Who is Tutlie? Based on a quick view of bio’s, Tutlie was “Formed by Jessie Radlow in 2010 while attending college in West Chester, Pennsylvania, the band has seen many lineup shifts on the path to refining the vision Radlow first set forth.”
Jessie Radlow - keys & vocals, Rebecca Way - vocals & guitar
Greg Diehl - bass guitar, Greg O'Neill - electric guitar
Greg Diehl - bass guitar, Greg O'Neill - electric guitar
Mark Cruttenden - drums, Asher Brooks - multi-instrumentalist/producer
Root Down In The Shadow sat down with Tutlie to get the details on this refining vision and to see who Tutlie really is?
Root Down In The Shadow: Speaking to fans, in years past, there was a flower-child vibe. Descriptions of the band included: “We are Tutlie and we want to fill your world with glittery music.” Does this description still apply/What do you see as the identity of the band?
Jessie Radlow: “No, no Glitter. We’ve had lots of band member changes since then. I was not happy with that direction. Before it was all show, lacking density, and really got carried away. Really, I didn’t want to be that fairy band, fuck that I’m a rock n roller. I’m so glad that it moved in a drastic direction, for the better.”
Root Down: You’re self-classified as “Indie, Baroque Pop” What does that mean to you?
Radlow: Those terms have been used before for bands like Arcade Fire, Sufjan Stevens, and others. It really describes the level of artistry to the arrangement. You can’t have a full orchestra on stage, but can fill it with guitar arrangements, pedals, and samples, hoping to speak the album in a different way when we’re live.
Root Down: In 2012 you had an ambitious crowd-sourcing plan for Young Cries (https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/help-fund-tutlie-s-debut-album-young-cries#home). Did it fund?
Radlow: It did, but just a portion. It was not an all or nothing form of crowd-sourcing, but at the same time it was fortunate that it didn’t go as planned. When it didn’t fund completely, it forced us to re-think our process. Originally it was a three song EP, but when we re-organized we re-focused on the whole album since we had to start over either way.
Young Cries is available free through the end of August on Bandcamp. For the first time, the album is available on vinyl and available at their live shows!!!
Root Down: Hush Up EP (released in June ‘13) includes two songs not on the album; Where does this fit in with the re-shuffle of the band line-up and putting out Young Cries.
Asher Brooks: Hush UP EP was put out as a bridge to the album. We needed something for the fans since the album wasn’t ready to come out right away.
Root Down: The lineup has been influx for a while, but is stable now.
“The band now features the extraordinary vocal talent of Rebecca Way who, along with Radlow, provide an original and intoxicating backbone to the band. Joined by the additional talents of Greg Diehl on bass guitar, Greg O'Neill on electric guitar, Mark Cruttenden on drums, and multi-instrumentalist/producer Asher Brooks.”
Brooks: for about 2 years there was a revolving door, but since Rebecca & Greg O. joined, the lineup has been locked in with the core.
Root Down: Songs prior were from Jessie’s head. How are they created now?
Radlow: Typically they go to Asher from my head/bedroom. But now there is more room for collaboration
Brooks: In the beginning there was a lot of tension and tough decisions in the studio.
Rebecca Way: Now we have the foundation, we know the rules, and we’re comfortable.
Radlow: “Grass Isn’t Growing” is one of in the works with full band collaboration, and “Kaito” was a song to let go, to trust on. There was a lot I had to trust, and I was reluctant, but I love how the songs were becoming grandiose one of those songs. It starts off with a new percussive element. We have been re-arranging the record since Jan, while working on the album as new material.
Way: It’s cool that J trusts us with her little babies, her brain-child. Everyone is getting better at communication for creating the re-work. We’re excited the next album is already
Root Down: Where do you see this leading to?
Root Down: Tutlie is 6 people vs. Jessie Radlow + 5. How do side projects & solo beginnings influence or limit Tutlie.
Mark Cruttenden: We’re just doing it, close to like a flow-state. We’re not thinking about the influences, but no way that you can shed it. I used to play drums in a punk band, there’s no way to un-do that.
Radlow: When practicing and recording, we have to ponder: Is that crazy, is that beautiful, is that Tutlie
Root Down: The sound is intense and full-spectrum. How is it to perform live?
Cruttenden: So much fun,
Way: So invigorating?
Cruttenden: It has been a challenge to meet the album. As a band, we can't play it if we haven’t translated it. We have to bring the same scope to the live show.
Way: it’s intricate”
Tutlie: We’re excited for the new song “clouds”, it’s got this off kilter beat everyone is locked in. So tight!
Radlow: We had to stop playing for people. It's weird as I’ve always been in theater, playing to people.
Brooks: We’re better at playing for ourselves, now we’re lost in our own trip. The experience has been much more fun to play shows, but it has even been more fun to practice. Although sometimes it’s a horrible time to get the sound guy on board.
Root Down: What do you want a Tutlie fan to know/to read?
Radlow: We want to create another world, is that too much to ask?
Way: We want to bring you into our world, want the music to bring you to other places. It would be cool, if people thought we were any good
** Mike Southerton & Anthony Coppa contirbuted to this post **