Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Fun Fun Fun Fest: Transmission Entertainment Q&A [VIDEO INTERVIEW]


The brains behind Fun Fun Fun Fest, Graham Williams and James Moody, sat down with Austin Eavesdropper at the fest last Sunday to talk turkey.  (NOTE: The volume on this particular vid is a little quiet at first, then turns up about 20 seconds in.)

I hope you find these guys as delightful and down-to-earth as I do.  To hear Graham, a born-and-raised Austinite, and Moody, an Austin-by-way-of-LA transplant, talk about Fun Fun, you get the impression that these are perhaps the most zen musical festival planners in existence.  There's no out-pulling of hair.  No smashing things when a headliner (Devo) has to cancel.  No drama at all, really -- just two dudes!  Having a party!  Except we know there's probably more blood, more sweat, more tears to Fun Fun than that.  Graham, Moody, and their music lover foot soldiers have just found a way to throw the kind of party I imagine most festival organizers dream about: Large enough to command national attention, small enough to feel intimate, and even -- dare I say it? -- relaxed.

A few highlights from the interview:

*on having live comedy at fun fun:

"I think that it's just as vital and progressive of an art form as hip hop, punk, indie, electronica, DJ's. When you go to those [comedy] shows ... it's the same audience." [Graham Williams]

*on why bands and comics want to perform in austin:

"There's a lot of credibility associated with impressing people [in Austin.] Every fan is also an artist here. I think Austin holds this court to some degree, on blessing these acts, on whether they're alright or not. And if they're shitty, we'll say they're shitty." [James Moody]

*on getting involved in the music scene:

"I've always been a little bit of a music critic. Knowing I was really bad at the drums, [but thinking] how could I be involved? I'm just gonna listen to a lot of it, and then be a critic of it." [James Moody]

*on single-handedly reuniting the descendants, and convincing them last-minute to be fun fun's new headliner:

"The singer is a biochemist for I think DuPont ... and is really really committed to his job. The fact that is was on a Sunday was the only reason it happened. He actually wanted to fly in today, play the show, fly back on a red eye, and make a meeting on Monday morning. But he could not find a flight anywhere. Luckily, he was able to get with his team, a small group of experts, and do the meeting with a camera, over a laptop. Conduct the meeting that way." [Graham Williams]

*on musical guilty pleasures:

"Bad Religion." [James Moody]
"Yelle." [Graham Williams]
"Chumbawamba." [Both]

Special thanks to Amy Haley for taping!


Anonymous said...

Nothing wrong with Chumbawamba!

Austin Eavesdropper said...

@Anonymous -- As I was remarking to the guys, I think Chumbawamba combines punk working class sensibilities with a good ol' pub rallying cry. I think G&M would agree, there's actually very little guilt in liking Chumabawamba. :)

Frank J. Rivera said...

Bad Religion is no guilty pleasure, IMHO. Greg Graffin is my rock boyfriend #3 (following Henry Rollins David Bowie).

Great work, Tolly. Such a fun interview.

Anonymous said...

You are incredibly pretty. All 3 of you, I mean.

Austin Eavesdropper said...

@Frank - Gah, David Bowie. AH-GREED. He's part man - part alien - part lover. It's quite a potent combination. And, glad you liked the interview.

@Anonymous - Well, thank you! Is this the same Anonymous as before? Either way, I appreciate the compliment, as I'm sure Moody and Graham do, too. :) They are pretty.