NEXT UP: Parallelephants
Indie R&B Producer/Songwriter
Origin: San Antonio, Texas
What's the story behind your stage name, "Parallelephants"?
It came from being super bored in sixth grade and I wanted to start a band really bad but no one else wanted to. You know people start a band and in five minutes they're done but I wanted to take it serious from a young age. And then I just came up with the band name in class while I was just drawing out band names and I drew out that one with like a little logo and it just seemed to work. It was silly and everyone I talked to didn't want to be a part of it because it was such a dumb name. I was just like I think it's cool, I'm going to use it when I write songs one day and I started to use it once I started my first project.
When did you start making music?
I started playing the drums at 7 and started taking drum lessons. But I always wanted to be in a band and I didn't really want to play drums at first. I just wanted to play in a band. I just wanted to play music with other people. That was my main goal and I always knew everyone needs a drummer because everyone plays guitar so let me play that one thing that everyone else needs so that was my thinking back then.
Was "Choqlate Boy" your first ever song?
There's a whole album I released before "Supply", the singles, and everything but then I felt like it was immature compared to "Supply" and everything that once "Supply" came out I immediately took it down off everywhere else so there's like a hidden album out there somewhere.
So what's the creative process behind "Choqlate Boy"?
That's like one of my few collaborations. I had a friend who brought me the chords at the time. There's two chords that are just going back and forth and he was like "I don't know what to do with this, I'm not a songwriter, but I like these two chords, they sound good together." And I was like "yea, these chords are crazy" so I started to write a whole song around it that very same day. I just started looping ideas. I looped like 8 bar loops with drums and chords and a melody part and then from there I start building a song.
Seeing your videos and your theme on Instagram are pretty similar. Showcasing both a 90s feel that isn't too bold, but yet simple and elegant. Is that ultimately the way you want to portray your music?
Yea, they go very hand-in-hand, like visuals and music go very hand-in-hand to me. When I started the project, I basically started it in two parts. There's a creative part but there's also the business and visual part. Those are like two separate things when I first started and slowly they merged together. I had a manager at the time and it just felt easier to just do everything myself.
Out of all of your songs released, what are some of your favorites?
I like the new song, "Me and Sade". I think the second song off "Supply", I don't want to say it's underrated because the real fans know it, but I think that song "Euphoria" is really cool. and then "Reason Don't Define."
Break down "Me and Sade".
So Emily Oberg contacted me and said she was a big fan of my music. I thought it was a spam account like no way she likes my music. I'm a fan of her, that's weird and random. And I ignored the message a little bit and she kept DM'ing me like a fan. And I found out it was really her. Long story short, she told me she wanted to do a video with me but with a new song and wanted to know if I had anything and then when she sent me her ideas, visuals, and a mood board, I was like "nah I have to write something completely different". So I wrote that song specifically to fit her music video idea.
(Video shown below)
I think the lyrics to the song are pretty important. The song is fun and everything but I always like to have a lot of contrast in my music. The first line in the song is "our dark skin in the sun, tell your white friends they can come along too". That's my way of saying like musically everyone is invited to what's going on. Indie music in general, thus far, has been like white space and I wanted to have all types of representation, even lyrically. You don't have to fit in this box to like this type of music and I know people are realizing that on their own but I don't see anyone speaking on it musically.
What's next for you?
I have a video coming out. I'm working on an album with Deezie Brown called "Hydrate", that album is crazy. We're like halfway done with it and people know him as a rapper but he's turning into a straight songwriter. He's really great. I'm also working on an album too and I'm about four songs deep with that. I don't know how long I wanna make it but I feel like I'm close to releasing it maybe around summer.
What are you currently listening to?
The new Toro y Moi album... Honestly, I know it sounds like I'm trying to plug in my own stuff but the new stuff I have with Deezie Brown, I'm just listening to all of that a lot. I'm mixing some of those songs right now and I have to listen to them a lot. I'm not sick of those yet.
Artwork by Madison Everett.