You won't be suprised to learn that St.Vincent is not her real name. The 32-year-old was born the more trad sounding Annie Clark.
St. Vincent grew up in Dallas. But that doesn’t mean she says ‘y’all.’ “I desperately tried not to get the accent. I don’t know why. I was maybe just a pretentious kid. Also, never call a woman ‘ma’am’, never, unless she is clearly 80. I got ma’amed not that long ago, and I was horrified. I feel 16. Or, at least, not a grown-up.”
Today, St.Vincent lives in New York, and likes the way city allows anyone to blend in. “ I think one of the things I love about New York is that I don't feel like a freak. There are so many people. You can't afford to be so myopic in New York. I feel like there are a lot of wonderful, likeminded people, artists and musicians. I don't feel like a freak. Like I kind of did in Texas.”
Now, she's turned her hand to directing. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Annie is set to take on the silver screen with her first film anthology, XX. If you're wondering what a film anthology is, XX will consist of four stories that are directed by and exclusively star women.
The recent Cara related attention hasn’t been a problem. “My life hasn't changed at all. A few more people come up to me on the street every once in a while and say, "Hey, I love your record," and occasionally someone will send a cookie to my table, which is always welcome. It's stuff like that.”
Her theme of music is what’s known as ‘art-rock.’ Think David Bryne, Lou Reed, FKA Twigs…even Lady Gaga in her ArtPop manifesto. Take this for an example. Working on their joint album Love This Giant, David Byrne (who is clearly an big influence) and St Vincent stole moves from Beyoncé’s Single Ladies routine, “slowing it down for awkward people”, as St.Vincent explained. This, it turns out, is a very art-rock approach. “You just recontextualise it, over and over and over again, until it’s unrecognisable from the source.”
The critics love her. Not only can she write, sing, dance and wear the s**t out of clothes, she can also shred a guitar that would have the greatest male guitarists out there silently weeping. COOL.
She’s a massive Nirvana fan and this year performed Lithium with the remaining band members for their induction into the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame (COOL #2). She calls them a “queer band.” Let her explain further: “Nirvana were such feminists. They came up in the Olympia scene, which was, you know, punk rock, feminist, riot-grrrl queer — it was almost hardcore in its ideology. Then they got massively popular because they just wrote great songs.”
She loves touring. “I do; I'm a freak. I haven't been in one place for more than four nights in such a long time. And I'm okay with it. I was reading some quote about how it's a particularly American way to think that there's some ideal life to be living—and measuring yourself up against this ghost ideal. I had a little bit of that too. I always thought that I would get tired of it, but I haven't. It's more fun to me now than ever.”
On defining sexuality, she says, “ I’m not one for gender or sexual absolutism, in the main. I fully support and engage in the spectrum.”
You'll never find her posting food on social media. “ I have felt, like, ‘Oh, I should learn how to make a good cup of coffee...’ Coffee, cooking, a nice home, fun activities: all these things that we are meant to do to be better people, and that we’re then meant to broadcast online. Food pictures should be banned. Take food pictures for yourself, if you want to. Just remember the moment, or rather, remember missing the moment — like, ‘Remember when I took this picture and missed the experience’. But don’t post them on Instagram.”
We don’t need to tell you this but she likes a strong look. “ Fashion, for me, is anything that's aesthetic and beautiful. Art, food, film. It's something that I appreciate and really like. I love it. I think it gets tricky. I don't get super caught up in the capitalistic side of it. It's kind of a buzz-kill. But, the purely aesthetic side of it, to me, is really wonderful.”