Born Again Virgin – aka Anna Roenigk from Austen, Texas – is a lo-fi grunge soloist, and she’s coming to play our LOUD WOMEN Unplugged showcase on 10 July at the Old Queen’s Head! To get to know her a bit better, we asked her 10 questions …
What can we expect from you on 10 July?
Some stripped down acoustic magic (hopefully)
If you could collaborate with someone – any musician/performer, living or dead – who would it be?
Rufus Wainwright – songwriter of my dreams, gay messiah
What are your favourite songs in your set to perform?
Probably the 2 newest tunes I’ve written, which you can’t yet stream but you can see me play at the show!
Which was your favourite gig you’ve a) played and b) watched?
One of my favorite gigs I’ve played that comes to mind was in Austin, Texas with my band at a venue called Cheer Up Charlies. We had one more tune left but I had broken a string at the end of the 2nd to last song, so my drummer and friend Greg Clifford played a monster 3 minute solo while I got my shit together and switched guitars . Also I was wearing a turtleneck and blazer that night and it made me feel powerful so there was that too.
One of my favorite shows I saw last year was Janelle Monae touring her album Dirty Computer. It was just an incredible show, her dancers were amazing, the outfits were amazing, she sang some of my favorite stuff from her older records… she is just a super powerful presence.
Recommend a record that you think our readers might not have heard of.
‘Balloons’ by Danny Malone. It has some incredible songs on it.. If you’re a fan of Elliott Smith or just simply great songwriting check it out.
What’s your best piece of advice for young musicians?
I still feel like a young musician so I’m not sure what I can say that would be helpful. I suppose, and as cheesy as it sounds, to just try to be yourself. We don’t really need any more dudes trying to sound like John Mayer in a Guitar Center.
Your top 3 most beloved albums ever – go.
I am not good at choosing albums, I’m better at choosing songs..but these 3 are all great and ~ special in their own way ~
Want One – Rufus Wainwright
Keep Your Eyes Ahead – The Helio Sequence
Rubberneck – The Toadies
What are your musical goals?
To make a full album I am proud of, to tour more, and to support myself with my music.
What’s the most important thing we need to know about your music right now?
That it is changing. To what, I’m not sure yet.
Give your top 5 contemporary bands/musicians
Besides the ones I have already mentioned… and as far as current working musicians:
Haley Bonar – She now goes by HALEY but her songwriting is amazing, her album Big Star and The Size of Planets are my favorite.
Anna Calvi – She’s just a total shredder babe and fucking goes all out when she plays. I haven’t seen her live but I’ve seen live videos and it looks like an amazing show. I feel like she’s one of a kind.
Mitski – I love the way that Mitski writes. She is intense and dramatic and it feels very authentic. I also equally like the way she interacts with her fans. She seems like she would be a really chill person to talk about music with.
Sufjan Stevens – I thought of Sufjan because he makes whatever the fuck he wants these days. As for the past few years, Carrie and Lowell was this beautiful, incredibly emotionally complex album. Then he writes 2 different versions of one song about Tonya Harding. For pride month he put out some catchy pop tunes. He does what he wants.
Smash Mouth – um besides their prolific career, have you seen them going off on Twitter lately?