At just twenty years old, Sloan Struble is already making waves in the indie community. His eight-song debut album Fuzzybrain got a decent amount of attention upon its release, resulting in the Austin-based songwriter releasing two more songs to complete the record and present a “fully realized” vision. With a mission to connect people and focus on the positive in the world, it’s no surprise that fans are latching on to Struble’s music in droves.
To celebrate the expanded album, Struble sat down to talk Coco, homemade pizza, and Tame Impala in the latest Indie Mixtape 20 Q&A.
What are four words you would use to describe your music?
Fun, Optimistic, Personal, Dance-able!
It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?
I would love to be remembered as an artist who was a nice person and also cared deeply about the impact of music in people’s personal lives, and used that knowledge to make art that makes people feel good and important!
What’s your favorite city in the world to perform?
I really haven’t had too much experience touring yet, but I sure do love Austin, Texas!
Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?
I would probably say my mom. I had made everything up until now in my childhood bedroom, so she’s naturally been there — literally — throughout the process of making every track in Fuzzybrain. My parents are the greatest supporters and I am beyond thankful for them!
Where did you eat the best meal of your life?
My mom is actually an incredible cook, and we didn’t eat out much growing up. She makes a very good homemade pizza, so I would say that’s my favorite meal hands down.
What album do you know every word to?
I am unashamed to admit it is Owl City – Ocean Eyes.
What was the best concert you’ve ever attended?
I recently saw Parcels, and they put on one of the greatest all-around shows I’ve seen in a while. They are just so fun, cool, and inviting. Love what they’re doing!
What is the best outfit for performing and why?
I have these vintage Levi’s pants in a material I’m not sure the name of, but they are kind of stretchy? Anyways, they don’t ever wrinkle! I’ve been wearing those probably too often on tour, and usually just wear a vintage, thrifted tee along with it!
Who’s your favorite person to follow on Twitter and/or Instagram?
I follow a bunch of art and architecture accounts. My favorite is called @escapist_to_the_country, and she just re-posts really cheap, wild houses for sale all across Europe — always tempts me to drop everything and become a farmer somewhere remote. Maybe I’ll do that later!
What’s your most frequently played song in the van on tour?
What’s the last thing you Googled?
“Canadian National Anthem.”
What album makes for the perfect gift?
It totally depends on context, but I don’t think it would ever be a mistake gifting JT by James Taylor. Or anything James Taylor, really. My dad kind of gifted me his music, so it feels natural for me to do the same for others.
Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?
Last week we stayed at my bassist’s cousin’s college house in Charleston, and he had some friends over when we got there around 1:00 AM. One of them was a fairly intoxicated friend who desperately wanted to play Mario Kart, so we did. She was a little too competitive, easily the most intense and strange round of Mario Kart to this day.
What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?
I don’t have any tattoos! At least not yet!
What artists keep you from flipping the channel on the radio?
Vampire Weekend, Parcels, Andy Shauf, James Taylor, Carpenters, Michael McDonald, etc.
What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?
People tend to be so much more generous than I make them in my mind, so lately I’ve been very receptive to seeing that in others. I’ve been blown away by how giving some people are especially as a touring artist now. But my one thing that stands out currently is the day I decided to drop out of college and start touring and committing everything to music. I worked really hard to get into UT Austin, and my parents did as well financially, but they were both extremely supportive and receptive to all of the change happening in my life. I will never forget when my dad said, “Well Sloan, you probably shouldn’t stay in school” before I even asked if they would be cool with me dropping out. That’s a moment of generosity that changed my life a ton and made this transition so much easier.
What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?
I am only 20 now, so I would say “Next year is going to blow your mind!”
What’s the last show you went to?
We performed at ACL a few weeks ago and I got to catch Tame Impala’s set. Completely mind-blowing, I look up to Kevin Parker a ton, so it was awesome to witness it all live!
What movie can you not resist watching when it’s on TV?
I’m a sucker for really anything Pixar. I love Coco!
What would you cook if Kanye were coming to your house for dinner?
I would make breakfast for dinner. Fat stack of flapjacks.
The expanded version of Fuzzybrain is out now.