What's In Your Fridge: Tess Anderson

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      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

      Tess Anderson

      Who Are You

      I’m a singer-songwriter, music producer, and vocal coach. I grew up in Victoria and moved to Vancouver in 2016 to dive headfirst into a music career. Although music is by far my biggest passion, I was a nationally ranked competitive swimmer for nine years, and only quit because of injuries. I got myself through college working as a lifeguard and swim instructor, and being in the water is still one of the places I feel most at home. These days you can catch me performing at various venues around the Lower Mainland a few nights a week, hiding in my little studio writing and recording all my feelings, coaching my incredible music students, or hanging out with my husband and our four-year-old son. I also have been working on releasing my debut EP for the last three years, and it is finally out this summer.

      First concert

      When I was about nine, my mom took me to go see Hilary Duff at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre Arena in Victoria. I was absolutely obsessed with her. I remember walking in the front doors of the arena and completely losing my mind realizing that I was standing in the same building as Hilary Duff. Being a Hilary Duff show, nearly the entire audience was young girls, which meant that the lineup for the women’s bathroom was atrocious, while the men’s bathroom was empty. I remember having to go right before she was supposed to hit the stage, and I REALLY didn’t want to miss her grand entrance, so my mom decided to take me into the men’s bathroom. While I was in the stall, an angry security guard came in yelling at me to get out… I was mortified. Oops. At least we didn’t miss the start of the show.

      Life-changing concert

      Sitting second row for Sara Bareilles at the Rio Theatre in 2013. This show was everything. It was part of her solo “Brave” tour, and it was one of the most awe-inspiring things I have ever seen. She jumped back and forth between piano, electric and acoustic guitar, ukulele, and even a harmonium. Seeing her rock the stage completely alone—with not even an opening act—was beyond impressive. Sara is the reason I decided to get into songwriting in the first place, so seeing her up close and personal in such a tiny and intimate venue was insane. I honestly spent most of the show sobbing. Since the Rio is originally a movie theatre, she spontaneously decided it was only fitting to close off the show with an impromptu acapella performance of “Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid. So funny. It was pure magic and solidified in my mind that music was what I wanted to do with my life.

      Top three records

      Nothing But Thieves Broken Machine Conor Mason’s voice is otherworldly, and the songwriting on this album is phenomenal. They toured this record here, playing the Imperial on Main Street in 2017. At that point, Vancouver had been the only city in North America that had played their new single “Amsterdam” on the radio. It was probably my favourite concert I have ever attended. Everything about it was flawless, and listening to these songs always brings me right back there.

      Sara Bareilles Kaleidoscope Heart If you haven’t figured it out by now, I adore Sara Bareilles. So much so, that over spring break while I was in the ninth grade, I learned to cover almost every single song on this album and posted one video a day for a week straight on YouTube channel in what I called my “Sara Bareilles Week”. I still to this day occasionally play some of the covers in my shows. This album (as well as her previous record, Little Voice) really inspired my early songwriting, so it will always hold a huge spot in my heart.

      My Chemical Romance The Black Parade Yup, I was that pre-teen who was listening to Hilary Duff and My Chemical Romance back-to-back. (Okay, let’s be real, that’s still me at 24). I swear this album never gets old. Very little brings me more joy in life than screaming along to “Teenagers” and “This Is How I Disappear” in my car on road trips.

      All-time favourite video

      OK Go “Upside Down & Inside Out” OK Go has always been masters when it comes to crazy over-the-top music videos, but their video for “Upside Down & Inside Out” takes the cake. The video is shot in zero gravity, and they had to go to Russia to film it. It is mind-blowing what they were able to pull off. You have to go watch the behind-the-scenes video to fully understand what is even going on. It’s insanely cool, and definitely makes me want to go up in a plane and experience zero gravity.

      What’s in your fridge

      Pineapple Juice. This is one of my voice care secret weapons, thanks to a vocal coach suggesting it when I got laryngitis in high school. It’s a natural inflammatory and can also help prevent phlegm build-up in your throat. If you Google it, there’s some debate about whether or not it’s actually effective, but hey, it’s saved my voice on numerous occasions. I have a Costco size box on hand at all times.

      Gluten-free English muffins. I learned I was gluten intolerant when I was about 16, after two years of being extremely sick all of the time with no answers as to why. Although I don’t miss gluten anymore (or how it made me feel), finding good bread alternatives is still so hard. After years of searching, I finally came across a brand of gluten-free English muffins that are FANTASTIC, and they’re now a breakfast staple around here.

      Krazy Glue. Growing up, my parents always kept our Krazy Glue in the fridge. I never thought to ask why, it just was always what they did. As an adult, when I bought Krazy Glue to fix a broken bowl (still holding together four years later, by the way), I put it in the fridge afterward. My husband has always thought it was super weird, but I kept it there regardless. When writing this, I finally Googled whether or not you’re supposed to keep Krazy Glue in the fridge, and ta-da, keeping it there extends its shelf life. So there you go, nice work Mom and Dad.

      Watch the video for Tess Anderson's new single, "Don't Believe In" (cowritten with and produced by Mother Mother's Ryan Guldemond) below.