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Bright Idea - Ragamuffs






In this episode we hang out with Ragamuffs chatting about zombies, hidden talents, influences and the future.

Join us on a journey through Hawaii as we interview local creatives to get to know them outside of the usual Q & As. Home to a population of diverse culture, our community of artists mix it up from influences around the world. Hawaii may be small in size but packed full of talent. First up to bat, Ragamuffs, an indie pop duo with UK/Australia indie vibes. These fluffy kittens are the quirk to your ambivert. Their energy on stage will cause your body to start moving uncontrollably. 

Joseph Carag and Hailey Fines became music partners at a young age when they discovered their similar taste in sounds. They started out in 2016 as a duo and are sometimes joined by homies Locke Nishihara bangin’ on drums and Landan Tolentino slappin’ the bass. Their first album Achy Luminescence can be categorized as Indie-Rock, but when you get down to the details you see they add in a mix of pop and folk vocals. They’re so cool that you might even call them an “Indie-rock Popsicle”.

Hear them on Spotify

See them on YouTube

Weapon of choice during a zombie apocalypse and why?

Hailey Fines: If we were in a zombie apocalypse, I would have a samurai sword as a weapon. I was thinking about this and guns. You can shoot them and it’s good for far away shots. 

Joseph Carag: But you see guns, they run out of bullets.

HF: Yeah, they run out of bullets.

JC: What would you do with a gun after?

HF: Bow and arrows; you have to go and grab your arrow after.

JC: Honestly…

HF: Well Zombies move slow

JC: Well if it’s World War Z zombies, we’re like dead.

HF: I forgot, do those move fast?

JC: Yeah, there’s the one that just rush you. I would do an axe or samurai sword.

HF: That’s heavy. I would do, yeah, some kind of samurai sword or some kind of sword; so I can just carry right here.

JC: Yeah, like a light saber.

HF: And it’s long enough so like [you can] stab them.

JC: Stab ‘em to the head. Maybe I’ll just hug the zombies to love them; show them how to love.

HF: I think a sword is good.

HF: I’m Hailey.

JC: I’m Joseph.

HF: We’re Ragamuffs. We are an indie rock/pop bedroom/pop duo from Honolulu, Hawaii.

JC: Nice, that was a good one.

What is a ragamuff?

HF: Our band name comes from the word ragamuffin which means like a street child or raggedy child and it’s also a type of fluffy kitten if you google it.

JC: Nice fluffy kitten.

HF: Yeah, we got it from a song; our favorite soul song called Ragamuffin by Selah Sue.

Indie rock pop duo Ragamuffs posing during a photo shoot with a yellow backdrop.
Courtesy of Ragamuffs

Who’s the mexican mango?

JC: That’s a good question.

HF: What’s a mexican mango Jo?

JC: Mexican mango derived from our relationship of sweet and sour moments of life. Hailey is a mexican mango. She took a DNA test and she’s 50% mango and 50% mexican. I’m just joking.

HF: Nah but yeah, he wrote that song. He wrote it about me and the times that I get angry. But he still loves me at the end of the day.

JC: Yeah good times.

HF: Thanks a lot. No, I’m just kidding.

If you had to perform in another musical genre, what would it be?

JC: Hailey and I were talking one day and were like, “Joe, you’re such a good rapper.”

HF: Mmmm...oh my gosh.

JC: So I’d probably would have went to do some rapping and some R & B. For real.

HF: Why don’t you freestyle right now then?

JC: Hip hop!

HF: Free style beat box

JC: No no no, not on the spot! Not on the spot.

HF: I’m just kidding.

HF: For me, if it’s like another genre I’d probably wanna make soul music. I love soul music. Some vocalists that I look up to are Sarah Bareilles, Amy Winehouse; or folky stuff like Norah Jones. We were like thinking of making a fake rap artist and doing a Ragamuffs featuring and then warp your voice or something so no one knows it’s you.

JC: Lower the voice a little bit or heighten it.

HF: That’s funny.

The Ragamuffs are the love child of which two musical artists?

HF: If Ragamuffs came from two artists, I would say it derived from Arctic Monkeys is one. This is such a hard question. But yeah, Arctic Monkeys...

JC: ...and San Cisco. So we generally we do UK indie and Australian indie a lot. That’s one or two of our favorite bands from different countries.

HF: Yeah, that more grungy feel combined with the surf rock. Yeah.

JC: Surf yeah

HF: Like poppy, upbeat, feel good, indie rock.

If you could go on tour with any artist (dead or alive), who would it be?

HF: If we could tour with any artist (dead or alive) right now, we’re like thinking cause our influences are different from people we would be compatible with. So Boy Pablo is one. 

JC: Boy Pablo, The Greeting Committee, 

HF: Beabadoobee; that would be fun.

JC: Arctic Monkeys or San Cisco.

HF: They seem quirky and down to earth.

JC: Yeah.

HF: Yeah. Touring’s a long time so yeah.

Any hidden talents?

HF: For me, my hidden talent. I’m really good at Microsoft PowerPoint. It’s so random. I’ve always spent a lot of time doing random stuff on Microsoft and just playing with it. So I’m really good at making fancy PowerPoints and I’ve designed like bunch of graphics through PowerPoint also.

JC: You even made our single through that.

HF: I think partially. But in highschool I designed our highschool t-shirts with PowerPoint but no one knows. You can do a lot.

JC: For me, I actually could back up really well on a car, or a truck, or a handivan. I’ve tried it many times.

HF: You banged something the other day.

JC: No I never.

HF: You banged the rental car.

JC: No I was turning; it’s not backing up. But backing up I can go really fast. Backing up. Yeah, Hailey’s house is like a narrow driveway and there’s so many cars sometimes. And a couple times when I’m really scared to go home, I would just rev it backwards and then drive off.

HF: He did teach me how to drive so I give you credit.

What’s your favorite thing to eat when a snack attacks?

HF: My favorite snack when a snack attack happens is muddy buddies! Yeah, those are addicting.

JC: Yeah, my favorite snack attack snack is kettle corn. Specifically.

HF: Popcorn!

JC: Yeah, salted lightly

HF: I like popcorn. I think I would eat popcorn with muddy buddies. Like go back and forth.

JC: Together?

HF: Yeah.

JC: Sounds like a plan.

Any insider deets for the Ragamuff’s future?

HF: So Ragamuffs inside scoops of what’s going down in the future. Personally, we have a lot of big life changes that we’re experiencing; moving out of our family homes for the first time and living together. I’m excited for that. We get to write together and be traveling to record our new releases. 

JC: Future releases.

HF: Future releases outside of Hawaii. We’re just waiting for everything to open because we really wanna go on tour. Touring is still on our list of things to do and just networking with other artists… I guess yeah...

Hawaii indie rock pop duo Ragamuffs hanging out getting some sun under palm trees.
Courtesy of Ragamuffs

Produced by Ellemsee Media


Producer: Lauryn Gordines

Producer: Noah Gordines

Director: Lauryn Gordines

Director of Photography: Evan Fujimoto

Editor: Evan Fujimoto

Production Assistant: Jaslyn Loftin

First Assistant Camera: Jenise Lam

Second Assistant Camera: Chloe Ma



Written by Evan Fujimoto and Jaslyn Loftin

Performed by ETRNL and J.Lynhttps://open.spotify.com/artist/6m20b...

Used to Be

Written by Hailey Fines, John Sabugo, and Joseph Carag

Performed by Ragamuffshttps://open.spotify.com/artist/0IIb8...

Special Thanks

Aloha Beer



Written by

Noah Gordines

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