BY HENRY SAVAGE If tongue-in-cheek was defined in the Oxford Dictionary, a picture of Broncho mainman Ryan Lindsey’s face would sit right next to the entry. Originally formed in Norman, Oklahoma in 2010, Broncho came out of the punk and house show scene with their debut LP Can’t Get Past the Lips the following year. Last month, Broncho released their fourth LP Bad Behavior, showcasing a redefined sound that moves past their fast-paced punk stages to a new age of Broncho. In advance of their show at Johnny Brenda’s tomorrow night, we got Lindsey on the horn. DISCUSSED: paltry streaming royalties, Wayne Coyne, submission, bad behavior, why there is an H in their name, Magic Mark and how it’s a blurry world out there for a pimp.
PHAWKER: What is the meaning behind Broncho? Why the more obscure spelling with an “h?” I’m curious what else was on the list of possible band names?
RYAN LINDSEY: I think there’s a few different stories. [Laughing] There’s a few historians who see this differently. Ultimately, at one point it was the name of a song, and then we needed a band name. Somebody just said, “Let’s just call the band ‘Broncho’, and call the song ‘Pick a Fight.’” The rest fell in line.
PHAWKER: You guys are based in Norman Oklahoma, ancestral home of the Flaming Lips. Do you have a good Flaming Lips or Wayne Coyne story to share?
RYAN LINDSEY: Yeah, Wayne will pop into different places. Oklahoma City is where the Lips live, and they have a whole headquarters there that’s awesome. Very inspirational. Oklahoma in general is a great spot, there’s people doing stuff here.
PHAWKER: The new album is Bad Behavior. What sort of behavior have you and the band been getting into these past years?
RYAN LINDSEY: [Laughing] Listening to our mothers more. Doing what we’re told.
PHAWKER: Well-behaved gentlemen?
RYAN LINDSEY: [Laughing] Yes, it’s all about submission. This record is very submissive.
PHAWKER: What the hell is going on in the cover of the new album Bad Behavior? What is that tongue licking?
RYAN LINDSEY: Jury’s still out on that. I’m still not sure what’s going on.
PHAWKER: “Class Historian” has something like 20 million plays on Spotify. Now that streaming has more or less replaced retail sales, I’m curious what that amounts to in royalties? Most musicians find Spotify’s royalty model to be completely unfair to artists. What are you thoughts on all this?
RYAN LINDSEY: Ultimately, I want people to hear it. So however people are going to hear the music, I think it probably has more to do with the state of the economy. Back when record sales were through the roof it seemed like there was less of a wealth gap. There was more money in the middle class. Now it’s like, shit better be free because no one’s got money for it. I think the problem is elsewhere than with the music stuff. Unless someone is making all of the money and people could be getting a bigger cut…I’m not as well educated on that stuff…but I would definitely be for making sure things are fair when things are getting paid out on streaming services. I would rather somebody hear us. We just wanna be heard!
PHAWKER: What can you tell me about the actor who stars in the “Sandman/Boys Gotta Go” video? He is intense. Where did you find him and how did that video come together?
RYAN LINDSEY: I first met [Mark Ward] probably 10 years ago. I was told there was a party at Magic Mark’s. So I went to this warehouse in Tulsa, and I walk in the warehouse and I realize I’ve been to this place before. One of my uncle’s rented a spot there, where him and his band recorded and it was kind of a total band and art space. It was a great inspiration for me as a kid, and probably one of the biggest influences on me, seeing a spot like that. So then I go back as an adult, I walk in, and Mark’s doing magic. As I was cruising around I meet him, and he immediately starts doing some type of magic for me.
That’s where I met him and we’ve been friends ever since. He’s the type of person who can do anything. Our friend Pooneh [Ghana] who did that video, she met Mark because she came to Tulsa to take some photos of us. Mark was there with us and kind of jumped in and was helping her with whatever she needed. Like, “Hey I need light here,” you know, he would just make it happen. He’s just that type of person. She wanted him for that video, and loved the way he looked, but she had no idea that he knows what he’s doing. He’s a legit talent. There’s so many movies that he should be in, hopefully someone will exploit that. He can also blow things up. He knows explosives, and he can jump in and do pyro.
PHAWKER: What is the last song/album you listened to that blew your mind or changed the way you view the world?
RYAN LINDSEY: I don’t know, I’m always bad at that. I take in music a little unfocused, for that matter, I take all things in a little bit blurry. It’s probably to put my own spin on things, and to maybe not know all the info. You know, I don’t want to know everything that’s going on, but really what direction it’s going in. Also, it’s something that I’m still figuring out or knowing how to talk about. Thus far, it’s been blurry. Cause I never know lyrics to things, but I kind of do know them. I know the melody, and I know there’s certain parts that I can go to with music. It’s a blurry world.