Saturday, May 12, 2007

Self Made Glam Girl Rocks On

Here's a great read on my emergence from underground cult rock figure to present day. Thanks to J. Donnelly at the City Journal.

Don’t ever tell Mackenzie MacBride she doesn’t have the right stuff to be a singer. She’ll just laugh in your face, pull out a mic and belt out another glitzy show tune.
Perseverance is what’s kept the self-styled “cruise-ship Vaudeville glam rocker” sane all this time, she admits. “I’ve been at this over ten years and it’s only in the last year that anyone has paid attention,” says MacBride, a self-taught musician and dirty-blonde Cyndi Lauper type.But after what’s seemed an eternity of brush-offs and Cheshire smiles from promoters and fellow musicians alike, the singer – who this past year alone has birthed numerous Ottawa shows alongside high-profile acts like Hilotrons, The City Above and Lesbians on Ecstasy – is finally getting what she considers her just desserts.She just rocked the Russian-styled Avant Garde CafĂ© this past Saturday with Night of Knights and Emile Pelletier, and is set to lay down another set of “story-songs” at the CRIAW Conference with slam poet Oni the Hatian Sensation at the Elgin Street Church this May 5.The act itself is completed by backing band The Super Model Syndrome and is one of sheer sonic mayhem, a wave of guitars, liquid synths and oddly belligerent, operatic vocals ripping holes in conventional stage performance like runs in old pantyhose. “It’s New York City balladry, or glam rock,” she explains, adding she draws on influences like Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart to write her offbeat songs.“My music is from the days of bleeding ballads and eloquent words,” she says. “The concept of telling my own truths, and my own stories came to me over time… but I think what people are picking up on now is that I’ve emerged from what we could call a musical bunker.”That bunker, she explains, was her experience growing up in rural Nova Scotia. A land of conservative views and predominantly Celic-style tunes, MacBride says she couldn’t find a single musician to work with for years.Over time she grew more comfortable with her eccentricity, she recalls, playing electro-lounge sets on “B-grade cruise ships” for a while. As her comfort level rose, however, so did kudos from critics and fans alike.“I like to titillate people’s senses, and that includes their laughter button as well as their soul button,” she says. “I like to get onstage and tell the truth as I see it, and in my case I’m trying to share universal truths of heartache, hope and perseverance.”Indeed, jaded lyrics like “Everyone’s sending out their press kits and promos/begging the papers to run their front-page photos” from her tune ‘There’s a Rock Band on Every Corner’ go over well with the indie rock crowd, and MacBride has garnered a local following of fans of late.It’s through a celebration of truth and emotion in all its facets, from sublime revelations to rock-bottom depression, she says, that she's able to connect with audiences. “I try to present that for people so they can see that life is full of highs and lows,” she philosophizes. “Some people it grates on like sand in a shoe, but ultimately people tell me they ended up feeling comfortable with their own uncomfortableness.“And that’s what people come out for. It’s a gritty, angstful evening.”

Friday, May 04, 2007

Radio City

Mackenzie will be interviewed on CIUT (University of Toronto Radio) on Saturday May 5 th at 5 pm. She will be discussing her music. The conversaion will also examine the challenges (and odd triumph) of working in a sex and gender rigid music business.

Basically, here's a show that celebrates being outside of the box. yay! for Sex City!

Tune In:

The pod cast for this interview will be published in July, 2007.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

For the Gals

Mackenzie will sing an intimate set of music for the CRIAW Conference on May 5 th. The CRIAW Conference is a conference focusing on women's issues.


The Well
St. Mark's Anglican Church
9 pm,
Elgin St., Ottawa, ON

CRIAW website:

All are welcome!