"(With Janji) we're all about exploring new places--which is exactly what music allows us to do."
~ Dave Spandorfor
Dave Spandorfer, owner of Janji, fellow runner and avid music fan. I stumbled on Janji back in 2013, shortly after I started this blog. Dave and his co-founder, Mike, design high performance running apparel that, when purchased, helps make a difference in the lives of others. Specifically, 10% of the sale of each piece goes toward helping clean water projects in areas that need it the most. Back then, I wanted to work with them in any way that I could so I reached out and asked if I could profile the company on RWM. They got right back to me and we put something together - they're really cool like that. (see post) I kept in touch with them through the years, regularly seeing one or both of them at race expos and chatting with them via email; particularly Dave and often about music.
w/ Kirsten & Dave at the Mohawk Hudson race expo
Fast forward to last week. On Halloween, a representative from a gym down in Pennsylvania reached out to see if we could work together. A bit strange, I know, but I was intrigued. After doing a little research, I learned that XShadyside 24 Hour Gyms Pittsburgh is a one of the leading fitness centers in their area and they are dedicated to providing the best equipment and overall experience for their customers as well as promoting a healthy lifestyle in general. In a nutshell, they asked if we could do a giveaway on RWM together. They would provide a gift card for the retailer of my choice and in return I would promote both the gym and their message. Given his passion for both running and music, I've been wanting to profile Dave from Janji in my RUNNERS WHO ROCK series for a while now. XShadyside Gym's timing was perfect as I could couple Dave's story with the added bonus of a Janji gift card giveaway for you, the RWM readers. I'm all about promoting fitness and a healthy lifestyle so I was more than willing to give a shout out to XShadyside for the awesome contribution. The way I see it, everybody wins here - we now know more about Dave, we also know about an fabulous gym down in PA that we should check out if we're in the area, and we're giving back to those in need with the Janji gift card. It's a grand slam, really. All right, so first, let's meet Dave, a runner who rocks. Then, go ahead and enter to win a $50 Janji gift card courtesy of XShadyside Gyms. Woo hoo!
Name: David Spandorfer
Where you're from: Philadelphia, PA
Where you reside now: Somerville, MA (right outside Boston)
Occupation: Co-founder, Janji
What do you love most about running?
It’s an outlet, a stress reliever, and something that you strive for daily. If life can sometimes feel stuck on a treadmill, running (yes—even on a treadmill) propels you forward. It gives you clarity to questions, big and small.
What do you love most about music?
I’ll quote Mark Ruffalo’s character in Begin Again on this one: “One of the most banal scenes is suddenly invested with so much meaning. All these banalities—they’re suddenly turned into these… these beautiful, effervescent pearls. From music.”
Band: (current, all time or both) Been true since 7th grade—Radiohead. But, since 22, A Million came out, I’ve been on a Bon Iver kick.
Album: (current, all time or both) All time is Kid A, by Radiohead. Recently it’s been 22, A Million.
Race venue: Loved racing at the Armory, an indoor track in New York.
Music venue: Hands down, Cambridge’s Sinclair. It’s a great, small venue that attracts wonderful bands.
Race distance: Half Marathon. Not too fast, not too slow, and not too painful after.
Show you've seen live: Top 3 have been 1) Radiohead’s In Rainbows tour 2) Bon Iver’s post-Bon Iver album release tour 3) The National’s post-High Violet Tour.
Ice cream flavor: Coffee cookie dough
THIS OR THAT
Sweet or salty? Easy. Salty.
Live or recorded? Live if it’s truly live. But can’t say I like recorded live shows.
Coffee or tea? Coffee
Summer or winter? Summer. Who picks winter?
MORE MUSIC INFO
Which band or artist would you go see tonight if you could?
Beck. One of the most talented artists ever… and still have never seen him live.
Which band or artist (wait...but no longer alive or playing together) would you go see tonight if you could? Beatles, of course. I don’t think I’m bucking some opinion by calling them the most talented band ever.
Which band or artist would you like to have dinner with tonight if you could?
Tough question. There’s a lot of weird artists who are interesting, but probably challenging to connect with. I’d love to have dinner with Bruce Springsteen. Seems like a relatively normal guy who has some seriously incredible stories to tell.
Fitz and the Tantrums
Which band or artist would you like to be playing alongside you during your next race (or long run)? Probably Fitz and the Tantrums. I’ve had the pleasure of running with the drummer of Fitz and the Tantrums, and when a band member (especially a percussionist) gets running, you want them to be playing off your emotions during the run. Start off slow, and keep me energized as my own energy fades.
Today, I feel like….(complete the sentene): A rock star. Love the fall.
Top 5 Songs for running, dancing or both?
These categories often overlap, so here are some of my top energetic running songs from the past year:
• Huarache Lights by Hot Chip
• Humbug Mountain Song by Fruit Bats
• Anna by Will Butler
• Johnny by Basement Revolver
• Cold Light by Operators
Last 5 Songs you listened to today?
Every month I make a monthly playlist and have now done this every month for the past 6 years. (follow me on Spotify to see—I’m the only David Spandorfer out there). Here’s what’s starting off November 2016’s playlist:
• Birth by Rari
• Some Sunsick Day by Morgan Delt
• Lump in Your Throat, Andrea Bignasca
• Chemicals by The Notwist
• Wonderful by Francobollo
***** WAIT....DON'T FORGET TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY ******
Enter to win a $50 JANJI GIFT CARD courtesy of XShadyside 24 Hours Gyms Pittsburgh. To enter comment below. Tell us what you'd buy with your Janji Gift card (so many good choices for women and men). Or, tell us your current go-to pump up song. Or, tell us what and when your next big race is. That's it. Winner will be picked via random.org on Friday, November 18th. Many thanks to Janji and XShadyside for helping me put this together. Good luck!
Listen to this:
Some Sunsick Day - Morgan Delt