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Multi-instrumentalist Timmy Vilgate's sound advice 

click to enlarge SOPHIE DOSS
  • Sophie Doss
Timmy Vilgiate is a writer, multi-instrumentalist, proud owner of two cats and all-around Renaissance man. When he’s not traveling the globe researching psychoactive and sacred plants for his Ph.D. thesis, you can find him releasing solo albums, playing shows and writing/producing his audio drama podcast Rivers of the Mind.

Essential Saturday night listening: Typically, on Saturday night, I will be writing or trying to work on one of my projects, like Rivers of the Mind or a research project. My favorite artists to listen to while I work are Kendrick Lamar, Childish Gambino, Amadou & Mariam, Arcade Fire (pre-Everything Now), and Adriana Calcanhotto. When the words distract me from whatever I’m doing, some of my favorite composers to listen to are Claude Debussy, Erik Satie, Richard Strauss and John Cage.

Essential Sunday morning listening: Sunday morning, when I drive to church, I usually just listen to the radio. I’m sure that’s the opposite of what hip local musicians are supposed to say they do in Sound Advice columns, but it’s pretty much always what I do. I usually listen to one of the Top 40 stations, and skip away from any of the slow/sad songs.

First record I bought with my own money: Sometime in eighth or ninth grade, I received an iTunes gift card. [I looked] for something I could afford with my gift card and would be something I hadn’t heard of or listened to before. I stumbled across Consciousness by Smile Empty Soul, which I was drawn to by the cool nebula on the cover. I really loved that band for a few years.

“Wish I’d written that” song: If I had to pick one, I’d pick “Mr. Tambourine Man” by Bob Dylan, since I had to pay $650 to license it for Rivers of the Mind. If I had written that song myself, it would have saved me a lot of money.

“Wish I could unhear that” song: “Hustle” by Ebony ft. Brella. When my fiancée Sophie and I visited Ghana, this song was playing everywhere. At the hotel we stayed at, they played it four times during a big party downstairs and it kept us up until about 2 in the morning. It’s incredibly catchy, so it’s literally been stuck in our heads since we came back. If I so much as mention the song, Sophie looks like she wants to kill me, and God protect me if I ever start singing it out loud...

Artist more people should know about: All of the local ones. Especially C.J. Hackett/The Yeti/A Bad Night for a Hero, Menagerie, Charlotte Rogers/StaleMate, and Ozonic. There are so many good ones. Folks could also stand to listen to more international music — Toumani Diabaté and Amadou & Mariam are amazing artists from Mali. There’s tons of wonderful musicians and artists from Brazil. Last, but not least, people should know more about Jandek. No one really knows anything about him. It’s very strange.

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