Article Title:LarzRanda Bares All
Author or Credit:By
Published on:30th January 2016 - 03:15 pm
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Story ID:17847
Text:Mainard Larkin, who performs under the name LarzRanda, came out as trans in 2013 and has been taking the local music scene by storm. His new video, made by the award-winning duo Thunderlips is a personal tale of angst and unrequited and shows Mainard bearing his chest post-surgery. FORT*WORTH by Alan Waddingham The track came to life from humble beginnings, “The man Tom Dennison sent me some loops he had produced by sampling the sounds from Golden Eye (a PS1 game). I began writing the night before we went into the studio to do vocal takes,” says LarzRanda. “The process was super organic, jamming ideas for the fun of it!” After laying down the track the video followed suit, “My lovely friend, Alan was leaving for an overseas trip and hit me up about making a vid the week before he left. I believe it was his idea to shoot in Sean’s office. “Both Sean and Jordan thought it would be really rad to do a one shot project. The thought of hanging out with all my pals from Candlelit sounded too swell! The first thing we did on shoot day was eat quarter pounders with steamed buns.” The result was a very humble and groundbreaking video (check it out below) and the homegrown rapper says just like the creation of the track, the video shoot was also organic. “We had a setting and a loose concept, but no storyboard or set order to how each shot would play out,” he says. “It was quite a cathartic performance and I guess exposing my chest felt like a natural progression. I remember someone suggesting it and thinking it would feel really right because rapping the lyrics had already made me feel really bare.” The lyrics for Turtles express an intense vulnerability, we are offered a glimpse into the life of LarzRanda, it is the visuals for the track which turn this vulnerability into a strength. “I guess I always try to write about subjects which feel meaningful but Turtles was more personal and showed a little more vulnerability I guess. It was the first time I wrote about heart ache from my own perspective as opposed to a character’s.” explains LarzRanda. Having come out openly as trans, LarzRanda is often labelled as a “transgender rapper”, his identity written as a precursor to his art. “I figure so long as I concentrate on making the best work possible then it won’t really matter at the end of the day,” he says, explaining it’s something which is out of his control “…unlike my own creative productivity.” “If the title “transgender” opens people up to queer identities or makes someone out there feel less alone then I think that is real real rad!” The music industry can be a cut throat place but LarzRanda says for the most part he has had a positive experience coming out publicly. “I’ve received a massive amount of love and support which has been a real blessing. There will always be folks here or there who don’t fully understand but I’m really lucky not to have come across a lot of that!” His advice to other young trans guys who are trying to find themselves and be comfortable in their own skin? “Firstly, I have to acknowledge how lucky I am and that my experience as a trans person has been really rad compared to some many others within the community!” he admits. “If I could offer advice, I would say pat yourself on the back man! Growing up as a trans person is really challenging, all of the things in which you’re facing are ultimately going to shape who you are in a way that is super rare and special. In saying that, it’s totally normal to feel hopeless when you’re dealing with dysphoria in a world which is still progressing. It’s really important to surround yourself with people who accept you for who you are and how you identify. Being trans means you have a totally unique way of looking at the world. For a long time I didn’t realise that living freely as the person I was inside was possible ­ but it was, and it is for you too! “Also, if there is anyone out there who would like someone to talk to about these things, totally feel free to get in touch via the internets yo.” Be sure to check out the video for LarzRanda’s track Turtles below and keep an ear out for a show near you, he assures us the future is offering up a feast; “Delicious felt drawings of fast food cups, shows in different area codes and some new releases also! Hastings, Dunedin, Wellington... look out!” *Photo credit for front page image: Cameron Robinson Photography     - 30th January 2016
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