Nine-piece Columbus-via-Cleveland act learns to feel love as deeply as sadness

After living two blocks from each other in Cleveland, Tyler Butts and Nick Reinmann went their separate ways after high school. But even with Butts in West Virginia and Reinmann in Akron, they continued collaborating.

Over email, Reinmann sent beats to Butts, who'd send verses back. “I'd be hiding in my room,” said Butts, seated with Reinmann at a Clintonville coffee shop on a recent morning. “All my roommates would be having parties and shit, and I'd be sitting at my computer.”

“It was all we had. We didn't really have friends when we were living where we were. We needed to express ourselves somehow,” Reinmann said. “Playing music to me has always been a necessity. I've been putting bands together since I was 12. … Some people make music because they wanna be known as someone who makes music, and some people make music because they have to. I think we're the latter. If we didn't make music, I think we'd do some really destructive stuff with our lives.”

Eventually Reinmann moved to Columbus to attend Ohio State and Butts followed. The pair began making its brand of alternative hip-hop as Booty & the Kidd (I'll let you figure out which nickname refers to which band member), releasing first album The Heart of It All in 2016. The duo put together a full band for the release show, and soon enough Booty & the Kidd became a jazzier, nine-piece collective with saxophone, trumpet, keyboard and more.

For just-released album You&I, which the band will celebrate with a release show at Skully's on Saturday, June 30, Booty & the Kidd wanted to make a more positive, uplifting record.

“The Heart of It All was about being alone and introspection. We wanted this one to be more about not the negatives of having other people in your life but the positives of it,” Reinmann said.

“You wouldn't be bumping The Heart of It All at a house party. You put headphones on and cry to it,” Butts said, laughing.

“We do feel really sad sometimes,” Reinmann said, “but we've also learned, with the help of all the people in the band, how to feel happy and feel love and feel other things just as deeply as we feel sadness, and that comes across in this album.”