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The Bandthropologist looks at Charlotte Cornfield

Posted by Margot / May 22, 2011

In an attempt to deliver a new twist in music reporting, Midnight Poutine presents the Bandthropologist, a (somewhat intrusive) look into bands' personal space. We've all seen the loud and sweaty output at venues and listened to sweet melodies on our headphones, but do we ever think about the origins of the music? It's basically Jane-Goodall-meets-Margaret-Mead for Montreal-based bands; purely observational and self-professedly biased, this study of humanity focuses on one jam space at a time. You can make endless assumptions about people and their culture by looking at how they live, so why not test this out on the people whose music we love?

20110522_charlotte cornfield_B.jpgBreakfast is indisputably the most important meal of the day, so why not start out with some fruit, hot sauce, and The New Yorker? Montreal singer-songwriter and multiple-band-member Charlotte Cornfield knows how to start the day right. And she's got to build up energy for going on tour this summer - she'll be making appearances at a few of your favourite summertime festivals.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_C.jpgWhen did it become passé to yell "More cowbell!"? Was it 2004?

20110522_charlotte cornfield_D.jpgCharlotte's often known for her percussion skillz, but she also picks up the guitar and sings a fair number, too.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_E.jpgTaking a break from the musical paraphernalia, shall we notice that there's Astroturf in this windowsill? Very civilized, if you ask this bandthropologist; one story above the awning, the windowsill is a great place to get in a bit of tee-time.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_F.jpgEqually civilized: Boggle. It could be that all of her thoughtful lyrics are coming from many a game spent finding words in those fated cubes. (Of course that's complete conjecture; something makes me think that her lyrics often have more than 4-5 letters each).

20110522_charlotte cornfield_G.jpgWhat sort of fabulous artefact do we have here? Some sort of medieval torture contraption? No, not in the Cornfield household! This is none other than a musical loom, built by one of Charlotte Cornfield's housemates. Though it's currently slightly out of tune and housing some greenery, it has the ability to (pun alert) "weave" some original music.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_I.jpgCharlotte Cornfield: thwarting global warming two drying racks at a time (and I'm sure those guitars produce Earth-saving music, too).

20110522_charlotte cornfield_J.jpgThey've got a great place to listen to music and soak up the late-afternoon sun. Speaks volumes to what these people value (hint: the good things in life).

20110522_charlotte cornfield_K.jpgThe whole point of this series was to stay away from "Who are your musical influences?"-type interviews, but I just liked how this one looked. Also, The Cure rocks.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_L.jpgAgain, we could look at this tiny sample of a considerable CD collection and make assumptions. But we won't. That said, it's a great way to start a conversation about some of Charlotte Cornfield's other projects, like Takk.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_M.jpgWe all need some bright-red-brick outdoor respite from time to time.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_N.jpgOnly one person's going to claim this guy at the YYZ baggage check.

20110522_charlotte cornfield_O.jpgNow that you've seen where the music is made, you can check out the end product yourself: Charlotte Cornfield's EP release of Construction on the Street is going on Monday (tomorrow!) night at Casa del Popolo.

If you know a band that you'd like to see bandthropologized, shoot me an email: margot at midnight poutine dot ca.



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