Our newest West Coast Spotlight – Ludic. This trio hails from Vancouver and we got to sit down and chat a little bit about the group dynamics and their newest single. Love Me Like is available today on all major platforms. Check out what they had to say!
Tell us about how you first met?
The concept for Ludic first began in late 2016/early 2017 when Ayla decided to begin hunting for young, like-minded musicians like herself to form a serious band with. She met Max and Rhett for the first time at a jam session overlooking the beach in White Rock, and it was almost immediately apparent that she had found the people she was looking for. Max and Rhett began jamming together as Ludic before they even knew of Ayla’s quest to find a band, but when they met her it only seemed natural that she’d fill the vacancy and turn Ludic into the trio that it is today.
The 3 of you have been playing together now for about 2.5-3 years, which seems LUDIC-rous as you have such a cohesive sound. Was the original jam vision to have the sound you have now?
What’s stayed the same about our vision since the first time we started jamming together is the “Ludic” nature of how we create music- it’s spontaneous, undirected, playful, and all about exploring the depths of our influences and seeing what comes from that. Our sound is simply the product of what happens when the three of us get together and create music, which sort of goes without saying, but it’s safe to say the cohesive sound comes from how we approach all of our music that way.
Your dynamic is pretty interesting as far as Max and Rhett being brothers, and then Ayla coming in from a previous band. Was there growing pains if any?
Honestly no! We both have always gotten along with each other very well and never ever punched each other so were at a pretty good spot. In terms of Ayla she was kind of a problem because of her just being TOO good a fit. It made it really difficult, but we worked it out.
Being a younger band, do you find it difficult to be taken seriously in such a competitive industry?
Ultimately, the three of us have a lot of faith in how hard we’ve worked and continue to work at music. After hundreds upon hundreds of hours of working at our craft, we feel confident that what we do speaks for itself because it comes from such an honest place of loving music. At the end of the day, people might always have preconceptions about you for all sorts of reasons; it very quickly becomes an exercise in futility to think about every possible judgement someone might have about you. So, we just do what we do! Either people will like it…or they won’t! Either way is okay with us. We just love making music.
You draw pretty heavily on everything from funk, to soul, to even elements of shoegaze, what are some of your personal inspirations both growing up, and some contemporary artists you’ve vibe with?
I’m (Ayla) always really inspired by artists such as Stevie Wonder, The Beatles, Miles Davis, Jimi Hendrix, B.B. King and Brittany Howard. I grew up with a lot of latin-influenced music and flamenco in particular, however I’ve always been drawn to music with a lot of groove and soul. Some contemporary artists I really “vibe” with are Brittany Howard (as already mentioned!), MonoNeon, Erykah Badu, Jacob Collier and singer-songwriters such as Angel Olson and Weyes Blood.
I (Max) go through phases of listening, a few years ago it was the musical giants that I aspired to be. Hiatus Kaiyote, Jacob Collier, Snarky Puppy, and Knower were some on the list. Now I’m severely loving contemporary pop music with artists like Caroline Polachek, Rosalia, Janelle Monae, Daft Punk, and Prince of course.
(Rhett) Many of my influences Max has already mentioned because he’ll introduce me to really awesome music whenever he finds some. If I were to add anything I would mention BROCKHAMPTON, Anderson .Paak, Jojo Mayer, and Ariana Grande.
While you only have a handful of singles out, they are all phenomenal from beginning to end. What is the creative process for you 3, duty-wise?
Wowwww thank you! That means a lot to us. It changes song by song! It usually starts with one of us bringing in a song idea, maybe some chord progressions, some melodies and some lyrics, and then we’ll jam it out and fill in any gaps we need to. Some song ideas come in more finished than others, but we’re always prepared that whatever we bring in will be completely Ludic-ified by the time we’ve all worked on it.
The video for “My Love” was shot around Downtown Vancouver, and it’s just beautiful, I mean, very Wes Anderson meets Vampire Weekend mood. What was the inspiration behind it, and how much fun was it to shoot?
This may just be the ultimate compliment?! The idea was simply to capture how much fun we have making music together. This vibe is already somewhat encapsulated in My Love and is why we chose that song as our debut single in the first place, but we wanted our first music video to really play upon all of the good vibes that are felt anytime we are together, both as musicians and as friends. We also wanted to intertwine that concept with striking and colourful imagery of the beautiful city we’ve all (for the most part) grown up in!
Your latest single, “Want You” dropped earlier this year, with an accompanying video, it’s a bit more mellow than your previous singles, but still insanely catchy. Can you tell us more about the track?
It’s a bit of a selfish song to be honest. Like you want to be with someone really bad despite the questionable stuff that’s happened in the past, and you’re still trying to convince them to come back to you. Being cheerful and ignorant to the problems, kind of toxically optimistic. We wanted to play with this idea visually in the video with Max being the speaker. He’s unusually cheerful in the video while Rhett and Ayla clearly aren’t. That’s the kind of dynamic we wanted to play with.
Rhett, you’ve been playing drums since you were 6 years old. Ayla has been playing guitar since you were 10-12 years old. Would you care to expand on your long, life affair with music? Also Max, what’s your history with playing music?
I (Ayla) would certainly describe my experience with music as an affair. I might even go as far as to describe it as a love affair. Though I have many interests and passions outside of music, music ultimately is the love of my life. Everything leads back to music in some way for me. Honestly, I think I knew that I wanted to be a musician since before I really knew how to play any instruments! When I came to the realization that I wanted to spend the rest of my life making music, that’s when I began exploring various instruments and then eventually discovering the guitar. I love playing any instrument I can get my hands on but I connect with the guitar on a deeper level I think. I’m so very free playing music, and especially playing the guitar! Quite excellent. 🙂
(Rhett) Playing drums has always been a big influence in my life since I was little. Music was something Max and I both grew up with and we’ve shared most of the experiences along the way. My relationship with music is something that brings me comfort and whether I’m feeling good or bad. I can sit down behind my drums and put my feelings into my playing and process different parts of my life as I play.
Vancouver’s always been a pretty eclectic city, and your sound agrees. What are some of your favorite places in Vancouver that you hold dear? (Restaurants, live music venues, etc.)
Ayla (the person typing!) has grown up going to the Vogue Theatre, so having the opportunity to perform there a couple times now has been quite magical. I also think that Rufus Guitar Shop is wonderful; this is the place where I bought my first real guitar and a lot of the coolest gear I own. I also love the Naam. Perhaps one of the most delicious (and one of the oldest still-standing!) restaurants in Vancouver. I have had many fun hangs over the years. I also must shoutout Jinya for a similar reason, which is essentially the certified-Ludic-favourite restaurant to eat at any time we’re together. Lastly, GLORYDAYS is basically the raddest vintage clothing store in town, and we love them very dearly!
What would be your dream collaboration? Alternatively, who is someone you played with that absolutely blew your mind?
There’s a whole laundry list of people that we would loooove to collaborate with. Contenders for that list who have also blown our minds would be Snarky Puppy, Brittany Howard and Lawrence. We had the chance to open for all of these people just a few months ago. They are all total heroes of ours. Getting to not only open for them but watch them play a show and find out that they are all very kind and warm people, has been just about the best thing ever. Ayla also had the opportunity to jam briefly with Jacob Collier a little while back. She undoubtedly considers it to be one of the coolest experiences of her life.
What can we look forward in the future from Ludic?
We would love to say touring and festivals and all of that great stuff. Sadly we’ve had to change some of our plans in that regard due to some very obvious reasons! We have many unreleased songs recorded and many songs to be recorded. All of which we hope to share with the world as soon as we can. There certainly is an album in the works, some more singles in the meantime. Hopefully some creative solutions we come up with to make light of the challenging situation we’re all in currently.
As our West Coast Spotlight – Ludic comes to an end we want to thank Alya, Rhett and Max for taking the time to chat with us about their music. The new single Love Me Like which is out now!
Keep up with Ludic by visiting their website
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