Taylor Janzen Bunbury Music Festival interview 2019
Taylor Janzen had just finished up smiling for the camera when I walked over to sit down with her for a quick interview. The sun was finally starting to come out from behind the clouds and it was shining brightly overhead. Our photographer Laura Fox noticed that the tree next to us would make for some good shade during the interview to keep us cool and that it would also be a much nicer background for the photos she was wanting to take of Taylor. We moved under the tree and began the interview. Michele Blue: Is this your first time at Bunbury? Taylor Janzen: Yeah, it’s my first time in Ohio actually. I am really loving it. It is very beautiful. MB: Where are you from? TJ: I’m from Winnipeg Canada. MB: I read some of your background, and I am kind of curious… Dennis Quaid? Because you are so young, and he is just a different generation, what’s the story there? TJ: Ummm… well, it started as a joke and then because I would always make like jokes about his Ellen special. When he’d say “Dennis Quaid wants a copy…” [I] Thought that was so funny. And then it just turned into a genuine love. I named a song after him as a joke and it just sort of turned into this thing. And now here I am. MB: You also have a cat named Rory Gilmore, did you watch the Gilmore Girls? TJ: I did. I love Gilmore Girls! I love it! My mom and I love it. I named my cat after Rory but I kind of regretted it after watching A Year in the Life. But you know what, it’s fine because she is Rory Gilmore the early years. Then when in doubt she is Lorelai Gilmore. MB: Did you relate more with Rory, the younger one? TJ: I really liked her as a character when she was younger. I am such a Gilmore Girls nerd. I am re-watching it all right now. MB: A lot of your songs are based around mental health and awareness, you are 19 and on the road… my own daughter is 19 with some anxiety about travelling. She is in Japan and away from home for the first time. That first day was hard for her. Did you have any issues when you first went on the road or did you have a good support system with you while on the road? TJ: I mean the thing with anxiety is that different things make different people really anxious. I don’t necessarily get super anxious about travelling now because I do it so often. I get anxiety about other things. Dennis Quaid is about “imposter syndrome. ”Like man, when are people going to figure out that I suck...” and that kind of a thing. I mean sometimes when I travel it is like an “oh my God” kind of a thing, but really no. MB: You are so young and have not really experienced a lot of life. Like college, are you going to college? TJ: No, I’m not going to college. I am very bad at school. MB: A lot of kids get a sort of freedom with college, and you are just jumping right into your career and some freedom. Was that a little scary for you? TJ: Yeah, I mean… I am sort of easing into it too. I still live in Winnipeg. It’s nice to have a good home base. That is the thing right now. I really love where I am living right now. When I am back in Winnipeg I have a sort of nice self-care thing that I do. Where I drive by myself. And I drive through the city. It is nice to have a place where you know the streets and everything. MB: Is this your first big festival? TJ: No…I did Shaky Knees last month. That was my first one and it was super cool. I love this one though. Ohio is beautiful. It’s gorgeous. I really love it here. Laura Fox: What’s next? Do you have more festivals or tour? TJ: I have Winnipeg Folk Fest next. Which has been one of my goals since I started playing music. So that’s really cool. Then I am doing Mirrors Festival in London which is awesome. And after that I am just going to work on some new music. LF: Do you find pressures of being a woman or that you have additional pressures as a woman that maybe guys don’t or feel like you have to prove yourself more? TJ: Definitely that is something that I have noticed. I didn't… I don’t know. When I started playing shows I would be the only woman on the bill. There would be like 5 bands and I would be the only solo artist and I would be the youngest person. I would notice that I would show up at the shows and the guys wouldn’t talk to me. Until I would play and prove myself. Then they would be like “oh you’re so cool. Like let’s do a show together… and also, can I get your number?” And I am like thinking “I don’t enjoy this” and I was like 18. So that was more of a thing when I first started, and I anticipate it being a thing continuously, because it is what it is… but hopefully people will be more inclusive as I continue. LF: Unfortunately, the music industry can be like that. MB: They need to bring back Lilith fair. Do you remember Lilith fair with all women? TJ: No. I do not remember that. Brandi Carlile has an all women line up and I really would love to go. Winnipeg Folk Festival has always been like that. Last year the entire bill was evenly split. Which was awesome. The headliners were even… or actually I think there were more woman. LF: Girl power. TJ: For sure! LF: Thank you so much for your time. TJ: Thank you for your time. MB: It was really amazing meeting you. TJ: Thank you.