BN1 chats with… Fond of Rudy

Fond of Rudy are the latest of Brighton’s bands to be touted as ‘to watch’, and their take on upbeat indie-pop is increasingly garnering critical attention. As they prepare for the physical release of their debut EP ‘ONE’ at The Joker’s BN1 Magazine Presents… on 27 Mar, we talk to the band about the evolution of their music, playing in Brighton and the role of physical releases.

So how did Fond of Rudy begin?
The band itself has been going for a couple of years, developing and experimenting with various styles and members. It was only in January of this year that all the groundwork laid down previously equated to make this formation.
Your bio describes your music as ‘south eastern calypso pop’, but how would you explain that in layman’s terms?
It’s hard to define it as a specific genre but it falls somewhere in the midst of indie-pop in layman’s terms!
Fond of Rudy originally formed in 2013, but last year your line up changed when you added a new guitarist and drummer. Has this shake up changed the band significantly or was it just part of a natural evolution of your music?
Yes that’s correct and our new bassist Otto arrived in January! So essentially it is a brand new act ready to go. I believe it was part of the evolution of ‘FOR’. It’s like the band was finding its feet and the consequences of our experimenting enabled growth for the music.
Recently you’ve been mentioned as band to look out for by a few blogs and magazines. Has this recognition taken you by surprise or does it feel a long while coming?
I feel like it has yeah, although the band’s been brewing for a while you never quite know how people are going to react to music you put out. It’s never a foregone conclusion that somebody will pick it up and instantly like it. The lyrics are quite personal to me, so of course to any musician there is an element of self-gratification involved. But if we are receiving recognition we’re over the moon and it drives us to release more and more new music which hopefully listeners will take to with the same positivity.
Your upcoming gigs are in London and Brighton; how does playing in the two cities compare? Is there a distinct “Brighton” feel about playing here?
Brighton is our hometown, we love playing gigs here. As we do in London! The difference I suppose is that in Brighton we’ve got our friends and following supporting us, a great vibe to play to. In London we’re a little bit more exposed, which is quite exciting I think, playing our music to new audiences and gauging their reactions to it. Quite different but honestly we love playing music in Brighton, London, anywhere!
In April you’re going to be playing at the AMEX stadium, a venue that seems very different from The Joker. Do you prefer gigs like this, perhaps with a more varied audience, or more intimate events in bars and pubs?
I think we enjoy any type of performance be it at a stadium, festival or bar etc. Great for different factors, really looking forward to the Amex and playing to a whole bunch of new faces. Intimate gigs like The Joker are the ones where you can really connect with the audience who are there to see you perform, those are a little bit more special to us.
You released your debut EP online in January. Have you been excited by the response to it so far?
Definitely! The response has been incredible, we just hope that people keep enjoying our music and sharing it.
You’ll be launching the physical version of your EP at the event at The Joker, hosted by BN1 Magazine on 27 Mar. What do you think is the role of physical, hard copies of albums in an age where so many of us use iTunes and Spotify to listen to music?
It’s true that everything is streamed in our days, there is no denying that and I’ll admit I stream from Apple Music and Spotify. But if one of my favourite artists puts something out, I will always support them by buying the physical CD. I feel that physical CDs are becoming more like collectible items now but maybe just as important to the unsigned act. If you purchase from iTunes or stream on Spotify, how much does the artist obtain themselves? They get something like 0.006 pence for a stream. Unless you’re an artist as big as Taylor Swift or gaining hundreds of thousands of plays, it’s unlikely to fund too much for an unsigned musician. However if you buy a CD at a gig or directly from the artist, you know you are investing in the band’s future and a piece of memorabilia for yourself.
Finally, given your band name, can we ask if it’s a particular Rudy that you’re fond of?
Our music essentially tries to encapsulate the feelings of being in and out of love. And the pursuit of it. ‘Fond of’ generally means really liking and being drawn to something but the Rudy part, you can consider as a blank space… you fill it in. We want people to draw their own meanings for what Rudy is to them whilst engaging in the music. Who do you love? What are you fond of?

Fond of Rudy play BN1 Magazine Presents… at The Joker, with Elka, Mi’das and a DJ set from El.Train, on Sun 27 March.

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