She & Him

The Exclaim! Questionnaire

BY Cam LindsayPublished Mar 20, 2008

What are you up to?
She: Promoting the release of Volume One. Working on a movie called Gigantic and writing music for Volume Two.

What are your current fixations?
She: Bobbie Gentry, Marvin Gaye, pumpkin seeds.
Him: The Louvin Brothers.

Why do you live where you do?
She (Santa Monica): Because I enjoy defending it to New Yorkers.
Him (Portland, OR): Friends, family, peace, quiet.

Name something you consider a mind-altering work of art:
She: Getz/Gilberto
Him: 2001: A Space Odyssey

What has been your most memorable or inspirational gig and why?
She: I went to see Anita O’Day, before she passed away, in a small restaurant in L.A. Nobody was paying attention. She was snapping her fingers with her back to the audience. She was fantastic.
Him: Brian Wilson at the Sydney Opera House; obvious reasons.

What have been your career highs and lows?
She: High: I love singing! Any time I get to sing I am happy. I consider it the greatest privilege. Low: there have been times when I haven't gotten to sing as much and it was very sad for me.
Him: I don’t know. Not sure they’ve happened yet.

What’s the meanest thing ever said to you before, during or after a gig?
She: I wouldn't want to honour something like that with a mention in a fancy magazine.
Him: "Wow, that was interesting” and/or "It looked like you guys were having a lot of fun up there.”

What should everyone shut up about?
She: Themselves.
Him: Celebrities, extremists.

What traits do you most like and most dislike about yourself?
She: Like: sincerity. Dislike: too much sincerity.
Him: Like: focus. Dislike: tunnel vision.

What’s your idea of a perfect Sunday?
She: Wake up early. Bake cookies and play piano. Take a walk where I hopefully see lots of cute dogs. Eat spaghetti squash. Watch a documentary.
Him: Rest.

What advice should you have taken, but did not?
She: Always bring a book. I don't always bring a book, and then I get stuck with nothing to do.

What would make you kick someone out of your band and/or bed, and have you?
She: Poor taste or no sense of humour. And no, I think the selection process should be careful enough that the kicking out would not be necessary.

What do you think of when you think of Canada?
She: Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Smarties.
Him: Banff. One of the most beautiful places on earth.

What was the first LP/cassette/CD/eight track you ever bought with your own money?
She: The Beatles A Hard Day’s Night.
Him: The Smiths The Queen Is Dead cassette.

What was your most memorable day job?
She: When I was about 11 years old my dad paid me 20 dollars to help in the costume department of a commercial he was directing. I had to cover a pair of sneakers in dirt. I can't remember why.
Him: Working at California State Parks and Recreation.

How do you spoil yourself?
She: A New Yorker magazine and a bag of peanuts with shells. I'm a simple girl.
Him: Soy mochas.

If I wasn’t playing music I would be…
She: Relaxing on an island with a tropical drink and pulling the strings that make the world spin.
Him: Doing something outdoors.

What do you fear most?
She: maple syrup on my arms.
Him: In 2008, smear campaigns against Senator Obama.

What makes you want to take it off and get it on?
She: At the same time? A brand new wool sweater.

What has been your strangest celebrity encounter?
She: I stepped on Janet Jackson’s toe at a party once...

Who would be your ideal dinner guest, living or dead, and what would you serve them?
She: I would like to have dinner with Socrates, Plato and Aristotle and ask them their opinions on various issues and current events. Then I would serve them wine and lots of caffeinated beverages and watch them duke it out.

What does your mom wish you were doing instead?
She: Nothing! She loves music!
Him: Probably raising a big family.

What song would you like to have played at your funeral?
She: "This Will Be Our Year" by the Zombies.
Him: "Amazing Grace”

Click here to read a full interview with Zooey Deschanel.

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