I’m not sure how Jody of Public Universal Friend found my email or even found out about me, but why question an amazing thing? I had honestly never heard of Public Universal Friend prior to the email hitting my inbox but I was instantly in love with Jody’s energy felt through the emails and, one thing led to another and, well, here’s my interview with the amazing Jody Friend!

We’re going to start off with a two-parter- Pick between It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Office, or Parks & Rec. Now that you’ve picked, please assign each band member as a character from said show.

Since The Office is the one I’m most familiar with, I’d say our drummer Jarrod is most like Darryl, our guitar player Jared is probably Jim, our engineer Chris is probably a mix between Pam and Toby, our percussionist Phil is Creed, and I’m probably Holly.

Everyone says that every crowd is their favorite but, what city has the best audience and why is it Minneapolis?

(I’m guessing you meant Indianapolis, though Minneapolis I hear is great) Indy is full of artists and musicians who care greatly about the community of art growing and flourishing and this is something that I believe sets the city apart from most medium-sized metro areas in the midwest. The music scene, since I entered it in 2015, has only perpetuated because of a number of individuals curating a culture that is equitable and uplifting, focused on quality music being made and encouraging diverse sounds and backgrounds in what feels like a new frontier. Consequently, the crowds at Indianapolis shows are there because they love music and supporting the artists, pure and simple, and this makes Indianapolis have some of the warmest receptions for shows I’ve ever witnessed. 

What’s a new hobby you have taken up during quarantine? If no hobby, is there a random TV show that you binged/ have a very strong opinion on?

In March 2020, I picked up skateboarding again for the first time in 7 or 8 years. Never something I expected to take on as an adult, but the mental and physical health it has afforded me has been a bright spot of the year. And! Some of the shows I’ve been hooked on during the pandemic have been West Wing, Peep Show, The L Word, Arrested Development, and Cosmos.

What’s your go-to coffee order?

Lately, my go to order has been a flat white or a cortado, although I love a good single-origin drip depending on the roaster. 

Are you okay with unconventional interview questions? (too late!)

Conventional interviews are *so* last year!

Did Matt Skiba help or hurt Blink 182? Or, if you have no opinion, that’s fine too (although I’ll absolutely be judging you)!  

(Go ahead and judge- I didn’t grow up with them like a lot of folks, but) on a purely sonic level, I definitely think the two singers thing is underrated and underutilized in rock music and Blink is iconic for what so many of us considered to be the quintessential pop-punk voice. So, yes?

If you could compare yourself to a bird, what bird would it be and why?

I guess I’m a raven- since I’m creative and sensitive, might be considered by some to be an outsider, and I can be moody af, but certainly bold and outgoing when I need to be. 

Favorite lyrics of all time? (it can be a full song, a phrase, etc. just please let me know who it is and what song!)

Wow, favorite lyrics – I think the song that comes to mind, one that always impresses me, is “Suggestion” by Fugazi.

What’s your favorite menu item at Taco Bell?

 Some days are double decker taco days and others are chicken quesadilla with cinnamon swirls kinda days. 

If you were to rob a bank, what would be the song playing in the getaway car as you escape?    

 Most certainly “Sabotage” by Beastie Boys.

What’s one thing I should know before listening to ‘PERENNIALS’?

While I believe the album can stand on its own without context, I think knowing that it was written through three years of the most significant change I’ve ever faced – coming out as trans, de- and reconstruction of faith, ending of my marriage, and starting over on so much – hopefully, the listener can recognize the tender center of the work in how it documents a revolution of my life. I believe the songs hold much for those who listen with empathy,¬†especially for those who face their own path of reconstruction.

Okay, I know that was a lot of questions but I instantly fell in love with Jody and just wanted to know everything (even the weird questions). She was so quick to respond to me and just so full of energy even if we have only talked through e-mail.

Here’s a sneak peek at the album with the amazing video done for “Heather”:

‘PERENNIALS’ isn’t due out until March but keep an eye on Public Universal Friend’s social media account for some music videos and other teasers. I will definitely be reviewing the album to make sure to come back for that juicy goodness!

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Check Out My New Playlist With All of My Favorite Songs HERE! (Including “Heather” by Public Universal Friend)