Date: November 2, 2008
Author: Tegan
Publication: teganandsara[dot]org
Headline: October 2008 Ask Tegan

Jenny asks: What practice techniques helped you the most when you were learning to play guitar?

For me I never looked at guitar as something I needed to practice. I wrote my own songs and played them because I enjoyed the process of writing. I think this was the key for me. I looked forward to playing guitar because I got to sing and play my own music.

Sarah asks: You have been writing songs and making albums for ten years; I was wondering how you imagine yourself ten years from now?

I hope that I have a family. I hope to be making music still too.

Nakia asks: I was recently reading an article about the wacky things that bands and artists request backstage at their shows. Do you have a backstage rider? If so, what are some of the items you request? If not, what would be some of the items you would request?

Our rider is as follows: water, humous, pita, baked chips, chocolate chip cookies, 2 types of fruit, 2 types of vegetables, 6 Luna Bars, orange juice, lemonade, vitamin water, almonds, sandwich stuff for 12.

Nicole asks: Your fans are aware of your social conscience, what with your association with PETA, Macbeth Footwear, and your position on the U.S. election. Has your band and management team considered creating or aligning yourselves with carbon offset projects that fans can contribute to in an effort to reduce your carbon footprint due to touring?

We have talked a lot internally about our carbon footprint. We have started turning the bus off once we are all off it and using the venue rather than the bus unless there is shore power. We also recycle on the bus. My goal is to work more with companies that help bands do this in the next year and record cycle. Often times reducing your carbon footprint (like using a bio diesel bus) is out of the price range of a band our size. But is on our minds.

Alex asks: What do you think about "hardcore" fans going to dozens of your concerts, spending every free second watching videos of your banter, and writing thousands posts about you on various message boards? Are you scared of their obsession or do you like that they are so into your music?

I am definitely not scared of our fans. I find the enthusiasm in our audience endearing and genuine. It certainly feels good to be us. My whole life I've been a music fan. I've flown to see concerts, I've slept outside for tickets, I've showed up hours and hours before a show to line up. It's great that people feel so passionate about what we do. We do too! We have that in common among many other things with our audience. (It's Sunday and I'm at my family's in Georgia and I'm answering fan questions. I think this proves that I care a lot.)

Bonus Question from SEPTEMBER 2008 ASK TEGAN:

Candice asks: Does Sarah Palin scare you as much as she scares me!?

Absolutely. I've tried the last 5 minutes to put it into words but I can't. She just scares me. A world where she is in power terrifies me. I have no idea what I will do if Sarah Palin becomes Vice President. I feel for all Democratic Americans.