John Roderick (musician)

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John Roderick
John Roderick
Background information
Born (1968-09-13) September 13, 1968 (age 48)
Seattle, United States
Genres Indie rock, alternative rock
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards
Years active 1998–present
Labels Barsuk Records
Associated acts The Long Winters, Western State Hurricanes, Bun Family Players, Harvey Danger, Jonathan Coulton
Website Official website
MySpace Page
The Long Winters Library and Archive

John Roderick is an American musician, writer, podcaster, and politician. Born in Seattle, Washington, he grew up in Anchorage, Alaska, where as a young man he worked as a sluice box mucker for a gold mining operation in the area. He is currently the lead singer and guitarist in the band The Long Winters and was formerly a touring member of the band Harvey Danger. He is also a frequent guest musician on recordings by other bands, appearing on the Death Cab for Cutie album Transatlanticism, the Nada Surf album The Weight Is a Gift, The Decemberists album Picaresque, and the David Bazan album Curse Your Branches, as well as recordings by BOAT, Visqueen, Say Hi, Denver Dalley, Shelby Earl and Ken Stringfellow. He collaborated with Jonathan Coulton for Coulton's album, Artificial Heart, released in September 2011[1] and a duo album called One Christmas at a Time in November 2012. Roderick became a founding member of the Seattle Music Commission in 2010.[2]


In June 2006, Roderick covered the Bonnaroo festival as a correspondent for CMJ magazine, and then reprised his role for MSNBC the following year. He has also written about music and film for The Stranger and in early 2008 began writing a weekly column for the Seattle Weekly.[3]

Roderick is a frequent collaborator with 826 Seattle, hosting the event People Talking and Singing[4] with Dave Eggers in 2007, and teaching a course in writing called How to Write Like I Do.[5] in 2009. Roderick also took part in the Revenge of the Bookeaters tour appearing at the Beacon Theater for 826NYC[6] and at Park West for 826 Chicago.[7]

Roderick has also appeared with John Hodgman and longtime Hodgman accomplice Jonathan Coulton at shows in Seattle, Portland and Los Angeles. Roderick is a frequent guest on Oregon Public Broadcasting's Live Wire Radio and on KEXP. He narrated the Venue Songs for They Might Be Giants at the Moore Theatre, appeared with Hodgman on Minnesota Public Radio's program Wits, and has performed readings of his own prose at John Wesley Harding's Cabinet of Wonders in Seattle and NYC.

Roderick is the son of Washington state legislator David Roderick.[8]

Roderick was voted #3 on Seattle's "Sexiest Man" list of 2006.[9]

His first book of extremely short prose, Electric Aphorisms, was published in November 2009.

In 2010, Roderick collaborated on the project Mt. Desolation with Keane's Tim Rice-Oxley and Jesse Quin.[10] He also toured with John Hodgman on Hodgman's book tour, filling in for Hodgman's normal musical act, Jonathan Coulton.

In September 2011, Roderick began co-hosting Roderick on the Line, a podcast with Merlin Mann.[11]

In June 2012, he toured with Coulton as the opening act for Coulton's Artificial Heart tour, and provided the lead vocals for the track "Nemeses" from that album.

In January 2013, Roderick guest starred as the "Expert Witness" in two episodes of John Hodgman's comedy/court show podcast Judge John Hodgman.[12][13] He also served as "Guest Bailiff" on the same podcast for two episodes in April 2014: "Episode 154: Visitation Rights"[14] and "Episode 155: The Perp Walk."[15]

Roderick co-wrote two songs with Kathleen Edwards on her 2011 album Voyageur. "Soft Place to Land", co-written by Edwards and Roderick, won the 2012 SOCAN Songwriting Prize.[16]

In April 2015, Roderick announced that he would run for Seattle City Council.[17][18] While his campaign was eventually unsuccessful, Roderick stated he will stay "committed to a better city".[19]


  1. ^ First Track from Artificial Heart
  2. ^ The Seattle Music Commission
  3. ^ John Roderick's column at the Seattle Weekly
  4. ^ "People Talking and Singing – Official Website". November 8, 2007. Retrieved 2013-09-10. 
  5. ^ "How To Write Like I Do – 826 Seattle Adult Workshops Series". Retrieved 2013-09-10. 
  6. ^ "826NYC". 826NYC. Retrieved 2013-09-10. 
  7. ^ "A Non-Profit Writing & Tutoring Center in Chicago". 826CHI. Retrieved 2013-09-10. 
  8. ^ Eskenazi, Stuart (December 26, 2007). "Local News | Former legislator David Roderick dead at 86 | Seattle Times Newspaper". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2013-09-10. 
  9. ^ Smyers, Darryl (November 30, 2012). "The Long Winters' John Roderick Talks Christmas Music, Becoming Mayor of Seattle". The Dallas Observer. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  10. ^ Mt. Desolation's Official Blog
  11. ^ "Roderick on the Line". Merlin Mann. Retrieved 2013-09-10. 
  12. ^ MaxFun Intern (January 16, 2013). "Judge John Hodgman Episode 93: Rhapsody in Blue". Maximum Fun. Retrieved 2013-01-14. 
  13. ^ MaxFun Intern (January 23, 2013). "Judge John Hodgman Episode 94: Bleached and Mounted Bones of Contention". Maximum Fun. Retrieved 2013-01-14. 
  14. ^ "Judge John Hodgman Episode 154: Visitation Rights". Maximum Fun. April 2, 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-09. 
  15. ^ "Judge John Hodgman Episode 155: The Perp Walk". Maximum Fun. April 9, 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-09. 
  16. ^ Wheeler, Brad (October 19, 2012). "Kathleen Edwards, John Roderick". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved December 20, 2012. 
  17. ^ Groover, Heidi (April 6, 2015). "Musician John Roderick to Run for Citywide Council Seat". The Stranger. Retrieved April 6, 2015. 
  18. ^ Twitter
  19. ^ "Roderick's first concession tweet following his unsuccessful political campaign". Twitter. 6 August 2015. 

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