- Words Mike Vinti
After some time off the road, BADBADNOTGOOD's Matty Tavares decided to write a solo album. It's one of our favourites of the summer so far. We meet the multi-instrumentalist turned singer for this week's Internet Crush.
Social media has changed the way we interact with our favourite artists. More than just musicians, they’re now personalities, people we can interact with on the daily. Now more than ever we’re aware that musicians are pretty normal people, they just have a weird job. Every week we get to know one of our favourite SoundCloud heroes, internet dating style, in our new column, Internet Crush.
Best known as one-fourth of hip hop/ jazz titans BADBADNOTGOOD, Matty Tavares is no stranger to the music industry. Having broken out of Toronto with his BBNG bandmates while still in his teens he’s matured into an in-demand producer, songwriter and even drunk studio engineer, working with everyone from Justin Bieber to Kendrick Lamar. Over the years Matty has even found the time to conjure up an album’s worth of solo material, taking some time away from touring with BBNG to record and as of last Friday, release it. Title Dejavu it’s a collection of dreamy tracks that reference everything from the Beatles to his work with BBNG and is one of our favourite albums of the summer already. Naturally, we had to go grab some time with him for this week’s Internet Crush.
You’ve worked with everyone from Justin Bieber to Kendrick Lamar – what’s your strangest studio story?
It’s hard to say, but probably when me and BADBAD recorded a fake improvised album with Earl Sweatshirt at 2 in the morning on an iPhone. On that same trip we were supposed to rehearse for our Fallon performance with Earl, and instead, we spent 90% of the time playing “I Miss You” by Blink 182 with Earl singing an improvised collage of Blink 182 lyrics from all their songs. We literally did this for hours straight.
Or when (Frank) Dukes called me when I was at a party because he needed someone to come to the studio immediately to engineer something. When I got there, he introduced me to PARTYNEXTDOOR then left the room, and I had to quickly install AutoTune and figure everything out in a split second. I was pretty drunk and just remember freaking out in my mind because I was unprepared and just thinking how it was the weirdest 360 my night could have had.
I’m sure there are like 1000 others I can’t remember right now.
What’s your most embarrassing memory?
I’m sure there are many I’m repressing right now because it’s hard to think of one. The first one that comes to mind was the first time I ever played live – it was for my high school talent show, and I was in grade nine (which would mean I was like fourteen). We were doing an instrumental cover version of a Linkin Park song that we practised for weeks. Somehow, and for some reason that I still don’t understand, I told everyone to play one of the parts differently right before we went on. Also when we started playing, we forgot to tune, and the song was in some kind of drop tuning. Literally, the second we started playing the entire thing fell apart, and we kept going for three minutes anyway in something that probably sounded closer to Merzbow than it did rock music. Everyone boo’d, I was blamed because I wanted to change a section, it was insanely embarrassing at the time. I haven’t thought about this since actually, I wonder if it has anything to do subconsciously with why I hate touring, LOL…
What do you think causes Deja Vu? (Googling this will be a violation of the trust we have built over the previous two questions.)
I wish I knew or had some kind of coherent answer to this that didn’t involve Google! I really can’t say for sure, but I know whenever it happens it sucks me into the moment in a very deep way. I could be doing anything, and if I feel deja vu, everything stops for like 5 seconds after I ask myself “I feel like I’ve been here before”, which is a really cool space to be in.
What (if anything) do you miss most about touring with BBNG?
I miss the sense of purpose that touring gives you. After I stopped touring it took me a very long time (and I’m still working on it) to find out what could give me meaning and direction outside of literally having to be at a specific place and time to perform.
Who do you roll with?
I roll with a bunch of my longtime friends from Toronto, but recently I’ve been hanging out a ton with my friend Seth who makes music under the name MorMor. We met in November and realised we lived literally a two-minute walk away from each other, then started to hang out basically every day. He’s the best!
Describe your sound in just a sentence:
Feeling sad in a hot tub.
It changes constantly; I’m going to say blue.
Pierrot Le Fou.
What’s your star sign?
Have you ever been in love?
Have you ever had your heartbroken?
How do you deal with a broken heart?
Make music and annoy my friends incessantly about it!!!
Who was your first celebrity crush?
Last book you read:
Crime and Punishment.
First single/album you ever bought?
I can’t remember the very first one. I definitely remember the first one I got with swearing on it (that I tricked my parents into buying) was the Kid Rock compilation album American Badass. It was BADASS.
First band/act you ever went to see live?
I grew up as a super sheltered kid in the suburbs so I didn’t really go downtown to see shows and my parents aren’t musicians or anything. So because of that, the first show I saw was A Silver Mt Zion when I was 16.
Wow, it’s very hard to think of in the moment, the only thing that’s coming to mind now is my first day of Junior Kindergarten, and maybe playing with other kids in a daycare before that.
What do you do in your spare time?
Hangout with friends and talk
Are you a morning or evening person?
Evening, but it’s slowly transitioning to morning as I get older and drink less.
First song you ever wrote?
I remember writing songs with some friends when I was fourteen and recording them on this super shitty Tascam CD-R recorder that was almost impossible to use and having no idea how to get the songs off the recorder.
Favourite song of your own?
Constantly changes based on my mood, sometimes I hate everything, sometimes I love everything! I really like “Dejavu” right now.
“How can you care
About all this stuff?
Is all that really matters
But why? Oh no reason
Why do you need a reason?”