The merits of NXNE are up for debate, but what isn't are the great new Canada-based bands and musicians that play every year. We've assembled a series of mini-profiles of some smaller acts you should check out.
Tei Shi started in Bogota, continued in Vancouver, and is now in New York doing the life thing. Her songs layer silken Amber Coffman vocals with the occasional instrument. You can see her tonight at Wrongbar with Kelela and Glasser.
Where are you from and what's your favourite thing to do there?
I'm originally from Bogota, Colombia--when I'm there I would say my favorite thing to do is definitely eating. Colombian food is so good, and when I am there visiting one of my #1 priorities is to consume as much of it as I can! After leaving Colombia when I was young, I spent most of my life in Vancouver though--I would say my favourite thing to do there is being outdoors. Whether it's at the beach or a park, walking along a seawall, or just roaming the city. Vancouver is such a beautiful city, anything outdoors is a treat.
What were you doing before you started answering these questions?
Drinking a beer with my roommate.
How should we prepare for your NXNE show?
Probably smoke some weed and bring a friend.
What present should a fan bring for you to the gig to show their appreciation?
CANDY. Or a personal note :)
Why does the rest of Canada hate Toronto? Should they?
It's interesting how there is that rivalry between the west and the east. Particularly being from Vancouver, there is definitely a Vancouver vs. Toronto feud going on there. I think it stems just from how different the cities are from each other. NXNE is actually going to be my first time in Toronto, so it's hard for me to speak with any authority, but I'm sure I will love it and have heard really great things about it. I think growing up in Van, people liked to hate on Toronto because it's such a metropolis, and there isn't as much green and as much focus on the outdoors and that open space and landscape that people from Vancouver value so much. But I'm a city girl at heart, so I'm sure Toronto will be to my liking as well.
What's your favourite show you've ever played?
My favourite show so far was probably a show we played right before SXSW, at Glasslands Gallery in Brooklyn. It was the first show we headlined, and Glasslands is one of my favourite spots, so it was really fun for me to have that experience there. Lots of great friends came out, and it was probably the first time that I felt quite comfortable on stage and started having fun, in contrast to most shows before then when I'd just feel extremely anxious and nervous.
What's your favourite thing on the Internet right now?
Who are you most excited to see at NXNE and why?
I actually haven't really thought about it at all. I guess I've been so focused getting our own show together, and we are going to be there for such a short time that I haven't really planned out what shows I want to see. I'd love to see St. Vincent though.
What's your favourite summer activity?
I'm happy just lying in the sun. I love swimming too, so being by a lake or ocean or even a pool is ideal.
Are you working on any new music? Describe its sound using a food analogy.
Definitely, right now my biggest focus is working on new music. I've been writing a lot the past few months and have been recording and developing new material pretty intensively for the past few weeks. I would say it's cold pizza from the night before...that tasted really good the night of, but then got unexpectedly better throughout the night and is more tasty the second time around. I hope my music is like that.
Although maybe I'm the only person who like cold pizza better than when it's fresh.
What artist perk do you wish NXNE gave out?
Accommodation! haha...or passes for free food anywhere in the city. As you can see I really love food.
Post a YouTube video that's the opposite of your band
Actually, maybe it's not too far off. My nephew loves this song.