Exclusive Interview with The Bobby Tenderloin Universe

The story of Bobby Tenderloin is one of legends, mystical death, a sacred transfer, a cosmic continuum. It is written in the stars and hearts of every being that ever was, is, or will be.

I got the chance to talk with him about how he got into making and performing music, his musical influences, the story behind “That’s All I’m Sayin’” and so much more. Keep reading to see what he had to say!

Tell me a little bit about how you first got into making and performing music.

My grandmother used to entertain the family [by] playing ragtime on the piano and leading songs. Soon enough, my cousins and I would all be joining her with usually four and sometimes even six hands all on the same piano. My uncle would play the harmonica while everyone else in the room clapped and sang along. They were unifying and bonding experiences we were lucky enough to share as an extended family. This unity is what I’m striving to achieve with my music, no matter how large of a crowd it is that we will play to. 

Was there a specific moment or person that made you realize that music is what you wanted to pursue professionally?

When I told my grandmother I decided to go to University, she replied honestly and thoughtfully, “Well, I suppose if your hands fall off it could be good to have a backup plan” 

I’m always genuinely curious about what artists want to convey with their music. Your sound would typically be classified as alt-country, but if you had to describe it without using genre names, how would you describe it?

I’d describe each song with a specific emotion or mood.

Going off of that, who are some of your musical influences? 

Right now, I’m listening to The Kinks, Bobby Gentry, Gram Parsons; quite a lot of various artists, but I go through phases. For example, I could have a few months where I listen to nothing but post punk, and then pendulum to another genre the next month. I like the way Lemmy wrote lyrics. I’m also influenced by some of my friends. I’m lucky to be surrounded by extremely creative people.  

Let’s talk about the new single, “That’s All I’m Sayin”. What’s the story behind this song?

The song is the story of a boy who has fallen in love with the picture of a woman on the cover of an adult magazine. He proves his innocence by thinking that if he could somehow get the chance to meet her and profess his love, then she’d surely feel the same way and they could get married and live happily forever after. 

I always love hearing about the songwriting process so I was wondering if you could give me a glimpse into what it was like specifically for this song.

Well, my buddy Toothpick sent a guitar riff to my phone and told me I could use it to write a song if I wanted. So the main riff in the song was actually written by her. Then I let the riff percolate for few days while I worked outside, and soon enough, it was time to take it down into my basement, move a mic around and play some instruments. 

Something I’ve always been curious with songwriting is how topics come to mind. Did you know what you wanted to write about going into the song session that birthed “That’s All I’m Sayin” or did it just come about organically once you were in the session?

Most of the details are worked out in my head while I’m working outside before I go into a session. Usually after I record something, I listen to it for a few days and then have to go back to change some things that are bugging me. I often wonder how not having time to work outside would affect my creative output.

Were there any major changes made to “That’s All I’m Sayin” once you got into the recording studio, whether it be in the lyrics or something sonically?

Aside from the pedal steel parts, I was trying to use minimal patch cords and amps in the making of album but when it came to “That’s All I’m Sayin’”, I wanted to give the acoustic guitar riff a bit of grit, so I ended up doubling it with an electric Silvertone guitar that had a built-in speaker on it.   

I know this single just came out, but are there any plans for an EP or a full length project to be released any time soon?

Yes, not only am I one song away from finishing writing a second full length album, I am also halfway done writing a duets record and another related album, which I can’t talk about yet. They all will have some really exciting surprises on them! 

Lastly, we’re called Talk Nerdy With Us because we all have an inner nerd so what is something that you’re currently nerding out about?

I was recently reading about the buddhist monks that live in the Himalayan mountains and what they can achieve, altering not only their mental state but the physical state of their body’s as well. I’ve always been fascinated by what people can attain using only their minds. Trippy shit. 

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