The Caring Babies interview

1I know it gets said a lot but music truly is a great healer and in my case, has really helped me through difficult times. I am always seeking out new music and enjoy a large number of the artists I listen to but like anyone, there are some that stand out and become a part of your life. This is where The Caring Babies come in. I was trawling one of my favorite music websites β€œThe Weirdest Band in the World” and stumbled across a feature on the band. Instantly I was taken in by this super fun music and the awesome videos but after this initial burst of interest I realized on repeated listens that there is an endless depth to The Caring Babies output. I bumped into bandmates Matthew Mazur and Redgei to find out more…….

GB – Hey Matt, how are you doing?

MM – I’m amazing today!
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Great, so nice to bump into you

Is Regdei with you?

This is an awesome surprise. Yeah, we’re on the blue couch.
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Great! Could you please tell me a little bit about the Caring Babies?

So, I’m Matt, and this is Redgei. we live in White River Junction, Vermont, in the United States. We play adult contemporary music and fun workout music. We started making music in 2008, that’s when it all came together.

Wow, 7 years is a long time for a band, does it help that Redgei is the strong silent type?

Yeah, she keeps it together when things get tough. She also does all the computer stuff. She’s a really good typer. If I have some lyrics, she can just program the whole song in a night.

^ Redgei with her computers

^ Redgei with her computers


Amazing, she is super talented, how did you two meet?

Back in 1998, a friend of mine ran into Redgei at a yard sale, and she brought her over to my Dad’s place. We’ve been hanging out here and there ever since, but I didn’t even know she was into cool music until 10 years after we met.

That’s lovely

We’ll talk more about The Caring Babies later, but I was wondering what your really music experiments were like? Do you remember the name of your first band/act?

My first band was The Dollhouse Vampires, It was me and my friends Sam and Sander. We played a song called My Winter Hat, and there’s a video of it somewhere around this place. That was when I was 11.

We were a rock band, right out.

Pictured above from left to right: Adam & Sander

Pictured above from left to right: Sam & Sander

That is an amazing band name, and I need to see that video πŸ™‚

I’ll find it if I can. I have a sweet Aerosmith shirt on in the video.

Nice, I like your style

What came after The Dollhouse Vampires?

Well, when I was 18 I started being in bands again. I joined a band called The Foodstamps in 2002, that was exhilarating to be asked to be in the band. Almost every other band I’ve been in has had at least one member of that band in it. The Yarbles, The Cupcakes, Forferd Meg, Bombs Away, The Dead Rats, Portrait, and they were all kind of punk in a way. After that I was in Real Life Time Machines, who were dubbed “cozy core” and “cosmic punk” by the newspaper. That was the band that lead into The Caring Babies.
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What sort of music did you grow up listening to?

The Beatles, mostly. Also, Tom Waits, Bobby McFerrin, and Paul Simon.

Those are the main ones, I think.

I can really hear those coming through in the Caring Babies music

And the Monkees! I forgot, that was the first band I liked that people gave me kind of a hard time for liking. It was also the first record I owned myself. I just remembered that.

Hey You there.. we are the monkeys and invite you to pull our fingers all at once

Hey You there.. we are the monkeys and invite you to pull our fingers all at once


I guess that you started listening to more punk stuff in your teenage years?

Yeah, a friend of mine gave me a tape with Screeching Weasel, and Ash, and the entirety of Short Music For Short People when I was 16. I listened to that tape until it blew up. {Definitely!)

Ash as in the Northern Irish band Ash?

the guitarist of Ash

the guitarist of Ash


Indeed! Jack Names the Planets was the song. Possibly my favorite on the tape. Then I got a car with The Clash’s self titled album stick in the tape deck.

That’s a pretty good album to have stuck though

Yeah, it would always warble to a halt on Janie Jones and flip the tape over on it’s own. It was a very charming way to listen to the Clash, and I listened to it all the time.

Matthew Mazur from 'The Crying Babies' in front of his car with the self titled Clash album stuck into it

Matthew Mazur from ‘The Caring Babies’ in front of his car with the self titled Clash album stuck into it


And I know you were a big fan of Atom and His Package as you introduced me to his awesomeness recently

I was just going to mention him. He wasn’t on the tape, but that same friend told me about him. That was revelatory. One of the first times I realised, OH! You can do whatever you want!

Whats interesting is that Caring Babies seems to be truly a real mix of all these artists you mention

Thanks! That’s a big compliment!

^ The Caring Babies love big compliments

^ The Caring Babies love big compliments


Did you have an idea of how you wanted Caring Babies to sound or does it happen pretty organically

Well, I think that has to do with one of our other big influences, video game music. Redgei and I like the game Shadowgate, and the music on it is just amazing. Redgei says it’s the foundation for her programing style.

Also, Redgei says, the Moon theme in the DuckTales game!

I totally get that
1Is there a reason your songs are often very short?

I think it’s just how long they should be, and no longer.I once had this guy tell me that one of the best things about us was how short the songs are. Then he said “No wait, I’m sure, that is definitely the best thing.” It sounds a little weird, but he really meant it. It was a memorable compliment.

I love short songs, and the fact that if I want to experience a whole CB album, I can do so in a short space of time πŸ™‚

Shorts space in time

Shorts space in time


We never go on too long, either. And we can fit in between other sets.

Yes, live shows are often not long over 5 mins?

Hahaha! No, 10 minutes.

I often do that, just so no one has the chance to get bored or realise I’m shit
1
One of the greatest shows I was ever at, every band was only allowed 15 minutes, and I loved every band so damn much!

It was thrilling, you wanted more from each successive one!

I think there is something in that, I usually get bored of watching a band about 30 mins in, but I have a really short attention span

I always feel bad at really nice shows, because I usually start to space out a little. 2 hours is a long time to play…

^ The Caring Babies being a bit spaced out

^ The Caring Babies being a bit spaced out


I found the best way to describe listening to the CB is likening it to watching Con Air with my wife, having the overwhelming desire to high five and punch the air at the sheer awesomeness unfolding
1
Did you intend to be so life affirmingly joyful and uplifting?

That’s an amazing compliment. Happy music has always been the music that really gets me. Whether we’re writing because of confusion or sadness or joy, I feel like it comes out in a joyous way, and I want it to.

Do you want some seltzer or something? I’ve got chips and stuff…

I’m good thanks, I am working my way through this box of Twinkies

I never leave home without them

^ interviewer Graham and his stock of Twinkies

^ interviewer Graham and his stock of Twinkies

Do you like zebra cakes?

The original hexagonal treat?

I haven’t heard of them, do they contain real zebra?

No, but they make you feel like a lion cub.

zebra cakes will make you feel adorable

zebra cakes will make you feel adorable

Wow, I need some of these in my life

What is the CB’s favourite foods?

The zebra on the box has sunglasses.

That’s how you know it’s cool

^ cool!

^ cool!


Redgei likes sugar cubes and vegetables. And I like seltzer, tacos, and burritos.

We also make our own granola sometimes.

Nice! You live in White River Junction, what are the best things about it?

It has trains, and it’s right on two rivers. It has an old timey hotel named after a president, and a museum of curiosities. The museum is the best, and they let is play music there all the time.

I think the museum and the hotel are from the mid 1800’s, so maybe not that old timey to some.

White River Junction in 1889

White River Junction in 1889 (nothing has changed)

Ah yes, The Main Street Museum seems to be a big part of your life

Yes. We watch terrible movies there every Tuesday night. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s amazing what you can sit through when you’re with friends. I end up seeing some pretty extraordinary films that are hard to get through. but pay off in peculiar ways.


Terrible movies are one of my favourite things in the world, usually they involve a shark in some way

Speaking of Zebra Cakes, we just watched this awesome Turkish movie called Lion Man. The only animal he attacks a in it is a cow, so no sharks.

😦
Still, sounds awesome

We did watch Jaws: The Revenge, but the only thing Jaws attacked is boats and banana boats.

Banana boats are perfectly fine

Banana boats are perfectly fine


So you have 3 albums

1 7″

and 1 floppy disk into your career

Where do you plan to go next with CB?

Yeah, no tapes yet, but I want that to change.

^ might this be the future?

^ might this be the future?


Aside from the uber limited Butter on the Trestle split tape of course πŸ˜‰

That one was so limited I forgot about it! I have this cool friend who I want to do a split album with in the future and it’s you!

Haha, not sure about the cool bit
πŸ™‚

Super Cool!

Super Cool!

I’m convinced you are my generations Beatles

and me and my friend Kai watch your videos and wonder why you aren’t wildly popular

We are genuinely mystified

Would being more popular be terrifying?

I need to make more videos, I think.

I think it might be. I do like the fact that I get to lay low, but my fans are the coolest, and there is something about the way you can connect with people through music that is very unique.

Other people’s music has helped me through some of the hardest parts of my life.

For sure, music has always been the one constant in my life too. and yes, more videos would be awesome, they are a thing of beauty, who does them?

Redgei, mostly, except when she’s acting. She does all the special effects, and there are lots of those.

Indeed

So by now, hopefully you have a few more superfans

Where can they go to pursue their fandom further?

Mostly youtube,we have a lot of short films on there. Also, we do these film slams where you have to make an entire 7 minute movie in the span of 48 hours. We’re on a team with some of the guys from our movie night called Team MALONE! Redgei and I have soundtracked 12 movies this way.

Fantastic! The Hard Reboot is like one of my favourite films ever

Where can people find CB online?

Well, our bandcamp and our facebook are the most reliable places to find us, but I haven’t been good about posting lately. Redgei’s computer doesn’t connect to the internet, or we would probably have a giant geocities page.

We do have a blogspot that I haven’t updated in a while.

Ah geocities, good times, the internet was so nice back in the day, was fondly reminiscing about myspace this week

And if people want to buy some physical releases or merchandise, what is the best way to do this?

Well, it isn’t much, but our label, “The Case of the Missing Records” is a place where you can get copies of our stuff.

Also Antiquated Future has some of our records, I know.

They’re a very cool site.

Sweet, and before I forget, you also have a super cool zine as well

Oh You, a Periodical. That has been going for 10 years, and we’re on our 16th issue. It’s mostly just pen and ink drawings, but it’s really fun to make. The cool thing about that is it’s small, so I can really send it anywhere in the world very easily.
1Well, I think that just about wraps this up, do you have anything you would like to add or say? πŸ™‚

I want to thank you for hanging out with us cause you ARE cool! And I want to say that we’ll keep making music, even if it takes a long time to do it.
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That’s good to hear, whilst I sense that the CB output doesn’t take itself entirely seriously, it seems to come from a super earnest place, so I thank you for giving me so much enjoyment from your music, and for giving me something that I can truly believe in

You’re welcome! Yeah, while I don’t take it seriously like a job, say, I do think it’s really honest. I think it represents me well, and I think it’s there are other people who can relate to it. I hope it inspires other people to find a way to do something that makes them happy. One of the most valuable things I ever learned was that there aren’t limitations on how you’re supposed to express yourself. If you like what you do, people respond to that.

I couldn’t put it better myself, thanks for your fun, joyful and meaningful music!
πŸ™‚
Take care x

Thank you, Graham! I’ll ship you some Zebra Cakes, someday… Or maybe just bring them on a plane.

Yeah, save them for the next flight
πŸ˜‰
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2 Responses to The Caring Babies interview

  1. Pingback: interview with Haiku Salut | Yeah I Know It Sucks

  2. Pingback: The YEAH I KNOW IT SUCKS Podcast – volume 2 | Yeah I Know It Sucks

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