, like, you know, the 20, 20 view of the thing or whatever hindsight of it all is just so interesting, but that's incredible that you're able to see that, especially that early on. 5 (25m 53s): Thanks, man. I appreciate that. That's very kind of you. 3 (25m 55s): Yeah. Well, okay. So we, we talked about last time you had a crowdfunded record and you even said, like, it wasn't until 2020 that you were able to really just do this basically a hundred percent on your own, like full time. Right. 5 (26m 9s): It was about, yeah, it was early 20, 20, maybe late 2019 that I was like, okay, I can actually afford rent now. 3 (26m 15s): Okay. 5 (26m 16s): You know, I was relying on other people in my life up until that point. And then, you know, things turned around 3 (26m 22s): Was that Crump, was that crowdfunded record? Was that something that was done through Patriot? Like how did you, like, tell me about the process of doing that and like being able to put this record out 5 (26m 32s): My last record, the normal album, it was, it was funded through a Indiegogo. 3 (26m 37s): Okay. 5 (26m 38s): Basically I just offered various campaign, exclusive perks or benefits as they call them exclusive merchant experiences and stuff like that. The people who've contributed to the campaign. And I just did the same thing for my upcoming record. 3 (26m 53s): Oh, really? Okay. For case I make it, that was the same, same process then. 5 (26m 58s): Yeah, pretty much. I mean, I used a lot of what I learned from the last time around to conduct a more successful this campaign, this time around. And also, I just had a bigger audience at this point. And so it was, it was a huge thrill and definitely a successful operation. Super grateful for that. 3 (27m 18s): I mean, having the Patrion that you, you had built over the course of the years, must've, you're already ahead of the game. Right. When now when the pandemic started. Cause that's what everyone was like, oh, now what do I do? 5 (27m 29s): Right. Yeah. Like, Yeah, no, I definitely, yeah. I, everybody, I got super lucky. I had a source of income that was already online. I already worked from home and everybody, it sucks cause it's like everybody around me was getting slammed economically while all of a sudden I was doing 10 times better than other ever, because we were looking for something to do inside. And I was the only person, you know, so I was like, you know, it's, it's, it's weird. But I think it's, it's almost like it's like the pandemic launched my career and I hate it. 5 (28m 11s): You know, it's like, and it was also just the, oh, I have so many opinions about what the pandemic did to culture and how it forced everybody inside and in front of the algorithms all the time and how that people's heads. And I, I, I, I think that that had a big part in what ended up happening in my career and I could go on and on all day about that. And I won't bore you with it, but it's 3 (28m 37s): Interesting. I mean, to be honest, I feel like it's as horrible as it sounds. I feel like my podcast is in the same boat because I was Tressie already for 17 years. And then the pandemic hits and we're like recording shows from our house. Like there's nothing live. There's no one driving around. So like the, the fun and the thrill of doing that just became like this mundane, like audio, wallpaper, ish type. I'm doing these things, but no one's driving around listening to it. No, one's like tuning in really from their home. Everyone was like focused in on the news and blah, blah, blah. But then all these artists are sitting at home like, Hey man, like you've got this podcast. Like we got nothing going on. 3 (29m 17s): We'd love to chat about our new song. We have this thing going on. And then it just became like so many, you know, it, it just did this with the two, with the two things I was doing. I mean, it's sucks. But if, if it wasn't for that, then I wouldn't have had the, you know, the amount of people coming to me as, as there were, as it stood. 5 (29m 37s): So you had a similar experience where like, it was at like the start of the pandemic that you started to traffic coming to your work 3 (29m 43s): A lot more. Yeah. That's like, I mean, it was, and it was solely because now, I mean, I'd started the podcast in the beginning of 2019. So it's like I was doing it and it was a thing, but then it was like, so it was, it was kind of like how you were saying, like, you are a name out there. Like people knew who you were, you were out there doing the grind work. And then it was like, oh, well you've already begun to build something in this space. And now people are trying to now catch up to what you're doing. Essentially not catch up, but like, oh, well you're like, well, I've already been doing this. 5 (30m 16s): You mentioned that you mentioned that you were doing radio work for 17 years. I'm looking at your face. I'm like, where is, where are those signs? 3 (30m 23s): I appreciate that. I'm a 37. 5 (30m 27s): Oh geez. You look younger than me. Oh, 3 (30m 29s): I appreciate that. 5 (30m 32s): You managed to squeeze 17 years of career in that face. Look at you. 3 (30m 35s): Yeah. I know. Believe it. I'm just kidding. 5 (30m 38s): I love all the luck, but where did you, what did, what did you do in radio? 3 (30m 44s): I was on the air. 5 (30m 47s): They're doing what? Specifically? Like the show or 3 (30m 50s): The oil? Yeah. I was just a guy. I did a, you know, five hours or four, depending on yeah. Five hours, depending on what market I was in and played records and talked about songs. And it was pretty much that did it for a corporate radio stations and did it at the end of my career for an independent station. That was a really massive one in San Diego. And which was cool because I had more freedom to do stuff that was fun. But in the same, same sense, it was like, unfortunately companies like the radio stations were just bleeding because they weren't getting advertising money. Right. No one was going there. 5 (31m 25s): Yeah. 3 (31m 25s): So it was like, I'm watching this thing. Like it was, yeah, it was hard to see and like hard to see a lot of friends lose jobs. And it was like, this is crazy. Like the biggest DJs, the biggest programmers on the planet at the time, or in the country at the time are losing their gigs. I'm like, how is this happening? Like, this is not, you're going to let this guy go because you think what this isn't going to end ever. Like it, just to me, it isn't making sense, but then I'm also at the same time people are coming to me like, yo like, Hey, blah, blah, blah, wants to talk, but blah, blah, blah. You know? And I was like, sure, yeah, I'd love to chat with X, Y, or Z. Right. So it was, it was just bizarre, but I, I mean, I'm forever grateful for it obviously, but it sucks the circumstance of it. 5 (32m 9s): Yeah. Yeah. It's a weird time. It's a very weird time. Not just to like, you know, in, in the, in the creative sphere, in the business fear, you know, it, it, it totally affected everything. And then on top of it, it's just already, before the pandemic hit, I can imagine like a lot of people working in radio might've had started to work up a lot of anxiety because a lot of people knew like everybody was going to podcasts or it was going to, you know, streaming and whatnot. And it was a lot harder to, you know, get by doing radio work. You, that you worked at like multiple different stations. Was that like something that like people 3 (32m 45s): Over the course? Yeah, yeah. Over the course of time. I did. And there was, yeah. So there there's P in the, you work for a bigger company than you are on multiple stations at once. Yeah. As far as like, you might be the afternoon person at this station or the, you know, day, you know, mid day person here and the night person here in the weekend, presenter, it just like, that's how it works. It, yeah. But, and the last, the last station I was at, I was only on the one station, but I was, yeah. I mean, I wore multiple hats there, but it was, and it was fun and it was great. And I, and I, and I love that company and the people that I've worked with there to death. And it was like, I don't have anything bad to say about it whatsoever, but it was just one thing that wasn't working for me when I saw the, the, the balance of what was happening. 3 (33m 33s): So for me, it was like, oh, I should just, I love talking to music musicians that I love being a part of the music industry. And I don't want to lose that because of a pandemic and possibly being like, okay, everybody lost their job now, what do I do? Try to find something else that I have no skillsets. I mean, I don't know. It's just bizarre, but I mean, to be able to, like, for, for you on the Patriot thing, like where you doing, like online shows or releasing like content, like how are you continuing to, to grow and grow and grow even pre pandemic? 5 (34m 8s): Well, my Patrion was only partially dedicated to my music at the time. It was also dedicated to other creative pursuits that I had a Xen with that like followed, like 1 (34m 22s): I'm planning on traveling this summer, make saving at the pump part of your plans. But two times the fuel points from Harris Teeter, it's easy. Download your EBIT coupon. And for every dollar you spend with your VIT card, you'll get two fuel points. That's up to $1 per gallon on quality fuel at participating BP and terrace Teeter fuel centers, download your EBIT coupon today and save money at the pump all summer long with Evoque and Harris Teeter fuel points. 6 (34m 53s): The Fisher, 7 (34m 53s): It's a place where families can stay close by while our military and veterans are treated for wounds and illnesses seen or unseen at military and VA hospitals, 8 (35m 3s): Because the family's love is the best medicine of all 7 (35m 5s): Learn 5 (35m 8s): Like almost like a serialized novel of sorts, you know, various little things here and there a blog. It was, you know, a behind the scenes thing to a certain extent. And then also just some additional stuff. And over the course of the pandemic. Yeah. What I did is because I couldn't go out and tour, which was my whole thing is that I loved touring. I started doing live streams from my house in the pandemic, and that's what really started to make a little bit of money for me. And I just got lucky, you know, that the record I put out in 2020 happened to get a lot of attention from people. 3 (35m 46s): It's an incredible album, man. And it's yeah. And you look at the numbers on it. It's like, it's insane. I mean, you deserve it, but it's just, yeah, it's so cool to see that. 5 (35m 56s): I think to a certain extent, the algorithms were able to determine that these songs contained themes that people might want to argue over and therefore pushing it to more people's for you pages. 3 (36m 10s): Okay. 5 (36m 10s): My theory, I have to say, I give social media platforms a lot of credit when it comes to the strength of their AI systems. 3 (36m 19s): It's pretty insane. I really think about it, 5 (36m 25s): You know, but yeah. I just got lucky that the stuff I said, which you know, that the stuff I put in, in this album just happened to resonate with people at that, you know, at that time, you know, 3 (36m 41s): Were you writing like with this next record? Cause it was it, were you writing from that place of what was happening during the pandemic? 5 (36m 48s): Somewhat. Yes. The record that I have coming out in case I make it is a collection of songs from the past few years. I think that the oldest song on it, I wrote in 2018, but a lot of it has, it certainly has the, I think the sort of pandemic feel in there because some of the songs were written during that time. And a lot of the songs were then rewritten or adjusted or reapproached during that time. And certainly I've changed a lot over the past few years as a person, as well as an artist. And so, you know, a lot of that is in there as is the experience of going from, you know, barely getting by, to being overwhelmed with attention that's in there as well. 5 (37m 48s): And so, yeah, it's, it's, it's definitely partially that it's, it's a very, it's a very different piece of, it's a very different piece of video than my previous records. For sure. 3 (38m 4s): I've heard two songs from the record, I think. Well, Tomcat, disposable. That's that's going to be on the record. Yeah. Okay. Well first tell me about that song. And then I want to, I want to know about a Cicada days. 5 (38m 15s): Okay. Yeah, sure. Tom cat disposables is a song that I wrote from the perspective of a mouse that I had to kill in the winter of 2020, or maybe it was 2021 by then. It's I, I have an affinity for rodents and pests of all kinds. If I squash a bug, I feel awful about it. I just, I think that I feel a sense of almost like, I don't know, it sounds dramatic, maybe kind of silly, but I see an animal that is ultimately harmless or at least innocent in its nature that doesn't want to cause anybody any harm and isn't going to do what isn't going to hurt you. 5 (38m 57s): And, but people still are grossed out by and misunderstand and just hate, you know, you see this little creature, this little mouse, which I find adorable and it, all it wants is a warm place to live and some food to eat. And, you know, we jump up on our chairs and scream, IGA mouse, kill it, and then we kill it. And of course, when it comes down to it, it's for practical reasons, some of them carry diseases, they shed all over your kitchen and you can have that. 3 (39m 28s): But 5 (39m 29s): You know, I feel like this weird affinity for them where it's like, I know that you're just trying to live and yet you're, you're looked down on and seen as less. And sometimes I feel like that, I guess, and, or at least I have felt like that at many points in my life and, or maybe I'm reading too much into just finding mice cute. But whatever, the one night I walked into my kitchen to find a mouse, attempting to drag a big Parmesan rind through a crack between the wall and the oven. And I immediately fell in love with this animal. 5 (40m 10s): I keep pet rats. So 3 (40m 12s): Add pet rats are growing up as a clear, yeah. I didn't know how my mom decided that it'd be a great pet for me, but I had them for years upon years. 5 (40m 21s): Oh, wow. Yeah. They're are they're phenomenal past Pat's, I've, I've been keeping them for a few years, myself and, and so I see a mouse and it's like, if you, if anybody else saw a stray dog, you know, and so the mouse ran into that crack in the wall. And I tried breaking up the Parmesan into smaller pieces so he could fit it through the hole. I guess my roommate had left a big chunk of cheese out on the counter and, and, and I want it to be this thing's friend. And, you know, the people I was living with were like, I get it. It's cute. 5 (41m 3s): But it's filthy. And the, the knife drawer is filled with shit. And I'm just like, yeah, but I mean, I handle rat feces all the time, taking care of them, you know, sometimes they poop on you even, it's like, it's not a big deal. And they're like, these are wild animals shitting in our kitchen. 3 (41m 21s): This is not your pet in like the chips inside. 5 (41m 24s): Exactly. And I eventually was like, yeah, but it can't how dangerous could it actually be? And then I looked it up and I was like, oh, this it's particular specifically a deer mouse that we had. And that one is specifically like the biggest vector for hantavirus in Lyme disease. You know, the former of which will kill you 50% of the time, if you can track it. Sure. I was like, okay. So I got to get rid of this thing. And it was the, you know, the dead of winter. So even the have a heart traps would have been inhumane because he would've put it outside, dislocated it, and it would have just died out, which is just going to be slower and more difficult, you know, if, and if it survives, it'll be by getting back in the house and making you do it all over again and in a 3 (42m 15s): Different neighborhood. 5 (42m 16s): That was I, yeah, I guess I could've, I could've considered that, but the, but ultimately all I had were these, you know, Tom cat brand disposable traps, and my landlord gave them to me and they were like, get rid of it, take care of it now. And I was like, okay, fine. And I set out some of these traps to like little blocks of poisoned food. And then the next day I saw that there was, there were bites out of the food and I never saw the mouse again. And, and it broke my heart. I was just like sobbing for days. 5 (42m 56s): I just, I couldn't stand it. And I wrote this song, Tom cat disposables, because I just felt so rotten about having killed this mouse that I really, what I wanted to do was help. I, I wanted to give it a good life, which is a ridiculous thing. Ultimately like man, grow up. But at the same time, like it's, it's like it broke my heart and I, I feel awful about it still when I think about it. And I I'm so grateful for how the song has been received, because one it's such a huge change in the sounds that I tend to gravitate towards. 5 (43m 36s): It's stylistically very different than what I've put out before. It shows a much more, I dunno, soft, sensitive side to what I do I think, and a lot more vulnerable than a lot of my previous work. I think it's also one of the most complicated arrangements I've ever put together. And I'm very proud of the fact that I, you know, really like composed every last note of it and used instruments I've never used before. And so I'm super thrilled that people are gravitating towards it and seem to be so moved by it, especially for getting all of that for getting all the pride that I have wrapped up in as an artist. I also feel really fantastic about the fact that this creature, whose story I found so tragic by virtue of the fact that it was so undervalued and seen as nothing more than a past is now being mourned by thousands of people all over the world, that there are thousands of people all over the world have heard this song and seen the video that Ivan Owen and I made and, you know, and felt something for this innocent creature who I wish knew. 5 (44m 44s): I wish that I could contact this mouse and somehow, you know, communicate with an animal from beyond the grave to tell him, Hey, listen, everybody loves you and everybody, and everybody misses you. You know, it's like, there's, there's something beautiful about that. And it almost is like to a certain extent, I feel like with the help of Ivan Owen, the engineer and animator, who I teamed up with to make the music video for it almost kind of was able to address the problem that I saw. And that was that these animals, mice and rats and other pasts are treated as disposable and not like us and not conscious beings and not really entitled to their lives. 5 (45m 34s): It's like, that was the issue that inspired the feelings behind the song. And now I, I don't know, I'm, I'm really proud of the fact that so many people now feel otherwise at least about this one mouse. And it's like, I was actually able to honor this, you know, this, this incredibly humble and dishonored creature and I'm just, you know, I'm thrilled about that. That feels really good. 3 (45m 58s): Yeah. I mean, it's, it is a, it's such a great perspective. I mean, it was something that I would have never even, I mean, I understand where you're coming from, where I was like, okay, I gotta get rid of this mouse, but then to honor the mouse basically write the song and then have people really yeah. Like hear it and be like, wow. You know, attached to that. It's some, some bit, but you're right. It's like, you're, you're, you're giving back to the mouse. 5 (46m 26s): Yeah. Yeah. It's a lot of people have contacted me telling me that and made them cry and whatnot. And I'm like, wow, people are grieving this mouse that they've never heard of people, people, or that they never saw. I never encountered people, rarely grieve mice at all. And so I don't know. I feel like it may be the most concrete proof that I've accomplished anything as an artist that I've seen is that I almost accomplished a task and that was get people to feel something for, and then grieve an animal that I feel is not felt enough for. And grieved and ARF. 3 (47m 7s): Is this a similar story with the cicadas? 5 (47m 10s): No cicadas. Yeah. It's it just it's it's BI it's Cicada days is more of more, more self-reflective in a personal sense. I think to a certain extent Tomcat disposables can be read fairly as a metaphor for something else. 3 (47m 36s): That's what I was thinking when I heard the song. I didn't think it was truly about what it was, but 5 (47m 41s): Yeah. I mean, it, it was literally written about a mouse, but I also wrote it knowing that it could be read as more of an, you know, a metaphor, but an allegory of sorts, maybe metaphor. I don't know the difference. What am I doing? Talking like, I know what literature raises. Okay. 3 (47m 59s): I don't either. I'm just agreeing with you. Like yeah, sure. It sounds good. I know what a metaphor is. I'll go with that. 5 (48m 6s): But you know, somewhat of a symbol for how I feel about my music career and how people feel about a lot of different things in life that they are pursuing something that they think is going to be cheesy, but is actually a trap. You know, the idea of a mouse trap is just a very simple, very straightforward metaphor for a lot of different things. And so there's something that's personal in there as well, that isn't quite as dedicated to the animal, but Cicada days is much more self center. It sounds like I'm going back to just randomly criticizing myself and the world around me for no reason, but, you know, yeah. 5 (48m 54s): I it's, it's much more self-involved self-absorbed jeez. It's all. It's all. Self-deprecating the way I'm describing it. It's personal. It's how about introverted? There we go. Okay. It's a way of saying what I'm trying to say without myself. It's it's about, I guess it's about the end of our relationship, but it can be about something more than that to something less specific than that as well. I think it can be about change is the thing that I think of is like cicadas spend the vast majority of a 17 year life cycle underground. 3 (49m 38s): Crazy. Not to interrupt you, but so I'm originally from San Diego. The last time I interviewed you, I was living in San Diego. I've since moved to middle Tennessee. I live just south of Nashville. Now I've been here for a little over a year with my, my family, my wife and kids. We moved here the year we moved here. It was when the cicadas came up. Nobody ever heard of cicadas in my life, literally my life, just because we didn't have that on the west coast. Right. So I'm here and like, there's this buzzing sounds. And people are like, oh, the skaters are coming up for this first time. I'm like, what are they talking about? And then I see him. And then I'm seeing guys like, there's like on TV, people are like making them into some sort of food. Like you could eat them. And I'm like, what is going on here? 3 (50m 19s): Yeah. Like, I dunno. So this was, I'm like, is this a whole world that I've just never, ever, ever been exposed to? Or I didn't even know what they were. And like I noticed, then your songs called that. I was like, oh wow. I actually know what it's a cadence is right out. Because if this is last year, it'd be Googling it or, you know, whatever. But like, yeah. It's bizarre to know that it was, yeah, there are set. It's like 17 years. Right. They buried themselves underground. 5 (50m 43s): Apparently 3 (50m 44s): They hates or something. 5 (50m 47s): Apparently there are different species or subspecies of Cicada that some of them spend even longer underground, but apparently always a prime number of years. So as to not coincide with other animals, life cycles in a way that makes them more likely to be a victim of predators. Yeah. Don't quote me on that. I've just heard it. And yeah. I just, that's just what I've heard 3 (51m 12s): Too much sense. It's weird. 5 (51m 14s): Yeah. Yeah. Nature can be like that though. Sometimes can it, you know, I don't know possible, but I could also be totally misconstruing what I've heard about cicadas. So 3 (51m 26s): I've heard the 17 year thing. That's why, when you said that, 5 (51m 29s): Yeah. The 17 year thing is definitely true. They, they spend, you know, roughly 17 years underground feeding off of the roots of trees and then 17 years, I dunno when they decide it's time and I don't know what triggers them to and why it takes 17 years. Like what chemical reaction in its brain takes 17 years to finalize. But yeah. 3 (51m 55s): Right. And it's crazy to think that those little bugs are alive for 17 years. Right. I mean, it's like you think of like an aunt don't they have like a lifespan of like a 24 hour period or something crazy like that. It's like, 5 (52m 5s): You can still live long. No. 3 (52m 7s): And then you think this thing is outliving like dogs and certain other animals that you're like, how is this bug living for 17 years? And then coming up at that point. 5 (52m 18s): Yeah. It's, it's, you're, you're seeing you're in your senior year of high school is like, all right. Time to go climb this tree. 3 (52m 26s): Right. Exactly. It's so bizarre. 5 (52m 29s): And so they, they then climb the tree, they get to some point in the tree where they decide is high enough and they move from their shells and they turn into this enormous, terrifying fly that screams for like three months and dies. And there's something, I don't know. I mostly just liked the way the phrase sounded and I feel like it carried with it some abstract feeling that I can't quite define, but I also feel like there could be something to be said about, you know, the idea that Cicada days are, you know, days of, you know, last minute desperation, Cicada days are when you work for something for ever and ever and hope for it. 5 (53m 23s): And it doesn't quite pan out how you hoped it would it's time spent screaming, looking for the thing that you, you know, came out of your shell for it's, you know, the process of coming out of your shell and finally saying hello to the world it's change. And so the song, I guess, the lyrics are kind of on the abstract side, at least for part of it, but towards the end, over the course of the song, it becomes more and more blunt and less poetic and flowery and it's language. And I think that that is really the symbolically. 5 (54m 8s): The Cicada days of that song are all in the last chorus of the song when the song comes out of its shell and does it screaming after waiting and being cryptic and unknown. And in that last chorus where I don't repeat the phrase Cicada days that time around and instead instead use the phrase the end of days, it's when I am blunt and straightforward with my lyrics in a way that I am not usually with my lyrics. And so I'm quite, I'm quite curious to see how this song ends up affecting people. 5 (54m 48s): I took some risks with its production that I, that I'm curious to see how it impacts people. I'm very curious. 3 (54m 58s): Yeah. Yeah. It's definitely a more of a, it's definitely more mellow song compared to what you need 5 (55m 2s): Today, for sure. 3 (55m 4s): I mean, I guess up until the end, when it comes out of a show, 5 (55m 6s): Well, I guess that's yeah. That's what I'm saying. Yeah. The first 17 years of the song, you know, but it's, it's also, yeah. Even otherwise it's, it's once again, a significant stylist departure from a lot of my previous work, which I think is something I'm going to have to talk about a lot over the course of the next couple of months. I'm sure a lot of like, yeah, it's a significant departure from my previous work, but I have to say, I think a lot of people are going to be focused on that and forget the fact that I've like switched genres, like every other song that I've put out. And I think it's just that people most associate me with the, with a particular portion of my work and see that as being the stuff that I do that is that, that that's like, that's who I am. 5 (55m 60s): And that things that aren't spooky, evil jazz are departures. When, to me the, the wacky cartoonish cabaret stuff was always a departure for me, as much as anything else it's always been, you know, genre has historically been more of a tool for me than, you know, just a style that I gravitate towards that I like to use the, of various genres as methods of communication. And I have to say, I do that less with this record, but not in the sense that the new record doesn't switch around genre wise at all. It, if it isn't to say that the genre isn't hard to pin down on the new record or that I don't mess around with it, it's just rather I didn't ever go, how do I emulate this existing sound on this record? 5 (56m 54s): I w it was much more just how do I create the sound that is most conducive to communicating what I have to communicate, regardless of using a genre as a symbol of something, I don't think I'm making any sense. My point, 3 (57m 15s): No, you are making sense. 5 (57m 16s): It wasn't a conscious choice. Like the last record I put out there were times I was like, I'm going to use doo-wop in order to highlight X thing about what I'm trying to say, whereas this time around, if it just so happened to sound like a sixties country song, then it's like, okay, well that's just what it sounded like. I don't know. 3 (57m 32s): Right, right. You aren't trying to, to write in a particular genre or chase something that you had done prior. It's just, I'm not going to write what I'm going to write and it's gonna, yeah. I'm gonna do what I feel 5 (57m 44s): Some of the songs. I think people who are more who are familiar with my previous work, I think some of the songs are gonna surprise people in their sound and other ones. I think people are going to be like, oh, I, yeah, I do know this artist still. Okay. I was told that this was going to be totally different, but I got this. So, you know, it's still me, it's more me than my previous stuff. And I think a lot of the new stuff, I think a lot of people are going to start talking about how much more accessible it is. And then a lot of people are going to take that as a bad thing. And I'm going to be like, I'm sorry, I didn't, I didn't mean to be accessible. Sorry. You know that isn't to say that it's not still weird and experimental at times, and that I don't occasionally do things with the express intent of being up to or abstruse, whatever. 5 (58m 36s): Oh, geez. I don't know what words I'm saying. It, it pointed to that. I'm just writing. What's honest and what I think most accurately and authentically reflects who I am as a person and who I'm trying to be as an artist and what I have to say to the world, because I think that as an artist, our primary responsibility Is, I don't know, I don't want to talk responsibility and art because I have my qualms with how people talk about media. These days is always being, you know, discussions about responsibility and whether or not you're doing it right. 5 (59m 18s): And all that stuff. But at the same time, I, if we do talk about art in that sense, then I think something that people need to be considering is the possibility that maybe one's responsibility is to be their authentic self as an artist, because that's how you communicate with people in a real sense. That's how you genuinely connect with and genuinely offer the world something you can, you know, try to be pretty and, and attractive. And you can try to present yourself in this perfect light and try and, you know, be a responsible media creator, all you want, but ultimately, unless you're willing to share the stuff, that's a little bit less pretty, and a little bit more raw and uncomfortable. 5 (1h 0m 7s): You're not going to connect with people on a very deep level. I think intimacy requires us to, I think intimacy and therefore love really requires people to understand and appreciate each other, not just despite before one another's flaws and quirks and all that. And so my only goal with this record was to do it was to do it exactly as I wanted. And, and by doing so hopefully reach the people who need to hear what I have to say and who I need to say it to. 5 (1h 0m 54s): Does that make 3 (1h 0m 55s): Sense? No, completely, completely. 5 (1h 0m 57s): I'm struggling. I feel like this whole interview or whatever, I've, I've, I've struggled to find my footing as to how to speak about things, but 3 (1h 1m 4s): You've done great, man. I appreciate it. And 5 (1h 1m 9s): What's the problem. 3 (1h 1m 10s): Ah, he needed a couple more. There you go. Well, I, I appreciate it. The records coming out in July, is that what I read? 5 (1h 1m 16s): July 29th. Yeah. 3 (1h 1m 18s): Amazing. Amazing. I do have one more quick question. Will I, I again, appreciate you being here again. I'm glad I get to see you in person or in person via computer instead of over a phone line this time. But I want to know if you have any advice for aspiring artists. 5 (1h 1m 34s): People always ask me that and I always struggle to answer it because, because I want to be honest about, about my experiences, because I think my perspective is, or not my perspective, but rather how do I put this? I want to be honest about it because I think that an honest assessment of what it's like to be a professional artist is severely lacking from how we talk about it and what we tend to tell aspiring artists. But at the same time, I don't want to be a downer and I don't want to be a pessimist or be, or you know, anything like that. 5 (1h 2m 24s): I want to encourage artists to create art because I think it's one of the greatest things you can do with your life. Obviously, I think that is what I decide to do, but you know, I think it's, I think it's an incredible pursuit and I'm so grateful for what I've been able to do. And there's nothing else I'd rather do. But at the same time, I, if we're talking about aspiring artists, we're talking about young people and young people, you know, I don't know adults, aren't honest with them enough or honest enough with them enough. And it's like, I want to say, follow your dreams. Damn the torpedoes. Believe in yourself. You can do this. 5 (1h 3m 4s): But I also want to say, Hey, it sucks sometimes, and it's just a job and that there's thrills and there's a lot of fun and it's great to be able to do something you care about and you love for a living it's phenomenal, but it requires a certain level of publicity and a certain level of notoriety or to do what I do anyway. And I cannot in good conscience recommend that anybody present to a career that requires publicity, I don't think it's healthy, especially not in the social media era. 5 (1h 3m 50s): I don't think it's necessarily safe. I don't think that it's, it's just not something that I could wisely and in good conscience tell a teenager to do. Yeah, go try and be famous. Like good Lord. What a terrible thing to, you know, what, what a terrible idea. It's like, it's it's it is it's it's don't get me wrong. There are wonderful parts to it. But the, the amount of attention I get, which isn't even very much in the grand scheme of things, I'm not some celebrity. So I can't imagine what it's like when somebody actually gets genuinely famous. I can't imagine the nightmare. People like that must live because it sucks to be watched all the time. 5 (1h 4m 31s): It sucks to be seen as something other than just a person. It sucks to have the standards by which you are treated, be different than it is for anybody else. And so it's terrible for anyone's mental health, I think. And maybe some people handle it just fine. I've met very few people who are just like totally cool with it all the times, all the time. And the ones who do I often think are working pretty hard to maintain, maintain that perspective. I could be wrong. Maybe I'm just not cut out for it. I certainly think I'm not cut out for it. And if somebody like me who believed that being a famous musician was what he wanted for so many years. 5 (1h 5m 16s): I believe that's. I truly wanted for it to turn out that I was not cut out for it. Well, then it could be you too. And so, because the thing about dreams is that the second they're not a dream, then they're not a dream. A dream is totally within your control when it, once it comes true, it's no longer your dream it's reality and reality can suck. Sometimes reality is unpredictable, it's uncontrollable and it is, it is, it can be harsh. And so while I cannot stress enough how lucky I am and how grateful I am to be able to do something I love for a living. I also can't stress enough that if you're going to pursue it, you better be, you better be careful and be wary of the pratfalls that await you. 5 (1h 6m 12s): Be conscious of the fact that you can't design it exactly how you want it to be, and you can't control how you're perceived and that there are going to be things that happen as a result of your success. If you are lucky enough to succeed, that will be difficult. And I can't understate how difficult that is sometimes. So my, I want to like try and succinctly sum up my advice to people who are in that position who are aspiring musicians and artists. And I've, I haven't been able to come up with a way to phrase it just yet, because now I've given you this whole like five minute long spiel, and I don't feel like I've made my point properly yet, but I guess ultimately it's like, you know, good luck is, I guess what I would say is, and I mean that in every way, I mean as seriously, good luck. 5 (1h 7m 12s): And I also mean that as well. Good luck with that, you know? So yeah. Your options are either to believe in yourself and risk failure, or don't believe in yourself and guarantee that you fail. And so that's, if you're definitely sure you want it, but be careful out there. That's all I can say.