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Gavin's Underground

King Niko, The Numbs

by Gavin Sheehan
- Posted // 2011-06-28 -
I think its a pretty safe bet to say that if you didn't attend the Utah Arts Festival at some point over the weekend ... you screwed up! As the festival organizers themselves reported an increase in attendance numbers over the weekend, it was certainly on display as the word “congested” best described trying to get around the two-block celebration. One of the big milestones of the weekend: Night three saw a packed field for Fictionist on the Park stage, while simultaneously Muscle Hawk brought the biggest dance parties to hit Library Square just a few hundred feet away. But don't take my word for it...
To close out this blog's coverage of the whole event, two more interviews for you from local bands who performed. First up, CWMA winners King Niko, who played to a standing-only packed crowd and closed out night three at the Park Stage, and The Numbs, who put on a hip-hop clinic at library square to celebrate their album release, complete with b-boy dancers who jumped in on a whim. Plus, you can check out photos from Day 3 and Day 4 in our galleries, with over 1,400 photos from the entire festival. (Except for those snooty artists who threaten to break your camera, and justly don't deserve the exposure.) This set includes everything from Washington Square, Slam Poetry, The Art Yard, Fictionist, Pig Pen & Pat Maine, My Dead Ego and The Rubes!

King Niko (Benny Moffat, Zachary Sloan, Ransom Wydner, Tim Rawcliffe & Reid Laitinen)

Gavin: Hey, guys! First off, tell us a little about yourselves.

Ransom: King Niko is all about making chicks dance.

Ben: We love the nightlife, we love to boogie, we love to burn the disco down!
Gavin: What first got you each interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?

Ransom: I think we all grew up in music. My dad used to make us kids sing these songs in different languages for business presentations. I started loving to sing when I was about nine and my sister had me sing Jackson 5. I got into the pop of the day like UB40 and stuff. In junior high, someone showed me Rage Against The Machine and changed my perspective.

Ben: My Grandfather was a professional yodeler and one hell of a drummer. I can remember him teaching me songs while I would ride around in his tractor as a little kid. Music was just a part of life while I was growing up, so when I was about 15, I started teaching myself how to play the guitar. I wrote my first song when I was 16. It was for a girl in my school that I thought was really hot. She liked the song, but said she wasn't interested in dating a guy who lived on the west side. I knew right then and there that music was going to be the way that I expressed myself and defined my place in the world. The first record I bought was Michael Jackson, Thriller; the first cassette tape I bought was Stay Hungry, Twisted Sister; the first CD I bought was Best of Earth Wind and Fire; The first song I downloaded was "Everything is Everything," Phoenix.

Gavin: How did you all get together to form King Niko?

Ransom: As far as I can ascertain, Ben, Tim and Zack knew each other from bands they had played in together. I knew Ben through his cousins Scott and Curtis with whom I had been in a band called All Things Glowing Brightly. Ben got the four of us together under the guise of a jam session and then told us that he was really looking to start a band. A friend of Tim, Ben and Zack's named Andrew Sullivan joined the band for over a year before rededicating to school in August. Reid had known Zack from the University of Utah and we knew he played keys from hanging out with him at parties and stuff. Reid was Corey O'Brien's roommate and we kind of got to know him better that way. When Andrew told us that he wanted to leave the band and do other things, the first person we thought of approaching was Reid. The current lineup has been going since August.

Ben: I was playing in two bands before King Niko was formed, Medicine Circus and MotherCity. Both of these bands were very satisfying, but they both lacked the pop sensibility that I love to hear in music. I had decided that it was time for me to exit the music scene and start living a more traditional lifestyle. Of course, right when I made that decision, I came across the All Things Glowing Brightly CD. The first time I heard Ransom's voice, I knew I had to ditch my decision and bring together all my favorite musicians and build a band that would complement Ransom's amazing talent. Before I ever contacted Ransom, I spoke with my best buddy and favorite bass player of all time, Tim Rawcliffe. Tim and I had played together in MotherCity and we had always wanted to form an upbeat rock band that would get people moving. Next, I called on my long time friend and favorite drummer, Zack Sloan. He had stopped playing drums when I called him, but was intrigued when I told him about Ransom's unique voice. Finally, I contacted Ransom and asked him to come over and chat. We had a few beers and talked about what we liked and didn't like about our previous bands. I then told him that we should get together with Zack and Timmy and see what kind of music we could make together. Immediately before our first "jam session", Tim told me that he invited our friend Andrew Sullivan to join us and play keyboards. I was reluctant to have a keyboard player, but the second I heard how talented Andrew was on the piano, I knew he had to be part of the family. Unfortunately, King Niko was not Andrew's thing and he eventually left the band in August of 2010. We then discovered the one and only Reid Laitinen. Reid had some great gear and was very willing to put in the time to learn the old songs and help us write new tracks. Since Reid joined the band, things have picked up and we have refined our sound to include more of his "electro" sensibilities. However, we still remain great friends with Andrew Sullivan.
Gavin: What was it like coming together and forming a kind of indie pop/rock sound?

Ransom: Awesome. The first time we got together to write, Ben said that he had been in a bunch of bands where the front row was filled with dudes nodding their heads and he wanted to be in a band that makes chicks dance. We always kept things like hooks and choruses in mind. We work together really well and love what we do and the kind of music we write, so we never really stopped to say "what kind of band is this?" We never took out ads and said "guitarist looking to start indie pop/rock band" because we don't really even know what our sound is, to be honest. We just write songs that we like, and plenty of songs that we hate and bury deep, deep down, never to see the light of day.

Ben: 100% agree with Ransom.

Gavin: You released your debut album Gorgeous and Glory in late 2009. What was it like recording that album, and what issues did you have to deal with along the way?

Ransom: We hit the ground running with Gorgeous and Gory. We formed in April of '09, played our first show in May and recorded in August. It was incredible how fast things got moving. We knew that we had to make a recording so that we could take things to the next step, but didn't have any money or time to do it. Luckily, we found Mike Sassich, who was able to do the whole shebang on $500 in a few days. I think we tracked all the instruments in one day, all at the same time, and then vocals on another day. On the third day, Mike had us come over and pick the tracks we liked, etc, then took a few hours here and there to mix and master it all.

Ben: We had to find a recording studio and engineer that would would work with us on the cheap, but still pump out a high-quality product. I made a few calls to friends in the recording game, and this guy named Mike Sassich kept coming up. I knew of Mike from a super cool band called, Kingdom. Kindgom was one of the only local bands at that time that truly inspired me, so I was a bit nervous when I asked Mike if he would be willing to record our stuff. Mike was so rad and made us all feel right at home in his studio, Man Vs. Music. He knew that our budget was tight and recommended we record ensemble-style to get the job done quickly. Luckily, we had been rehearsing our asses off, so it was not too difficult to lay down all the tracks in one day. We owe a ton of our success to Mike.
Gavin: What did you think of the reception and attention the album got when it finally came out?

Ransom: It was wild, we had a finished copy of our mastered CD at either the end of September or the beginning of October. Corey O'Brien listened to it and we were on the radio that day. We were on "What's It Worth?" and got amazing feedback, and then we spent 17 nights on Xposed. It changed everything. That EP, and specifically the song "Katrina Sleepover," got us the gig opening for Say Anything and 30 Seconds to Mars. It really did change absolutely everything.

Ben: It was so nice to have people support and enjoy our songs. Musicians often strive to make music that is personally satisfying, but they often forget their audience needs to feel that same sense of satisfaction. King Niko has always made music for the listener and not just for ourselves. So when people actually started requesting the songs and keeping us in rotation on X96, I knew we had done something right. We always want our fans to be happy.

Gavin: You followed it up with last year's EP The French Accent. How were things for you the second time around, and how do you compare the two albums?

Ransom: They're both great in different ways. We did both EPs with Mike Sassich and spent the same amount of time and money on The French Accent EP as Gorgeous and Gory, but French Accent has three tracks compared to G&G's six. As a result, Gorgeous and Gory has this great raw, urgent feel and French Accent has a more polished finish. They both opened a lot of doors for us. I would say that our best-recorded song is French Accent, but the most successful song we've made to date is probably "Katrina Sleepover." Really, they're the same story and the same band. Even with the different levels of production, you could put them all on a CD and it would sound right. The new stuff we're working on, with Reid on keys, will be completely different--and significantly better, in my opinion.

Ben: Ransom's answer nailed it! However, I nailed Ransom's mom - ZING!
Gavin: Earlier this year, you won our CWMA awards. What was the entire experience like for you as a band in the running, and how have things been since winning and receiving all that exposure?

Ransom: Wow, what an incredible time! I remember hearing that we'd been nominated and not believing it. I love the CWMAs and I go every year to as many shows as I can. I've been a fan since the Showdown to SXSW days when my old band Endland played. The whole thing was surreal. Our first show with Sam Smith band and Corey Mon & The Starlight Gospel was so much fun. Zack teaches high school, and since we mainly play at bars, his students don't ever get to see him, but since the show was at Avalon we had a bunch of kids there watching their teacher kill it! We were even more surprised to make the finals. We literally believed there was no chance that we would edge out bands like Cavedoll and Shark Speed and Holy Water Buffalo and all of these well-established acts. We even had a show booked in Boise on the day of the finals. We were that confident that we wouldn't make it. When we got the email that we were in, I think we all freaked out. We canceled the show in Boise and practiced our set to death to make sure that we put on a good show. The night of the Finals was absolutely wild. City Weekly put on such an amazing party. Lindsay Heath Orchestra and Corey Mon and company were a lot of fun to hang out with and great people. We got to do an interview with Eric, who made a sweet video of the night's events. Everything was so great. The show itself was probably the biggest one we'd played since opening for 30 Seconds To Mars, but it was so much more satisfying. These were our friends and our fans and they were there supporting us. It was unreal. The coolest part, of course, was winning. We were unloading our gear when it happened, and didn't even hear Dan announce it. We walked in to grab another load of gear and people were cheering! It was just so amazing.

Ben: I remember when it was still called South by Southwest and the winning band would get a trip to play a showcase in Austin. Although the nature of the contest has changed, it still was a great honor to be invited to participate. When I was told that we had made it to the finals, I was like, shut the fuck up! There are way better bands out there right now who should have made it, but then I realized it was simply a popularity contest, and lucky for us, we have a shit ton of great fans who support us and love our music. When I heard that we won the contest, I had mixed emotions. The other two bands, Lindsay Heath and Cory Mon, are both exceptionally talented and deserved to win as much as we did. That being said, we worked our fucking asses off to write great tunes and perform them with a sense of urgency that helped push us over the top.

Gavin: Are there any plans in the works for a new album, a possible tour or any other projects underway?

Ransom: We're hitting the road for about a week right before the Arts Fest: Tempe, Temecula, Hollywood and San Francisco. We're working with Rockfish Records on a new single right now and hope to record a full-length album soon; it's just a matter of funding it. David Connell is putting together a music video for our new single, and it's gonna be HOT! We can't wait for all of the fun stuff we have planned for this summer.
Gavin: Going statewide, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?

Ransom: It's great! Provo has produced two very-high-profile bands in the last two years, Neon Trees and Fictionist, Salt Lake just needs to catch up! There's so much talent here and a fantastic support system. There are companies who try to make money at the expense of artists, sure, but they don't take up much space and they burn enough bridges to keep themselves basically irrelevant. Most of the bars and bands and promoters that we work with love music and love the local scene. We are at a point, I think, when a lot of great music is being made and I hope to see the scene grow to support a greater number of professional musicians.

Ben: Utah musicians are the best! In particular, I very much enjoy the SLC music scene because there is such a variety of groups and individuals. Look out, Provo, SLC is hot on your trail!!

Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?

Ransom: We need to work together. We're not enemies and we're not competitors. Our competition as musicians are apathy and disinterest. Let's spread the word about each other, you know? If King Niko can't play a show with a band we like, we still try to talk it up and go to the show. That kind of thing is important. I also wish that younger bands wouldn't let themselves be taken advantage of. It seems that they're so eager to play shows that they'll let some promoter bully them into selling a hundred tickets and not make any money. A lot of times they end up paying to play a show, even. We need to stand up, together, and demand a little respect.

Ben: Agreed!
Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?

Ransom: Wow. We're really into the local scene. Some of my favorites are Long Distance Operator, Dirty Blonde, The Suicycles, Muscle Hawk, Fat Apollo & The Cellulites, The Bloop, Sam Smith Band and Spell Talk.

Ben: I love Ghetto Tea Party, The Bloop, Long Distance Operator, Dirty Blonde, Holy Water Buffalo, The Last Look, Fat Apollo, and Suicycles. Basically, I love all my fellow Utah musicians. Motherfuckers got to stick together and shit.

Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how it affects local musicians?

Ransom: Community Radio is way ahead of the mainstream guys, but Helmut and Metalhead at KBER as well as Corey O'Brien at X96 are really going to bat for local bands in a big way. KRCL doesn't know who we are, I don't think, but their local programming is great, nonetheless. UtahFM has shown us so much support, all of them: Portia, Camden and Rob, Kat and Daniel all play King Niko as well as a bunch of other local music.

Ben: Love our local DJs. None of our success could have happened without them.
Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?

Ransom: It's happening and there's no stopping it. You can argue for or against it and what it means for the industry, but piracy is here and it's only getting bigger. A lot of bands and labels are trying to rage against the changing tide, but I think that the smart thing to do, as a musician, is to say "how do I thrive in this new environment?" Musicians need to be ok with the fact that people are going to take their music for free if they feel like it. The best you can do is make it good enough to spread like wildfire. I will be the first to admit that I pirate music all the time. If I like it, I still buy it though. It's like a test drive or something.

Ben: I was a major "free download" guy for a long time, but then one day I told myself, that's fucking bullshit. These are artists who deserve my money. If I like a band enough to download their song or album, I am damn well going to pay for it. That being said, I have no problem with people sharing our music and/or giving it away for free. It's just my personal policy to pay for music.

Gavin: What can we expect from you guys over the rest of this year?

Ransom: We're playing a bunch of fun shows, we'll have a new single that we hope will get some radio play and we really want to get everyone some new music.

Ben: Probably a billboard on I-15 with a picture of us rescuing puppies and kittens from a raging inferno. Other than that, just the standard shit -- world domination and laser beams.
Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to promote or plug?

Ransom: We're playing the Brown Bag Concert Series in August, and the first ever SmashBash music festival on August 28th at Gallivan Plaza. Find and like us on Facebook and/or follow us on Twitter so that we can keep you up to date!

Ben: I would like to plug Ransom's sister, but unfortunately, she is married and a very sweet girl. So, I will settle with plugging Reid's mom or maybe Zack's dad. I'm not picky.


The Numbs (DJ Shanty, Marc Dago, Gunner McKell & Rooster)

Gavin: Hey, guys! First off, tell us a little about yourselves.

Dago: Numbs consists of three emcees… Myself, Gunnar McKell and Rooster and one deejay, Shanty. We all met in high school in Provo. I’ve been writing song ‘lyrics’ since I was 16 and I love rap music to death.

Gunnar: What's up, Gunnar McKell, Numbs emcee.

Stubbs: Well, I go by Linus Stubbs, but my government name is Lance Palmer. I'm 31 years old and currently living in Ogden.

Shanty: I'm Shanty, DJ for the Numbs.
Gavin: What first got you each interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?

Stubbs: My good friend Stefan Medeiros got me into making beats about 10 years ago. Some producers that influenced me were DJ Premier, Pete Rock, Madlib, RZA and J Dilla.

Gunnar: As a kid, I was always surrounded in music. It's something that has always been there and always will be. I love most music but fell in love with hip -hop and all of its limitless elements. The name of the game for us is just to keep pushing boundaries and to evolve at the same time.

Dago: Growing up, a friend of mind named Ernie Diaz let me borrow his Run DMC King Of Rock cassette and that was pretty much it for me. I’ve been a part of this ever since then. The entire hip-hop culture fascinated me: emceeing, deejaying, breaking and graff -- an art form where you can create anything that you can imagine. That King Of Rock tape was my intro and other artists I gravitated towards were Public Enemy, A Tribe Called Quest, BDP, EPMD, Gangstarr, Main Source, Eric B & Rakim, NWA, and Too Short.

Shanty: I've always been interested in music, but I got seriously interested in hip-hop around '87 when I entered junior high. My gateways into hiphop music were Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, Run DMC, LL Cool J and Eric B. and Rakim.

Gavin: How did you all get together to form The Numbs back in the mid-'90s?

Gunnar: We grew up together and we all had passion for the same things. We also grew tighter over time because in the beginning we were the only ones doing it...well, at least in Provo.

Shanty: We were all hanging in the same circles, going to dance clubs and talking music. I think we were all very like-minded, and looked at it as an experiment to see what sound we could come up with.

Dago: There was a dance club in Provo called The Palace in the late 80s,early 90s that was epic. We would meet up on Fridays and ‘rap’ in the ‘soul room’. It was a great place to connect with other like-minded people. We decided to record our first song in 1992 at Channel Recording Studios in Orem. We had no idea what we were doing. We assumed that the 40-something recording engineer could make a ‘beat’ and then we would rap over it. Awesome, right? That session spawned the tune, "Ivory Jive" which never saw the light of day. The cool thing about that period was that we recorded on a reel to reel. That was fresh.
Gavin: With each of you having various influences in hip-hop and rap, what was it like coming together and meshing styles to create your sound?

Gunnar: It just happened. It's what we knew... we just dove in head first, kamikaze style, and did our thing. It was for the love of  y'all! Ha...it sounds corny, but it's true.

Dago: We all grew up in that ‘Golden Era’ of hip-hop so I think we share some of that same essence. Maintaining that originality and progression while trying to break genres and the status quo. Music should never, ever, be boring.

Shanty: I think we all agreed what we wanted our sound to be, for the most part. There were clashes, but that was all part of discovering our sound. This group has always been really open-minded about ideas. We all wanted to push the envelope.

Gavin: How was it recording your first album Metaphonic back in '96, and what difficulties did you have to deal with along the way?

Shanty: We learned a lot recording that album. It was our first time in the studio, and everything had to be learned. Before that, music seemed like it just magically appeared. We realized just how much time and effort it takes to multi-track a song.

Dago: Ha, writing and recording Metaphonic was awesome. I have great memes about the whole process. We recorded with Josh Stippich at his studio, Dr. Dendrites, here in Salt Lake. It was all done on ADAT tapes and I think all the ‘beats’ were made on an Ensoniq ASR-10. We would use show money to fund the recording. I think one of the difficulties was trying to fit everything and everyone on all the songs. At this time, there were five vocalists (Fisch & Tangent would later leave to form Furthermore) and two DJ’s (Shanty and Rick One). We all had ideas and ethos on how we individually approached making songs. It felt like a junk drawer, that we kept trying to cram in piece after piece.
Gavin: What did you think of the reception the album got when it finally came out? And what was it like gaining a following in Utah with rap and hip-hop establishing their own scene here?

Gunnar: It was awesome! We knew we had it when we pulled into the lumber yard skate park in Provo and it was jammed- packed. It gave me goose bumps!

Dago: It was a great feeling. Having a physical product of your thoughts, words and self on a CD that you could share with family and friends. We put Metaphonic out in 1996 and wanted to immediately get to work on the next whatever. Fisch and Tangent left that same year, trimming the lineup to myself, Gunnar, Roo, Shanty and Rick. Even in 2011, people still mention how much they dig Metaphonic, so we put it up on our bandcamp as a FREE download. Those CDs are long gone.

Shanty: It was mixed. Some people loved it, some hated it. We made an experimental, artsy hip-hop record. Not everybody appreciated what we were trying to do, especially at that time. There were some people who understood what we were going for, though.

Gavin: When you followed up your debut with Anesthetic Episode and then The Word, how was it each time heading back into the studio with new material, and at times a new lineup?

Dago: Anesthetic Episode was more introspective and decisive than our debut. We dropped this in 1998 (eight songs) on vinyl (i.e.,. wax). We were able to get pseudo distribution on sandboxautomatic.com and that lead to touring opportunities in CA and eventually getting picked up by the now-defunct indie label Guapo Records. We recorded The Word for Guapo records. The project was released in 2001. It was the same lineup as the Episode, with a more polished sound that was never short on ideas. This was a true collaborative effort with Shanty mastering the scratches and cuts and Rick One really hitting stride with the tracks. Also, as vocalists I felt we had all arrived with true ‘group’ performances. Through Guapo, we were able to get suits at Tommy Boy records interested enough in us to send A&R reps to Provo to meet. Talks between Guapo & Tommy Boy never really materialized and Guapo ended up closing its doors in ’03.

Shanty: Each time had a new set of hurdles. It's always creative and fun, though. Some of the best times of my life have been in the studio with these guys.
Gavin: Speaking of, the lineup has changed a bit over the years, growing and shrinking at times. How has it been for each of you working with the changes and still being a cohesive unit?

Dago: I think change is mandatory in order to grow. I know that sounds cliche but there is something to it. Fresh perspectives and vision help me stay inspired. Adding new touches and direction ignite that spark. Still, we know each other so well that we are comfortable being ourselves and it’s a blast doing the Numbs material whether it’s live or recording.

Shanty: It's difficult losing a member of the group. You come to rely on them for what they do. You just have to rally everyone together and figure out how to fill that void.

Gunnar: The name of the game for us is just to keep pushing boundaries and to evolve at the same time. Remaining true to ourselves. We always keep our roots on lock and never forget the blood sweat and tears that got us here in the first place.

Gavin: Why such a long wait between The Word and Nfinity, and how was the vibe for everyone getting back into the studio and on stage again after such a long hiatus?

Dago: Nfinity came out in 2007. It felt like a patchwork album to me. The roster at this point was myself, Gunnar, Roo and Shanty. On Nfinity, there were so many different producers, recording studios and songs recorded in bits and pieces over four to five years. Some songs we didn’t end up using at all. After Guapo shut down, we were left figuring out what our identity was and where do we go from here. Shortly after that, we were able to get some licensing deals and land songs in films and trailers (Universal's Alpha Dog, Sony’s Crossover and You Got Served) and on television (the first four seasons of America's Next Top Model, NBC’s Friday Night Lights and MTV’s Punkd). The income from that enabled us to build our own studio and keep the machine moving. It was liberating.
Gavin: As of this show, you're putting out your brand new full-length Soulburn. What was it like putting this one together, and what has the reaction been prior to release?

Dago: Linus Stubbs is one of Utah’s’ brightest and defining beatsmiths. On Soulburn, he captures that early '90s aura -- lush, varied beats that all manage to sound cohesive enough to fit together on the same album. I let some people hear tracks from Soulburn and I keep getting "your best record since The Word." I think that’s a good thing. Get your funk boots on!

Shanty: Soulburn has taken years to happen. Life has a way of getting in the way of making music.

Gavin: Are you thinking of going on tour anytime soon, or staying local and working on other projects?

Gunnar: We're going to be in the lab raising that bar. In the meantime, we'll be rocking shows and recording. We also have some top-secret side projects in the works. Ain't nothing changed but the weather vane -- full flex!

Dago: Touring is always an option. Utah has a lot of go-getter's that are always on the move: Pat Maine and Pig Pen, Dusk, George Life, Fizzy Form and Burnell tour constantly. Numbs has been to CA several times, but it would be fresh to go east. Or even Europe.
Gavin: Going statewide, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?

Shanty: I think the local scene is amazing. The Wasatch Front has a lot going on right now.

Dago: Utah has such a powerful and eclectic scene, not just in the hip-hop/rap genre. It would be nice to see more all-ages venues, ,and I’d really like to see a yearly UTAH Rapfest come about. I think that would be dope. Shouts to Dave Payne of Red Bennies and Chris Controller of Night Sweats.

Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?

Dago: Stay involved and supporting, whether it’s picking up someone’s new disc or attending the shows. It’s so easy with technology now to experience things via Facebook, Ustream, Twitter, etc. It’s all so accessible and immediate. But you don’t get that connection, you know? I would much rather see a band or group play live than catch it live streaming.
Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?

Stubbs: Some of my Utah faves as far as emcees are Task, Dumb Luck, Pat Maine, Dusk One, MC Pigpen and Phil Maggio. DJ's, I'd say DJ Juggy, Brisk, DJ Handsome Hands & Street Jesus.

Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how it affects local musicians?

Dago: Friday nights are GREAT! KRCL’s "Friday Night Fallout" show with Roots Rawka is AWESOME, and on UtahFM.ORG "The Vapors" show with Beth & Scarecrow is DOPE. Mike Booths’ is FRESH as well. These platforms always show love. However, I don’t think ANY artist should sit down and say to themselves ‘Hey, today I think I’m going to write a radio song’... that’s bad mojo. Just write a GREAT song and if the public, PD’s or the powers that be take to it, it’s all good.

Shanty: I love KRCL. They've done a lot to promote the local scene. I think we're all very fortunate that a station like that exists here in Utah.
Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?

Dago: It’s a double-edged sword. All sides have benefits and drawbacks. The tech involved with music changes so often that it is in constant flux. I like it when artists/groups that I dig drop free ‘mixtapes’ or ‘leaks,’ and if it’s good, I’ll pick up the one that costs. More so with indie artists, because I know that money actually goes into what they do… their vision and livelihood.

Gavin: What can we expect from you guys over the rest of this year?

Stubbs: New Task and Linus album coming July 10th. Dumb Luck and Linus Stubbs album some time later this year, as well as an EP with an emcee from Brooklyn named Wildelux.

Dago: Rotten Musicians (Myself, Fisch and Shanty) just dropped our third effort, Epee -- get it here as a free download. Also, I’m putting out a solo EP in August called Kill Screen; check me out on Bandcamp or Facebook. It’s going to be seven or eight songs long. Fisch sampled old NES games and other chip-tune-sounding bytes… it’s on some video game-type shit.
Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to promote or plug?

Stubbs: My Bandcamp, Twitter and Facebook.

Dago: Just want to give love to ALL the peeps in Utah and around the globe that support. It’s incredible how many awesome people you run into being involved in music and art and whatnot. Without the support, it wouldn’t be as much fun as it is. You ALL make it worthwhile. And check out our Bandcamp… there is FREE music on there for you, you and YOU. And I like Twitter -- hit me up @markdago.

Gunnar: Shouts to the fans and all the people that have taken the journey right along with us. We love it. We do it for you guys.

Shanty: You can follow me and my thoughts on Twitter @djshanty!


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