Friday, March 11, 2011

Lilith Winners To Be Featured On National Television Show Strictly Global

Strictly Global is a TV broadcast committed to breaking new trends and alternative lifestyles, especially in the way of music.  To kick off their season premiere, the fine folks at Strictly Global put together an episode dedicated to Lilith 2010.  Best of all, the episode will feature a number of artists who were chosen by the OurStage community to open select Lilith dates across the country. Legendary musician and festival founder Sarah McLachlan and Lilith co-founder / Nettwerk label owner Terry McBride will grace the screen, as will OurStage CEO, Ben Campbell.

The Strictly Global Lilith 2010 episode will air on over 30 million TV screens across the United States, and will bring viewers fantastic interviews and music videos from emerging talent. Click here to learn more about the featured artists. To listen to some tracks from each of the winners, check out the playlists below. Be sure to tune in tonight, September 17th at 10PM EST to catch the Strictly Global Lilith 2010  episode on your local channel.

Strictly Global Episode: Lilith 2010

Lilith 2010 Winners

Q&A With Tegan & Sara

The whole realm of musical duos is gaining more and more popularity in the music industry. She & Him, Matt & Kim, Meg & Dia and”of course”Tegan & Sara. The thing that sets the latter apart is sheer versatility. You’ll find these Canadian twins relaxing you with acoustic performances immediately followed by dance numbers to get you moving. They even mix a substantial amount of indie and punk rock into their sets. Needless to say, they’ve got something for everyone. We caught up with Sara Quin to talk about their collaborative songwriting, their view on music awards and their overall musical goals.

OS: Lately, you’ve attempted to write songs together, rather than separately. Any sibling drama when working together directly, as opposed to your normal remote collaboration?

SQ: You know, not just with music, but with every aspect of our career, there’s an element of debate and conversation about a lot things that we do”making decisions for art and video and that sort of thing. So, certainly when we’re face-to-face and we’re dealing with stuff, it can sometimes turn into arguments or animated debates. But, for the most part we’ve sort of found a way to work through those issues. Certainly doing the songwriting long distance and generally giving each other space to make art without immediate critique or feedback has been really helpful. Writing in person sort of eliminates that buffer zone, but we made it through without too much friction. I think, because we were so excited by the results, it was helping to smooth over some of the difficulties. We were really establishing, Wow, okay so this is how you write a song. That’s so interesting. That’s not how I would do it. I think we were able to get past some of those bumps because we were both really excited about what was coming out.

OS: Only one of these co-writes made the final cut of Sainthood. What happened here and are we ever going to hear the other songs?

SQ: Yeah! We would eventually love to release the material, and who knows, some of them might get spiraled into something else. I think, ultimately, it was really late in the writing process, and a lot of the music just sounded so different than what we had already written for the record, that the songs just ended up feeling a little bit like they wouldn’t work. So, we sort of set them aside for a later date. It was less about whether or not the songs were good, because it was such a new thing, they really had such a different feel it didn’t make sense.

OS: You’ve been nominated for a bunch of Juno awards, but have never taken one home. Your latest album was nominated for the Polaris Music Prize. Do you think winning this award would put you on a different level as Canadian artists?

SQ: I don’t know. I personally never have put a ton of energy, or assigned any sort of value to those types of things. When you’re in the music industry, you see that there’re a lot of politics behind them, and often it’s not necessarily representative of everything that is out there, or what I would deem as good or the best of. You’re always weighing that with the natural desire to be acknowledged and recognized within the industry and in the public eye. Certainly when you’re winning these awards, or being nominated for them, it makes you feel good, and it sort of elevates you to a different status, and your parents are happy”that sort of thing.  So, I definitely don’t want to speak too negatively about them, but it’s important to balance being interested and excited and also knowing that they don’t totally matter, whether you win them or not. I would still feel like we had made a really fantastic record whether it had been nominated for the prize or not. If we don’t win, that’s okay too.

OS: It seems that the band has an interesting presence in the punk scene as well as the indie rock scene (Tegan’s collaborations with Against Me! and Alkaline Trio and yours with The Reason). Are you simply rock stars at heart?

SQ: I’m not. I think we always sort of felt awkward. I don’t think we ever felt comfortable with the idea that this would be our career, or that we would be professional for years. There was always this idea that it was just a hobby or it was something that was really fun. Then, all of a sudden, you find yourself really addicted to the lifestyle. So much of what the public sees is you on tour and onstage, and I think that’s where this idea of the rockstar sort of comes from, but so much of our lives is behind the scenes”songwriting and working on projects. It’s very isolated, and there’s a solitary, introverted element to a tremendous amount of what we do.

Behind the scenes, you’re interested in working on stuff. Mostly it’s alone, but then every once in a while an artist or someone will come along and ask you to contribute something. It’s just naturally reaching out, branching out and having a community. When people are working on albums and they’re looking for other people to throw their personality or their style into the project, you jump at the chance to do it. Like, for us, obviously we’re not a dance project, but it’s really fun to work with dance artists, because you get to sort of see yourself in a different light.

OS: Along the same lines, you perform along side artists of many different genres, like this year’s Civic Tour with Paramore and New Found Glory. What’s it like keeping up with acts like this?

SQ: I think what we do is adaptable. We’re versatile and we can tailor our set, energy level and the dynamic of our set to meet a lot of different venues and support gigs and festivals. Maybe we’ll stand out. I don’t know that we’ll necessarily fit in in the sense that we’ll be interchangeable with those bands. But, I definitely think that there will be people in the audience that appreciate hearing something different, or seeing a different approach to the music that we’re making. I feel really excited about it. There’s always an element of fear or danger when you’re opening for a band that isn’t exactly doing what you do, because you don’t want the audience to hate you. But, I really believe Paramore in particular have a fantastic audience. Hayley is so wonderful, and I think even though they have a very big audience, there’s a parallel in the way that we connect with our audience. It seems very personal, and they’re rooting for her, and I’m hoping that will extend to our band.

OS: You’ve both had mixed responses to the media’s portrayal of you as twin, lesbian, female musicians. This year, you had one date at the Lilith tour which celebrates women in music and their sexuality. How does the whole Lilith thing fit in with you guys?

SQ: Well, we are doing one show with Lilith. You know, it’s like a festival. For example, we were over in Europe doing rock festivals in Germany, and we did Glastonbury in the UK. You take into consideration who the audience is and what might get their attention, and you sort of write a set list that will make sense at that venue. With Lilith, obviously with the focus on women musicians, you’re going to see a lot of women in the audience. I think that it means that Tegan and I can do what we do best. We have a really dynamic catalog of music, and I think I’ll feel more comfortable doing a set that’s a little more representative of what our entire catalog is representative of.

Whereas when we’re playing a rock festival at midnight in Germany, we’ll probably play more heavy music, or we’ll play most of our rock songs. We won’t be trying to do the acoustic sing-a-long’s. I think Lilith is great. I don’t worry as much about being pigeonholed because of our gender or sexuality the way we did when we were younger. I think we now have the history in the industry. That helps us get out of the category of women making music for women, which used to sort of drive us crazy. Based on the artists that we’ve supported and the festivals that we’ve done, and how mainstream/wide of a spectrum our audience is now, I think we’re not worrying that there’s limitations because of our gender or sexuality.

Check out Tegan & Sara’s upcoming tour dates:

9/7- Kiefer UNO Lakefront Arena, New Orleans, LA

9/8- Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, Houston, TX

9/10-Nokia Theatre, Dallas, TX

9/11-Cains Ballroom, Tulsa, OK

9/13-Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, CO

9/15-Dodge Theater, Phoenix, AZ

9/17-Theater at HP Pavillion, San Jose, CA

9/18-Viejas Arena, San Diego, CA

9/19-Honda Center, Anaheim, CA

9/24-Malkin Bowl,Vancouver, BC

Q&A With Metric

The concept of a female-fronted band isn’t really old news. Most often, you’ll find these acts forging more of a straight up “rock” sound. Metric offer flavor all their own. The band presents memorable songs in energetic, jump-worthy packages. While many indie acts try to arrange “singer/songwriter-esque” tunes into a band setting, the members of Metric all add their own distinct stamp to their songs. Singer Emily Haines’ voice seems a natural fit for the synth-y, electronic arrangements and danceable grooves that have become synonymous with the name Metric.
OurStage got ahold of Metric  guitar player Jimmy Shaw to get a little more information about how Metric actually puts together a song. Check out his answers as well as his thoughts about their recent dates and even their work with film composer Howard Shore.
OS: The band has stated that Emily Haines writes “sad” songs that fit with “happy” arrangements by the rest of the band. How, then, does a typical Metric song come about?
JS: Well in that instance it’s usually a song that Emily will write on the piano that is slow or somber, and I will take it, speed it up and “metrify” it. Guitars, dance beats, loudness in general. We have found that juxtaposition to be a major part of Metric’s sound.
OS: We recently spoke with hip hop artist k-os who talked about a certain camaraderie and simultaneous competition between Canadian artists. Do you find that there is a connection/competition there?
JS: If there is a competition, I believe it’s a healthy one. I see it that we all wanna be there at the finish line. None of us will make it if we all don’t achieve greatness, but the trick is we all have to achieve greatness in order to succeed in the goal. I am not so interested in reaching the top of the mountain to find I’m the only one there, only to look down and see all my friends partying at base camp.
OS: This year, you worked with Howard Shore to write a song for the Twilight Saga: Eclipse soundtrack. What was this like and how did you merge your songwriting process with Shore’s cinematic writing?
JS: This really was an amazing experience. Howard is a wonderful and incredibly talented man and musician. It actually came very naturally. He played us the scene along with the rough musical ideas that he had. We took those ideas and ran with them, writing a full scale pop song, going back and forth with Howard the whole time. He then took those melodies and implemented them throughout the movie score. For something I was so intimidated by at inception, it was actually quite smoothly achieved.
OS: Metric is a headliner on this year’s Lilith tour with Sarah McLachlan. Why is it important for you to support a tour like Lilith 2010?
JS: I don’t really see it as supporting the tour but just something that made sense at the time. I prefer not to think of things as symbols or gestures. As a great friend of mine once said, its just what happened on a Tuesday¦
OS: Later this year, you’re embarking on a much different tour with Muse. Will this be your first time transitioning from big outdoor festivals to rocking huge coliseums, or is this just business as usual?
JS: The only time we’ve played that type of arena is MSG with the Rolling Stones. That was uh, ok I guess. I’m excited to play all venues, big, small, outdoor, indoor. We have a mission to be the first band to play in space (you hear that Sir Branson? The name is METRIC).
OS: The band spends a lot of time touring between releases. Do you like life on the road, and what is your key to staying sane while touring?
Photo by Justin Broadbent
JS: I think the key is to give up trying to stay sane touring. Why fight the inevitable. Just feel weird. It’s ok, you wont die.
OS: After a smaller EP release and a few singles, is Metric planning to work on a new full-length album soon?
JS: Absolutely. We cant wait!! Aaaand GO!
Catch Metric at Lollapalooza this Saturday August 7th or on the following upcoming tour dates with Muse:
10/11 Cincinnati, OH- US Bank Arena
10/12 Columbus, OH- Schottenstein Center
10/21 Quebec, QC- Colisee Pepsi
10/23 Uniondale, NY- Nassau Coliseum
10/24 Newark, NJ- Prudential Center
10/26 Raleigh, NC- RBC Center
10/27 Charlottesville, VA- John Paul Jones Arena

Lilith Local Talent Search Winner Announced For Edmonton!

And now on to the next region. With two announcements down, it is time for another update in the Lilith Local Talent Search Competition. We are just two weeks away from the Lilith 2010 tour getting under way on the west coast, so we figured this is as good a time as any to announce the winner for Edmonton! Please put your hands together for¦.

Lilith Winner
Souljah Fyah