What’s In Your Fridge is where the Straight asks interesting Vancouverites about their life-changing concerts, favourite albums, and, most importantly, what’s sitting beside the Heinz Ketchup in their custom-made Big Chill Retropolitan 20.6 cubic-foot refrigerators.
On the grill
Who are you
Proud kitty cat mama, avid bird watcher, lover of all things sparkly, and a singer-songwriter based out of Vancouver!
My first real concert was Cher at Rogers Arena with Cindy Lauper, and it was amazing! It was after “Do You Believe” came out, huge tour production, my first arena show. Cindy Lauper was awesome. She entered the arena from right beneath where we were sitting in the lower bowl and walked through the floor seats to the stage! That was majorly thrilling, the spotlight so close to our seats—and what an entrance, so theatrical. My mom surprised me with the tickets when she got home from work that day which was seriously out of character. We had to jet to the city pretty quick. The whole experience was so memorable.
I want to say Radiohead because it was truly transcendent, but the show that really influenced me was a You Say Party gig out in Abbotsford. Somehow I ended up out there at this afternoon concert and the singer hit the stage in this crazy outift—something in my brain snapped open. For years I had struggled with stage fright. This performance reminded me that music is supposed to be fun. You're supposed to enjoy being on the stage. It was probably the moment I stopped obsessing about being a brooding music genius and let myself love pop music again.
Top three albums
I actually try to keep a list in my phone when fave albums and movies pop in my head. I suck at remembering this stuff because I like so much but...
St. Vincent Marry Me She opened for Arcade Fire the night after I saw Bjork at the same venue and the friend I was there with asked what I thought. I just couldn't stand her performance. She opened solo, doing the bass drum, playing guitar and some other instrumentation before her band came on. I didn't get it. She told the crowd everyone should do drugs, I was so innocent, the whole thing was so over my head! I can't understand how I ever came to acquire her first album, but the second it played she's been my greatest influence. By the time “Paris Is Burning” comes on I'm still in awe. It felt like a bold move in music and I loved the earnestness of her delivery.
Fiona Apple When The Pawn... I was a sucker for Columbia House back in the day and used to select albums based (mostly) on the cover art and this made the cut. This album is still and will always be a foundation. Matt Chamberlain's drumming, Jon Brion on production—it's so good. Her lyrics, vocal attitude, and rhythm are fucking perfect. I love her. She owns anger in a very unique way. People sometimes say my voice is like hers, I think that's because I sang along to this album everyday for so long.
Björk Homogenic I was in class in high school in Hope when my friend passed me his Discman and said "You have to listen to this." It was one of those moments when you hear an album and it fills a part of your being that was unknown to you. The depths of emotion on this record are astounding. This was the first record that reflected nature to me, which was pretty profound, I could feel mountains in the music. Björk is one of the planet’s greatest artists.
All-time favourite video
Justin Timberlake "Like I Love You" My mind was absolutely blown. I was so into pop music in it's ugliest incarnations when this came out, I was also fully immersed in dance classes and I feel like this video was the first foray since MJ into new styles of music video choreography. It's so smooth. Also seeing him break away from the boy band in such spectacular fashion was captivating. Even I was expecting his solo debut to be super dumb but it was very surprising.
What's in your fridge
A container of sauerkraut from no one knows when. To avoid the line at the Ukrainian Friday Night Supper I'll just make my own perogy dinner sometimes, though the last time was years ago. I think the hesitation to deal with it comes from an experience I had with an old roommate who came across my first attempt to make sauerkraut. She lost her mind over this, it was so stupid but more surprising was how personally she took it. I was out of town and she sent me all these crazy messages about how disgusting it was. Fair enough—it was probably a little nasty, but girl, get a hold of yourself! Throw it out and move on with your life!
One slice of homemade chicken pot pie. This was one of my rare adventures into the kitchen that ultimately served as a reminder that I hate cooking. What a nightmare this was—there's so much going on with the pot pie! Cooking meat isn't something I do so I'm grasping at straws wondering how to even do that, not to mention there's a gloopy sauce that has to be poured all over before it's baked. The one thing I do know how to make is pastry, so I pull that out of the fridge to roll it out and the moment my rolling pin hits it it crumbles. At this point I've been in hell for about two hours and I'm using every last bit of will power to not throw it all against the wall and then myself on the floor, I'm talking real tantrum screaming, crying sort of fetal position break down. Anyway it came out great much to my surprise, but no more pot pies in this fridge. Maybe that's why I'm holding onto the last slice.
Two crows and a Stellar's Jay. They are in the freezer with the hopes of getting some taxidermy out of them. I became very into the idea of getting animals that have died done so people can admire how beautiful they are even in their afterlife. You have to be careful though and know your birds—you can get in a lot of trouble for having migratory animals or raptors. I also had a squirrel in there for a while, but the lady I got to do it never gave it back! It's not all macabre—there's also normal stuff like peas, ice cubes, and perogies—but digging through my freezer is its own experience.
Check out Jessicka’s Uh Oh EP here.