What's New Chez Vous, Jon Cohen? (Hint: It's The One Wo/Man Band Festival!)
Jon Cohen is soft-spoken, but unrestrained when it comes to enthusiasm for the work itself, the people that inspire, the community. That small lovely electric light is no doubt part of the contribution he's made (you know, aside from the music he's played) in bands like The Dears and The Social Register; in his own successful solo project; and now in the flourishing of his festival: a celebration of that small lonely light that graces a stage in the body of the One Wo/Man Band...
"My name is Jon Cohen, of the Jon Cohen Experimental. I'm the founder & artistic director for the one-man band festival (18th to 20th of May 2012), an original new music festival in its maiden year here in Montreal, which celebrates and showcases exclusively, the talents and creativity of one man/ one woman bands from all over the world. I started out as a musician in a band and gradually moved into a one man band format which has allowed me to make a living touring the world and now I want to bring this unique phenomenon into one big amazing music fest exclusive to the solo performer."
So...What's new chez vous?
"Ever since I returned from a tour in Europe this year I've been organizing and making this festival happen. It started with just an idea but has now snowballed into a, 3-day show, with concerts, workshops, various locations and parties. This festival has taken on a life of its own. Our new festival website www.onemanbandfest.com has all the schedule details, where to buy tickets, with bios of our over 20 artists 20 artists including Bloodshot Bill, Wax Mannequin, The Kettle BLack, Jon Cohen Experimental, Mike O'Brien, Cocobeurre, Scott Dunbar, Lederhosen Lucil and many more."
Local love bonus questions of love! Most memorable meal you've had recently in a restaurant in Montreal? Most successful recent shopping experience? Who else would you like to see featured in this series?
Meal?: "I was in Chinatown the other day out of pure coincidence; I had had a runny nose and was on the edge of a flu I think. Oh and I was starving. I had this sudden deep hankering for some Veggie Pho Noodle soup and walked in to Pho-Bang New York on St-Laurent. I swear I can't remember ever enjoying a soup like that. Slurp after heavenly slurp, the noodles were perfect, the basil was fresh and the chop suey was crunchy, all veggie of course! It was the best 7 $ I ever spent. Afterwards, I felt healthier and no longer sick."
Shopping?: "I don't really shop except to buy stuff on craigslist really, but lately I bought this amazing suitcase on JP Grimard on Beaubien that just blew my mind, I packed it with 70 pounds worth of music gear for a 14000km tour across all of Europe and it never let me down except on the last day where the wheel broke off, but it was the last day, so I have gratitude for it for waiting till the tour was over before collapsing!"
Who Else?: "I would like to see more one wo/man bands (surprise surprise!) who are working like crazy. Artists such as Bloodshot Bill or Lederhosen Lucil, Jenn Mierau or Bad Uncle. These people should get the credibility they deserve. They work so hard and tour so much and are so talented and have been reinventing themselves for our enjoyment."
What's New Chez Vous is an interview series by Risa Dickens, Yelp Montreal Community Manager and co-founder of Indyish.com. Each column will spotlight new styles in town and the places local boutique owners love. If you'd like to see your shop/designs featured here, reach out and touch at firstname.lastname@example.org