Squamish Valley Music Festival Act of the Day: Willa

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      It's almost here. And, no, we're not talking about the upcoming federal election.

      No, we’re referring to the Squamish Valley Music Festival, taking place August 6 to 9 at the Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields. In anticipation of the big day, we’re rounding up local artists who’ll be playing this year’s event, and getting them to answer some important questions.

      Like what they’ll be making sure to pack to make it through their set, the all-time dream festival lineup, and who they plan to stalk backstage. And that’s just the start of our probing. Read on, but not before you pick up your Squamish Valley Music Festival ticket. The last thing you want to miss is today’s featured local artist....

      Born and raised in Whistler, Willa is no stranger to the Squamish area. Her striking vocals and dark electro-pop make her a local artist to watch, according to Mother Mother's Ryan Guldemond, who's been working with her in studio and helped with the recording of her debut single, "Stay the Night". Willa will headline her first tour this fall.

      Sea to Sky Playlist

      Hayden James "Something About You"
      Gallant "Weight In Gold" / This chorus is all sorts of epic.
      SonReal "Preach" / Gotta get pumped up for this guy's set. I've been singing backgournd vocals and doing features for SonReal for 5 years. He's one of the hardest working guys out there; so happy to see his success. Plus the video for this song by Dane Collison? WATCH IT!
      Omi "Cheerleader" / Complete and total guiltless pleasure.
      Mother Mother "Monkey Tree" / 'Cause duh.
      Nao "Inhale Exhale" / This song is utter baddassery. This track sounds like old school Janet, reimagined.
      Speelburg "Lay It Right" / Pretty universally perfect 'driving in the summertime' song.

      Outdoor essentials

      • Dope sunglasses
      • Evian water mist. You get lightly misted, cool off, and still look hot. See what I did there?
      • Refillable water bottle. Seems like a no-brainer, but I always assume I'll buy water on site... I usually end up buying vodka sodas with my dollars instead. Le sigh.
      • Disposable camera. Because those are the pictures you frame.

      I'd love to hang with

      Who do I want to hang with? Everyone. Specifically though, Alessia Cara. That girl knows how to write a song and I want to know her. I want to pick her brain, I want to figure her out, she's magic. Also, Drizzy; I'd like to be his friend. Maybe he'd introduce me to Beyonce one day. I wonder if he's camping?

      As stellar as this year’s Squamish bill is, what’s your Fantasy Fest line-up?

      • Nao
      • Hayden James
      • Banks
      • Kendrick Lamar
      • Kanye West
      • Beyonce
      • Grimes
      • Alessia Cara
      • Ray Charles
      • Ella Fitzgerald
      • Frank Sinatra
      • Led Zeppelin
      • Pink Floyd
      • Amy Winehouse
      • Beatles (Magical Mystery Tour era)
      • Me (because imagine being on the same bill as all of them?!) 

      What’s your official rider request?

      • Water! So much water.
      • Towels. It's a high energy set. Yeah, I break a sweat.
      • Watermelon.
      • Kronenburg Blancs, yo.
      • Air-conditioned area during summer festivals.
      • Fresh smoothies!
      • Big black beach balls that say WILLA in bright white letters to throw around into the crowd; that's always fun.

      Trivia time: What's Squamish's official slogan?

      The biggest, baddest, most beautiful little festival you ever saw.

      The Squamish Valley Music Festival takes place at Hendrickson Fields & Logger Sports Ground. Quick—what’s your favourite logger sport?

      Log rolling. Why? When I picture a logging sports day (which I've attended as a kid, weirdly), I picture a very hot day. The log rolling always ends up with a nice cool dip. Doesn't that sound nice?

      Bonus video!

      Willa met up with the Straight to talk Squamish, festivals, and the Squamish Festival. 

      Amanda Siebert

      Willa plays Squamish Valley Music Festival's Garibaldi Stage at 3:40 p.m. on Sunday (August 9).