Meet Radd: A Music producer residing in Florida, USA, and according to himself, I quote: ‘Amateur artist! I make music as well!!’ – Twitter. And oh yeah, when I asked him whether his name was spelled with all caps or not – because I noticed it was used in different ways – he replied, I quote: ‘It used to be all caps but I didn’t see that as me, I’m a more softer person’. Aaw, my heart! You Win, Let’s Go!
My Kind of Music, with Radd
RADDical! OUTSIDE THE BOX, In About 1392 Ways.
We’re off to Florida for today’s Spotlight and it’s going to be a surprise for you AND me. To be honest, today’s guest’s music has me a bit overwhelmed by the sheer amount he has produced and released since, hold up, 2018. When I mentioned this to him his answer was, I quote: ‘Eep, sorry about that hehe I will make sure to never make any music again’. Well, shit. Welcome Radd! I can’t even claim I’ve listened to it all, because, well, you’ll see for yourself I wasn’t exaggerating about the 1392 ways…I really did try though. (Oh and I can’t believe I have to say this again, but click on some tracks will ya!)
Radd’s complete discography is found on Bandcamp, where I count 30 releases, starting July 2018. including mostly albums, but also a couple of EP’s and singles. Where I thought OPTML’s discography was already mind-blowing, Radd’s has me in awe again, and listening to it all would certainly take up a couple of days time. It’s funny he realizes this all to well, which is why he – very methodically – released a compilation every year in September with the comment, I quote: ‘For anyone interested with my stuff, but don’t have the time to find the best bits, this is for you! :)’. You could say this is a tremendous help when starting out discovering, but the real die-hards will just plow through…right?!?
Any real observer will have recognized Radd’s portrait is done by the lovely Instantreigen of course! Shoutout to them for providing yet another beautiful piece of art to upgrade this Spotlight! And yes, you guessed right, Radd is part of the same group of friends/collabs/labels, as both Mr. Hoosteen and Instantreigen as well as OPTML are. You can see numerous references to either one of them, because of their art, musical additions and/or support given. What a great way to know there’ll always be this group of people that will have your back, no matter what. I’m suspecting they will be the ones to offer honest advice and opinions, helping Radd grow beyond his own limits.
Talking about growth…if referring to numbers…I’m curious where Radd’s discography will be in another 5 years. Using his words about it again, I quote: ‘fdgahdg – discography big – yeah I have albums – yeah its a lot – then you look at 1390 and stuff and…🤯’. Anyone that driven is sure to be propelled by their love for it because there’s no other way in my opinion, anybody could keep up that kind of level of creativity and the need to release it into the world. It’s the main reason I am sharing ALBUMS here and not mere singles – though there might be a couple of them included. As always, this page is not enough to display it all, but let’s get the fire burning for now and you can take it from there. Radd’s passion for music should be enough to give you a head start.
Searching for Radd’s music on Spotify might not be easy, but if you manage, it might leave you just as confused as it did me. So when I met Mr. Hoosteen I asked him about Radd’s Spotify account because of the very real difference in music that’s offered. It was then quickly explained to me that indeed, that Spotify account was a mess, a jumble of more artists with apparently the same name. Talking about what’s lacking on certain streaming platforms…This was recently confirmed by Radd himself, so again, take my advice and find his music on Bandcamp. Everything is there and it’s more than enough for any hungry House/french touch soul, to feed on.
I regret to say, this means I won’t be able to add that much of Radd’s tracks to my SGM weekly playlist, but I’ll make do with what I have and trust you guys to go and explore. Radd to me seems a very humble person and not at all one to take the stage at any time, so to have him here as my guest is a real treat. My initial request was kind of disguised at the time when I did the Spotlight on Mr. Hoosteen and if you were paying attention, you’ve seen the shoutout done to Radd. Radd was not immediately convinced he should be doing this, hiding behind his – just as talented – friends, Mr. Hoosteen and OPTML. Well of course I did not fall for that, especially after I started listening to his music right away. It all felt so right to me.
When I finally made the ‘official’ request, I was very happy Radd agreed on the spot. From what I’ve seen so far, he has a smart sense of humor – always a win in my book – and always puts his friends first. That says a lot about a persons intentions and loyalty, aka, integrity, which is a valuable thing in this world today. After I sent him the questions, he informed me a couple of days later to update on his progress, I quote: ‘follow up: I’m still working on it but this feels like an essay of sorts haha, I’m on number 6 rn :p’. I love a good essay! And the more details the more interesting the interview becomes. Another interesting thing Radd has been doing since October 2019, is releasing an album with a new song created every day, during that whole month. Just. How??
When asked by Smittz – remember him? – how he does it, Radd answered, I quote: ‘October energy, the spookiness in my bones courses through my bones. That and just selecting samples that inspire me to work lol selection is important’. Listen, I simply can’t imagine writing an article every day for a month long. I think it would leave me utterly unhinged, as much as I love to write and never seem to be able to shut up. Still. The only other artist I’ve interviewed and managed to complete this ‘ridiculous’ challenge, was T-BOW, who did this twice, not related to any spookiness as far as I recall though. If this doesn’t convince you of Radd’s creative mind, really, I’m going to break up with you and you’ll be spending Christmas alone.
Experiencing Radd’s music is like traveling through uncharted – for me – but colorful territory, while I have to be on my guard and expecting the unexpected at about every turn. See I’m not a gamer, but I’m guessing this would be how I feel like when starting a new game. Radd’s music paints an environment in my minds eye, only to be compared to the unlikely online world we’re so much part of today. Wait. Words. Radd’s music takes me from the arcade to the movie theatre, from the dance club into space. I would definitely label his music House, but ehm… It’s so, so much more than that. It might just be his starting point, but he’s taking the listener on a journey after which you’ll never be the same again, or…you won’t be coming back at all. In short, he might shake the foundation of what we think any genre should be…
Oh and wait, referring to space, I can’t let this one pass. Let me first say that Radd’s inventiveness regarding the use of album/track titles is absolutely appealing to a simple soul like myself. They’re fun and begging for attention and one very good example is the next album – for which we make a little U-turn on the timeline. I mean, no one can fault me for mentioning this particular one, since it includes the name of my hubby lol. And yes, of course it was one of the first albums I had to listen to, ejecting me right into orbit. I love how Radd uses so much variation and truth be told, this album does give me that outer space feeling. Since my hubby and I are both into sci-fi, this one certainly deserves a mention today!
Back to the timeline as was, 2020. Radd is consistently releasing music and one has to be wondering if his creativity ever diminishes. But no. Some lighter stuff, some a bit darker, some sounding seemingly uncomplicated and others sounding like they’ve been created to fit an orchestra. It’s tough to pin his music down to just one genre, which is fine by me, surprise is all a big part of Radd’s game, or so it seems. He is basically free-wheeling himself through music land. I dare you to form your own opinion because it’s definitely up for some discussion I would think. Of the good kind of course. But yeah, it’s up to you to explore and discover…
Coming to Radd’s third compilation already, in September 2020, I’m happy I can ‘skip’ listening. Wait. I’ve started at the beginning and this is yet another collection he made of ‘his best bits’, BUT you’ll have to check them out if only for the special edits and bonus stuff! Anyways, I’ve still got a long way to go lol, though I’m eager for it. And don’t even think he’s slowing down, because RADDical! Vol. 4 released last September! The consistency and you could say, almost calculated manner in which Radd keeps it all flowing, is nothing short of admirable. It seems he is following his own calendar and has some things very clearly scheduled for himself. I’m guessing his fans have started to sort of rely on that, expecting Vol. 5 by September next year. I’d say.
The same goes for Radd’s ‘October Energy’, the second album in this series released October 2020. Now while listening to Radd’s music, the one question that kept going through my mind was, if there were any grand changes detectable in the way his music sounds through time. You know what – please don’t be offended, since I’m only ‘judging’ this as a mere listener – I really don’t think there has been and the reason I feel that way, is BECAUSE of the diversity in it. Oh I’m positive he has grown in regards to the technical aspects, the mastering, the mixing, in other words: the way he produces now compared to how he did a couple of years ago. But not 2 albums are the same, so it’s pretty hard for me to discern. Wait, so what I’m saying is: Radd started out grand and grew RAD. (sorry-not-sorry, just had to at some point).
The very first time I listened to Radd’s music, it was the EP ‘Heaven’, which actually can be found in the earlier mentioned jumble on Spotify. It was enough to tickle my musical taste buds, but yeah, I had No Idea what I’d gotten myself into when asking Radd for an interview. This is a very good thing though, because it again challenged me to reach further and beyond what I’m used to listen to. I will be honest with you: while writing this, I still have about 9 albums to go through, but trust me, I will. My honor requires me to do so lol. I am a fervent believer I need to give it all a fair listen, to at least give an equally fair opinion. Makes sense right? So it’s up to me to finish what I started. Do not worry, I got this.
BUT, we’re closing in on the reason why y’all are here. This leaves me with sharing the ‘last but not least’ release from Radd, the third album filled with his ‘October Energy’, officially released on Bandcamp October 31, 2021. Mr. Hoosteen made a remark on the song titles, I quote: ‘Please tell me every title is relating to the number it appears?’ Well, have a look yourself and you’ll get that Radd makes excellent use of words/puns to display his tracks. You gotta admit the fun in that. I’m more than happy to give Radd the stage and let him do the really interesting talk, but first: BIG Thank You Radd! I have deep respect for what you’ve been cooking up in just a couple of years and will be on the lookout for more. That is, as soon as I’ve finished what’s still left for me to listen to lol. I’ll add you to the Spotlight page asap, where you will stay indefinitely, together with all your predecessors.
1️⃣ Let’s start with the obvious: can you please introduce yourself and tell us, who is RADD? Does your name a special meaning? When and how did you start making music? Do you play any instruments yourself, or sing?
‘Hello,! My name is Radd, and im an electronic musician to keep it simple; if I’m ever asked which genre specifically I tend to say french touch electro which usually confuses most people I know face to face haha.
I’m based in Florida, and making music is just something that I really like to do. Think of it like my auditory legacy to leave after one day when I’m gone, with my beginning to the end on display, a sort of wordless audio autobiography. My name did have a special meaning, but since then it’s moved on from that, and now it just means, me! :>
I started making music around my freshman year in high school, I have a really convoluted long story that explains exactly how I started making music, literally as detailed as stemming all the way back to a miniscule and minute detail that my older brother made in elementary school, but yeah I started just, putting beats and melodies together during my freshman year and, like didn’t stop and, well, I guess I’m here today!
I do play the drums and I’m told that I sing well but currently neither element has been used or implemented into my music whatsoever, I just don’t think it fits the vibe of my music style hehe’.
2️⃣ Where do you get your inspiration from? Who were/are your biggest influences? And how would you describe your music? Do you design your own cover art?
‘My inspiration, hmm, I get inspiration from the artists I listen to, but my direct inspiration came from Daft Punk and Justice when I started out, with producer friends of mine inspiring me to make music of my own, and I’m glad they did. My biggest influences nowadays still include Justice, but less of Daft Punk, and more out of the box interesting musical producers and groups such as Siriusmo, Vitalic, the Chemical Brothers, SebastiAn, J Dilla, Duck Sauce, Boys Noize, the Avalanches, and like, many more haha, too many to count.
I describe my own music as big. I feel like just, big, is a good descriptor for my music. I try my best to fill in all the mental holes when listening to a song, like whenever you listen again and again you can focus and marvel on each part of the song, and there’s a lot of parts and so many layers. I try my best to make a song feel as full as possible, whether that be when I’m making electronic based stuff, orchestral based stuff, or even sample based stuff. I try to make my music sound big! Like my own little electro orchestra.
As for my cover art, I usually collaborate with artists or make the art on my own. A very frequent and trusted collaborator is Mr. Hoosteen, who is simply amazing at graphic design, and has basically frontlined the art direction of the Signal album era’.
3️⃣ Do you feel you’ve found the genre that will stick or are you still exploring other genres too? If yes, which ones would that be and why?
‘I don’t think I’m particularly done genre exploring, but I don’t think that my current musical elements are going to be going anywhere, at least for a long time haha.
I’m hoping to explore more genres and even just delve deeper into the ones I already have done so with, such as Hip Hop, Orchestral, Plunderphonics, and Emotional Music, I uh, don’t know if that’s an actual genre but I want to make music that causes specific emotions when listening to it hehe’.
4️⃣ What would you consider the biggest eyeopener since you’ve started producing music? What would be the first piece of advice you’d give anyone who wishes to start and came asking/ what was the most valuable piece of advice you yourself received?
‘My biggest eyeopener when making music has to be that you just need to keep trying. I mean look at where I started, a joke song edit where I replaced vocals in a daft punk song to say “Gerald” multiple times lol.
So my first piece of advice is, look at your favorite artists’ beginnings, and when I say beginnings, I mean very beginnings. Their first audio thing released in their name. I think you’ll find that it sounds a LOT different, and definitely not as good. This shows that you just need to keep at it, and keep trying. This isn’t really advice that I received, but rather advice that I sort of learned throughout the years’.
5️⃣ You very recently released the album ‘1392’ on Bandcamp, can you give us a bit of background information about how this album came together? How does your creative process work?
‘1392 actually isn’t fully out! It’s a song-a-day release that’s an ongoing tradition every October, inspired by the “art piece a day” that some artists do every october. Same as that but, with music! This is the third installation of the 1390 series, with the number counting up one each time. For these albums I make a song a day, and tend to try and have a gimmick with each album. What the gimmick is I leave for you to solve hehe. But I really love doing these every year because it’s great music practice and it really helps me improve, even if it’s a bit stressful at times. And yeah, of course I might not do this EVERY year but, I sure hope to try haha
My creative process is very interesting, to say the least. I tend to start with a small idea and build from there, building and layering more and more, until you probably can’t even tell what the original idea even was, and I have a very large sounding song. Most of the time, these ideas come from little melodies, drum patterns, or samples that I find. For instance, my releases Heaven and Up2U were sample based inspirations’.
6️⃣ When would you consider ‘goal achieved’ after releasing new music? What would be ‘a dream come true’, regarding your music? Can you share at least one great comment you got on a track/album and what this meant to you? Can you tell us about what support from friends, fam, other artists, means to you?
‘Honestly for me, my goal achieved is just the really basic “when I think it’s done/when I’m happy with it.” There’s not really a criteria I attempt to meet, but a dream come true for me would be like, being able to try out so many different things at least once, and being happy with it. Like making a song with vocals primarily, a well made plunderphonics track, or a hip hop track with lyrics that I wrote, those are some of the things that I would like to achieve as a ‘dream come true’ as you said hehe.
As for a comment on my music, I don’t really know anything specifically, but whenever people say that my music sounds “big” then I know that I’m doing what I do right haha. I haven’t had any comments that really stood out and stuck with me or anything, but all the support that I get from my friends and other music artists means a lot to me! I don’t really have any family members that support me though, but I’m holding on!’
7️⃣ What can we expect from RADD in the – near – future? Anything specific you can tell us about, like fun collabs or projects ‘you’ve always wanted to do’ maybe?
‘Well I have like, way too many things planned haha, but to reveal one thing for sure; the Signal era is officially over. Sure I have like, some unreleased things regarding some of the tracks of the albums like edits and other lil things, but overall for big releases and singles, it is completed.
Now I’m hoping to move on to various singles, EPs, and mixes, and I’ll tease some now: An EP with a ton of weird vibes and sampling, A mini album based on one of my characters in a sadder reality than his story actually is (this one has been a wip forever but I hope to release it 2022), and a single from this mini album as well!
There’s also a HUGE mix of my own music to be released SUPER soon!!, like, end of October soon lol, and finally in terms of complete ideas I have like an EP that’s organ focused based on the word “linen”? Just a lot of strange stuff coming soon haha. I also have a TON of unreleased demos and scrapped tracks that I may release as B-Sides eventually on stuff, but for now they sit in my folders.
As for collabs I’ve always wanted to do, me and Mr. Hoosteen have been talking about working together on this, let’s say, “project”, so far there’s only been ideas but I hope we actually come up with something one day!’
8️⃣ Is there anything else you would like to add/share with the readers/your fans? Something I did not ask about maybe?
‘Something to add, hmm, honestly I don’t know! Besides telling anyone who is interested to be looking out for new stuff soon, I don’t really have anything else to say haha
I guess that I make art too? I like drawing cute things and I’m soon planning to merge my two creative outputs and using my main character in more of my music as like a sort of mascot, finally putting a person or face with my music!
But yeah other than that, I, guess that’s it! Haha, sorry if anyone was expecting more :p
Anyways, thanks so much for having me Wien, this was so fun to do <3′
Aaw, well, again Big Thanks Radd! it was so much fun having you here and I wish you all the luck in the future: that your creativity may flow forever! And to you my reader, you know the drill, go find Radd and listen to his music. There’s so much of it!!
Wishing y’all a very Happy Weekend! Now let’s get Jammin’ Geralds ❤