Retiring the Chopstick name

The short: I will no longer be performing under the title of ‘Chopstick’ and will go forward from here using Andrew Wayne, Andrew Wayne is Bored, or some other play on that phrasing. I feel enough people should know me as Andrew Wayne by now so I’m not worried about losing brand loyalty. (Pfft, what loyalty?!)

The long: I’ve been actually debating this for a very long time and have been unconsciously working towards separating myself from the name that was ‘Chopstick.’

A bit of history, the name never really meant anything nor did it have any real significance. I started using it because the Teriyaki place I frequented had packaging on their disposable chopsticks that read ‘chopstick’ in singular form instead of the usual plural form. I liked the vagueness of it and when I started recording my noise and experiments at home I used that. The spelling as ‘chopstik’ was debated but abandoned quickly.

Another silly thing to note, I would actually very often get people to ask me to play chopsticks on piano. It’s not necessarily a big reason to abandon the name, but it was sure annoying to be nice and pretend it was the first time I had heard that joke. “Oh that’s funny” I’d probably say because social anxiety kicks in. Tell them they’re clever, my internal voice goes.

Oddly enough, this was actually one of the first songs I learned to play on the piano when I was a kid. There was that scene from Big where they play Chopsticks on the giant piano in the toy store. Heck, let’s just say this scene introduced me to playing music.

Piano scene from movie Big (1988) - YouTube

Additionally, there was another producer that went by Chopstick, and whenever a new music social media site would pop up, our paths would sometimes cross. I never exchanged ANY dialogue with them. I’m sure they’re super nice and awesome. This Last FM page is a hilarious example of this where I managed to update the title and photo, but all the associated albums are from the producer. And frankly I haven’t been putting out enough material to compete or even try to keep up with an internet presence. To add to that, there’s a new music site every other day so I stopped trying to bother registering Chopstick on every page YEARS ago. They can officially register ‘chopstick’ wherever they want now. Ha!

Project wise, I haven’t put out any real albums in a long while, although I had been recording all of my live material. (That live material I do plan on putting online still at some point in time). The thought of recording a 40-70 minute experience for someone usually felt overwhelming.

I’m doing this for myself and my future as a sound designer and musician. I’m hoping that removing this name will give me the flexibility to do more as a musician, and not just be a “noise guy.”

As a final little treat for you and closure for me, I managed to find a video of the first Chopstick performance ever which was taken at Luna’s Cafe in Sacramento, CA on June 7th, 2006. This was recorded by my friend Matt Steen who has been a fantastic friend over all the years.