Tag Archives: Björk

Ep. #141: Lights

Lights is a pop artist from Toronto with legions of fans around the world. Born in Timmins, Ontario, Lights was discovered by Jian Ghomeshi when she was 15 years old and is now one of Canada’s most internationally recognized artists. Her latest album is Little Machines and it was released this past September, prompting her to tour and last week, she and I spoke before she played a set at the Halifax Pop Explosion. Here, Lights tells me about performing at the Polaris Music Prize Gala with Shad at the last minute, how Canadian music critics and fans receive Lights, pop music credibility, working with different people in different genres, the Beatles and Supertramp, her connection to Timmins and North Bay and Jamaica and the Philippines and Toronto, home schooling and learning how to play music, being discovered by Jian Ghomeshi at 15 years old, shooting a Wal-Mart ad as a kid, “Hero” by Mariah Carey, signing a management deal with Jian and sending all of her song ideas to him first, writer’s block, the song “Don’t Go Home Without Me” and temporal perspectives, having her daughter in February, re-living life through your kids, the notion of Little Machines and energetic kids, ambient sounds and a classic electronic sound, slapping your pregnant belly for a rhythm track, parental and public life, changing her legal name to Lights, #Pinktober and a breast cancer awareness campaign, an acoustic counterpart to Little Machines and the future, constant writing, lost Lights songs, the song “Muscle Memory,” Kate Bush, Björk and Tanya Tagaq, and then it’s lights out.

Related links: iamlights.com vishkhanna.com

lights

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Ep. #65: Tanya Tagaq

Tanya Tagaq is a truly singular artist who hails from the Nunavut territory in northern Canada. Though renowned as an Inuit throat singer who has collaborated closely with Björk and Kronos Quartet, Tagaq makes music that absorbs and reflects many genres and is impossible to pigeonhole. 2014 will see the release of her long-awaited follow-up to 2008’s acclaimed album Auk/Blood and on Saturday Feb. 8, she returns to Guelph for a double-bill with Timber Timbre as part of Hillside Inside. Here, Tagaq and I discuss why people south of Nunavut are being kind of pathetic about this whole Polar Vortex thing, her relationship with Guelph, why her last album reflected a passive period while her forthcoming one will be more aggressive, her plans to make electronic and metal music soon, her new album’s tone, fracking, Neutral Milk Hotel, the weird transcendence of underground culture, how to express opinions about politics as a vocalist without using words, her opinion of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, her new album’s title and artwork, some stories behind her yet-to-be-released songs, why her new album doesn’t have many special guests but her next album will, whether she’s concerned about tokenism or the way people have distorted or misinterpreted her work, how her story and an infamous ex-manager inspired her friend Geoff Berner’s hilarious new novel Festival Man, her upcoming show at Carnegie Hall, her relationship with Björk, why Buffy Sainte-Marie makes her cry, the song “Fire ~ Ikuma,” and more.

Related links: isuma.tv/tagaq hillsidefestival.ca vishkhanna.com

Tanya Tagaq lying down sm

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