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Featured Show: Insert Coin

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KOXY’s Featured Show for March is Insert Coin with first-year Audrey Villalobos Lily. On one of the first warm days of the spring we chatted in the shade adjacent to Fantastiprov’s Human Petting Zoo about the audio accompanyment of digital beings. Interview by Myka Kielbon.


Myka Kielbon: First off, if you could just tell me about your show.

Audrey Villalobos Lily: I’m a really big geek, I really like video games. So when I wanted to do a radio show I wanted to do it about soundtracks to video games because they range from full-on orchestral soundtracks, like in Skyrim – it’s more modern games like that, I think Zelda now has one.

MK: I’m a big Zelda nerd.

AVL: Oh cool, I am too. Not so much as I used to be, but it always has a place in my heart.

MK: That’s how I feel.

AVL: And then there’s other songs in games that are more – I guess the word for it is chiptune, it’s more like 8-bit, 16-bit, 32-bit.

MK: Is it chiptune in that it’s technically very simple?

AVL: Do you know the series Earthbound?

MK: With Ness?

AVL: Yeah, there’s music in the Mother series is very chiptune-like, you can tell that it’s from a video game. And I really like that. I kind of go back and forth between games like that. I range from old games from the NES in the eighties to modern games like Red Dead Redemption and sometimes even online games that are really popular, like Danganronpa. I did one [show] that was really fun, where it was songs from different dating sims. And sometimes me and friends, after the thirty minute mark, just start talking about the game and what we like about it.

MK: So do you bring your friends on the show a lot?

AVL: Sometimes.

MK: That’s always fun. Have you found that video game focus to be limiting, or that it gives you more territory to explore?

AVL: No, I don’t find it limiting at all because that’s my life. [laughs] That’s really embarrassing.

MK: That’s not embarrassing.

AVL: It’s not limiting at all, I’m never like “oh man, I wish I could’ve done this movie soundtrack instead,” because a lot of soundtracks I like are from video games and I think “wow, I did a game from the Nintendo system in the early nineties and now I’m gonna try and do something completely different next week that’s something from Bioshock,” something that’s modern and different, then go back and forth.

MK: How has coming to college effected your gaming? I know I always had access to consoles and such at my parents’ house, with my siblings, and now I don’t play video games as much.

AVL: I think I got more into it coming to college, because I met more people who can show me different things and are in different communities. We went back and forth and now we share new games. I was never into PC gaming – I’m still not really into PC gaming like like Overwatch, Rainbow Six [Siege], those kind of PC games – but I started playing games on a computer more, I got a Steam account, which opened that up to me. The games I play on my PC are pretty neutral. Do you know what Star Dune Valley is?

MK: No, I don’t know anything about PC gaming.

AVL: If you know what Harvest Moon is –

MK: Oh, I love Harvest Moon.

AVL: It’s like Harvest Moon but modern and maybe a little bit more adult. It’s simple stuff like that. I’ve broadened my horizons since coming here.


MK: How have video games affected your music taste? For example, I know for a lot of people the Tony Hawk soundtrack was pivotal.

AVL: And Jet Set Radio – I miss Jet Set Radio now that I’m thinking about that. My cousins had a Sega DreamCast and that’s all we would play growing up. It’s definitely made me like electronic, upbeat music. Like music that’s in Dance Dance Revolution, that’s something that I’m into now, and I probably would not have been as much into it. I would say that my music taste is pretty bad, compared to what an average person would consider good or bad, because when I talk to people and they bring up music, they usually bring up rap or something with meaning behind it, has inspirational lyrics and motivates people. Mine’s just – no lyrics, a beat that’s catchy – and I like it.

MK: Well the whole point of that is that it is motivating you to play the game, to get to the end.

AVL: Well, it makes me happy too. Especially music in Pikmin. It’s really serene. Even though you’re getting eaten by bugs, but it’s ok. The game makes you think otherwise.

MK: Like a joyful being eaten by bugs.

AVL: Exactly.

MK: Do you think that your show has interplay with nostalgia?

AVL: Definitely. Definitely, definitely, definitely. Well, it’s hard to say. Because watching a movie and thinking it’s great through nostalgia goggles is something not uncommon. Like I didn’t watch the Goonies growing up, but I watched it recently and thought “this isn’t that good,” but people love it because they grew up with it as a kid.

But with video games you think back on it and think “wow, that was a great game” but then you replay it and think “oh my god, why did I ever like this?” and it’s ruined. So sometimes there’s games that you don’t want to replay because you want to keep that good memory in your head. With music you can like a song as a kid and listen to it later on and be like “wow I still love this” and it’s awful. Like the Jonas Brothers. I love some of their music still and it’s only because of the nostalgia factor. It’s really bad music.

MK: When you said Dance Dance Revolution it made me think of that Cascadia song – “Every Time We Touch.” You know, that song is in one of the DDRs and it’s a bad song –

AVL: But it’s catchy! Like oonce-oonce-oonce-oonce-oonce so you keep listening to it.


MK: What other things are you involved with at Oxy?

AVL: I’m an illustrator at the Occidental Weekly, I’m a part of QTPOC – Queer Trans People of Color. And then I’ve been applying for jobs – hopefully as a tour guide. For my classes, I’m majoring in DWA and Group Language. Unless you talk to me intently, I’m not a person you look at and think “wow, they’re a total weeb.” I like to think that I’m that way, that you just don’t see me and go “they watch anime.”

MK: No one wants to be that person – I’m an East Asian Studies minor, I understand.

AVL: When you get to talk to me, you get to realize that I’m a really big nerd. I can come off really intimidating at first, I know, because there’s people I’m friends with now that say “when I first met you, you were a bitch” and I’m like “well, thanks.” Next year, for example, I’m outreaching from my major and taking a fun class for my fine arts core and it’s about analyzing and critiquing video games and analog games – like boards games.

MK: Yeah, take more classes outside your major. Highly recommend.

AVL: It’s just hard being a double major.

MK: Definitely, but you’ve got a lot ahead of you. So, would you say you’ve found a community in KOXY? Because you do your show alone, and that’s what I did my freshman year, and I was like “I can’t find any friends.”

AVL: I guess I nod heads at and wave at people before and after me. I’m really good friends with one person on KOXY, Dahlia [Theriault].

MK: We’re on staff together.

AVL: There are some people, but I wouldn’t say my whole friend group is on KOXY –

MK: It’s scary if they are, let me tell you.

AVL: But it’s definitely something that I wouldn’t give up. There’s nothing bad that came out of it, it’s all been good.

MK: Well I’m glad to hear that.


Tune in to Insert Coin Thursdays at 8:00 on KOXY Radio.

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