The last few months for Canadian singer/songwriter/actress/model CELLESTE have been filled with jet setting, rock 'n roll infamy and a lot of hard work.
From opening an arena show for Alice Cooper to modeling in Cancun for Royal Resorts to performing at the official opening gala for the Formula 1 Grand Prix du Canada to launching a vintage glam jewelry line carried by renowned online jeweler ICE to releasing a supremely catchy new single as a introduction to her sophomore recording being released this fall, her fancy footwork has been fast and furious deep in the heart of Montreal.
Celleste graciously took a break from wrapping up her new album to indulge in a piping hot platter of Mack and cheese.
1. As a follow-up to your 2010 album Ready To Fly, you’ve just released an addictive new single called Join The Infestation that’s chock full of booty-shaking funk and syncopated hand claps. Whom did you work with on the track and is there a whole album on the horizon?
C: On Ready To Fly, I had an amazing experience working with singer-songwriter/producer Eric Dick, so obviously I co-wrote my new song "Join The Infestation" with him again. Eric totally gets me and my music, and he brings out the best in me when it comes to working in the studio. I'm very happy to say that we're working on my second album right now, which will be coming out in the fall :)
2. In the accompanying JTI video, you bust out some pretty fancy footwork which makes me think of the original “Footloose” (it was blasphemous to remake such a classic!). Considering songs such as "The Loco-Motion" and the “Cha Cha Slide” were specifically written with the intention of creating a new dance style, is there an actual choreographed routine called The Infestation that you hope will catch on like The Macarena?
C: Ah! Funny question :)
All my dancing was actually improvised, it was really just about me having fun... Nothing planned there! I only had to rehearse the swing dancing parts...for obvious reasons. As for The Infestation dance...I'm all for it! That would be fun, but I guess I would have to check out the video and learn my own moves again lol
3. You opened for Alice Cooper at the Bell Center in your home base of Montreal. How was it hanging with the elder of Shock Rock? Did he give you any advice? Do you have a favorite song of his?
C: Alice Cooper is the sweetest guy! I gave him an album after soundcheck, we took a picture, did a You Tube video together and then he said: "Can I keep the CD?" Isn't that a cute story? I said: "Please do!". It was an honor to meet him, he's 64 and he's still rockin' out! You have to respect that.
(Btw, AC had Ke$ha sing on “What Baby Wants” for his Welcome 2 My Nightmare release...your voice would have sounded killer on WBW...and you could have listed your name as Celle$te)
C: lol That would of been nice! It's always good to have a $ sign in your name :)
4. On June 7, you performed at "The Grand Evening", the official opening gala for the Formula 1 Grand Prix du Canada. The prestigious event to benefit local charities will be held at the l'Arsenal Contemporary Art Complex in the Griffintown district of Montreal. I would love to race through the streets of my city. Any desire or possibility to put the pedal to the metal, Formula 1 style?
C: The Grand Prix gala was a great evening to be part of, I was very happy to be invited to perform there. As for racing...I'm not a big fan of speed racing... I did get to see the Grand Prix race, and I certainly respect the intensity those drivers have to endure... but I still can't say I'm a fan!
5. Our government keeps making cuts to Arts funding...our Public Broadcasting System is constantly on the brink but, in Canada, there are grants artists can receive to help them tour (both domestically and internationally) and showcase at conferences, etc. Brilliant! Have you received grant support from the Conseil des arts de Montréal (CAM), the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec (CALQ) and/or the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA)?
C: There's a lot of politics involved in this area. All the grants from the province of Quebec are for French music only, though it is possible to get a grant for English music from the Canadian government. But as co-owner of an indie record label (MightyMusic.ca), I can say that money often comes with ties... So up until now we've managed to keep our costs as low as possible, and haven't gone the grant route.
6. You have a partnership with the international jewelry boutique ICE for a line called VINTAGE GLAM that includes leather bracelets, steel cuffs, rings, necklaces and earrings (prices range from $60-$300). What are your favorites pieces and which are the top sellers?
C: The Smily Face leather bracelet is a winner on my wrist, but I really love all the pieces. As far as top-sellers... you better talk to Ice! My guess might be the "stainless-steel cuff" bracelet or the "multi-gemstone" silver bracelet...
7. You are very stylish in all of your publicity photos. What are your Top 5 apparel brands and/or shops/stores?
C: Well thank you. I actually work really hard to find my clothes... I make an effort NOT to shop in commercially known stores, or wear brand names. I like my clothes to be unique...so it's always a challenge. I really need a fun designer that I could work with, so I can always feel like "me", and wear my own designs... Working on it!
8. Let’s touch on some favorites:
Delectable at Tim Hortons? Cute Canadian question...but I love my Decaf Soy Mocha at Starbucks :)
Favorite flavor of Yoplait? I only eat organic yogurts...but my favorite flavors are vanilla & mocha. I love fruit, but I'm not a fan of fruit-flavored yogurts!
Adult beverage? Bold, red, Amarone wine...The best!
Animal? Pigs and dogs... I love them both equally.
Phone app? My producer & I use some very cool recording apps when we're writing songs, it's very handy and practical, and it allows us to write anywhere and at anytime... for quickly getting down ideas, "FiRe" is great, and for more involved recording there's Meteor, or DAW Multitrack
Brand of lipstick/make-up? No lipsticks, I love my lip balm. As for the rest of my make-up, I use MAC.
Singers? Robert Plant, Shannon Hoon, Fiona Apple, KT Tunstall
Movie? I love sci-fi movies, especially those involving time travel. Back To The Future 2 is a big classic of mine! The latest Star Trek by J.J. Abrams was also great.
Show on CBC? I have to say that I don't watch a lot of TV (so no CBC!), but I always enjoy a quick comedy to clear my mind... The Simpsons usually does the trick :)
Travel destination? I've never been to Italy... I absolutely want to go there for an awesome Amarone Wine tour!
Victoria or Prince Edward Island? Victoria...it's closer to California!
9. There’s a glut of televised singing competitions around the globe. There’s a new one in the U.S. with John Legend, Kelly Clarkson and Jennifer Nettles called Duets. So, with that theme in mind, if you could duet with anyone (dead or alive), whom would it be and what song would you want to sing?
C: My fantasy would be to sing the song "Change" with the late Shannon Hoon from Blind Melon, but an awesome duet/collaboration with either Steven Tyler, Lenny Kravitz or Sheryl Crow would also be an amazing experience :)
10. My favorite song from Ready To Fly is “Beyond Words”. Such a beautiful ballad! What is the inspiration for the song?
C: The song is about unconditional love...the kind of love that you can't express in words. We all have someone special in our lives, a friend, a parent, a child... I personally wrote it for my extraordinary dad. He accepted to be in the video with me, which was a fun experience and a magical moment.
11. Are there any charities or organizations that you support that you’d like to give a shout-out to?
C: I support many of them. A shout-out and much love certainly goes to all the organizations concerning animal rights, women's rights, and children. Eventually I would like to focus on a specific one that I'll be dedicating more time and effort to...
12. If you could spend a day with anyone (dead or alive), whom would it be and why?
C: I would love to have a chat with God :) So many things to ask...that would be quite an interesting and informative day.
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