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Call & Response: Ira Lee

Posted by Jer / August 3, 2010

Ira Lee.jpgCall & Response is a series of Q&As with bands, artists and random people we dig that live in Montreal, visit here, or have some dubious connection to the city.

Ira Lee is whack. That's what his web url says and, if you take a listen to just 20 seconds of his stand-out twisted hip hop album My Favourite Songs by Me, you'll agree. Often clever, always out there, Lee delivers an undeniably creative and off-kilter collection of songs that will make you laugh and cringe in equal parts. His video for All the Places We Did It is a prime example...cute and dirrrty all at once. Even though the album is loaded with characters and stories, it manages to stay personal and honest.

Sadly, Mr. Lee is off to Paris this fall to try and take over Europe. You can catch his last gig here in MTL on Aug. 14th at Off Interarts, 5145 boul. St-Laurent (part of the Indyish Monthly Mess). Before he leaves, Midnight Poutine has a few questions for this hip hop oddity.

Your lyrics are twisted. Would you really steal my little sister's bike?

Over, and over, and over again. All night long.

You've also got a unique flow and approach to rhyming. Any influences you'd like to cite?

Drugs. Silence, sacrifice and playing live shows. Every and any live show possiblefor almost ten years. I once performed for a room full of cats, covered in pussy the entire night.

Where is the best place to listen to your music?
I have the most powerful, interesting and original live show in Montreal. Download and share everything and anything you can for free and buy me a hotdog before we move to France forever and ever in September to get rich and famous.

What do you love most about Montreal?
It's further from British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Alberta than Manitoba.

What do you love most about Poutine?
The way the gravy tastes when you lick it off your shirt.

What do you hate most about Poutine?
The whole needing to 'chew' and 'breathe' while you eat deal. I never signed anything.

Who was your first live concert? Was it everything you had ever imagined?
Corb Lund and the Smalls in regina, Saskatchewan. Corb peed his pants, broke three speakers and got punched in the knee by a short soundguy. Not quite a whole box of Golden Grahams for lunch, but damn close.

If your music was a famous historical figure, who would it be and why?
Werner Herzog. A style that controls and manipulates reality to make art. I have never heard / heard of / or read a single explanation or justification of anything he has done in his entire career.

What's the best way to spend a Million dollars in 10 minutes?

How did you spend your 16th birthday?
Laying on my back in a patch of grass with my 'best friend', the prettiest girl in school, who was in love with everyone except me. I was trying to convince her that kissing me would make her parents really mad, and she wouldn't ,so i got up and walked home while she followed me slowly driving down the street, crying.

Of all the places you did it, where was the most awkward?
One time we ordered a 'Big Mac' at Taco Time and they tried to kick us out so we did it in the staff bathroom, and never even flushed, like gangsters.



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