First off, who are you and what genre of music do you make?
I’m Randy’s Got A Playdough Face, it’s basically just me doing indie rock. I try and make soft indie rock but sometimes it gets a little more aggressive than I originally intended it to be, so it kind of rides that line. But not super GRRRRR kind of heavy. But, you know. To the point of like, “Okay. This is starting to get into a thing”. But I try and make it softer and more mellow. But you know.
If you had to describe your music with a color, what would it be?
Um… I guess it’s kind of like, beige, kind of brown paper bag. Kind of like in between those two. It’s got a little crinkle to it. I don’t know, that sounds like a dumb answer.
No, this is my favorite question to ask. I love the answers that people give.
Oh, okay. Good. I like that.
What’s the biggest struggle you have when it comes to creating?
I really get kind of anal about transitions. Because I think a lot of people go on a really good- almost like a musical tangent- and it makes sense, but then they wanna get back to the original idea, and it feels very much like “Okay. We got so far from the original thing that we’re trying to go back to it and it’s just this hard cut”. So I think the biggest challenge is, if you do go on that musical tangent, bringing it back to the original thing. Finding that bridge is really important. So sometimes that can be difficult depending on how far you’ve gotten away from it. Do you know what I mean?
I know exactly what you mean.
If you could play any show in the world, what would it be?
Oh, like a show with someone or a favorite venue that I’d like to play?
Any.. Everything… If you’re like “Oh, I want to go to a 1920s speakeasy, bring that back. That’s my favorite example to give.
Ohh. Boy, that’s a tough one. Hmm. I think playing at like- I really like when bands get super classy and get to play at, like, a museum. So like the XX played at the Guggenheim. I think that would be a really cool thing to also do. You’re surrounded by good art and also get to be a little quieter, and everyone knows to be a bit more polite. It’s still like a venue for art. I think that would be nice.
What do you consider your biggest musical success?
It’s all very small scale still, so I think it was just when I graduated high school I put out a record all by myself under the same name and I remember being more proud about that record than about graduating high school. Like, tons of people graduate high school and I guess tons of people put out records but this was like, obviously something that I was more proud of.
What inspired you to start making music?
I remember- my dad plays bass- but I guess when I was younger I didn’t know what a bass was, so I just saw “electric guitar” in my mind. So when I heard it I was very confused because that’s not the sound you expect an electric guitar to make. I remember that being a “Woah!”, but it still looked cool, so I was like, “Let me play this”. So I started off playing my dad’s bass. You know, probably around like 12. And that got me to play with a lot of other people because everyone plays guitar. So you get to play with a lot of other people.
If you could hear any person living or dead sing to you, who would it be?
Wow. I know this isn’t, like, maybe the REAL answer but the first person that came to mind was Bono. I don’t know, that’s my answer right now but maybe if I thought about it more that would be my answer. But I think I’d like to have Bono just sing to me.
Who, aside from any band or musician, is your biggest influence?
Well, I really like comedy. So I guess I would have to go with… Mitch Headburg, maybe. He’d be my favorite comedian. I just have a lot of respect for comedians as well because it’s a difficult thing to do standup. A lot of things are difficult, obviously, but I don’t know. Yeah.
What’s your favorite book?
My favorite book… I haven’t read it in a long time, but I remember very much enjoying Martin Dressler in high school. I forget who it’s by, but it was a story about this interesting guy who kept doing more and more interesting stuff. And then I don’t wanna spoil the ending, but he gives it up in a really nice way. But I’ll have to revisit that one because I think I recommended it to someone and they didn’t like it. Maybe I’m recommending a bad book because I was stupid like six years ago or whatever it was. But that’s still my answer.
What do you like to do other than music?
It’s like horrible because I just like doing as much music as I can from a bunch of different angles, so if I’m not doing my own thing I’m like recording someone else or I’m mixing this or that. I guess I just.. If there’s nothing to do then I’m doing music, as lame as that is. I guess I do like going to museums and I do enjoy watching comedy. So those are my other two things that I really enjoy.
Who is your favorite musical artist?
Probably.. There’s a few different answers to that. In this instance, I’d probably go with Death Cab For Cutie because I really resonate with their early stuff and how they progressed very naturally as artists.
What’s one piece of advice you have for young musicians?
Maybe don’t spend any money. Probably a good piece of advice just because you can find a way to do with you want with a lower kind of budget. If you pour your heart into it then it’s there. But if you’re spending the money to go into the nice studio and you’re not ready yet… A large amount of practice without spending money, I think. And I think it also makes the product more romantic and you connect with it more.
Lastly, what’s your lucky number?
Lucky number? For some reason, I’ve always liked the number 36. I remember even in first grade, for some reason gym class got canceled and so we were just sitting in class and the gym teacher’s like trying to make up a fun activity so she’s like “Draw this. Whatever. Now write your favorite number on top.” And everyone tried to make their favorite number bigger than everyone else’s. But I was very convinced. I was like, “36. That’s a good place to stop.” I don’t know, I like 36.
Do you have any last words for the readers?
Any plugs? I guess I’ve got a new record coming out in a week. And it’s coming out on Family Vacation records. We’re gonna have some tapes made up. And hopefully a string of shows coming up soon.
You can follow Randy’s Got A Playdough Face on Twitter at @randysplaydough, and be sure to check him out on Bandcamp at randysgotaplaydoughface.bandcamp.com