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Artist of the Week: St. Vincent

Posted on September 4, 2012 by

Victoria Abraham defines one up and coming artist each week so you can impress your friends with your musical brilliance. This week, she tackles St.Vincent, an indie songstress, currently residing in Manhattan, who just released Love This Giant with David Byrne. 

St. Vincent is a singer and multi-instrumentalist who takes the best parts of indie rock and combines them seamlessly with cabaret jazz and pop. Her clever, straightforward lyrics and unapologetic weirdness make for a lovely musical experience. She’s set to release an album with David Byrne titled Love This Giant on Sept. 11 and will be participating in the 30 Songs/30 Days Challenge to support Half the Sky, which turns oppression into opportunity for women worldwide.

Origins: Tulsa, Oklahoma

Full name: Annie Erin Clark. Her stage name “St. Vincent” is a reference to Saint Vincent’s Catholic Medical Center where the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas died. Also, Annie claimed in a different interview the name honors her grandmother whose middle name was St.Vincent.

Known for: Clark is known for using a variety of musical instruments and arrangements, and for her happy lyrics that have an unmistakably anxious edge.

Used in a sentence: “St. Vincent makes the kind of music that you wouldn’t be ashamed of having as “most played” on your iPod.”

Download now: She and David Byrne released a new album called Love This Giant featuring a song called “Who.” But we still love her classic track “Cruel.”

File next to: Feist, Kate Bush, David Bowie

Fun facts: Annie began playing guitar when she was 12. Later, she took on the piano, bass, organ and theramin.As a teen, she worked as the tour manager for her uncle’s band Tuck & Patti.

After three years at Berklee College of Music in Boston she dropped out because she wanted to actually start making music.

Timeline:

2003/2004: After leaving Berklee, Annie moved back to Texas and joined a band called The Polyphonic Spree.

2004: She joined Glenn Branca’s 100 guitar orchestra for the Queens performance.

2006: She left The Polyphonic Spree and joined Sufjan Stevens’ touring band.

2007: She released her debut album Marry Me, on July 10.

2008: Clark won the PLUG Female Artist of the Year award.

2009: Her second album Actor was released. It was inspired by Disney movies.

2011: She released Strange Mercy.

2012: She was featured in Vogue’s September Issue. She and former Talking Head member David Byrne release a collaborative album called Love This Giant. 

Notable lyrics: 

Forgive the kids, for they don’t know how to live/Run the alleys casually cruel/Cruel, cruel/Bodies, can’t you see what everybody wants from you?/For you could want that, too/They could take or leave you/So they took you, and they left you/How could they be casually cruel?/Cruel, cruel, oh/Cruel, cruel, oh

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