normal fauna FAqs
Q: How did you come up with the name Normal Fauna?
A: I used to do medical transcription and frequently transcribed the results of cultures, which grow out "normal flora" if they are negative for infection. One day I told my partner and he said, "You mean as opposed to normal fauna?" and thus a music nym was born. The idea, of course, is that "normal fauna," as such, don't really exist. Added bonus: Fauna can be singular or plural, so I can bring in other musicians and we can all be Normal Fauna.
Q: But why not just use your name, Andee Joyce, instead of Normal Fauna?
A: I have been known to perform as either one, and when I play solo, I don't have a problem being booked under my actual name if that is what the booker prefers. But part of why I associate my music with the nym Normal Fauna is that I also have an identity as a writer (of prose) under the name Andee Joyce, and Normal Fauna will make it easier for people who are looking up my music to find it. Also, let's be real, Normal Fauna looks cooler on a T-shirt (and there are going to be T-shirts). But please do call me Andee (not Fauna!).
Q: What are your musical and lyrical influences?
A: I have so many! Probably thousands. But I don't take in influences the same way a lot of people do, in terms of mimicking that person's style. Instead, I'll wind up taking in just one part of it and integrating it (sometimes without realizing it) into what I'm doing. For example, I love Laura Nyro but I don't sound much like her at all. I did incorporate her sense of dynamics and drama and her note-bending phrasing into what I'm doing. Likewise, my lyrics don't sound that much like The Clash's or Harry Nilsson's, but both were early influences in the sense of opening up what you could write a song about, and how. (Nilsson had a top-ten hit about a stomachache!)
Q: If you could listen to one type of music all day, which would you pick?
A: Early '70s soul music (Motown, Philly, etc.).
Q: I noticed that in some of your photos and videos you are wearing sunglasses indoors. Why?
A: Those actually are not sunglasses, they are prescription eyeglasses with what is called an FL-41 (salmon colored) tint. Thanks to these lenses, migraines (which I used to get at least once a month) are a thing of the past! Typically I wear them when there is bright stage or outdoor lighting, or I need to be able to read a phone or computer. I do sometimes go without glasses on stage or in photos, and wear a brimmed hat to block the light, or I wear distance vision glasses with a lighter pink tint. But when I wear the dark lenses, it's not so I can look cool, although I'll cop to being happy not to futz around as much with eye makeup.
Q: Are you the same Andee Joyce who wrote the young adult novel THE AMY VIRUS that was featured on the Multnomah County (Portland, OR) Overdrive e-book system in 2017?
A: Yes! And a paper version (more condensed than the original) will be forthcoming from Autonomous Press. When I have an official pub date I will let y'all know.
Q: There's also an Andee Joyce on the Oregon Council on Developmental Disabilities, is that you?
A: Indeed it is! I was the first openly autistic member of the council, and now there are five of us. I did a presentation for the 2018 Breaking Barriers conference with other Council members, in a breakout session called "Ideas Worth Sharing," where we all told our stories. A lot of my evolution as an artist has come as a result of getting well steeped in disability issues. My autism affects all my signal processing, including music signals, often in delightful ways!