Roger Sellers is not a DJ. He never was. And, now he is no longer Roger Sellers…sort of. Sellers is now performing his electronic music under the name Bayonne. There are several reasons for this, but at least now, there will be less confusion when someone goes to check out a ‘Roger Sellers’ show, expecting electronic music and witnesses an acoustic set.
Words & Photos By Eric Morales
We are sitting on the back patio of Rio Rita’s, our usual spot for drinks, snacks and conversation. We’ve known each other for some time, and we’ve been all across the country together on both East and West Coast tours. We skip the details and dive right into bigger ideas.
“I think we’re in a golden age of media,” Roger says. “There’s so much great shit everywhere. So many artists. Television shows are like movies now, so incredibly made.”
The single responsible entity for all of this faces little dispute.
“The internet,” he says. “There’s a lot of things that do suck about it, but it’s collectively come together and the best of the best are working together now. People are sharing ideas more than ever, and there’s this ‘same idea’ that we’re all working toward.”
Roger feels that if his album had come out five years earlier, it may not have been as well received. But, because of the internet, people are more open to new and strange things. That’s just speculation. What we know is that people are gravitating toward this new and interesting sound that Bayonne provides.
Bayonne is also signed to a mindie (major indie label), and he now has a team guiding his every step. Everything is in place, but there is no guarantee.
“The whole team is there. It’s just a matter of ‘can we do it’? Can this be a reality? Can it be prolonged?” Roger takes it one day at a time.
When asked about Austin, and why he’s decided to stick around his response is simple, and humble: “The crowd in Austin really gives a shit. Austin has been very kind. I’ve lucked out. That’s all I can really say about it.”
“If you have nothing going, it doesn’t mean you suck,” Roger adds, thinking of other musicians who may be up and coming and struggling in such competitive territory. “It just means crowds are tough, the industry is tough. Keep pushing, work on your craft. Play and share as much as possible.”
“I did it for 6 years without getting paid,” he says. Roger was able to quit his day job making sandwiches at Thundercloud Sub’s just last year and is just now able to make a modest living off his music. “I think this is where the actual work comes in.”
The work isn’t just about music and industry. There are lessons to be learned about being human. He talks about his experiences opening for bigger acts like Khaki King, Ghostland Observatory, Battles and more. “It’s always nice when a headlining artist reaches out to you. That always means something because I know how tired they are,” Roger says.
Aaron Behrens of Ghostland spent 45 minutes chatting with Roger before a show, asking questions about Mom and Pop, swapping stories. “He was just so involved and sweet. If nothing else, that teaches me that if I’m ever to make it to a certain point, I want to be that way to others. I want people to say ‘Yeah, he’s actually a really sweet, awesome dude.’”
Keep an eye out for Bayonne’s album Primitives to be released under Mom and Pop Records in February before it is released worldwide.