Interview: The F-use

Published on 20 September 2021 at 09:42

1: How did you decide on the name, “The F-use”?

Back in middle school when I was first starting to write music, I created a SoundCloud profile and it asked what my artist name was. I didn’t want to just put my name so I brainstormed ideas for the longest time. Eventually I went to my mom and asked what she thought, and after a few minutes the name “The F*** You’s” was a contender (very middle school immature punk rock whatever), and then she said, “What about The F You’s?”. With a little play on words it ended up becoming The F-use because it’s not so in-your-face and looks clean.

2: What inspires you to create?

At the root of it I think what mainly inspires/drives me to create is the desire to better myself. Every time I put out a song I make sure I can confidently say, “This is the best thing I can physically put out at this moment”. Looking back on the album I put out not even close to a year ago, I feel like I’ve improved in my songwriting, instrumentation and recording techniques.

Besides that, when I was growing up and going through tough times I looked to music to see if anyone else was going through what I was. After learning that my experiences are shared and I wasn’t alone, I knew that I wanted to write that way instead of story telling and having these big metaphors that people debate over what the song was really about. A few months after I put the album out somebody messaged me saying that they never heard a situation described so accurately to how they personally experienced it, and that they felt seen and understood. So that alone will keep me motivated for as long as I can breathe.

3: What advice would you give to someone who wants to be in a creative profession?

Be yourself and create yourself! There’s a lot of people who try to be like what’s currently popular whether it be art, music, fashion, etc… Expressing your personal influences into your unique style is what changes the world. Take time to play around with different sounds, colors, mediums, and everything in between; see what sounds or looks best to you, and create for yourself and fulfill yourself.

4: Do you feel open minded about what you listen to? Do you like going out of your comfort zone?

I generally am open minded when first listening to new songs and artists! Even if I didn’t personally enjoy something previously released I’ll always give their new music a shot.

I also love going out of my comfort zone! I used to be so against listening to country, rap, noise music, stuff like that – but I looked at it as a learning experience instead of forcing myself to enjoy it (if that makes any sense). I can learn about different structures, lyrics, and melodies from listening to music I don’t typically listen to.

5: What outlets do you find out about music from? (Record stores, magazines, samplers, etc.)

As of now I hear about new music from friends! I love asking people to make me a playlist of what they’re currently listening to or if they have a favorite playlist. I love listening to what my friends are listening to, both to get to know them better but also I can trust them with having similar taste in music so I’m never disappointed!

6: What is your favorite format to listen to music on? (CD, Vinyl, etc.)

As of right now it’s just on my phone with a streaming service. There’s more music out there than we can physically listen to in our lifetime and I try to find new songs and bands every time I open the app. I do love collecting vinyl whenever I come across something I’ve wanted or think is neat here and there – but it’s not something I really go out of my way to get anymore.

7: What band/artist do you think everyone should listen to?

He’s pretty well known but John Moreland is one of my biggest influences in the past few years for songwriting as well as casually listening. He’s on the folky side but his lyrics drill a hole straight to your heart.

8: What motivates you to check out a new artist?

My pretty basic answer is if a friend recommends someone to me! Besides that, I love clicking the “similar artists” tab on Spotify to check out bands that may have a similar vibe to what I’m currently listening to.

9: Who was the first band/artist that became your favorite band?

As common of an answer this is, The Beatles were my first favorite band and will forever be my number one. My whole family loved them, from using their songs in videos when we were kids, to playing Beatles Rock Band in middle school, to covering their songs now.

Whenever I played video games in middle and high school (which was very often) I would listen to Beatles vinyl on repeat, pausing the game to flip the record when it stopped. The Beatles are a foundation to my love for music and songwriting.

10: What was the inspiration for your song “Survive”?

This song was actually supposed to be the follow-up to my album, sort of a response to losing all motivation and being swallowed up by depression. It’s one of those things where I thought, if I put it into the world, then it’ll come true. “Disregard my letter (which is the album), I’ve been getting better, back and forth and being on my own”. Really sums the experience and song up for me.  I wanted to show that it’s okay to take two steps forward and one back, as long as you’re trying and not giving up. 

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