“I knew people connected with bravery. I forced myself to be myself in music because I knew that all the artists I loved were fully themselves, and that’s why I loved them so much. I remember how much music helped me– listening to a Kid Cudi album or reading Frank’s letter for the first time or discovering Tyler. They were so vulnerable and I looked at that as a blueprint. I just wanted to give back.” – Kevin Abstract, episode 220 of Talk Easy with Sam Fragoso
Musician Kevin Abstract (founding member of BROCKHAMPTON) joins us today! With the release of “Roadrunner: New Light, New Machine,” we unpack how Kevin and the group arrived at this new record. Under the comfort of his sunglasses, Kevin talks about falling back in love with music during the pandemic (5:25), despite struggling with success (8:50) and self-acceptance (12:13). He also discusses the radical act of speaking his truth on Papercut (14:15), the power of representation (17:56), and the music video that jump-started BROCKHAMPTON’s ascendency (21:30). Then, before we go, Kevin speaks openly about the mounting pressures to perform (25:48), the joys of collaborating with Dominic Fike on Peach (29:54), the healing nature of “Roadrunner” (36:07), and where he hopes the group goes from here (40:34).
- Listen to ROADRUNNER, out now.
- Follow Kevin on Instagram & Twitter.
- Listen to Papercut, from Kevin’s second solo album, American Boyfriend: A Suburban Love Story.
- Read Frank Ocean’s letter & watch Lil Nas X’s video for MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name).
- Revisit the STAR music video.
- Listen to Peach.
- Watch the #1999 recording of Kevin’s performance piece in Corpus Christi.
- Check out Kevin’s conversation with Rick Rubin.
- Visit the BROCKHAMPTON website.
- Illustrations by: Krishna Shenoi.