Tegan and Sara, whether they like it or not, are one of the more fascinating pop duos in recent history.
The 28–year–old, identical twin sisters have been working together for more than a dozen years. The Canadian siblings each live on opposite ends of the country, Sara in Montreal and Tegan in Vancouver. And traditionally they write separately and later bring everything together in the studio, where they assign harmonies and complete the process.
Both sisters actually lived in Vancouver for a stint, but Tegan lasted only a couple of years before realizing her calling in Montreal.
"She had a friend there, and that's where she wrote a lot of the songs on 'So Jealous,'" Tegan Quin said recently. "Her moving didn't affect our writing at all, because we never wrote together."
Over the course of their past five records, the duo has quietly become a popular act all over North America, where their alternating styles — from bouncy dance–pop to emotionally charged rock — have caught the attention of music supervisors on all the major TV networks.
The Denver Post caught up with Tegan at her Montreal home.
Q: You both write separately, but how do you manage the other aspects of being in a band?
A: Sara has always been about the artwork, the website, the merch. I've been more about the business and management, handling the band and crew stuff. We keep the company running out here. And our whole band and management live on a island an hour west of here.
Q: Are people often surprised to hear that you and your sister don't live in the same city?
A: Not really. More band people than you might think don't live in the same city as each other. You spend so much time squished into a bus for months on end that it's nice to go home a not be forced to spend time with one another.
Q: You have been performing together for how long?
A: We have had the band going for 10 years professionally now, and we've been writing for 14. The guys in our band are family, so it's more of a family band when we're out on the road.
Q: But isn't it good seeing your sister, since you live on opposite coasts?
A: Sara and I are 28 and have our own lives. We still see each other and socialize when we're in the same place, and yeah, it's always good to see her.
Q: Tell me about some of the nice things about being better known.
A: We've put out five records, and this is the first one where we have been able to tour consistently and then take breaks. I had the chance to perform with Alkaline Trio and Against Me.
Q: Who else have you worked with outside of the work you do with your sister?
A: I've been writing a little bit with Tiesto, and that's been fun. Hunter Bergan and I have also written some stuff.
Q: Hunter Bergan from A.F.I.? Tell me about that stuff.
A: It's hard to explain: It's like a mixture of pop and rock and electro.
Q: Do you have any demos out there?
A: No demos. We're mainly looking to contribute to other people's records. We're both under contract to different labels, so it would be complicated to put something out.