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OtherWe're Charlie Harding and Nate Sloan of Switched On Pop, a podcast that breaks down how pop music works. Ask us anything!

Nov 13th 2017 by switchedonpop • 27 Questions • 63 Points

We are Modestep!

We just partnered with Jägermeister to perform an Ice Cold Gig at Cecil Peak in New Zealand suspended between two mountain peaks on a space net. Check out the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJspGy7Fy8E&t=25s

Next Monday we’re releasing our new single Higher. Presave link: http://monster.cat/2h6uhQg

Ask us anything

Q:

OK omg I love you guys... The quality of your podcast is absolutely beyond reproach.

Charlie 😍 ...I didn't really care about pop until my life was changed by Taylor Swift in 2014 and it seems to be what happened to you as well. I relate to your experience so strongly and I know so many people who had the exact same experience! Taylor is a gateway drug to pop becuse she shows people that, when in the right hands, pop can be deliciously smart and well thought out.

What other pop artists has become your faves since then? For me it's Carly Rae and Lorde, they're unbelievable. Melodrama is the undisputed album of 2017, reputation is lit but Melodrama is like the DSOTM of our time, it's that monumental to me.

A:

Do people ever get mad at you for looking like Joel Osteen, after telling them you’re not him?


Q:

1) How has your day to day life changed the most? 2) From your perspective does it seem like things are/will get better anytime soon?

A:

A good family friend of mine recently lost most of his right hand in an accident. He's 11 years old. Are there any tips you might have for him? Or, for me/my family/his family on how best to help him going forward?


Q:

Do you have a rough idea about when you guys plan on releasing the new album? - So so excited for it! The previews in your vlogs sound insane! Also, do you think you'll do a live UK tour once you've released the album?

A:

Thanks for all the praises! When we started this project, we were not pop music fanatics. We were generally curious about pop music and thought it would be a great entry way into a conversation about deeper listening. Since starting the show, we've become fans of so many great performers, writers and producers. Certainly Carly Rae and Lorde come to mind. Julia Michaels has been a personal favorite, Harry Styles, Ariana Grande, Alessia Cara, Zedd all come to mind. Also, I am super late to realize that JT's LoveStoned is one of the best recordings of modern pop. - Charlie


Q:

Not mad, but impossibly disappointed. Just kidding. No they liked the gag

A:

1) Down time is really rough. While I'm at work, things are pretty much "normal" (they have power). But when I get home and remember that the night will be dark (just candles), It get's kind of frustrating. Keeping busy has been really essential to surviving. 2)It does not. Politics are getting in the way of real progress. People with electricity say they have constant power outages so not even they feel they are back to normal.


Q:

Yes yes definitely! Will you pass on my channel link? It's all about how I do things with only 5 fingers: youtube.com/abshowfosho and instagram.com/abshow where they can message me -- I'd love to hear from them and answer any questions! Also luckyfinproject.org is an organization that connects people all over the world with limb differences!

A:

We're going to play it by ear. We plan on releasing a new song every couple of months until something really sticks, and thats when we're going to follow up with the album. We kind of figure as long as there is a continuous flow of music, you guys won't care too much about an album release date :P

The plan is definitely to tour the UK next year!


Q:

Yes Ariana is an incredible talent that people just aren’t fathoming yet. I know she’s popular but she’s a phenomenon that’s only gonna rock the world more in the future.

And Harry has been impressing me too, I enjoy his new shit, it has a classic sound to it 🤣 I don’t think he has a John Mayer level talent in him but he’s got something 👌

A:

Did anyone figure it out that it wasn't Joel? what was your response?


Q:

Do you ever just stay at work to enjoy the electricity?

A:

I managed a retail store for a long time. Around 1996, I hired a teenage girl, and as it turned out she did not have a left hand. I didnt realize it for the longest time. She just came in did her work like anybody else and that was that. She was a great employee. One of my best.

One day she said, " i really appreciate that you treat me just like everybody else, and dont go easy because of my hand." I was like "what the heck are you talking about?" She was shocked, and I think a little surprised.
I felt sorta dumb, but she kinda teared up ( i think in a good way), so before I could tear up I was like, " get back to work"

I occasionally think back to that kid. 20 years later, and she had a profound effect on me.


Q:

How are you? How’s your day been so far?

A:

Ok, one more—Tubthumper by Chumbawumba. The podcast Surprisingly Awesome has a great episode about this song's roots in an UK anarchist punk collective.


Q:

They did! I would just laugh and say I'm his tall brother!!

A:

We can't! They turn the generator off at 5pm sharp. But I charge my phone there during the day.


Q:

Thats a hilarious and sweet story! I think sometimes people with physical challenges work extra hard to prove they can do it! One of my best friends had no idea i had one hand the first few times we met... and then he thought I was a twin because he saw my wearing my prosthetic arm after seeing me with out it at first -- haha!

A:

My day has been great so far.. I took my little puppy who is only 11 weeks old to the studio and we practiced for a live session that we're doing tomorrow with a string section. It's going to be our first time playing with a string section and we're both really excited for it!


Q:

Can you analyze heteronormativity in pop music? As a lesbian woman, it's hard to find music to relate to as pop music is mainstream, it really mostly centers on heterosexual love. There are rare gems like Halsey and Lauren's 2017 pop song "Strangers" and Frank Ocean's "Thinkin of you" but it's very rare. Perhaps provide examples of pop music that is bold and reveals same-sex love and discuss issues with the heteronormativity.

A:

Are you ever worried that Joel Osteen is going to come to your neighborhood and pretend to be you and get into all sorts of trouble?


Q:

Do you have/use powerbanks? Would seem like a good way to have extra power.

A:

So obviously you write and eat with your left hand, but do you have any idea whether you're "naturally" left handed? Like you probably know which foot is dominant--which do you use to kick a soccer ball? How's your handwriting?


Q:

Hey guys big fan, couple questions.

  1. What's the current direction of your music going? London Road was an exceptional album and I'm hoping for more like that.

  2. Any plans for touring the UK next year, specifically Scotland? Saw you guys last time with Culprate and it was wicked! Much love. 🤙🏻

A:

Taotanic thank you so much for sharing this issue. Pop Music has a problem of promoting all forms of stereotypes. I think it is a failure often of trying to reach the most people. But I believe great stories connect with an audience not based on shared identity, but based on great emotional storytelling. So there is no excuse for the industry to be so conformist. Frankly, I believe it has a lot to do with the industries composition. Too many positions of power (executives, producers, songwriters) are held by white cis men. I've heard countless anecdotes of these people shooting down songs because they don't think listeners will "get it." There is a lot of reporting that needs to call out systemic abuse of power and curation. We hope to contribute to this reporting in future episodes.

Please keep writing to us with songs that ARE speaking to you. We admit that our identities result in inadvertent selection bias and we want to work to undo this bias. Please keep sharing ideas with us: [email protected]. (Charlie)


Q:

hahaha I would to do a video where joel pretends to be me and valets cars

A:

We were not prepared for this at all. We were pretty much YOLOing it.


Q:

Good questions. I think I would be naturally right handed. My whole family is right handed and I kick with my right..right dominant in sports, drumming, and guitar. My handwriting isn't too bad actually! I'd say average.

A:

Hey Niicolzz! 1. I've described our new music as the uplifting/dancey vibes of Evolution Theory but with the finesse and execution of what we learned from London Road. I think its some of our best music yet. 2. We always want to be on tour, like permanently... and Scotland is one of the rowdiest crowds out there. It would be my honour to go back. I think once we have new music out there, we'll be able to get back on the tourbus!

Big love <3


Q:

Thank you so much for responding back and understanding the frustration 😊 I still listen to good pop music regardless but it would just be nice to have something more relatable. Beyond having relatable lyrics, fandom also applies too. Boy bands tends to have many heterosexual girl fans. Openly LGBT pop singers like Halsey allow the opportunity to feel like fandom is more inclusive. I think there are pop artists that have done a good job not injecting many pronouns like openly gay singer Sam Smith. I’m a believer that there isn’t just one way to interpret music lyrics. You can interpret or think of anything you want when listening. Sometimes, I ignore the pronouns or put myself in the view of a heterosexual male that is singing. It is true that it is cis white men producing most of the music so hence the outcome. I dream that in the future, less ideas will be shot down and there’ll be more songs that are relatable for all people, regardless of who they love. Thanks again for getting it and having such a wonderful podcast! I look forward to all your episodes and your response made me just an even more committed follower! I'll keep sharing ideas!

A:

With this impersonating gig and acting etc.... do you make a decent living in general?


Q:

As someone who's lived through several hurricanes, I was just thinking that you better at least be charging your damn phone at work. How are you getting laundry done? Old fashioned way?

A:

What are you sick and tired of hearing the most from people who realize that you only have one hand?


Q:

hey lads 👋🏻 Have you got any upcoming gigs/festivals for the UK soon? First saw you back in 2011 at NASS, then download 2015 & the London Road tour, I miss the vibe and the energy from your sets and I think it’s about time you come back to touring 😉😂 also Josh what breed is your cute pupper? #modemobalways

A:

One of my favorite examples of interpreting lyrics is with Robyn's "Call Your Girlfriend." We did an episode about this piece and only later learned that it was a gay anthem that could be heard as a coming out story. (Charlie)


Q:

I park cars everyday. I have to be at work at 11am today. So I'm gonna wrap this up at 10:30am pst. I'm trying to get paid solely to doing acting and comedy with my dabs den crew

A:

Bucket. Also, wash boards have become a hot commodity.


Q:

Not much really bothers me, but I don't love it when people express sympathy. Not that sympathy is bad, but they usually do that only because they haven't asked me any questions and don't realize that I'm not sad about having one hand!

A:

We have nothing in the diary just yet, but that tends to happen when you aren't active with releasing music. Once we start the ball rolling with all these tunes, you'll see us back at those festivals creating havoc once again :)

My little puppo is called Fuji and he's a Miniature Pinscher (a tiny version of a Doberman, they call it a Dobermouse! )


Q:

Oh i listened to this episode on of my previous plane rides and loved it! I admit that song leaves room for a lot of interpretation. What a great example.

A:

Hey! Fellow valet here. Nice way to earn a living. Can make it pretty good where I'm from.


Q:

Batteries as well?

(I have some of these at my house, actually, but I doubt you want to drive all the way to Humacao. ...or that you want the ones I wore in Afghanistan, which were gross before Maria started moldering everything.)

I’ll bring new ones if you want to coordinate linkup via PM. In Plaza or wherever’s nearby. I have to fly into SJU, and my wife will probably want to wait to drive down to Humacao until early evening.

A:

Ever done a cool Halloween costume with your arm? Imperator Furiosa?


Q:

any plans for doing another modestep radio? Really miss those on my sunday evening

A:

Excellent question, thanks. I love this amazing playlist curated by the Darryl W Bullock (author of David Bowie Made Me Gay) that finds non-heteronormative pop gems from the last century :

http://thequietus.com/articles/23153-playlist-david-bowie-made-me-gay

I also think this would make a great topic for an episode soon, though there is a dearth of such material currently on the charts. I expect that to change soon, though, with up-and-coming artists like Troye Sivan waiting in the wings.

-Nate


Q:

Respect! Watch thos angles and never trust back up cams

A:

Cool. I live 2 blocks away from Plaza. I'll pm you.


Q:

Yes! I've done some pretty gross makeup on my arm and had so much fun with it! I actually made a video about my top 3 favorite "armless" Halloween costumes here https://youtu.be/ZEVQ4MLegq0

A:

Modestep Radio evolved into BSMNT and because Pat and I were not that confident with DJing, we decided to put them on hold until we felt more comfortable behind the decks. I think we're both at the point now where we're super comfortable and we'll be starting BSMNT up again :)


Q:

Oh, that would be good! I wish I had suggestions, but unfortunately I need to brush up on my indie/alternative artists. I've been so focused on Grimes and my other few favorites for so long lol.

EDIT: I did think of one, but it's from a few years ago- Kimbra on Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know."

A:

What's the most expensive car you've parked?


Q:

Thank you for your post..keep us informed about PR. I am so sorry that it has been 54 days?!? Good God. We are in Florida on the west side. How are you doing otherwise?

A:

As a fellow person with 1 arm, I always get, you can do that with one arm? And i always respond, why does it take you two.

What's the dumbest thing someone thought you couldn't do bc you have I've atm? Mine was Button a shirt.


Q:

Hey. Saw you guys at Download Festival a few years ago and you were amazing. Would you ever consider playing there again?

A:

Yes! Love Kimbra. Have seen her a few times in NYC as part of an improvised music ensemble called EXOTECH and she completely blew me away.


Q:

I've parked Jaimee Foxx's Bugati

A:

Ok. The fact that I still have a job is a blessing. A lot of people lost their jobs and had to close businesses.


Q:

Haha! Thats great. I once had a little kid absolutely insist that I couldn't ride a bike. I was like, no I really can... let me borrow your bike, I'll show you. Haha!

A:

Our first ever show as a band was at Download festival, playing the little Red Bull stage there. We then played it every year until we worked our way up to the second stage. I would fucking love to come back, no matter what size the stage.. it's like a second home for us and the crowds are always mental!!


Q:

Will be looking that up, along with your podcast suggestions. Now that I'm thinking about it, your podcast is how I learned about his! Thanks for your replies and doing the AMA!

A:

Joel Osteen's car obviously.


Q:

Have criminals been taking advantage of the disaster? For example looting?

Is there a curfew?

A:

What's your worst experience with ignorant adults? If miraculously you could take a pill and wake up with your right hand, fully functioning, would you take it?

Youre awesome!


Q:

How has it been since Tony leaving? Do you feel the direction of Modestep has changed? And How's he doing?

A:

Also sorry we're bad at getting back to our email! Love the recommendations. St. Vincent and Grimes are personal favorites. They could definitely be on the show. (Charlie)


Q:

He rides an arc

A:

Home invasions are a large concern right now. Not in my area thankfully, but criminals have been targeting people with generators and stealing them in more remote areas .


Q:

I get a lot of questions from curious people, but not really much negative questions or attention -- thankfully! The funniest question I've ever gotten from a poor soul was "So do you write with your right or left hand?" Haha! And, although that would be an incredible thing to wake up with a new hand, I don't think I would do it. I have faith that God made me this way for a reason, and he has proved that in my life so far in many ways. Reaching young kids who are missing fingers/limbs and encouraging them through my YouTube channel is one (an awesome one) of those ways!

A:

We've had to make a lot of adjustments. Both Pat and I have been teaching ourselves how to DJ and we've come a long way in the last 6 months! The direction of Modestep was always going to change as, even before Tony left, we decided to switch up our sound a little bit to make our tunes a little more dancefloor friendly. He's doing great, he has a new project called WhyMe? which you should definitely check out!


Q:

Can you dissect and discuss kpop more? Perhaps the growing popularity of kpop group BTS. They seem most successful in being a crossover kpop group to get into the US. They are nominated for the AMAS this year too. Their song Best of me had some assistance from The Chainsmokers so could be a good one to dissect. Although being a new genre (kpop), what sets them up for crossover success to the US ? whereas other kpop groups couldn't find it

A:

Don't know if he'll answer this but honestly they all just become a blur after a while. I've parked Lamborghinis, Bentleys, everything you can think of.

No big deal really. No time to really do anything other than park it and get back up to the valet area to do it all over again.


Q:

What has been the most surprising part of this experience for you? And what has been the hardest?

A:

Hey, my buddy at work is a paralympian who's missing his left hand, it sounds like a match made in heaven. Y'all should meet up, sound good?


Q:

Are you going to come to Rock im Park 2018?

A:

Yes we definitely want to cover K Pop and would love to have a knowledgable guest on for it, say a musician or critic. Any suggestions?


Q:

Yeah I agree! At this point I just want a comfortable car that's easy to enter and exit

A:

I was surprised how fragile modern society really is. The hardest has been losing hope some days.


Q:

Haha! Left and right... sounds like destiny!

A:

Oh man I wish, if you want us there make sure you relentlessly tweet them and get your friends to do the same. Believe it or not, thats what promoters look at! Rock Im Park/Am Ring are up there with some of my favourite festivals to play!!


Q:

Hi guys!!! Long time fan! You're responsible for helping me gain an appreciation for Taylor Swift's songwriting prowess. What are your thoughts on her new album regarding songwriting? What are the major changes in her melodic or structural style? Is there an episode coming up discussing this? - Paul B.

A:

Dude, keep up the amazing work. I swear If I were a director id cast you. Fucking Hilarious.


Q:

What do you think about the theory that mankind is always 9 meals away from anarchy? Meaning if gas ran out suddenly or whatever society would last 9 meals then people would start fighting over food and stuff.

A:

The one-handed Rubik’s cube world record is 6.88 seconds.... https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=3FDmmL5vKHg

Does that make you as incredulous as it makes me?


Q:

Will do! Your shows 2013 and 2015 were the best I've ever seen! Also when can we expect a new album to drop?

A:

Serendipity! Yes, our next episode will hopefully answer some of your questions. Thanks for listening! -Nate


Q:

Thank you!!!!

A:

I think that theory is damn accurate. It was scary the first couple of days.


Q:

Haha! That is next level!!

A:

Thank you ED!

Next year we'll be dropping a new tune every couple of months with an album waiting for that right moment :)


Q:

Sweet! Looking forward to it!

A:

How many beers did you get at the event?


Q:

Hope is a lubricant that we give our souls to function properly. Here's hoping you stay properly lubricated.

A:

I was going to go with a deep meaningful question but got tired typing it out so.... Favorite food?


Q:

Was an honour to do lights for your show at Teddy Rocks! When are you going to get the live show back on the road?

A:

Thanks for all your questions! This was a lot of fun!


Q:

oh bummer they weren't selling beers, but I had a few after

A:

Mom?


Q:

Haha! Asian food. Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese.. I️ love it all.

A:

Ah dude the lighting was on point.. and the pyro nearly burned my balls to a crisp. Great work!

We're working on a brand new concept live show to debut in 2018 and hopefully we'll jump straight back on the road and show the whole world!


Q:

Do you think Max Martin finally lost his magic touch? Katy Perry and T Swift's latest haven't done so well...

A:

Are you worried Joel Osteen will now attempt to take some sort of legal action against you?


Q:

are the rich in puerto rico also similarly affected, or do they have better infrastructure, backup generators etc...?

A:

What do you do with all the right handed gloves?


Q:

Do you guys consider coming back to Poland? (Especially performing one more time on Woodstock's stage?) I always loved in your music the combo of dubstep and rock, will it be present in your new content somehow?

A:

Interesting! You may be onto something. I suspect Martin will bounce back though. And I still really enjoy his work on Reputation on Witness, though it didn't have the same chart success. What's remarkable about Martin is his ability to adapt to changing musical landscapes, so I have to imagine he will continue to a presence on the charts. Let's keep an eye on it... -Nate


Q:

No. There isn't really anything bad we did. This is probably good press for him

A:

Good question. They don't have better infrastructure but they do have backup generators. Funny thing is, those generators are not made to run for 50 days straight, so they have to either use them at certain times or use them until they stop working and then pay someone to fix them. No one has been able to escape the effects of the storm.


Q:

You know, thats a fantastic question...

A:

Well, because we won the spinning top competition I believe we should be coming back to play Woodstock once again. They said once we have a new album on the way to let them know and we'll make that magic happen all over again. Honestly, the first time we played will be difficult to top as it was one of the greatest moments in my life!!


Q:

I have tremendous respect for Taylor Swift as a songwriter, but I haven't liked a lot of the new album (WHY IS SHE RAPPING?). It seems like a move that has appealed fine to her fans, but it's bad, right? At what point does taking cues from what's happening in the pop music landscape become cultural appropriation?

A:

Did you want to take your shirt off?


Q:

what are the strangest things that still seem normal (e.g. movie theater still running)?

A:

You're very inspiring! Was there a thing that you had a very difficult doing that you almost just gave up trying?


Q:

Hi there from Russia! Can u give an advices to the beginning producer of creating music and how to promote it (some management advices)? Is it worth trying to send stuff to guys like you? So much love! Show between rocks is fckin amazing!

A:

Hrmm, this is a big subject. I'll try to address each part of the question. Is the album bad? I have to admit I don't have any interest in the narrative of her evolving celebrity identity and in that sense many of the lyrics bore me. But as for the music, it is a different story. I've only listened through twice, and not deeply yet. My first reaction is that the song are universally catchy and well structured. There are lots of great synth sounds that capture my attention, and I already know some of the hooks listening just twice. On that level it seems successful. Your second question about appropriation is a much bigger question that I'd have to examine on a case by case basis. Taylor borrowing imagery from Formation in her video is absolutely appropriative and inexcusable. But I must admit that I find it easier to interrogate imagery and lyrics. Sound and style can be harder to pin down. More to come as I listen. (Charlie)


Q:

For sure I have semi-jacked abs

A:

Chinese food. Never stopped serving. Also, I saw Blade Runner 2049 the other day and people were looking around the theater during the desert/junkyard scenes like "that's us right now"


Q:

Great question. My grandpa used to tell the story of taking me to the park and me trying, but ultimately having to give up on, the monkey bars. Just couldn’t make it happen — haha! I allllmost gave up on putting up my own hair in any sort of bun or ponytail, but I kept at it and after several years of on and off frustrating practice, I got it down! (I actually made a video about how I do it 👆🏼) :)

A:

Hey Sergey! My advice with starting production is very simple.. be deliberate in what you make. A lot of producers sit and fiddle for hours and just make horrible noise, especially when they first start out. What I like to do is imagine what I want the song to sound like in my head, and then find a method for making that a reality. When you work like this, you tend to get much more natural ideas down and often much faster.

My management advice would be to never get management. Just make good music, put it everywhere you can (including sending it to people like us!!) and the rest will happen. Some managers can make a huge act from very little talent, those guys are great businessmen.. but if you make good music, a managers job is very easy, and a job you can easily take on yourself.


Q:

LOVE you guys. Keep it up. Are there any topics coming up on SwitchedonPop that you're really excited about? What should we watch for?

A:

It is said that one who both is and is not JO will come to evolve our JO crystals to the next level with his pearlescent energies and pretty decent abs.

edit: /u/MichaelKlimkowski eats JO crystals.


Q:

At least you're not radioactive!

A:

As a fellow left hander - How do you cope when writing on a notepad bound with those metal rings?


Q:

Hi Modestep - Big fan here :-)

I hate to kill the mood but what is your HONEST opinion on your fans taking drugs at one of your gigs?

1) Do you think it happens, and if so to what extent? 2) Would you give your fans a message on this matter?

Oh and whats the best venue you have ever played at?

A:

We've both been a bit bored by the charts at the moment and are excited for some new sounds. We want to look into issues of representation in the current charts. Otherwise I keep going back to DAMN and Amber Mark as my favorite things this year. I couldn't be more excited for some new music that starts to reflect even more on our current moment. Unsurprisingly, the pop industry has been slow to respond, with the best works still on the margins. (Charlie)


Q:

I eat precious crystals and minerals every day and then to 1,000 sit ups to maintain my chiseled 6pack. Also, I do crossfit. JK JK

A:

Yet.


Q:

Oh my I feel your pain! I write checks for my job a lot and those metal rings are the WORST. I usually just reposition the thing and come at it from an awkward angle. Haha

A:

disclaimer - I will not be held responsible for anyone reading this and fucking up.

People definitely take drugs at our shows, and I have no problem with it at all.

Everyone has a right to put what they want in their body, I would just let anyone who makes that decision aware that there are risks and you should find out how to do it properly as to not ruin your (and your friends) nights.. or potentially do something to damage your health. I believe you can now buy drug testing kits that you can test drugs with before taking them to make sure you know what you are actually taking. Also make sure that you google your body weight to get the correct dose for you and DON'T DO ALL OF YOUR DRUGS AT ONCE.

If you follow all of the above, you should have a great night!


Q:

What's for dinner?

A:

If you check out his new video he's shirtless.


Q:

I guess if you did you could at least claim the hurricane was rad

A:

Sorry if this has already been asked but, quite simply, why? What inspired you to do all these things that most people can't do, even when the odds were stacked against you?


Q:

Hi from Estonia! Any plans to make something experimental or different like "Time" on Evolution Theory?

A:

We are contractually obligated to say: Blue Apron.


Q:

Yeah check out ostend' day off

A:

Totally.


Q:

Hasn't been asked actually! I think my most honest answer is that I just didn't want to miss out on life. I've never been one to give up before even trying. I love trying new things, even at risk of failure. It's worth it! My hope and joy in life comes from the essence of Psalm 34!

A:

Ooooh I forgot about Time! We're actually talking over the possibility of doing a very rock-heavy EP for a big rock record label. I think there would be room on that EP for something similar to that :) Big love to you and everyone in Estonia <3


Q:

What are your guys' favorite music podcasts to listen to? In addition to yours, I really like "And The Writer Is..."

A:

We are having a retrospective on the comedic stylings of Mr. Martin Short, would you be available to attend?


Q:

Do you at least have rum?

A:

Thanks for the AMA!

  1. What would you like people with two hands to know?
  2. What's the funniest situation you've been in because of having one hand?
  3. What would you like to tell young people with visible disabilities?

Q:

First saw you guys at Download on the second stage, the energy in the crowd was incredible. I hope you guys play again soon, and I look forward to seeing your new live show at a venue (hopefully) near me!

Q. What do you think of other Electronic/Rock hybrid bands, like Prodigy & Enter Shikari? Have they influenced the music you make at all, or do you resent the comparisons?

Speaking of the Prodigy, I don't suppose you're supporting them on the UK tour next month? That would be perfect!

A:

Ross's show has some great interviews. We also love:

  • Song Exploder

  • Mogul

  • Dissect

  • New Sounds

  • Sound Opinions

  • NYT Popcast (Charlie)


Q:

I'm in LA are you in Florida? I love Martin Short!!!

A:

Unlimited.


Q:

Great questions!

  1. One of the most common things I hear from two handed people is "What is it like having only one hand?" I always tell them that I have no idea because I've never known anything different, just like they can't really describe to me what having two hands is like... it's just... normal!

  2. I have a TON of funny one handed situations/stories (I tell some of them on my channel linked above). One of my favorites was when I was 12, fishing on a pier. I told a kid who was relentlessly staring at my arm that a local shark bit my hand off, and the longer he stared the shark would know and come after him. Haha -- terrible!

  3. I want young people with differences and disabilities to know that God is good and made us a certain way on purpose... meaning WE have a purpose. And as that purpose shakes out over time, we should have the courage to try the things that might be scary to try, have fun in the process, and stay hopeful for the future!

A:

I would love to support the Prod again but no we won't be with them next month!!

We're good friends with some of the lads in Enter Shikari, I love their take on the crossover and their live show it absolutely great. The prodigy's live show has influenced us lots, not a lot of shows have that kind of intense energy and its something we absolutely aspire to get to!!


Q:

What are your guys' favorite music podcasts to listen to? In addition to yours, I really like "And The Writer Is..."

A:

Hey I’M in LA. You should make some short Osteen parody videos


Q:

What have you been eating lately? It must be hard cooking without power.

A:

What artifact in public is poorly designed for you?


Q:

So what is the best way to get feedback from guys like u?

A:

For the avant-garde jazz and downtown music heads, Jeremiah Cymerman's 5049 Podcast is a must-listen. -Nate


A:

This is where I've had to get creative. You know those cans used by catering services that have a blue flame? I'm using those inside a pot to insulate the heat and make it stronger. I put the pan over the pot with the flame inside. Been perfecting my spam sandwich and Tuna melt recipe. Also, peanut butter.


Q:

Ha! Great question! Those soap pump things that are always on the right side of the sink in public bathrooms. Trying to pump the soap into my hand with the same hand is awkwarrrrrd!

A:

[email protected] - send that fire!


Q:

do you think Cruel To Be Kind by Nick Lowe is a perfect pop song? because when I think "perfect pop song" it is the first one to come to mind.

A:

Have you been introduced to Justin Roiland? He is obsessed with Osteen. I think you two could do some great things together.


Q:

Spam is ALWAYS tasty :)

A:

You can answer the age old Zen question without effort, what is the sound of one hand clapping?


Q:

Any plans of performing in Belgrade, Serbia? We are HUGE fans.

A:

It definitely belongs in the pantheon along with "Tears of a Clown" and "Call Me Maybe."


Q:

No I'd love to meet him I love Rick and Morty. Hook it up dude

A:

Yes! Oh, I forgot to mention Chef Boyardee and Vienna Sausages. A running local joke is how kids born in 9 months will all be called "Carmela" (a local sausage brand) and they will all be Chefs (from Chef Boyardee)


Q:

too quiet in a crowd! haha!

A:

I would love to come back to Serbia, make sure you shout at promoters to get us over there!


Q:

Hey guys, I love your show. I listen from the UK and one thing I was wondering is whether you have any views on why certain songs do better in some countries than others (for example, Migos's Bad and Boujee was a middling hit in the UK but massive in the USA) and what it takes for a song to be a smash hit worldwide?

A:

What was the nuttiest thing you heard a church member say, whether to you, or something you overheard?


Q:

If you could have one physical thing show up at your doorstep, what would it be?

Has this affected how people consider the statehood vote where you are?

A:

As someone with a newborn girl that has a limb difference, thank you for what you do. I constantly worry that she will be bullied. That she won't be able to do a lot of things that most people can do. This gives me hope.

I find that a lot of kids in our extended family always ask what is wrong with her hand? Growing up did a lot of other kids ask you about it? Were you ever called names? If so, how did you handle it?


Q:

What are your thoughts on "Man's not hot"?

A:

This is such a great question, and one that, honestly, I have no idea how to begin to answer. Like, why has The Killers "Mr Brightside" been on the UK Pop charts since it was first released, 13 years ago?

https://noisey.vice.com/en_us/article/pg78ky/the-killers-mr-brightside-not-left-uk-charts-since-2004

Some pop mysteries will endure.

-Nate


Q:

I specifically told a lady I wasn't joel because she was getting too emotional and she refused to believe i wasn't him.

A:

A solar energy panel with a generator. And yes, people are disillusioned with the United States.


Q:

Thank you! I’m so happy to be an encouragement! Here’s a screenshot of an earlier conversation with A parent of a boy who was born missing a hand. Might help. Also yes i’ve always had a lot of people ask me just out of curiosity throughout the years. That’s definitely going to happen a lot, but I found that if I just give them a polite and honest answer, it immediately helps them and me feel more comfortable, then it’s all good! Kids can be mean but I navigated my childhood pretty well because I wasn’t scared to try things and just be who I was. I also used humor a lot to disarm people... no pun intended 😂 Check out luckyfinproject.org which is an awesome organization that connects limb different people all over the world!

Conversation

A:

He's very lucky and I hope he can make it last, its not often people blow up as big and fast as that!! :)


Q:

What's the best pop album of the year been thus far?

A:

What inspired the stunt?


Q:

As a fellow puertorican. Where are you from? Is your area better off than others? Im from Aguadilla over in the west corner of P.R. as far is im aware, we are way better off than the middle of the island.

A:

I am missing my left hand. CAN WE BE GLOVE BUDDIES!?!?

Not kidding. I don't buy gloves much because I hate paying for something I'm only using half of. So many useless left hand gloves and mittens. TOGETHER WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD ACTUALLY USE A WHOLE PAIR OF GLOVES.


Q:

Which songs did you play between the rocks for the Jagermeister gig??

A:

I can't definitively say what is the best album, but my personal favorite is Amber Mark's EP 3:33am. Also 4:44 is absolutely amazing. I just made that connection... (Charlie)


Q:

I didn't necessarily want to do this I had to. With our uncanny resemblance it was insane.

A:

San Juan, Hato Rey specifically. My street is full of garbage and mountains of debris. Not a pretty sight. And the lack of electricity has everyone on edge in the area.


Q:

Yessss I'm in!

A:

We played Higher, Sing, Another Day (xKore & Smooth remixes) - We have the audio if you guys are up for listening :)


Q:

Hey y'all! Dig your podcast and sing the "swiiiiiiitch on pop!" transition music jingle to myself pretty often. Would y'all ever consider breaking down "Break Stuff" by Limp Bizkit or any old nu-metal/rap rock material that many people write off as not having any pop elements?

A:

You look an awful lot like Littlefinger as well, maybe you should go to Washington?


Q:

My street is full of garbage and mountains of debris

have garbage services stopped functioning where you live? has the city or PR said when they are going to schedule a clean up for the mountain debris on your street?

A:

What’s the best one handed trick you can do? I have a friend who always prided himself on being able to get a cigarette, light it and return the pack and lighter to his pocket with one hand, but I have to imagine there’s more impressive one handed flourishes out there, especially when necessity dictates it.

Also, what’s your typing speed?


Q:

Yes please

A:

Love this idea! That would be such an interesting topic. What other groups come to mind? And do you hear any contemporary bands using that nu-metal/rap rock sound? -Nate


Q:

Thank you, Chaos is a ladder that I will climb in my fancy joel suit

A:

Garbage services are working in certain areas. Debris cleanup is much more limited. There has been a lot of flooding due to debris buildup near sewers.


Q:

Haha! Well... maybe picking stuff up with my right foot? I’ve gotten pretty good at that over the years…

And i’ve actually never measured my typing speed but I can type pretty fast. I use my right arm to help!

A:

I'll see what we can do!


Q:

Thanks for the response! Korn, Limp Bizkit, Rage Against the Machine, and early Linkin Park seem to define that period in my mind. And their influence today I think definitely extends to artists like Post Malone who have heavy samples with a similar flow to the aforementioned artists.

A:

The Joel Osteen we need, but don't deserve.


Q:

How has cell coverage been? I attempted to text a friend a few times with no reply, but I wasn't sure if he was able to get my messages at all. :(

A:

Can you drive?


Q:

Josh, do you actually skate or are you just a massive poser? Can pat skate?

A:

Whoa! Post Malone. Would not have made that connection. Fascinating. Thanks.


Q:

love this

A:

Only cell coverage in some parts of San Juan, some parts of Ponce and some parts of Caguas.


Q:

For sure! Manual and automatic!

A:

I skate to studio every day.. actually I fell so hard last week I thought I broke my elbow. Ive had to stop using my standard board and switch to my longboard because London streets are god awful for skating on. Pat can't skate from what I've seen haha


Q:

Personally I like that you guys focus more on the music. I follow other pop reviewers who focus more and let their opinions be more driven by lyrics, so I like to have the balance, especially since I personally find that music is far more important than lyrics in determining whether or not I like a song.

A:

I mean, LotR is HEAVILY influenced by Christianity, unlike Olsteen.

edit: stupid autocorrect i


Q:

I live on St Croix... No power since the 6th of Sept.... AMA?

(67 days?)

I too have electricity at work.

A:

Woah will you be doing a manual transmission driving vid? I can't imagine how it's done with left hand only. I can only use my right hand for driving.


Q:

hey guys!

is "new modestep" going to be full electronic, or some real instruments still be in your music?

i saw you live twice in poland, once with guitar and drums, and once with DJ set in lublin, both were awsome, but guitar+drums was more powerfull i think :)

all the best and can't wait to hear your music

ps: cute dog :)

A:

Totally, and as I wrote in response to another question here, analyzing the music can make you think differently about certain lyrics.


Q:

definitely some allegory there

A:

Wow! Good to know you're ok! Irma, right?


Q:

Thats a video I'm thinking of making in the near future!

A:

We still have live synthesizers and guitars just like before :) Thank you, Fuji says hi! <3


Q:

Are there songs that you liked before you studied music that were ruined by knowing more about them? What about songs you hated that you came to love by knowing more about them?

A:

If you had gotten on the stage, would you have tried to do a "practice" run?


Q:

Lost my power for Irma, but didn't get hit till Maria (on St Croix).

A:

Have you considered a biopic prosthesis?


Q:

Josh, are you still using that RED camera of yours? And why didn't u use your canon or whatever it was that you used in Thailand to film modevlog in NZ?

A:

Thanks for the question, I actually haven't paused to think about this before.

My answer is: I have only grown to love songs by studying them and learning more about them. Pretty much every song that we have covered (including, even, DJ Khaled's noxious "I'm the One") have been redeemed for me in some away after close listening and analysis. That's been one of the most remarkable experiences of the podcast, and one that extends beyond the realm of pop music.

I think embedded in this exercise of close listening is an experience of empathy, of putting yourself in someone else's shoes (ie, asking myself, who would gravitate towards this type of music, and what would they get out of it that I might be missing?). That tends to be pretty powerful, and leads to some expansive revelations once you try and listen outside of yourself.

Close listening and reading 4ever.

That said, certain songs may be lyrically so objectionable (eg "Blurred Lines") that I would want to careful not to be "swayed," in a sense, by super catchy or compelling music, into loving a song whose message I find abhorrent.

-Nate


Q:

I would've done and on the spot sermon about how to maintain your rage while driving in LA

A:

I hope you get power back soon. Did you see the hearing today at the Natural Resources Committee? The Rep. from the Virgin Islands did a great job.


Q:

I actually grew up wearing a more basic one (3 of the fingers moved in one direction) but it never actually helped me. I always explain it by comparing to having to hold a baseball bat in one of your hands at all time. Cumbersome and heavy!

A:

I don't actually have a RED camera! I have a Sony a7s, and I used that an my iPhone for the Modevlog :)


Q:

Are there songs that you liked before you studied music that were ruined by knowing more about them? What about songs you hated that you came to love by knowing more about them?

A:

Are you going to try and do this again? Did the guy that asked you if you knew his name tattle on you to security?


Q:

Can you provide some lessons learned or advice for others in order to prepare for this type of situation? I am looking for lessons learned on how much food, water, fuel, propane, etc. that people should consider having on hand in case of an emergency.

A:

Have you ever tried one of the 3D printed prothetics? I've made a few of the flexihands for people who way prefer them to the "medical devices" that cost more than the $25 or so to make. I've also made them for people who think they're great and all, but in the end it is a piece of plastic strapped to their arm.


Q:

But you had it a few years ago? (RED)

A:

Well said, Charles. -Nate


Q:

We are definitely going to do something again! That guy didn't give us away, security came through the fences right as that was happening and we bolted out of the arena

A:

Oh yes! Save water for 2 weeks. People go crazy and lines become endless. Also, get a generator and make it solar. You don't want to wait in line in the sun for 8 or 10 hours just to use your generator. Also, get a gas stove. Hot food became a commodity for about 3 weeks. And most importantly...SAVE! A small savings account can save your life.


Q:

I haven't tried the 3D printed hands yet but I'd love to check it out some day. I used to wear a mio electric prosthetic for years but it was heavy and not very helpful.

A:

We used to rent one for all our music videos, I will buy one some day! :)


Q:

How does K-Pop manage to have its unique and noticeable K-Pop sound, but also be so instantly familiar and catchy even though I have no idea what they're saying?

(Basically, could you guys do a K-Pop episode in the future please?)

A:

The video was a blast. Did you have any ideas of what to say/do if you came face to face with J.O?


Q:

Thank you so much! Would you agree with 1 gallon per day for drinking and 4 gallons a day for other uses so around 50-100 gallons stored?

A:

Your amazing and hilarious which = a great inspiration people in this world really need. What is something that you still want to learn as a future goal?


Q:

Any chance I can make a music video for you in the future?

A:

We definitely need to! Thanks for the encouragement. What are some of the K Pop tunes that you love even though you have no idea what they're saying? -Nate


Q:

I would ask him If I could go to the bank for him. Cash a check!!!

A:

Good estimate.


Q:

Thank you! :) I would LOVE to learn how to play more advanced piano. I've tinkered off and on and can play a liiiittle bit, but I'd love to play for real some day.

A:

If you're good at it, sure :) send your work to [email protected]


Q:

Hi Nate and Charlie, thanks for doing this! On the show, you guys sometimes discuss how an artist's lyrics in a particular song are enhanced or reflected by some of its musical components. (For example, you pointed out in the Kesha episode that the line in "Praying" that goes "I hope your soul is changing" is reinforced by a change in the chord progression that occurs when she sings the word "changing"). I was wondering -- in the pop music industry, how often are the vocalists aware of those theory-based components that might be present in their own songs, and to what extent do you think it matters whether or not they are?

A:

How much rehearsal did you do going into this versus doing it on the fly?


Q:

Which aid group is helping the most?

A:

Thanks for doing this AMA

Do you have or have you ever had a sensation of a phantom limb where your right hand would have been? How do/did you adjust to it?

I'm asking, because I've heard that the brain has a certain image of the body from birth, which might not reflect the reality of the body. I would like to hear your first hand experience on the matter. EDIT: PUN NOT INTENDED!

Edit: Have you tried mirror box therapy? Any thoughts or fears about it?


Q:

Hey lads,

I got 2 questions. Sorry if these have already been asked

1) from the news about how your allowed to release new music as modestep wouldve you started a new band/project if that wasnt the case?

2) this ones for pat but do you miss touring with funeral for a friend

Cheers for the amazing music, unfortunately the only time ive seen you guys was years ago supporting lostprophets in cardiff!

A:

Love this question! I feel like it's something we have danced around a lot on the show, so I'm glad to have the change to address it here. Basically, I don't think it matters whether songwriters are aware of the theory behind what they are doing. As Charlie addressed in another question here, a songwriter can intuit the right musical choice, and then we can come along after the fact and hyper-analyze it to death, uncovering all the connections that they may have placed completely unconsciously.

That said, there is certainly a sub-category of songwriters who do probably think about every single musical choice and their multiple musical meanings. Max Martin comes to mind, I feel like he consciously drops "easter eggs" into his songs, like the secret bass line we discovered in Ariana Grande's "Into You."

-Nate


Q:

I have don scripted Osteen videos before and those are more rehearsed for sure. At this point for this video I felt comfortable enough to stay in character and try something gonzo. Something different. We had to do something new this time around

A:

Red Cross, FEMA and Daddy Yankee (no joke)


Q:

Haha! Great unintended pun! I have heard of those phantom sensations but I've read that those usually come when the person previously had a limb but lost it somehow. I've never felt even the slightest twinge of anything beyond the end of my right arm. ha!

A:

Easy Gav,

  1. Actually due to the nature of the legal bother we were having, we wouldn't have been able to release any music, under any project. Luckily thats fixed though!

  2. Some of my best mates. We had fun times, seems like forever ago now. But nah I wouldn’t say I miss it. I miss them dudes though!!


Q:

Hey guys, absolutely love the podcast, about halfway through catching up in your catalog. :-) Any chance of an episode on pop offshoots or blends, like pop punk? Ty!

A:

Did you at any point reasonably believe you were going to jail? It might be intimidating but they had literally no grounds to arrest you. Maybe things are different up here in Canada, but seems like the most they could do is remove you from the premises.


Q:

Would you, and your family like to stay at my house in Washington until things get better? Maybe your boss would let you telecommute?

A:

Pineapple on pizza. Yay or nay?


Q:

Do you return to poland, and be in wroclaw? this is very important to me and my mother for wroclaw doesn't let me go, i love you very much ❤ i'm sorry for what i'm writing but even i can't english

A:

We definitely want to do more throwback episodes for sure. It would be fun to launch a whole series of other genres but we're both engaged in too many other projects right now. If you have other people who could make great hosts, let us know. (Charlie)


Q:

Oh yeah we were all scared we were going to jail. I didn't want to go to jail and for some reason I was alike ahhhh I'm gonna have to call my mom.

A:

You are so kind. Thank you for that offer. Since my parents recently got their electricity back we are pretty committed to staying here. But your offer shows such kindness. Thank you!


Q:

YES

A:

We would love to do a full tour in Poland next year!


Q:

What are some of your favourite resources on how music works? (online and otherwise)

A:

I'm sure the cops considered arresting you but then decided having to go through life looking like Joel Osteen is punishment enough.

Seriously though, in the video you keep asking for a beer. Did you know Osteen doesn't drink and that was part of the joke? Were you afraid that would blow your cover?


Q:

Please forgive my ignorance. Prior to Maria what was the worst power outages you'd experienced? The media here sometimes paints this picture that Puerto Rico's infrastructure was failing prior to the hurricanes, almost implying you are all used to this sort of thing. Can you comment on that perception?

A:

Does it bother you when people say you’re brave or inspiring or are amazed that you’re able to function?


Q:

We always recommend a few books: - Carl Wilson: "Let's Talk About Love"

  • Tricia Rose: "The Hip Hop Wars"

  • David Byrne: "How Music Works"

  • Greil Marcus: "Lipstick Traces"

  • Shea Serrano: "The Rap Yearbook"

  • Oliver Sachs: "Musicophilia"

None of them are about theory or songwriting, but rather give unique perspectives on how music works in our lives and cultures. For theory, we both read a bunch of dense textbooks in school. (Charlie)

A:

Yes our original premise was to go to things joke would never do. Check this out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mFsbfuNrzQ


Q:

I was a kid during hurricane Georges and I was without power for about 3 weeks. Lately we would lose power for maybe like 1 or 2 hours if it rained a lot (once a month). Never for this long. It is really subhuman living conditions.

A:

Plenty of people have said things about being "brave" to me, but it doesn't bother me much because after talking for a few minutes they usually don't feel that way anymore! I like when people are inspired if it ends up helping them do something they were struggling with!


Q:

Hi! Have you ever thought of doing another deep dive into someone’s ouevre? I loved the Taylor Swift episode and would be so excited about a similar episode on Beyoncé since she’s had such a long and evolving career.

Also I know this question is probably going to come up a lot, but what are your thoughts about reputation?

Do you have any guilty pleasure pop songs that you are embarrassed to admit you enjoy listening to?

I am a huge fan; thank you for the podcast!

A:

Thanks for answering! Couple followups if you have time. I read somewhere that the cops thought it was funny. Were you joking around with them? Did their reaction to it make the security guard real salty?


Q:

When you do realistically think you'll have electricity at your home again? Is your family trying to buy a generator? When do you think the island will return to using an electrical grid and stop needing to rely on generators?

A:

What is the one thing besides Reddit that made you smile today?


Q:

Thanks for the questions. When we did our second episode, we still didn't know the format of the show. It turns out that covering an entire artist's ourvre is best suited for a seasonal, serial podcast like Dissect. We like to make connections to an artists previous work when we're looking at a single song, but covering an artists entire career in an hour is nearly impossible. As for Reputation, we're still listening but enjoying lots of what we're hearing so far. And guilty pleasures? We have none! I don't feel guilty when I listen to music anymore. (Charlie)

A:

The cops were all very nice!


Q:

1) Realistically, January. 2) The whole Island, at least year.

A:

I was at church earlier today and the pastor said something that made me laugh.


Q:

How do you define a cheese melt?

A:

Kudos for pranking a religious event without turning it into an anti-religion circlejerk. Is a hot dog a sandwich?


Q:

Not sure if you're still answering questions. But I read a week ago or so that there have been thousands of deaths in Puerto Rico since the hurricane but they aren't sure how many can be attributed to the aftermath of the hurricane such as drinking contaminated water.

Have you noticed if there are people succumbing to illness more often than regular? Or have the deaths been fairly consistent with old age and death by natural causes?

A:

Do you joke about your disability? Like try to high five people with your missing hand?


Q:

Any variation on bread + cheese + toppings grilled/baked/fried. Butter makes it better. (Charlie)

A:

A hot dog is not a sandwich to me! It's a back up when there's no decent burger


Q:

Great question. Suicide rates have spiked. And yes, people are dying from diseases that we never worried about. You have to be really careful what you put in your mouth.

A:

Yes, most definitely.. joking around is my bread and butter!


Q:

Thanks for the answer

A:

Have you ever met J.O? If so what was his reaction?


Q:

That's really horrible. Lo siento mi amigo.

A:

Do you get sick of the jokes like "can you lend me a hand?" or "have you been to the second-hand store?", or do you still find them funny?


Q:

Questions for listeners: - What music do you want to hear on the show?

  • What guests do you want to hear from?

  • What formats/segments would you like to hear?

  • What should our next project be?

A:

Id did meet JO at a book signing. They kicked us out for filming there so we couldn't get the reaction of his. It was mellow and lackluster anyway.


Q:

Thank you.

A:

Welllll shamefully I'm usually the one who makes those joke haha


Q:

Just to reinforce my upvote, I second all of this!

A:

How do we know you aren't just Joel Osteen impersonating Michael Klimkowski?


Q:

I hope all your friends and family are okay.

A:

I also love this idea—delving into dismissed or maligned genres can often lead to stunning revelations about the biases behind why we feel the way we do about them, something Charlie covered beautifully in his discussion of disco with guest Micah Salkind on the episode "Breaking Down the House," in which I learned that lurking behind the anti-disco movement of the 1980s was a flood of homophobic and racist sentiment.

Screamo is especially intriguing. Thanks for the suggestion!

-Nate


Q:

I wake up and ask myself that question everyday in the mirror. then i look at my bank account and i know i'm michael

A:

Thank you. We are. We lost a friend to cancer due to the deterioration of infrastructure. He was a great guy.


Q:

I'd like to hear about the intersection of musical theatre and pop, like how broadway cast albums used to make it into the pop charts and they don't anymore (except Hamilton?) and people sampling from musicals (Hard Knock Life, Rich Girl, etc.).

I also like the Classical Masters bits and everything that adds context to the pop music I'm hearing.

A:

For all the people coming up to meet "Joel Osteen" and being shocked, did anyone point you out as an imposter?


Q:

Did the power cut made people to interact with each other more now? Like we did in the past

A:

Ahhh I would have taken Mixolydian for its scale tones. I wish I were cool enough to be Phrygian. But in reality I'm probably more like a Minor Pentatonic scale: simple, a bit moody, but always reliable. (charlie)


Q:

Some people knew i wasn't but they still loved it!

A:

The first weeks we did, but then desperation kind of set in and people realized this was going to last a long time, so they got kind of alienated. It was a strange shift in energy.


Q:

I'd like to hear about the intersection of musical theatre and pop, like how broadway cast albums used to make it into the pop charts and they don't anymore (except Hamilton?) and people sampling from musicals (Hard Knock Life, Rich Girl, etc.).

I also like the Classical Masters bits and everything that adds context to the pop music I'm hearing.

A:

That was sweet. What sort of stuff did you leave out?


Q:

Have you had issues with price gouging?

I hope things are resolved quickly for you!

A:

Haha Charlie! Too good -Nate


Q:

It was super fun! We left out some stuff of people opening up and me having to break character to keep things from getting out of the comedy realm.

A:

This has been the worse. Generators going dor $800 before the storm are now at $1500.


Q:

Any particular key, Nate? Different feels and all...

A:

Are you planning on doing more of this and how did the idea come to mind?

Your impersonation of J.O was hilarious!


Q:

Jesus, I'm sorry you are going through this.

A:

G mixo baby! Right between light and dark.


Q:

I'm always putting up comedy with dabsden.com probably more joel for sure too. Idea can cause I look so much like him.

A:

Thank you. I hope it ends soon.


Q:

Considering what's in the news, why do you think more people aren't talking about whether people should be working with Dr Luke? Do you have any opinions on the issue?

A:

Hey, dude! Loved the video.

I tried to do a similar sort of thing (getting into an event without a pass) and was wondering what, in your experience - is the #1 most effective way to look or act like you belong in a place, in order to get in without a ticket?

Thanks so much for your time! :)


Q:

So cool you're doing this. I'm likely too late, but:

I spent 6 months working in Puerto Rico this year, mainly in the mountains of Toro Negro, Tres Picochos, Adjuntas/Giullarte, Jayuya, Maricao... How did these places and the people there fair? Even before the hurricane, it seems the roads and the infrastructure there were in pretty poor shape. I've had difficulty finding news about these smaller towns.

So many incredibly kind people there, that I haven't had no way to get in touch with.

A:

Too many artists in this industry get away with horrible abuses. We shouldn't continue to heroize them. While I believe it is important for our society to embrace rehabilitative justice, that does not mean that people who abuse their power should maintain or reclaim it.


Q:

Look exactly like the guy hosting the event! JK. Dude it was all about remaining calm and confident and acting like you belonged. Also, the fact that we had camera men with us and the director John Parr made it look very official.

A:

These places got hit the worse. I had the privilege of going on a grassroots mission there with water and food. They are in real bad shape and cell coverage is non existant. I'm so sorry.


Q:

Is is it true that Nate's freshman year roommate is the best violinist you've ever seen in your life?

  • AK
A:

What would you do differently if you could do the whole stunt over again and how would you react if you bumped into the real Joel?

Also are you of Polish descent ?


Q:

This Saturday, I’m headed to see my family who rode out the storm near Humacao/Yabucoa. I wasn’t able to get a flight there and back right after the storm, and by the time the airport was opened back up fully, my wife (medical professional in Humacao) thought it would be easier, logistically/cost-wise, to wait for thanksgiving.

Anything specific I can bring you, even if it’s just a small comfort item or two? I usually pack lightly, but Southwest passengers get two checked bags. (Just don’t say paper towels.)

A:

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Arthur is the best violinist I've ever seen perform. Joshua Bell is a close second. (Charlie)


Q:

Honestly we had a great crew!!! I would have tried to go deeper into the green room and get face to face if security didn't boot us hahah. I am of polish decent. Jindobre? Is that hello

A:

Haha nice one. I had a very cool flashlight you could put on your head but gave it away to some people in the mountains. They are in very low supply here and they needed it more than I did at the moment. If you could find one and bring it I would really appreciate it.


Q:

would you define latest albums from Björk as pop? Are you guys interested in talking about her?

A:

How did the real police react when they showed up? Vs. the very "Christian" security guard we see in the video lol


Q:

Is there anywhere I can send mail just to you? I have headlights and you can have some other shit too man but I want it to go to use. and someone I know (kinda)

A:

Yes and Yes and Yes again


Q:

Real police were much chiller they were laughing saying how much i looked like joel hahaha. the security dude was the real presser

A:

Sure I will Pm you!


Q:

Do you think an artist suffers when they keep the same producers for their future projects? Tove Lo had suffered with a mixed bag for Lady Wood after Queen of the Clouds, but Sia seemed to have evolved further from We Are Born to 1000 Forms of Fear.

What do you think are pros and cons of having your next project have the same producers?

A:

I'm digging your videos man, I see the start of a fortuitous new venture for you. My question is-how did you mentally prepare for your grand entrance? You look like you practiced some cordial lines, but how did you ward off the nervousness? Cause that was ballsy


Q:

Are you wearing a NASA shirt?

A:

I think what matters is having a clear artistic vision for the album. Then you find the right producer. Could be the same person or a new one.


Q:

It was crazy I just trusted my dabsden buddies and we all had each other's backs and i had to double down on the character to get anywhere.

A:

Yes! My favorite shirt.


Q:

May sound dumb, but why didn't you just run at the end?? Were there cops there, or just security? I was thinking I would've just ran away lol. Were you tresspassed in the end?

A:

Is despacito really the way you do it in Puerto Rico?


Q:

The directors john parr and reggie henke wanted more coverage. it's all about coverage. in the time we debated staying or going we were already being apprehended.

A:

Just putting power back.


Q:

How do you feel about EA, in light of their recent shit storm?

A:

Rather not have power than play their games.


Q:

The link to the Paypal does not lead to your fundraiser. Would you please re-post?

A:

Can you check again? I changed it.


Q:

Is this a business opportunity for portable power generator companies? If you could buy the generator, could you get the diesel fuel?

A:

Yes it is! But please don't hike up prices.


Q:

how much does a gallon of diesel cost right now?

A:

Right now about $2, but a month ago it was at $7-9 a gallon. Absurd.


Q:

How's the laboral situation over there? Have some people lost their jobs because there's no power, or is work mostly normal for everyone? Saludos desde Costa Rica. Espero que estés bien.

A:

Gracias! It's really bad. 15,000 people have already filed for unemployment. So many businesses are closing. I'm so lucky to have a job right now.


Q:

How much debris is left by the road? Crews want to come help but can't afford the 90 day payment terms PR included in the latest RFP for debris removal. (Standard is 30 days, plus no assistance for getting trucks over there.) Hopefully the Army Corp will step up and straighten things out.

A:

Oh man I didn't know this! Will be looking into that 90 day clause.


Q:

What's the situation with the trucks now? Last I heard they didn't have drivers to deliver supplies.

A:

This has been resolved thankfully. The U.S. military, along with private truck drivers have transported diesel and supplies to most of the island. The first weeks were scary. Empty shelves everywhere. Now supermarkets are more or less back to normal if they have power or generators.


Q:

Has this whole power outage been helping you with No Nut November?

A:

lol


Q:

Do you think humans are too dependent on modern technology? Have you seen any people there such as homeless people or farmers or fisherman that are dealing with lack of electricity better than others simply because they are not dependent on technology?

A:

Yes! Homeless people have adapted brilliantly. And I would say the problem of our dependence on modern technology is that it is outsourced. I'm really considering going off the grid.


Q:

How'd you get WiFi?

A:

My parents' apartment got power 3 days ago. It is the lap of luxury.


Q:

Would you rate the rest of the USA's aid response as a 10 out of 10, as Donald Trump did? If not, how would you rate it?

What was effective about the aid response, and what was ineffective?

Here's hoping you have better days ahead.

A:

Thanks: I can't rate the US aid, because this is like nothing before. The easy answer would to say there are days where it is at a 10 and days where it is at a 1.

Effective: Cargo ships with literally tons of supplies arriving 2 or 3 days after the storm. Ineffective: Turning on the Power grid, and the President not understanding the seriousness of the issue, plus the politicking with the mayor of San Juan. It has put people against each other here.

Thank you.


Q:

This is probably the most realistic answer for this question. Thank you.

A:

You're welcome. Things are complicated, in general.


Q:

I also wanted to thank you for being honest about the cargo carriers being there too. I work in international trade and I know for fact that I couldn't ship anything out of Miami for about 3 weeks due to all carriers (ocean and air) being forced by the U.S. government to use their ships/planes for relief efforts. It was sickening to see the media lie about this and it pissed off everyone at the major Latin America export hubs (ATL, MIA, DFW, etc). Everyone was eager to help and the media shit all over the effort, it was disheartening.

So thank you for making it known that we were doing our best.

A:

You can't imagine the excitement I felt when I saw you guys entering our port for the first time since the hurricane. It was the first time we didn't feel cut off from the entire world.


Q:

What is Caguas liike?

A:

I haven't been there yet. I was in Ponce two weeks ago and they are soing much better than San Juan.


Q:

Also in PR. ALSO on Reddit ON MY CELL PHONE because I need an f’ng break, and my computer doesn’t work either.

What mad skills/new hobbies have you found now that the electricity is gone? How do you fill your time?

A:

Practicing my guitar solos.