Music Bugle Exclusive – Q & A – Kerry Alexander Of Bad Bad Hats

Photo courtesy of Bad Bad Hats Facebook page.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez

Chockfull of neurotic riffs and melodic quips sure to be in your head for the near future, Minnesota’s Bad Bad Hats serve full-on indie-pop flavor with their ‘Walkman’ LP, out now on Don Giovanni Records.

In collaboration with longtime producer Brett Bullion, Bad Bad Hats – comprised of lead vocalist Kerry Alexander and bassist Chris Hoge – leave no stone unturned on this LP, with earworms like “Milky Way” and the title track “Walkman” as worthy highlights.

Also known for their mighty stage presence, they’ve performed in places such as Philadelphia, New York City and Chicago, alongside acts like Michelle Branch, The Front Bottoms and Third Eye Blind.

The Music Bugle had the chance to talk with Alexander about ‘Walkman’ and more, which you can check out below.

Music Bugle – How did you guys decide on the name “Bad Bad Hats”? 

Kerry Alexander – I never remember why we chose “Bad Bad Hats” when we were choosing a band name, but it’s a reference to the Madeline children’s books.

Music Bugle – What was your goal for the ‘Walkman’ LP? 

Kerry Alexander – I went into recording this album knowing I wanted to write an album that was upbeat and would be fun to play live as a rock trio. We had been on tour with The Beths and had played some shows with Ratboys and both those bands have such great energy onstage and the guitar playing especially is so rocking. I wanted to channel that.

Music Bugle – One of the highlights of ‘Walkman’ for sure is the witty “Milky Way” video. Did that come out exactly how you hoped? 

Kerry Alexander – It did! We worked on it with our friend, Dan Stewart, who also did the “Nothing Gets Me High” and “Detroit Basketball” videos with us. It’s always a great experience working with Dan. We went through a few Elvis impersonator-related ideas until we settled on the speed dating gag. Everyone took to their particular Elvis very naturally and my friend, Alyssa, who played the speed dater, provided perfect facial reactions.

Music Bugle – What excites you the most about your particular style of music? 

Kerry Alexander – The joy in the music we create.

Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise? 

Kerry Alexander – We enjoy Remi Wolf. Dijon and Liz Lawrence have also been some inspiring discoveries.

Music Bugle – How were you originally affected by the COVID-19 pandemic? 

Kerry Alexander – Well, our 2020 schedule looked a lot different, but we were able to be active and creative in different ways, thanks to YouTube livestreams and a Patreon page. Those pivots were scary at the time, but now, I feel very grateful for them. We learned a lot and have had so much fun making music together in a fresh way.

Music Bugle – Where do you go when you need a break? 

Kerry Alexander – I go on a long walk with my headphones on and a favorite album playing. I like to be in motion when I need to clear my head or decompress.

Music Bugle – What’s a quote that motivates you to keep doing what you do? 

Kerry Alexander – One of my favorite Dolly Parton quotes is, “I don’t care when people call me a dumb blonde. ‘Cause I know I’m not dumb. And I know I’m not blonde.”

Music Bugle – What’s something that you wish happened more in today’s music industry? 

Kerry Alexander – I wish I had more moments to celebrate with my peers. We’ve made so many great friends in the local indie scene and the national indie scene and it would be awesome to have opportunities to be together and toast to all our hard work and creative output. Preferably, with some corporation buying us dinner and drinks! (Laughs)

Music Bugle – What makes you the most proud about where you come from? 

Kerry Alexander – I love to see how much talent comes out of the Twin Cities music scene. I think it speaks to the supportiveness of the local fans and the wonderful music community there. 

*Photo Credit – Zoe Prinds*

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