2015 Artist Survey: Father John Misty | Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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2015 Artist Survey: Father John Misty

Josh Tillman on 2015's Best Albums, Indie vs. Mainstream Pop, Childhood Memories, and the Life Goal He Has Yet to Achieve

Feb 24, 2016 Father John Misty Photography by Pal Hansen Bookmark and Share

For Under the Radar’s 13th annual Artist Survey we emailed some of our favorite artists a few questions relating to 2015. We asked them about their favorite albums of the year and their thoughts on various notable 2015 news stories involving either the music industry or world events, as well as some quirkier personal questions.

Check out our Best of 2015 print and digital issues for answers from Arcade Fire’s Will Butler, Julien Baker, Blanck Mass, CHVRCHES, Dan Deacon, The Dears, Dutch Uncles, EL VY, Everything Everything, Field Music, The Flaming Lips, How to Dress Well, Sondre Lerche, Low, Luna, Mew, NZCA Lines, Cullen Omori, Natalie Prass, Small Black, Surfer Blood, Tamaryn, Telekinesis, Vampire Weekend’s Chris Baio, The Walkmen, Youth Lagoon, and others.

Here are some answers from Josh Tillman, who records as Father John Misty. Father John Misty’s excellent February 2015-released sophomore album, I Love You, Honeybear, was Under the Radar’s #1 album of 2015. Consequently, Father John Misty is on the cover of our Best of 2015 print issue and all the info on that is here. The album was released by Sub Pop.

This interview first ran in the Best of 2015 print issue, which is still on newsstands now.

Top 10 Albums of 2015

1. Jeff Bridges: The Sleeping Tapes
2. Erykah Badu: But You Caint Use My Phone
3. Björk: Vulnicura
4. Bob Dylan: Shadows In the Night
5. Lana Del Rey: Honeymoon
6. Joanna Newsom: Divers
7. Empress Of: Me
8. Oneohtrix Point Never: Garden of Delete
9. Alabama Shakes: Sound and Color
10. Miley Cyrus: Miley Cyrus and Her Dead Petz

What was the highlight of 2015, for either you personally or for the band? What was the low point?

The high point of 2015 was Beyoncé dancing side-stage at my Coachella set and the low point has been everything since.

What are your hopes and plans for 2016?

To go a year without proffering my opinion on streaming music.

With the launch of TIDAL and Apple Music in 2015, there are more streaming music options, but the same issues of adequate artist compensation persist. What are your current thoughts on streaming and which service would you most like to have your music on?


What are your thoughts on Friday being the new global release day for albums? Is it helping or hurting album sales?

I think Adele’s recent success is a pretty obvious affirmation that changing release days to Friday is going to save the music industry.

Mainstream pop music is increasingly embraced by indie rock musicians and listeners, as well as serious music critics. At this point, do you draw any distinctions between Top 40 pop and indie rock/pop? Are you comfortable with this shift?

It’s true. The lines really are blurring more and more. Sometimes when I am on my way to an indie rock writing session with my indie rock producers who have been getting pressure from my indie rock label executives who are still not convinced we have that crucial indie rock single that’s going to break with indie rock radio and then I’m off to meet with my indie rock trainer who’s getting me in shape for the grueling indie rock dance rehearsals for my 35-date indie rock arena world tour all while trying to avoid the ever-present indie rock paparazzi for whom pictures of me are worth a fortune to the trashy indie rock tabloids who, though reprehensible, must be reckoned with, and as such, my indie rock publicist occasionally orchestrates a few candids to be taken when I am out partying with my equally wealthy and famous indie rock friendsI can barely tell the difference myself.

What are your thoughts on how the 2016 U.S. Presidential election is shaping up?

It looks like World War III is going to be a real hoot.

What’s your earliest music-related childhood memory?

Choking on a watermelon Jolly Rancher at JCPenney while “Little Lies” by Fleetwood Mac played.

What’s the biggest goal for your life that you have yet to achieve?

I’d like to somehow get a tiny golden gramophone to play all my tiny golden old-timey records on.



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July 14th 2016

The Bush family looked at all the nepotism and crony capitalism and general larceny that their Mexican elite friends got away with, so they decided it would be more fun to rule over Mexicans than these annoying, uppity, egaitiarlan Anglos.

February 13th 2017

I vote for Miley Cyrus and Her Dead Petz
Its amazing album i like.