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Nardwuar is the greatest interviewer of all time.
With an unparalleled commitment to research, Vancouver-born John Ruskin has interviewed some of the biggest musicians on the planet, including Snoop Dogg, Kurt Cobain, Lady Gaga, and yes, even Mikhail Gorbachev. This self-proclaimed “Human Serviette” has a reputation for digging deep in his pre-interview homework, regularly surprising his subjects with obscure trivia and rare gifts. The most common reaction to one of Nardwuar’s questions is an eyes-widened, deadpan reflexive response: “How did you know that?” Nard does his homework.
Some of Nardwuar’s best interviews over the years have taken place at SXSW in Austin, where he’s become a photo-op fixture of the festival. Just search Twitter for “Nardwuar SXSW,” and you’ll find a flurry of selfies festival-goers have taken with the plaid-sporting human music encyclopedia. This year in Austin, it looks like he’s already linked up with Just Blaze, Juice, and Kali Uchis, and we can’t wait to see who else he might track down.
When you get interviewed by Nardwuar, you know you’ve made it. Check out 10 of his best SXSW interviews below, along with a Nard-nugget of knowledge revealed in each meeting.