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Bardz in hoodie looking away

An Interview With a Modern-Day Bardz

by Eric Valencia

If you have ever been searching for a musical poet, then I have the artist for you. Tyler Bardzilowski, known as Bardz, is a bard in every sense. A musician that I never heard of, he stood out as one of the best acts on the Sunday of M3F. His set rang with so much energy, throwing out mean guitar riffs with abrasive drops. When it was over, I knew he was someone who would quickly become a household name, so I had to talk to him. Even though I butchered the hell out of his last name, Bardz was still great enough to sit with me for an impromptu interview.

So your set was pretty amazing, especially when you built a song essentially from scratch. How did you do that? How did you decide what to place where and how to build on it?

I’m really inspired by Tash Sultana and FKJ. I’ve been playing guitar for a long time and that used to be how I would play, like by myself. I would just loop stuff and build off of that. So through Ableton, I had a few sounds that I liked. I was actually writing a song that was kind of like the one that I built today, but I was just in the beginning stages and I never turned into anything. I liked the sounds that I used and I wanted to make something of it, so I deconstructed it and I saved those sounds in my keyboard. Then I wanted to just build into a build and add those things one by one. I started off simple, with just a one-two note kind of ping. I added a small core layer behind it, then the guitar loop for the chords, and then that was kind of the basis of it. From there, I was just playing the melody on different instruments and saving them into the build-up where I would launch the drop, which was the song that I was working on. I think constructing it live, I was like, I could really mess this up terribly or it could go well and I think that was exciting. So I wanted to do that because it just stops the flow of everything and then it’s quiet and you just kind of build something from the ground up.

Bardz at M3F holding guitar with crowd
Bardz Killed it at M3F | Image Via Artist FB

How long have you been as Bardz? How long have you been a DJ? Or being a musician, rather?

I’ve been pushing the Bardz project for almost two years, maybe two or three years. I’ve been making music for a long time, but I haven’t been marketing it for longer than a couple of years, maybe coming up on three. I’ve been playing guitar since I was like 10 or 11 so that’s about 14 years now. I taught myself guitar, keys, I’ll sing a little bit in my productions and kind of taught myself. I did saxophone in school growing up, so that’s where I got with some of my music theory. But then I started making electronic music a few years ago and partnered with a couple of friends who’ve been helping push the project. My manager’s great; I have a graphic designer, photographer and a couple of other managers and some PR. Team has just been growing, so it’s been cool to just add on to it and see where it goes. It’s always been fun, so it doesn’t feel like work at all.

Did you have a band or a different project before Bardz?

I tried bands in school, but nobody ever wanted to practice. I kind of got annoyed, so that’s why I’m doing it on my own. I like to play music with others, I love it. It’s just I know I can rely on myself. So I just started doing it like that and every day just working on music. But I love collabing with other people and hopping on. I’ll play guitar for other friends and different acts as well cause I can just jump in, but Bardz has kind of been just me for a little while.

Are there any artists that you really want to have a collab with? Like any kind of dream list collab?

Yeah, for sure. ODESZA is a big inspiration. Roger Waters is a massive inspiration. Pink Floyd changed my life. My Pink Floyd phase was crazy when I was younger. Definitely Roger Waters, ODESZA, Tash Sultana, those are probably my top three. There are good musicians and I like how, especially like Tosh and Odessa, they’re very musical. They put it in their own way and it’s electronic a little bit, ODESZA more so than Tosh, but they still pay homage to instruments. I really liked that.

Who’s on your team, who do you tour with generally?

I’m actually not on tour right now, but we’ll do shows out of state as they come. Right now I’m focusing on building my catalog out. I’ve been working on a ton of music and I’ve been working with my team. We’ve been pitching it out and we’re building out a plan for the rest of 2020, so we have a ton of releases lined up. We’re just trying to plan it out in an efficient way, so each one is as successful as it can be. I mean this year is just getting started, but last year I did some in California, I did New Mexico, some in Denver, a couple in Denver, just kind of as they come, you know. I love playing shows, it’s a lot of fun, but I really love making music. So when I know there’s not a show coming up, I can kind of just sit down and know that I can be in the studio for a few weeks on end and I don’t have to plan for a set. I want to make them as special as possible and really choreograph everything. So it takes up a lot of time.

So should we expect an EP coming out this year?

Yeah. We’re still waiting on confirmation from some other parties to see what the best plan of action is for that, but I’m sitting on a ton of music that’s ready to go. I have a new song coming out at the beginning of April, that’s the next one, and then that Chili Peppers remix I played is going to be coming out after that. We’re just planning the album art and then like I said, just placement with blogs and labels and stuff like that.

Bardz on stage at Goldrush
Bardz at Goldrush | Image Via Artist FB

I know you played here last year at Phoenix Lights, Goldrush, and Crush, but what’s been your most memorable festival to play?

Well, Goldrush was the first festival I played in Arizona, so that was definitely cool. I think my most memorable though, probably this one. I played Decadence about a month or two ago and that was really cool. I try out new music when I play shows to see the crowd reaction and see how’s it doing? I played 70 to 80% of my own music for that show and the reactions were amazing, so for me, that was really cool. There was space in the front of the stage because the booth was up top where I was, but I was able to run down and around wireless on the guitar. I was just flying around with my in-ears, just playing the guitar. I was doing laps and it was fun because I could go pretty much free on the wireless. So that was a lot of fun for sure.

Wear you on the stage that was in the warehouse or the one that was in the tent?

It was the warehouse. I believe the Sapphire ballroom, I think it was called. So that was really cool.

Very cool. I don’t want to take too much of your time. This has been great.


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*Featured Image Via Artist FB”

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