“I write very gay sh*t, but I’m here for everyone”
BY FELICIA KOCH, IMAGE BY MOLLY ADAMS
Based in Vancouver, Canada, Xana is a magnetic new musician within the LGBTQIA community. While blurring the lines between pop, rock, and even western genres, Xana’s music is powerful, vulnerable, and undeniably catchy. So if you’re in desperate need of a brand new banger to blast on your way to work, or seeking something to tug on your queer heartstrings, tell Alexa to play some Xana.
So this is your first tour! Are you feeling ready for it?
This is my first tour, so I’m really excited about it! Other members of my band have toured before, so they have a little bit more experience. I’m just along for the ride! We go over to the Island tonight, and I’m playing with Rifflandia, which is the music festival on Vancouver Island. Next week I have my Seattle show, and then I’m gone for three weeks!
Is there a particular place or city that you’re most excited to visit?
I am definitely just excited to be on the go in general, but I’m especially excited for the New York shows. They go so hard, and the fact that I sold out two shows there is also just so insane! I don’t think I’ve fully accepted that yet. I’m also super excited for The Dinah, just because that’s such an iconic festival to be playing. It will be so fun to be around so many queer women and to perform for them and meet new people there.
So there’s this running joke in the queer community about dating long distance. Have you ever been in a long-distance relationship?
Haha, no I don’t think that I have ever had a long-distance queer relationship… I wouldn’t say that I wouldn’t ever though, because I feel like at some point in my life, when I am dating and having relationships, there will potentially be a part of that relationship that might be long distance. So I’m not super shut off to that possibility.
Well, what if you happen to meet someone new somewhere like New York?
Well, one thing about me is that I will do anything for love! When I am in love, I will do literally anything. I’m just down for it all. So I know that there’s definitely a world in which I’d be like “Yup, you’re the one, I’ve gotta get you.”
So where do you get the majority of your inspiration for songwriting from?
I have songs that are literally word for word out of my diary. They’re about my romantic relationships or about my relationship with myself. Then I have the songs that I call character songs, like Bad Bandit, which feels a bit more like storytelling for me. I make up characters, but even in those songs, there’s always a little bit of truth and a little bit of something personal. Like yeah, I have crazy commitment issues, but instead of saying that, I’m just going to write about this western Harley Quinn who murders anyone who wrongs her.
I love a bitter ex song, so those are my favourites of yours. Which of your songs would you consider your favourites?
The bitter ex songs – you gotta have ‘em. I’m a Leo, so when my feelings are hurt, oooh boy, lord have mercy! I’m so thankful that there are people out there in the world who actually enjoy my music, listen to it, and support it, so that I am able to make my most unhinged thoughts and feelings into songs. It’s so therapeutic, and I don’t know what I would do without songwriting. I would probably be in a lot more therapy! You gotta get that shit out, one way or another, so this is just the way I choose to do it.
So who do you think your core audience is?
It’s very much the queer community. Still, I love and think it’s so funny when I go through my comments on a youtube video, and it’s ninety-five per cent queer people except for that one person who is like “Hey, I’m a straight guy, but I love your music!” I write very gay shit, but I’m here for everyone.
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