Role Model Explains How His New Album ‘Rx’ Was Inspired By His Girlfriend

I want something on the radio. I want that to happen without ever bringing a writer into a room. I actually had a breakdown about this: Interscope would put me in a room with these amazing writers, and it never worked for me. I always end up questioning myself. All my favorite songs take me 10 minutes. I write all my own songs alone.

I also want to act. I auditioned for the role of Elliot in Euphoria. Dominic Fike did a great job, but I was up for that role. Before the audition, I studied for two weeks and locked myself in my apartment. I want to go into acting alongside my music career. I’m excited about this album, though. I’m excited for it to be out.

Are you going to blast your music out on TikTok?

I have such strong feelings about TikTok. I have seen it ruin really amazing careers that were just getting started, and all of a sudden they get a viral song and shit just ends. I’ve posted my music on TikTok before, but I usually delete it. My label tells me to post [on TikTok]. I get it. If I was a label, I would tell artists that too. That’s their job. TikTok isn’t about longevity, though. TikTok is depressing.

What do you do when you’re depressed?

I get high and watch movies. I’m a classic A24 boy. I also generally have to take care of myself because I’m diabetic. It impacts my life a lot. Touring is a nightmare. I downplay everything to make people not worry, but it definitely could take years off my life. I met Este Haim at a festival recently, and she has diabetes too. I had been trying to contact her for years! I wish more people with diabetes talked about it. I’m Type I. Type II is fake. I don’t believe in it. Type I is the one where you have to have shit hooked up. I’m trying to talk about it more. It just takes so much coordination when I’m on tour.

How do you feel about touring?

I love touring. I get to hide in my bus then pop out and get a bunch of validation, but traveling with diabetes is hard.

Who is your dream to work with? Tyler. I want to produce with him.

What’s the story behind all your tattoos?

People with tattoos love to talk about their tattoos. You know, they’re like, “Hey.” I’m like, “How are you?” And then they’re like, “Oh, this one? This is my grandfather who passed away last year. It like, really fucked me up.” It’s like, shut the fuck up.

Should we get matching tattoos tonight? Let’s get matching GQ tattoos. I feel like I would be good at working at GQ.

Are you going to get an Emma tattoo?

Yes, but I won’t say which one.

You should keep some things a secret forever, by the way.

Yeah, it’s a secret.

This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

Styled by Edwin Ortega

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