interview: ingrid gatin

so, canadian singer-songwriter ingrid gatin has a very interesting bluesy-french sound to her music. she plays the accordion (a highly maligned and much under-appreciated instrument, in this opinion), so that right there gives her music a delicious parisian feel. but rather than sounding like a chanteuse, gatin comes off more like a blues singer with her sultry voice and melodic rhythms.

she’s about to release an six song EP – time will change us. it is, for the most part, exactly as i described above – a fascinating blend of french accordion and the blues. and, frankly, it’s the accordion that makes the whole thing so alluring. just why aren’t more people playing/liking the accordion? i just don’t get it – i mean, it’s so fascinating. and ingrid gatin uses that fully to her advantage, creating songs that, despite popular opinion about accordions being cheesy, are intriguing and beautiful (as exemplified by climb, climb, climb off of the EP – swoon, peeps. just – SWOON).

ingrid was kind enough recently to answer some questions for me about her music, influences, and what’s up next for her:

have you met heather: you’ve got a very bluesy sound to your music. what are your influences?

ingrid gatin: Cocorosie, Sufjan Stevens, Antony and the Johnsons, Beirut, Arcade Fire, and yes, the blues: Billie Holiday, Etta James, Nina Simone, and sometimes Bonnie Raitt. Not to mention Sam Cooke, Al Green, Hindi Zahra, A Hawk and a Hacksaw. I love it all basically.

hymh: what is your writing process like? are your songs culled from life experiences or are they found in other inspirations?

ingrid: My songs definitely come straight from my life, straight from my heart. They are not always about me, but about something that affects me deeply. I often try to write from vantage points that show a deeper meaning or a broader vantage point, but generally, I just write what comes out.

hymh: you’ve just spent time touring eastern canada. how do you like performing live on the road?

ingrid: I love touring. Basically, I would like to spend all my time travelling and performing, and the [Canadian] East Coast is amazing. It is what makes my life work best.

hymh: time will change us, your new EP, will be released in early august. what’s the story behind this work?

ingrid: This is an EP or a “mini-album” that we chose to release as the first volume to a two volume set. It’s more rewarding in many ways to spread out the time and the work of a full album, and when we have the double album, there will be a ton of songs and a lot of thought and dedication worked in.

hymh: what’s up next for you?

ingrid: After just having played the Winnipeg Folk Festival, we are playing the smaller Brandon Folk Festival this weekend. Then Ingrid Gatin (as in Ingrid Gatin on accordion/keyboards/vocals, Natalie Bohrn on Upright Bass/vocals, Matthew Tomlinson on drums/vocals, and Julia Watson on violin) will be touring Western Canada, with Matthew Tomlinson as the opening act, playing music shows and festivals and promoting the new release!

thanks, ingrid!

check out slow dancing – which is the bluesiest piece on the EP (and sorry, friends, the least accordion friendly):

(mp3) slow dancing by ingrid gatin

this song, how did i get so, isn’t on the EP, but it just had to be shared:

time will change us will be released on august 4th. go HERE to learn more about ingrid gatin.

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