Where you grew up and where you live now.
I was born in Los Angeles but grew up in San Diego, and after some back and forth, I put down roots in Los Angeles. My family goes back five generations in LA, but I always choose the Padres over the Dodgers.
Your first musical memory.
The music was always playing on the car rides and there was a wide mix of different genres and decades that I was exposed to. As a kid, my dad used to play “Shout!” by the Isley Brothers and every “a little bit softer now” he turned the radio dial down and every “a little bit louder now” he turned the dial until the music was unbelievably loud with all of us shouting the lyrics.
Your first gig.
I remember being young and going to shows with my parents for artists like the Temptations or the Beach Boys. Some of my early gigs were on holiday radio shows like Jingle Ball. Once I got into high school and really had the freedom to choose my own shows, I saw a few shows every month, usually staying outside of curfew – not for any nefarious reason, but just because I I used to watch the loadout and see what equipment was used on stage.
Your favorite bands/musicians.
My musical tastes are all over the place, but some of my favorites include Radiohead, Bright Eyes, Death Cab for Cutie and Phoebe Bridgers. Generally speaking, I like artists who push the norm while creating thoughtful music. Many of the newer artists I’ve listened to are names like Wet Leg, Miynt, Goth Babe and Dijon. If an artist does something different from a production, instrumentation, or songwriting perspective, I end up with a curiosity that keeps me coming back to the record.
How do you get your music these days.
The #1 most important method for music discovery will always be word of mouth. I like to share and discover new artists with my friends. There’s a certain pride that I think people feel when they can introduce a musician to others. Other than that, I’ll scour the regular editorial sites and see what’s playlisted on DSPs. I recently signed up for Tidal and wonder how I could have gone so long without this more faithful audio quality. It’s good!
Your favorite place to see a concert.
At home in Los Angeles, I love going to the Moroccan Lounge, the Troubadour or the Echo. They are all great places with their own advantages and different atmospheres. An all time favorite would be Red Rocks which 100% live up to expectations. It’s an amazing venue, and every show I’ve seen there has been a magical experience.
I’m also a fan of the Bend Amphitheater on the river in Bend, Oregon, and of course Humphreys by the Bay in San Diego. To see so many people floating in the water to hear a show is amazing.
I have a bit of a bias, but Outside Lands is my favorite festival. There’s something special about strolling through the grasslands and forests of Golden Gate Park, then heading to a set by your favorite artist while enjoying their incredible food and drink program.
Your favorite music video.
I have so many videos over the years that I love. The Beastie Boys’ “Sabotage” is an amazing video that everyone should see. Radiohead’s “No Surprises” was the first music video I saw that seemed so simple yet so complex. My introduction to half•alive was through their video for “Still Feel”, which is an incredible video. Young Thug’s video for “Wyclef Jean” is also too fun and way too real.
Your favorite music-focused TV show and/or podcast.
The music nerd in me loves Song Exploder. Being able to not only hear the story of how a song was made, but the actual recording through a dissection of individual tracks allows you to understand how the sum of something can be greater than its parts. I also like being able to hear the demos or earlier versions of the songs.
A recent project you are proud of.
To kick off Portugal the Man’s new album cycle, we wanted to find a way to reward fans for supporting the band. Portugal the Man worked with Rally to build an entire fan community for holders of their $PTM cryptocurrency, so a natural extension was to reward fans who pre-recorded the new single “What, Me Worry?” with a $PTM coin. By pre-recording the single, your play will unlock access to the band’s PTM archive filled with recordings of live shows over the years, and give you access to unlock pre-sale tickets for the shows. The group has always been focused on connecting with fans, and they use their play as a way to share the value of their community with fans. This global initiative has inspired thousands of fans to keep this new music.