“From farther up the east coast toward Christchurch comes Flip Grater. The female singer-songwriter has a Hope Sandoval feel to her acousto-folk, but when she shades to something more angsty indie, she's got a little Cat Power in her.” - The Austin Chronicle, Austin, Texas
Christchurch singer/songwriter Flip Grater has been busy of late. In 2006 she released her debut album Cage for a Song, had a hand in producing the videos for it, started her own label Maiden Records and then did a solo tour of New Zealand - finding time to compile a cookbook tour journal. Now she's back in the studio recording a new album. To top all that off, a song from the Cage album was featured on the season finale of the US television drama series Brothers and Sisters.
Flip found some time to answer a few questions..
A desert island. You can take ten albums, five books and five albums.
Albums: Chinatown - Be Good Tanyas, Uh Huh Her - PJ Harvey, Johnny Cash Live at Folsom Prison, Slut Rock - Nou, Give Up - Postal Service, The Reminder - Fiest, I Had To Live and Learn - Ella Fitzgerald, The Stand Sure Oak - Shaun Anderson, Pink Moon - Nick Drake, White People - Boy Modelling People. Books: Gourmet Island Cooking for One, Edmonds Cookbook, Transform Your Life -Gelshe Kelsang Gyatso, My Year of Meat, Hannah's Daughters. Movies: You, Me and Everyone We Know, Garden State, The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Science of Sleep, Cube.
What's a heartbreak song?
Colin Hay - I Just Don't Think I'll Get Over You
Buried or cremated? And an epitaph.
Buried under a tree in a biodegradable bag. 'The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways; the point is to change it.' - Karl Marx.
What music do you most want played at your funeral?
'Let The Cold Wind Blow' by Kate Rusby.
Pick five words to describe yourself.
At. Least. I. Am. Trying.
Babies. Do you want them?
Have you ever had a moment of extraordinary clarity, an epiphany?
I've had some amazing moments. the clearest and the most prolonged ones were all while straight. I once had a fantastic understanding about the nature of mind and lack of inherent existence in all things. It was very comforting.
When was the last time you cried?
'I'm not crying -I've been cutting the onions. I'm making lasagne for one' - Flight of the Conchords.
Who is the person from your past you wish you could go back and talk to?
Camila. My Swedish boyfriend left me for her. I'd like to apologise for hating her for years after.
If you could have any job you wanted what would it be?
What's your greatest ambition?
To have given more than I've taken when I die.
What's your greatest weakness?
Stress, salt, alcohol and attachment to people.
Your favourite smell?
First thing - coffee brewing. Midday -the sea. Last thing - Laphroaig. Neat.
What's the most important thing in your life?
Do you believe in the afterlife?
I believe in reincarnation.
What's your poison?
Wine, whiskey, coffee, msg.
Who has time to read magazines?
What's the best piece of advice you've received?
If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.
What's your most treasured possession?
What's your greatest talent?
I make really good dumplings.
If you could build a house anywhere, where would you live?
The reason I live in Christchurch currently is due to the fact that I chose it over anywhere else in the world. But I would like to own a house somewhere hotter than I can live in during June and July. Perhaps southern Sweden or Denmark.
Technology or art?
You are invisible for a day. What are you going to do?
An attention seeker like me would hate being invisible.
What is Heaven?
A hot day on the beach with a few good friends, perfect surf, a giant book of soduku, bean salad and gin and tonics with fresh lime.
What is Hell?
What turns you on?
If you're referring to the lasting kind, it comes from within.
Britney. She needs a cuddle or a shrink?
Where are you off to now?
The Sitting Room. I'm recording demos for my next album.