“I always attribute it to luck,” Armisen says of the Portlandia success with co-creator and co-star Carrie Brownstein. “It’s a lucky time for us. We were just very fortunate that it all worked out.”
He also insists that the show is relatable because it can really reflect any group of people in any city, not just Portland. And he does throw it out there that the feminist bookstore ladies are his favorite to play.
Despite Portlandia being pegged as a show that parodies hipsters, Armisen says, “There’s almost no such thing as a hipster,” adding, “I think it’s grownups who yearn for being 27 again. [...] It’s the equivalent of being a beatnik in the the ’60s.”
While the comedian doesn’t usually apply labels to himself, if he had to, he’d use “bodybuilder,” “muscle guy,” “sporty,” and “pushy,” among others of a similar caliber.
Along with Portlandia, he’s also populating another IFC series as the voice of Terry Rosachristas on the animated show, Out There. “It’s kind of like Latino, but hippie Latino,” Armisen says, “which is something that hasn’t been explored that much.”
Finally, since we’ll be streaming live from the Music portion of SXSW for the rest of the week, I ask Fred for his tried and true tips for interviewing music artists. His advice is as follows: always start with a compliment; ask what their roots are; ask about the other band members and then ask about future solo projects. And the test scenario goes off without a hitch!
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