Brandon Smith AKA Crandon V. Mittz is truly a character that we all know and love. Whether you've been to a gig that he has put on, seen him doing karaoke in The Orion, he's stolen your lighter or only communicated with you by asking for a cig, we all have some stories.
Have a listen to the full interview to get the real essence of our conversation. Then you can also hear how our outdoor recording got ruined when the heavens opened above us.
His humble beginnings started by just putting on gigs so he could see the bands he really wanted, at that point he had long shaggy hair and had a hankering for screamo. Over the years things haven't really changed, but he has come all the way to curating his own stage at Sounds From The Other City.
"Honoured to have been active in this field for the years that I have, hosting live music in different venues, living rooms, squats and other alternative spaces across the UK. There's nowt I've found more rewarding than creating an environment where people are performing, sound engineers. the audience and everyone involved with these evenings can just have a fucking good time. I've had the privilege of working with a lot of great people, making many great friends and raising thousands of pounds for local charities and causes in the time that I've been doing this."
Above are a just a small selection of the gig posters from the nights that Brandon has worked on, some highlights are: Cocaine Piss, Beige Palace, POSA, Territorial Gobbings, Crywank, The Garden Centre, Mutabase, ALAN and The Early Mornings.
My first experience with Brandon was going to basement shows in Fallowfield in about 2014, probably seeing Crywank or Lugubrious Children and meeting him and Indigo (Granola Suicide) and feeling like I was accepted by these strange etherial wonderful people. Since then, Brandon and myself have played together on a few occasions, most memorably at the first show he put on where we played as an experimental American band, but he was playing bass with a bow and I was doing something unforgivable with effects pedals. Over the years he has put me and my bands on again and again, even if we were shit. But his application and belief in the underground scene in Manchester is what has got him respect from everyone in town.
I think this really was never culminated in a better way than when he put on Belgian punk band Cocaine Piss.
"I think it's situations like that and the general chaotic environments that comes with organising these nights that has been a leading factor in me keeping at this for so long. Like the time I put Cocaine Piss on and my mate lost a tooth in the pit because everyone was being bare rowdy. He came back to the venue the next day to ask if anyone had handed it in. They had not. Pretty hardcore."
I think that says it all.
I could keep on praising him for the work he has done, but really, you should go listen to the interview with him, chatting about all this. It gives lovely little insights into the way it all happened in real time. Then you can hear us getting properly rained on whilst we were recording it outside, that's when the interview truly gets started!