Ever heard of a casting call for Barbies to play a role in a music video? No? It’s true. Check out Rookie Season’s music video “Backtalker” to see who made the cut. While you’re at it, you’re more than likely dig the vibes of song too. Who is it? R&B duo Rookie Season AKA the brainchild of Brad Odum and Sanders Bohlke who met/rehearsed ONCE to eventually come to the decision they work well together. Crazy, right?
With one living in Mississippi (Bohlke) and the other as a touring drummer in Nashville (Odum), things just clicked for them the moment they met. We were amped, excited, and pretty much shocked when we read that too. Plus, we were majorly digging the Mayer Hawthorne-ish feel. Check out our interview with the two (Brad Odum & Sanders Bohlke) where asked about their career before Rookie Season to how they got to collab with Azod Abedikichi to create one entertaining music video.
TYF: I love the story of how you two became a duo. How did you two even know about one another in the first place? Did you have any doubts before hopping on stage for the very first time together?
Brad Odum: We had a mutual friend that connected us. My brother introduced me to Sanders’ solo material around that same time. We just clicked. No doubts were had.
TYF: Prior to Rookie Season, what was life like for either of you? If that one moment of playing that first show together didn’t happen, what do you imagine your life to be like today?
Odum: Man that’s a good question. I was playing tunes where I lost a lot of money, time and youth. It’s pretty cool when you find a creative brother. There is connective tissue that happens when you bond over making something, and not having that, I imagine it would leave your heart a little less full.
Sanders Bohlke: I was focusing on my solo career at the time. I was just trying to find my thing. When I met Brad is when it started to come together for me. He played a big part in that. In terms of what would’ve happened had we not met, I don’t really think like that. This was what was supposed to happen. There was no other option.
TYF: How did the idea of having a career in music come about for you? What was the first instrument you ever picked up?
Odum: I’ve always loved music. It’s a wonderful thing to turn something you love into actual work… Drums. It’s always been drums.
Bohlke: I started playing guitar when I was 15. I never really looked back. I didn’t really think it would become a career until it was my career. I’m still not sure.
TYF: Musically, you guys have the same vibe. How does the writing process go? Does one half do the lyrics, other half melody, etc? How do you know when a song is officially finished?
Odum: A lot of times we’re in the same room and we either start with a melody or a beat. We start piecing together some structure, and then I (Sanders) will start mumbling some sort of nonsense into the mic. Most of the time Brad takes it and starts writing out lyrics he thinks I’m saying, and then we shape it into a song.
When we’re not in the room together it still kind of goes that way, but it’s a lot more emailing ideas back and forth. We both write music and lyrics. And we just sort of know when it’s done.
TYF: With your EP The Collide, how long was this in the making? What was the hardest or easiest thing about putting it together?
Bohlke: Start to finish it was about 2 years to make The Collide. The hardest part has been living in separate cities/states.
TYF: The music video for “Backtalker” is so dope. How did the collaboration with Azod Abedikichi come about? How much say did you have in the production of it all?
Bohlke: The director, Azod Abedikichi or AZXD, is an “instagram famous” claymation artist and a really good friend of ours. We sent him some early mixes of the first two singles and he loved them. He immediately wanted to make a video for “Backtalker.” The concept was all him. We talked about it for months, and he kept coming up with these brilliant ideas and then changing them. He finally landed on this one, and we were all in. There was actually a casting call for the barbies. He was so meticulous in his search for the right ones. That’s what makes him so good — the attention to detail. We’re excited that it’s finally getting out there.
TYF: I had to ask about your clothing line. What is the idea behind it – is the clothing line considered to be sort of “Rookie Season Merch” or completely separate? Curious as to why you decided to also design apparel in addition to making music?
Bohlke: We look at Rookie Season as more of an entity. It’s not just a band to us. We wanted a place where we could just create what we wanted without any rules. We love design and fashion, and we wanted to create apparel that could stand alone. The idea is that the apparel, or anything else we create, will lead you to the music and vice versa.
TYF: You haven’t gone on tour just yet but when the chance comes, who else would you like to be on the lineup?
Bohlke: Jay Z or Chance
TYF: As we’re winding down 2017, what can we expect to see from Rookie Season in 2018?
Bohlke: We are working on a new clothing capsule, and we have some new music in the works.
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