It’s time to bring some musical diversity to “11 Questions.” Welcome my long-time friend and perhaps the only hip-hop/rap artist I may ever bring my sometimes-narrow taste to appreciate, Mr. Nathan Conrad, better known as the Spoken Nerd.
Nathan is a clever young man who brings an often-whimsical flair to this art form. He is also a talented performer who plays local shows and tours extensively throughout the country. If you are not familiar with his work, get a taste of what he’s like with this wonderful 2010 video for “Apocalypse Awareness Day.” However, I still think my fave tune of his is “I Love the Police.”
I love talking music with Nathan since he has a huge heart for supporting all the hard-working artists he shares the stage with during his travels. We also share a common love for a lot of the same rock bands. Like me, he’s a big fan of the band Low. Nathan even travelled up to Minnesota to disappointingly see their notorious 2013 artistic-statement festival show when their entire set consisted of a single 29-minute song! Maybe I shouldn’t be reminding him of it.
Oh well, so here’s your eleven from Nathan…. I mean Spoken.
Where are you from originally, when did you move to Nashville and why?
My family moved to Lawrenceburg, TN from southern Illinois when I was five. When I was 20, I took a job in Florence, AL and began commuting to Nashville on the weekends to experience the music scene. That’s when I befriended the rap group, Ienquiring Minds and producer 24-7. We hit it off so I moved to Nashville to start making records.
What are the first and the last records you bought, and where did you buy them? Were they CD, vinyl or digital?
The first album I ever bought was the soundtrack to Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) on cassette. I just purchased a copy of Reliant K’s Mmhmm on vinyl (original pressing).
First and last live concerts that you’ve seen?
My first concert was Metallica, Candlebox and Suicidal Tendencies at Starwood Amphitheater. Alice in Chains were supposed to play, but they canceled the tour, and we got Candlebox instead. The last show I went to that I didn’t perform at was DJ Shadow and Quiet Entertainer at Marathon Music Works.
Whose star should be added to the Music City Walk of Fame?
JEFF the Brotherhood
Where do you go in Nashville for coffee and pizza?
I’m a pretty simple guy when it comes to coffee but I tend to really enjoy Sip Cafe. As far as pizza goes, I go to Manny’s House of Pizza for New York style, Bellagio’s is really good too! For delivery pizza, I’m all about Jett’s.
What’s your favorite record to ever come out of Nashville?
Neil Young’s Harvest
Where’s the best place to eat late night after a show?
The Bluebird calls and asks you to host an “In the Round.” Pick three local songwriters to join you.
Dale J. Gordon, Jason Isbell and Erin Rae
What are your favorite music venues to play in town?
Name a musician who you’d like to see move here.
Finally, what’s in your musical future?
I have a new band called State Parks. We are about to release a new record early next year, so be on the lookout. Spoken Nerd is continuing to go strong, and I am more inspired than I’ve ever been as a writer. I’m going to go wherever this music takes me!