Interview with Grimelda
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
Blair: We both had parents who love music so it was always around. Our dads both play so it’s hard to imagine an upbringing where we didn’t have music. I think we’d be doing something in the arts for sure. I do all our artwork so I’d probably be some art school weirdo.
Skyler: We also started going to local punk shows at a young age so that really amped up the desire to play live. I’d probably be a gardener or environmental scientist or something to do with food security. And a mechanic. And a cook. I guess basically be able to feed my community and fix their shit if it breaks.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
Blair: I like checking out art galleries, reading comics, novels, and walking around lost in thought. Vocals are hard and I usually come up with an idea while wandering. The musical side does feel a little like something I’d create in almost the same way as a painting or a story. Where we have these mediums like time signatures or genres to create with and it might not come out how it sounds in my head but the life it takes on is what’s surprising and fulfilling and what keeps me going.
Skyler: Shitting in the toilet cause it feels good and then I think, “hmm, know what else feels good? ROCK N ROLL!”
How long has your band been around?
This band has been around for ten years but we just recently changed the name from The Faps to Grimelda. We’ve been playing together in other projects for about two decades.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
We grew up in rural areas / small cities in southern Saskatchewan. It’s cold as fuck in the winter and relatively conservative. So weird kids like us had to entertain ourselves since we weren’t exactly trying out for hockey. There are a few great bands from around here. The long winters make for longer gestation of songs which can lead to some pretty unique stuff. The scene is also too small to have cliques of certain genres. We played our first shows with everything from acoustic to hip hop to thrash and grindcore— which is definitely where our tendency to genre hop for a second or two within the same song comes from.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
Grimelda is Micheal Bublé’s middle name. We named it that because we want a soda water sponsorship.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Blair: We’ve played everywhere; hot dog stands, train tracks, apple orchards, biker bars, bowling alleys, family restaurants, art galleries, squats, cellars.. and of course the usual spaces like halls and bars and campus radio. The most memorable are usually the ones where we show up and realize we’re gonna get in trouble. But there have been others. That apple orchard show was fucking insane.
Skyler: Yeah it’s often the really bad ones and the really good/weird ones you remember. Packed house shows usually end up being the most fun. One of the best was probably at an anarchist bookstore in Quebec City. We also got to perform/run trivia night at Bob’s Burger Bar in Kenora. The Apollo in Thunder Bay was always a haven. All these cities are places where we’ve been warmly welcomed by the community and made awesome friends so I think that has a lot to do with how memorable a show is.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
We don’t care as much about the venues, sure a good stage is nice; but for us it’s about the crowd becoming part of it. We’ve had some amazing shows in Sault Ste Marie, Quebec City, Calgary, Lethbridge, Kelowna, Hamilton… It's about finding the people. We went overseas last year and hope to go again. We’ll play anywhere.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
Haha.. uh do you want the cool answer or the real answer? Cool answer: probably Grinderman? Or some other legends like Tom Waits or Rage. Real answer: I dunno fucking Carly Rae Jepsen or Billie Eilish or some shit. We’re in our thirties, give us a break. Or split the difference and go with 100 gecs.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
We’re not in any position to give advice.. but one thing that should come obviously is be nice. Music is about community. You’ll get screwed on door deals, taken advantage of, play with jerks and play to no one etc etc.. airing dirty laundry, getting in public beefs etc is almost always a bad look, so just have fun and learn lessons as they come.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
Don’t name yourselves the Faps, that’s gonna age poorly and you’ll just have to change it.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
It’s a cop out answer but all of them. Our lyrics are kinda silly but they have meaning for us. Our sound is very much an extension of our personalities, sense of humour, interests, and beliefs.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
Blair: We’ve been closing our set with our song “Bonez” for a long time now. It gets pretty wild. We’ve been around a bit so sometimes we’ll get a request for an older song but we don’t really remember how to play a lot of the older material.
Skyler: I like playing the loud ones and the dumb ones.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
We like to start with a riff and then kind of dissect it and put it back together. Or find what we can do that goes against what the first instinct might be, or find ways to interrupt ourselves. It’s fun to try to figure out where the line is and how much we can get away with without going too off the rails.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
Our last EP, the New Daft Punk EP was mostly about the end of the world or destruction in some ways. The Grimelda LP before that was built around themes of love, self love, friendship, community. Our new stuff we’re about to put out is a love letter / criticism of rock and roll and all its tropes. How rock has become homogenized and refuses to make room for new artists, but we still love rock and roll and cheap thrills and wanna celebrate it.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
All the time. Uhh, by being mature human beings able to talk about our feelings openly?
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
We have a new EP coming and a few singles leading up to that. We’ll be on tour, hopefully through Canada and abroad.
How can your fans best keep up to date with you, any socials you want people to check out?
All our links are on www.grimelda.com and all social media which you can access through WiFi or dial up internet connections on your home PC or Macintosh computers. Service charges may apply.