Hector of “The Hanged Man,” on how growing up among weird spiritual/pseudo-mystical traditions, a chance meeting at a bar and a really nice divorce lawyer made for a unique new show.
as told to Michele Carlo
RFB: I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a radio show doing tarot reading-related playlists. What made you think of combining the two and what/who were your influences (if any)?
HM: I got the idea for the show from my ex-wife’s divorce attorney. Really nice guy, and a great divorce attorney. And seriously, I’ve had a love for freeform radio since I was in college; the tarot concept allows me the freedom to (hopefully) keep from being predictable in what I play while also giving the show an overall theme, or, if I were to be crass about it, a “hook.” I wouldn’t say that I developed an interest in tarot specifically growing up, but the city I’m from [in Texas] is suffused with weird spiritual/pseudo-mystical traditions so I can’t see how that wouldn’t have had an effect on me. I myself am not an especially spiritual person, although I do have relatives who speak in tongues and I respect their dedication.
RFB: Why RFB for your platform? What was it about the station that attracted you?
HM: It was a chance meeting, really. Started talking to Calvin (host of Lush Vibes Radio) at a bar because he’s friends with the bartender and I was in the middle of a conversation with her about a topic that is lost to history (probably The Mountain Goats or something like that). He made it sound like something worth doing. I then went to a few media mixers and liked the general vibe, so I decided to see if there was a place for me on the air… which apparently there was! To me, Brian Turner is the platonic ideal of a freeform DJ and ideally I want to be doing something that measures up to the standard he set at WFMU. So far I am a comprehensive failure in that regard, but I figure I have about five years to get it right before human civilization collapses (or I die of a preventable disease).
RFB: Who would your dream guest(s) be and what would you hope listeners take away from each show?
HM: Mostly I just hope listeners enjoy the music I play and don’t find me totally unbearable as a personality. If I had to pick between the two I’d choose the former. As my ex-wife’s divorce attorney put it, “there’s always going to be people who dislike you, so there’s no point worrying about it too much. Now sign here and initial here.”
As for dream guests… so far, other than friends who would drop in on previous radio shows that I’ve done, I’ve had one guest on any radio show I’ve done, ever: Henrik Berggren of Broder Daniel on episode two of The Hanged Man. If you listen to that show, it is extremely obvious that I’d never actually interviewed anyone before. The point is, that if any of the following were to appear on my show I would thoroughly embarrass myself, so: Mark E. Smith, David Berman and Cormac McCarthy. Obviously, though, the first two are dead—so Cormac, if you’re out there—apparently my uncle and you used to live in the same neighborhood, so we’d have at least one thing to talk about. Hit me up!