Happy Friday, y’all! We’ve got a fresh batch of artist spotlights for you today. I don’t know about you, but this made me want to play Mario Kart and listen to Fleetwood Mac – read below to find out why!

 

BAYLA – Montreal, QC

Who are your musical inspirations? 

Alanis Morissette, Stevie Nicks, Cyndi Lauper.

What is your favourite thing about your city?

I love the vibe of Montreal – the mix of languages, cultures and people.

What is the best career advice you’ve received?

Don’t sweat the small stuff.

Would you rather travel forward in time or backward?

Neither.

What have you been listening to lately?

LANY, Charlotte Cardin, & Betty Who

 

Crystal Eyes – Calgary, AB

Who are your biggest influences? 

My biggest influences come from the music of the 60’s counter-cultural revolution, and how that informed the music of the 90’s, and how that then informed contemporary indie rock. I am trying to merge all of those aspects through a contemporary lens.

What was the best career advice you’ve received?

Expect nothing but believe in yourself. Be nice to everyone, not because it will get you ahead, but because everyone deserves that from you. When you take the time to listen to someone else, you learn something. Be fearless about accepting criticism, use it constructively and openly but also know when to ignore it. Support your friends, but also please support people who might be otherwise marginalized in the ‘scene’. Not everything is about you. Work hard and practice and stop judging yourself.

Where do you consider “home” and what is your favourite thing about it?

I consider Canada my home. My heritage is ‘white settler’, and I feel a lot of shame about the colonial history behind that. But I also don’t identify with anywhere else as ‘home’ – as a fourth-generation ‘Canadian’, I do feel very much part of this country and it’s landscape. I’ve explored almost all of it, and the beauty and vastness of the land makes me happy and inspires my music. 

Where do you most like to order takeout from?

I would rather cook, which is my other creative passion apart from song-writing! Otherwise I would prefer go out and enjoy the ambience.

What are you listening to lately?

Snail Mail! Amazing rock from Baltimore, along the lines of what Alvvays has accomplished. Also lot of 60’s/70’s country/folk/psych artists like Blaze Foley, Lee and Nancy, West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band.

 

Freddie Future – Toronto, ON

Who are your biggest influences?

Blood Orange, Majid Jordan, Frank Ocean 

What is the best career advice you’ve received?

Stay true to yourself. The rest will follow. 

Who have you been listening to lately?

Kendrick Lamar, Solange, Childish Gambino, Blood Orange, Majid Jordan, Drake, The Weeknd

What was the last book you read?

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

Anything exciting coming up in 2018?

I’ll be releasing my debut album! 

 

Iduna – Toronto, ON

What was first album you bonded over as a band?
 
Fleetwood Mac – Rumours. It wasn’t exactly that album…but after our first show together we ended up hanging out and watching the Fleetwood Mac rumours tour DVD.
 
What are you most looking forward to at CMW?
 
The music! Also, getting to know the Canadian and global music scene a little bit better. We’re also releasing a new single and video on April 27th, and it’s called “Nosedive”, which will come out right before CMW!
 
What is the best and worst thing about working as an artist in Toronto?
 
Best: Seeing great musicians and how diverse and exciting all the music is right now.
Worst: Breaking through the obscurity. There’s just so much always happening.
 
What are you listening to right now?
 
Jason – Matt Good (Something Like a Storm), Plants and Animals (Parc Avenue)
Trison – Tame Impala (Lonerism), Soundgarden (Superunknown)
Tim – Sylvan Esso, Alice Glass, and like a billion other things
Craig – The sounds of the night and the embers of my cigarette…as well as Tatran and Bowie.
 
What are your 3 most recent emojis?
 
🔪😵🥔 They were the last used in band chat…god help us all.
 

The Mooks – Toronto, ON

What was first album you bonded over as a band?

You Forgot It In The People – Broken Social Scene. When we first met, Owen and Luis had played in bands for 10 years, and Mookie knew next to nothing about their musical backgrounds/tastes. We quickly found out, this was an album that was integral to all of us during our formative years

What are you most looking forward to at CMW?

We are most looking forward to our showcase. We’ve only played 4 shows together, mainly to friends. We’re excited to expose ourselves to strangers. With rock n’ roll music.

What is the best and worst thing about being a band in Toronto?

The best thing about being a band in Toronto, is the sense of community. There’s constant reminders that there is always someone out there working harder than you that week/month, friend or foe. It can be exciting or debilitating. Oh, and Long and McQuade rentals rule. The worst thing about being a band in Toronto is probably the cost of living. Everything is just more expensive music wise and life wise. But you can figure that out after awhile, and learn some hot tips. 

Where are some of your favourite places to get takeout from?

As a band, hands down it’s Chicken pizza through a window from a place called Chito’s at the corner of Bloor and Landsdowne. They put gyro chicken on top of pepperoni pizza, and then drown it with garlic sauce/hot sauce. It’s beautifully disgusting. And cheap. Great service too. 

Nintendo or Playstation?

Nintendo. Nothing beats MarioKart for us.