Once upon a time, a little girl said, “Why not both?” in an ad for taco shells – and it made the world realize that life isn’t about this or that. That sentiment applies to so many avenues, but today we’re applying it to music due to the international combination that SIDE DƟƟR and Andy Fonda are bringing to the table with their stellar collaboration on their new single, “Y Tu Que.” SIDE DƟƟR sat down to talk to us about how the connection was made, and what’s next for this perfect pairing.
Kendra: You met through music almost several years ago, but what brought about this new musical union?
SIDE DƟƟR: In late 2022 I started writing some new material for potential future SIDE DƟƟR releases. I wanted to write in French this time only. The first line that I had was a quote from the last book of a French essayist Jean d’Ormesson in Provençale (dialect spoken in the South East of France) that said, “Sine Soleo Sileo,” which roughly means in English, “Without the sun I keep silent.”
I then quickly realized that I wanted to pair some Latin-rooted languages with French and have an excuse to do some featuring. But this time instead of writing the whole song I would leave half of it open for lyrics as well as melody in order to create something totally different that I could not have done on my own. Andy was the first artist I thought of knowing that he was writing at times in Spanish and it made sense to share that one with him (which would become the second single coming out next year) and a second tune came very short after (this one) so we decided to collaborate on both of them at the same time.
Kendra: Being that you two have a creative history, what sort of growth did you notice in one another when you two connected again?
SIDE DƟƟR: We worked on that music separately at first not really giving each other any notes back, leaving as much freedom as possible. Then when we met up to finish the tunes we realized we had a very similar approach to writing. We only had played a few things here and there in each other’s solo records so far so this was the first time we were actually creating something together. We both learn a lot in the process. I think the song would not have gone in the same direction without it and that’s the magic of collaborating on something.
Kendra: You two are making a fusion of sorts blending Spanish and French, on “Y Tu Que,” which is out now. Being a foodie, I have to know what Spanish and French cuisines would you marry in one dish that would be the most comparable to what you’ve done in the studio together?
SIDE DƟƟR: Haha that’s a great question. I’ve been working the past year on blending French and Guatemalan food together with my ex. Andy is originally from Costa Rica, I’m not that familiar with the cuisine over there but between Central America and France, we realized that there is this one dish in common called Poulet à la crème et champignons (Pollo y Crema) which is pretty much the same thing: chicken mushroom in cream. I don’t know who is the chicken and who’s the cream, I’ll let the audience decide.
Kendra: You noted that in the past 365 days, writing half songs had been your approach. Did ‘yTu Que’ start out as just that?
SIDE DƟƟR: I first released an EP on my own in 2020; then shortly after a second one I fully wrote and played but featuring female vocals; then I wanted to do something different so I did a cover EP. The last release I did was writing half of a record for the SIDE DƟƟR & DARTA LA album earlier this year. Next move I wanted to apply the surrealistic technique called “Exquisite Corpses,” where everyone makes a piece and you attach it all at the end. Without going too deep into it, I chose to do it with one person at a time. Andy was first on the list and those 2 tunes (“Y Tu Que” and then our second single ”Sine Soleo Sileo”) came first.
Kendra: Los Angeles is where you two are based at the moment and it’s no secret it’s one of the most popular cities for creative-minded people. With that, do you have plans to add more layers as you two move forward – like adding more international artists into the mix?
SIDE DƟƟR: I’m planning on finishing some more songs with the same technique next year pairing myself with more international artists. I already have a few tunes done so I’m trying to figure out, as I said before, which format it will be released under (either an EP or a few more singles blending French with Italian and with Portuguese for now).
Kendra: Time for a side note – with it being November it being a month we give thanks, I’m asking everyone this…what is one album you’re grateful for, an album that inspired you to do what you’re currently doing right now as an artist?
SIDE DƟƟR: There are so many records that inspired me obviously throughout the years. Lately, I’ve been taking more inspiration outside of music. But that being said, maybe “Figure 8” by Elliott Smith is a record that pushed me to do my solo music when it was the right time to do so. I was only playing and writing with bands before so I think I needed that during the pandemic to process what I had to process. Elliott Smith represented that melancholic poetry that spoke to me right away the first time I heard him.
Kendra: Lastly, with ‘Y Tu Que’ out now, can you let the people know what else is to come from you two musically?
SIDE DƟƟR: Andy is working on a solo record for next year (English and Spanish) where I played some bass; he also just released an album with his band James Supercave in October this year.
For SIDE DƟƟR we have a second single with Andy Fonda coming out at some point in February 2024 with hopefully either a filmed live in studio performance for both songs and/or an actual show for later on. I’m also planning on finishing some more songs next year with the same approach. On a different note, I’m releasing another single with my band CARRÉ and a second EP. Then I’m a part of 2 more bands in Los Angeles (you said it before “the most popular city for creative-minded people”): Low Hum and Dream Phases which both have a full length coming out in 2024. Lastly, I might put out an anti-Valentine EP on February 14th next year but we’ll see.