What is the first thing you think about in the morning?
“This one definitely varies…..and I know this is going to sound cheesy but generally the first thing I think about is music; putting some on, playing some, thinking about a part in a song I cannot get out of my head. Music just glues itself to my brain somehow… it’s like a very natural process for the way my mind functions. Oh and I think about having a glass of water usually, putting on some socks too.”
How would you describe yourself?
“Well there are many aspects to “me” I guess. I am one whole person but different circumstances bring out different characteristics. In my friendships I would say I am very loyal, fun, generous and inclusive. At my job, in my work life I would say I am very self-directed and task oriented; personable with clients and always wanting to help people improve their lives. I would say on all levels, on the more negative end of my personality I can fall into being super critical, judgemental and not easily trusting of others. My brother describes me as a “card”, my mother probably describes me as ridiculous at best ….generally I tell people I am a 40 year old man in a 23 year old girl’s body (what that means to someone who is reading this and doesn’t know me… I’m not really sure). I guess overall I am just Dannika.”
Who has influenced you the most?
“I would say my Baba Marion (my dad’s mother) has been the most influential in how I live my life and how I make my choices. She is a very naturally spiritually connected woman and has so much wisdom that I just want to soak it all up as much as possible. She has really instilled the idea of having a “purpose” in my heart—this truly keeps me going and this also inspires a lot of subject matter for my music.
For the more artistic influences anything old; 60’s/ 70’s music, fashion, photography, art, TV shows (I am really enamoured with Three’s Company). I am really captivated by those generations’ uses of colours, patterns and just a more vibrant & hopeful view of the world. With this “Good Morning” CD project I really wanted the themes to come through properly in the photography and in the artwork as a compliment to the music I had created. For whatever reason I feel most like myself wearing bellbottom jeans, sitting down and listening to a Jefferson Airplane album or watching interviews of musicians or performers from the era– just how people presented and held themselves then—it just seems like I was born a little bit too late and I often feel out of place with societal norms in present day.
For strict musical influences most definitely Silver Apples, Moody Blues, Adrian Belew, Jefferson Airplane (of course), YES!, Jim Croce, Peter Green, Fiona Apple, Bat For Lashes, Joni Mitchell, The Carpenters, Electric Prunes, Heart, Velvet Underground, Ultimate Spinach, David Axelrod….after this I would probably just start listing all of the artists that I love so I have to stop myself here. However I would say that everyone I listed is a big and direct influence on my music. I feel like while my music has congruent qualities that make it it’s own;I also really enjoy writing and performing all sorts of styles that I would say “deviate” from my styling’s.So I would say that’s why my influences are over the place … or a better way of saying that I guess is ‘”eclectic”.”
Where and with whom do we find you on a Friday night?
“I am 50% introvert and 50% extravert. So Friday nights can either be very lively and you can find me with my best buds Juditte and Soph getting up to no good…..or you can find me eating an entire brick of organic cheese and then passing out on the couch next to my Baba while she is watching the miracle channel.”
What makes life meaningful?
“Purpose makes life meaningful. To have something that drives me, that is fruitful and has a perpetual unfolding outcome… that is meaningful. Or just walking around outside at twilight and hearing the birds chirp over the purpley sky… a well executed hug….love I guess– whatever that looks like. I guess love can make life meaningful or rather it does. Music does because music is omnipresent. It’s at weddings, funerals, playing in the grocery store, at church, summer camp, city bus… you don’t need any tools outside of yourself you can simply sing…you can’t really escape music. It’s in everything ; so as it is in everything it can encompass every meaningful subject for ever and ever amen.”
Best thing to do on a rainy day?
“Probably eating lasagne or shopping with friends. I don’t want to say watching a movie because I have little patience to sit and watch most movies or shows. I have to be like really tired for that.”
“My favourite book is probably “A Clockwork Orange”. I can’t say I am a violent person and that I enjoy the actual violent and crude things that are carried out by Alex and his Droogs in the book… but I think it’s a very great narrative on society and is really relevant in pop culture as a way for people to maybe actually think about things.
I am also totally in love with the “Weetzie Bat” series of books by Francesca Lia Block. They are adult themes presented in a fairy tale way. They are really beautiful and really get to the depth of emotion in the way the stories are presented.”
What do you like most about yourself?
“I like most about myself that I am able to objectively evaluate things in life before jumping in and making dumb ass decisions. I also like that I have a creative approach to most things I do in my life.”