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After A Year Off, King Wylde Is Back With A New EP

The Ames musician King Wylde has made great strides in the past year, both as a musician and as a person. He's May's "Artist of the Month."

A year of self-isolation has given all of us, among other things, time to reflect and take stock of our lives. For Rudy Miller of Ames, who makes music under the name King Wylde, it had an impact on his music as well.

King Wylde has released music both as a solo artist, and with the Des Moines rapper MarKaus. His debut EP, “Faultless,” came out earlier this year, along with a music video for the song "Love Me Again." And now, King Wylde is the Artist of the Month for May, in a collaboration between the Des Moines Music Coalition, Good Morning Iowa, and IPR.

Those who have seen King Wylde perform with MarKaus will remember him well for his brilliant and flashy guitar playing. The sound on his EP is quite different, drawing upon his earlier influences from his childhood and his more modern R&B sensibilities.

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courtesy of Rudy Miller
Rudy Miller, known professionally as King Wylde, on the set of the music video for "Love Me Again."

“As an artist, I like to think I’m always changing. I think it’s a reflection of my younger self, and the things I used to listen to,” he said, specifically mentioning alternative rock and “post-hardcore” as the music he listened to while younger. “It’s important to grow and leave room for change.”

King Wylde was forced to cancel a planned summer tour last year as a result of the pandemic. He spent his suddenly abundant free time working out, reading, and playing video games with his brother. He also found time to write and record new music.

“I did a lot of self-reflection, and thinking about what I want out of life, and my future,” he said. “With a lot of free time, it gives you a lot of time to think, and you can think yourself into a dark pit, or you can really focus on the things you like and dislike about yourself, and figure out how to become the person you want to be. It was a bummer to not be able to play shows, but I feel like I’ve grown a lot as a human being and as a musician.”

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Madeleine King
King Wylde performing with MarKaus, at the 80/35 Music Festival in 2019.

King Wylde’s new mindset has informed the new music he’s written, which he’s planning to release later this year. He’s also tried to capture the energy of his live performances, saying that playing live is “where his heart is.”

“I spent a lot of time thinking about the emotion, and the vibe and the energy, that I want my songs to give off. I want that to equal my stage energy, and feel that through my music as well,” he said. “I think everybody tries to be different, but I really try to push it to the next level.”

The “Faultless” EP is available on Bandcamp and Spotify. King Wylde will be performing at xBk in Des Moines on June 11, and at the Iowa Juneteenth Music Festival, on June 19.