Q & A with Stacey Kaniuk

There is a charming yet enduring quality to the latest  CD from Stacey Kaniuk. A classically trained pianist by trade, Kaniuk’s debut full-length CD owes more to 60’s soul and R&B than Brahms. Kaniuk’s vocals are her secret weapon on Hot Air Balloon. Her voice is  powerful and charismatic yet inviting to the listener.

Stacey recently took the time to take part in the MusicNerd Q&A where she tells us why living in Aurora, Ontario isn’t all bad and why Gumby and Pokey resided on the inside of her closet door.

Where do you currently call home?

I live just north of Toronto in Aurora.

Why do you live where you do?

Well, this is where I grew up, it is what I know as ‘home’. Aurora’s a great place…Friendly people with a love of music and art. It’s a small town without that scary “small town” vibe. I love spending a Saturday morning riding my bike to the farmers market. I’m 1/2 city lover, 1/2 country girl. Identity crisis!

What is occupying your time these days?

I’ve got a new CD “Hot Air Balloon”. I can safely say I have worked harder on this than anything else in my whole life. It was so much fun, but also meant some really long days (and nights) and very little sleep.

First record purchased and at what age?

I bet it was Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill when I was eleven. I spent hours leafing through the lyrics in the liner notes.

When did you start to play music?

When I was five I started playing piano. We had an old Heintzman upright piano, which I loved. I was so devastated when we sold it; I stole some pieces from the inside and hid them in my dresser drawer. I think I still have them. Singing came later, and I honestly can’t remember when. Our house was always filled with music from day one.

If we took a look inside the bedroom of a 13-15 year old you, what posters would have been on the walls?

The nineties! There was a Bush-X poster, Radiohead OK Computer, and on the inside of my closet I kept an old Gumby & Pokey poster. I kept it on the inside because those guys freaked me out a night.

What three records could you not live without?

Ray LaMontagne – Gossip in the Grain

A Donny Hathaway Collection

Radiohead – The Bends

Not necessarily in that order though.

Who or what is getting too much attention these days?

Charlie Sheen. Reality TV. The Swiffer Wet Jet.

Who or what is not getting enough attention these days?

Climate change. It did for a while, but it seems like now it’s old news…

What has been your most memorable show?

My last CD release for my first EP was pretty special. Since it was in October, we decked the place out with sunflowers and checkered table cloths, we gave away homemade candy apples and the place was FULL of family, friends and and fans. I could feel the love in the room and it was very humbling. I’m pretty sure I fell asleep smiling that night!

Worst career moment thus far?

When I was younger I sang the national anthem for the RCMP Music Ride, in front of roughly one thousand people. The anthem had to transition from English to French and back into English. The French part went fine, but coming back into the English part just I blanked out on the words. Silence…. I was so embarrassed I just muttered “I’m sorry” and ran off the stage in tears! Not my proudest moment.

Most extravagant rider item?

Twinkle lights! They make for great pictures.