Thao & The Get Down Stay Down, the Oakland-based band fronted by singer and songwriter Thao Nguyen, is now debuting the new video for the track Phenom. Shot entirely via Zoom video conferencing software in the midst of California’s Stay At Home order, the video was filmed without any of the collaborators ever being in the same room together. The Fountain spoke with Thao about the single and plans for the coming year.
TF: You have a new video out, what reception have you received so far to Phenom?
The response has been great-quite enthusiastic, and definitely a more robust response than we’ve ever received for a video.
TF: How would you sum up the track in a sentence?
An imagining of a collapsed time, near future dystopic utopia wherein the scorched of the earth have returned and are bringing to bear.
TF: You have a new album out next month, what can we look forward to from that?
It’s our first band record that is self produced, by me and my band mate Adam Thompson. You can expect big beats, lush melodies, a lot of vulnerability, grief and joy and some love songs.
TF: What is your plan for the remainder of the year, how are you adapting to the recent changes?
My plan is to stay open to changing my plans 🙂 I’m going to promote and share this album as much as I can without us touring, and figure out different ways we can still engage with and present the record to people given the constraints…I’m also going to become a better vegetable gardener and send more physical mail to my mom and my nephews.
TF: Any advice to give to fellow musicians and performers?
Do not feel as though you should be creating right now because people declare things on the internet and reference King Lear. Make things because they bring you peace and joy and don’t share them. If you can’t afford to give your work away, do not do it and do not feel bad about it. Now’s our time to reassess and re-imagine a different way.