Five Ohio State University students band together to form the psychedelic indie group known as Captain Kidd. Having played as festivals such as Firefly and Numbers Fest, it was truly as pleasure to sit down with four of the five creative and absolutely hilarious young men.
(PC: Kris Perez)
You guys have played college events such as Number Fest and OSU Welcome Weekend along with other fest such as Firefly and, now, Fashion Meets Music. Are there any differences in atmospheres between college festivals, like Number Fest, and other festivals, such as Firefly?
Nathan: There definitely is a difference.
Eric: Yeah, there’s a difference. Like at #12 Fest you could bring an octobong and you could put it to use, but at a festival like this, you’re not going to do anything that outlandish. This is more about the music and some of the college fests, I feel, are more about the party.
Since you’ve played at college festivals at OSU and OU, who are fairly big rivals, is there a different in atmosphere between those events? Which one was your favorite and why? (jokingly) You better say OU or I’m done with this interview.
All of the guys laugh.
Nick: Well, at #12 Fest, it was all about getting pretty…
Nick: Yeah, pretty slam-boned and just dancing to something like hip-hop or..
All of the guys in unison: DJs.
Nick: yeah, DJs. But we’re pretty dancy.
Nathan: I totally preferred Numbers Fest.
Eric: We did a lot more opening for Capital Cities (as OSU Welcome Weekend) than we did for Whiz Khalifa, you know? I kind of prefer the Numbers Fest one, though. That was one of the most fun shows I’ve ever played just because everyone was going nuts.
Yeah, OU parties, but we really do appreciate all of the bands that come down. We’re really big into helping local music.
Eric: Yeah! You guys have had a lot of bands play at Numbers Fest before they were popular and I’ve seen that.
Hopefully that’s like..
Stew: A trend that can continue.
Yeah, like a good omen!
Eric: We can only hope!
I’ve read that you guys were called the Dyslexic Turtles. What’s the story behind that and why the name drop?
Nathan: Dyslexic Turtles.. we were a different kind of band back then.
Eric: We were really indie.
Nathan: Very.. like Flaming Lips. Weird, but we were trying to come up with name and my little brother, who is two years younger than me, came up with Dyslexic Turtles just at dinner. That was his name and we went with it.
Eric: It was good enough.
Nathan: Our current manager, who was our promoter at the time, was like, “Yeah, you guys aren’t getting a show with that name. You need to change your name.”
So, how did Captain Kidd come about?
Nathan: In a Steak ’N Shake at 3am.
Eric: In Mansfield. We had a show and our promoter was like, “Okay, guys. This has gone logn enough. You really need to give us a name because the flyers are being made tomorrow and we really need a name.” So, when we get really frustrated, we like to cross the line.
Nathan: We get really sarcastic. We were coming up with these really pretentious names.
Eric: Yeah, like very long, bad names. One of them was Captain Kidd and the Great White Macao. I said, “You know, let’s just cut ‘-and the Great White Macao’ and Captain Kidd doesn’t sound bad.” He was a cool pirate.
It’s definitely a name that sticks and one at you remember.
We Interviewed Kid Runner yesterday and they said that you guys are Drew’s neighbors?
All of the guys: Yeah!
Eric: We’re all Drew’s neighbors!
Nathan: Yeah, we all live together!
Nick: We were all outside chilling and Drew was bringing a TV into his apartment.
Eric: He’s always outside smoking a cigarette. (laughs)
Nick: We were legitimately humming/singing a Kid Runner song and he steps out of his car and we’re like, “No way!”
Eric: We saw his hat! He always wears his hat. So, he gets out of his car and I’m like, “No freakin’ way. That’s Drew. And he goes, ‘Oh, shit. Captain Kidd!’”
How was performing with them? They mentioned nothing but good things about performing with you guys!
Eric: We love Kid Runner!
Stew: They’re great!
Nick: We’ve played with them like three or four times!
The infamous “Beerio Kart.” Who came up with this brilliantly insane idea?
Nathan: Ahhh… “Beerio Kart.” It was freshman year. Used to play a lot of N64 and we decided to combine it with alcohol. It got to the point in the spring semester where we were still getting good grades, but we were playing “Beerio Kart” like 4 days a week.
Eric: It’s like PB&J, but beer and Mario Kart.
Has it become a pre-show ritual or a tradition to get whoever you’re performing with to play “Beerio Kart” with you?
Nathan: We try to get everybody to play with us.
Nick: Paul McCartney wasn’t too into it at Firefly, but that was expected.
Stew: He was just scared he was gonna get smashed.
Eric: (imitating Paul McCartney) I don’t wanna smash you guys.
Are you guys reigning champs?
Eric: We won’t lose
Nathan: We play a lot, but recreationally.
Eric: It’s kind of.. gross. Like, any time we drink, which will be like two or three times a week, literally every single time we got out..
Nathan: We pregame with Beerio Kart. That’s what we do. Oh, we’re going to go to the bar? Let’s play a few rounds of Beerio Kart.
But it’s safely, right? Like no drinking and driving.
All of the guys: Yeah!
Eric: Just pull over to the side of the road, then drink.
Nathan: We’ve mentioned it (Beerio Kart) in like very interview, but I you’re the first person to ask us a question on it, though.
Eric: We never get asked, we just wanna throw it out there, but you already asked us. Thank you. I wish we had it here. Could we like get it and hook it up to a TV?
Nick: The movie theater? (where the interview was taking place)
Eric: In the movie theater!
All of the guys laugh.
Eric: Could you imagine (Beerio Kart) in iMax?
As a whole, you guys said you were heavily inspired by Arctic Monkeys and MGMT. So, a psychedelic kind of thing. Who inspires you as individual musicians?
Eric: I always feel I’m pretty awful at guitar, honestly. I’ve never viewed myself as a guitarist. I’ve always viewed myself as a song writer and we’re always trying to make out stuff sound really good. So, to me, it’s like the same. We all happen to share the same tastes now and we all want to work towards what we want to sound like. We all have the same ideas. So, I would say for me it’s definitely the same- Tame Impala, Arctic Monkeys, MGMT.
Nathan: How about you Stew? Who inspires you with your sound?
Stew: Kanye was a big part.
He’s my favorite person in the whole world. I could go on about him for days. (I showed them my Kanye lyrics tattoo).
Eric: We love him.
Stew: We all love Kanye.
How have you manage to go to college and continue to grow as a band?
Nathan: It’s hard.
Eric: Quite honestly, it’s hard. Passing accounting, stats and analytics wasn’t exactly fun while trying to write and record and all that. My grades suffer.
Nathan: Grades definitely suffer.
Eric: But as long as we pass. We’re passing.
Nathan: Sleep has suffered the most. I don’t think anybody is doing really poorly in school.
Stew: I’m doing alright.
Nathan: Stew’s actually doing really well!
What are you plans as of now? Like, what are your plans with your majors as your band continues to grow in popularity?
Nathan: We’re gonna do the band. Get our degree.
Just to have something to fall back on. You have passions and you wanna pursue that and it’s working out for you guys, but it’s definitely good to have something to fall back on.
Eric: We have a lot of work to do. We’re graduating after this year. As far as music, there’s so much more to do and it’s kind of intimidating at times, but at the end of the day, it’s way too much fun doing the music thing to not go for it.
What has been the most interesting band experience thus far? Cool interesting, funny interesting or both?
Eric: At Firefly, our tents got brutally mutilated by a monsoon. That was pretty funny. We slept in these artist green rooms and we had to get out of them because there was lighting.
Stew: The tents weren’t grounded.
Eric: Yeah, he (Stew) was so drunk and he was panicking with the worst anxiety and he’s like, “Guys, we gotta get out of here. The tents aren’t grounded. This isn’t safe. You gotta trust me.”
Nathan: He’s an engineer so..
Nick: I slept by a hotel pool. I was with my little brother watching Kid Cudi and the whole festival got evacuated and I was like, “Alright, I got to go back to the artist area.” The security guy said I couldn’t go back in there. So, I ran to the hotel across the street and they were letting people stay in the lobby, so I slept on a chair next to the pool for a few hours. We were all separated, but we did eventually find each other.
Nathan: I went out to General Cafe to hang with my friends. We had to drive to New Jersey. All of the hotels were booked because everything got evacuated.
Nick: It was really disappointing because Cudi was really fun and interesting.
I just wanna know. Has the ad-lib tactic continued to be effective if/when you guys write a song the same day you perform it?
Eric: I don’t think we’ve done that for a while
Eric: That was definitely Dyslexic Turtle days- writing lyrics on your hands while you’re playing.
Nathan: We’ve been doing a better job trying to finish songs.
Nick: He uses permanent marker now.
Eric: Yeah, we have rules now with who good the song is. We weren’t really a band then yet.
(PC: Kris Perez)
Captain Kidd consists of Nathan Baumgard on leading vocals and guitar with Eric Blaha on guitar, Andrew Gutierrez on bass, Nick Samson on drums and Stew Weinland on keys.
More photos of Captain Kidd’s show amongst other photos from the Fashion Meets Music Festival will be coming soon!