Tony Kay

Interview: Leeni of Prom Queen Talks “Doom-Wop”

Over the course of six years and three albums, singer/songwriter/guitarist Leeni Ramadan has crafted a distinctive musical universe with her band Prom Queen. It’s an environment where Brill Building girl-group pop, surf rock, exotica music, and Patsy Cline country share space—a place where jet-black humor, kitsch, and haunted obsession intermingle like spirals of cigarette smoke….

Rusty Willoughby, Unsung Hero of Northwest Rock

Seattle singer/musician Rusty Willoughby’s demeanor is so unassuming, the simple acknowledgment of his music feels like it’d give him a case of the awkwards. He’s never seemed super-comfortable with attention, or with the kind of networking and extroversion necessary to be a Big Time Rock Star. Even the times he’s edged close to outright breakout success…

The Maldives’ “Mad Lives” Sounds Like a Classic

There’s undeniably something elemental about The Maldives’ sound. After all, roots music, folk, and country—sub-genres that, at their best, have always evoked the Earth and the elements—form the band’s bedrock. But like so much that’s elemental, The Maldives’ longevity (13 years and counting) and dependably awesome live presence can be taken for granted with alarming…

Your All-Northwest, All-Ghoulish Halloween Playlist

Halloween’s just around the corner, and you’ll need a soundtrack for all of the trick-or-treating, parties, and all-around skullduggery. Doubtless, there’s a ton of horror-themed songs out there for your All Hallows Mix. Northwest artists have generated their share of genuinely spooky/scary/horrific tunes, to be sure—enough to put together a pretty primo playlist. I’m not…

Ravenna Woods’ Chris Cunningham Talks Scary Movies

It’s an overcast Saturday afternoon in Upper Queen Anne, on one of the first honest-to-God, truly autumnal autumn days of 2016, and I’m on my way to interview Ravenna Woods lead singer/guitarist/songwriter Chris Cunningham. The wind’s picking up, and the trees—some flashing lambent autumn reds and yellows, others bare and skeletal—are bending and eddying with…

Air-Raid Shelter: An interview with podcast host Aaron Roden.

Aaron Roden is the kind of guy who’s incredibly easy to bullshit with over beers. Affable, unpretentious, and funny, he possesses a gift for talking—and listening—to relative strangers. And often, those relative strangers open up in unexpected ways. That unique gift’s enabled the veteran podcaster to carve out a distinctive and steadily-growing niche. Roden’s shepherded…