Everything You Need To Know About The Endlessly Entertaining, Dallas-Raised And Grammy-Winning Musician Born Annie Clark.
Dating back to at least 2011, it’s been customary for folks to single out a Grammy winner and publicly wonder just who the hell these people are.
Now, granted, Tumblr may not be so en vogue these days, but we here at Central Track still here to carry on the tradition that social medium started. In honor of St. Vincent’s big night at this year’s ceremony — where she performed a killer duet with Dua Lipa and picked up the award for Best Rock Song — we’ve decidedly to single the Dallas-raised artist born Annie Clark out, and put on blast the people who scoffed last night at her inclusion in the 2019 Grammy Awards.
who the fuck even is st. vincent holy fuck
— ً (@jiminarchy) February 11, 2019
Who is St. Vincent? I’m old af
— Christy (@okchristy88) February 11, 2019
Who is this St. Vincent and does she need her guitar tuned?!
— DOOPS (@gtdoops) February 11, 2019
Yes, as an outlet based in Dallas, the city from which the icon known as St. Vincent sprang forth and entered this world, we’re well aware that we’re probably preaching to the choir by trying to answer the question of who the hell this remarkably talented North Texan is.
But for everyone else — and, hell, even as a refresher for those of us who already kneel before her altar — here’s a list of 50 fun facts that should inform everyone to St. Vincent’s endlessly interesting ways.
1. As Annie Clark, she attended Lake Highlands High School in Dallas.
2. St. Vincent has become known for her powerful, aggressive guitar style, but did you know she also plays the Theremin?
3. Since 2015, Clark has lent her name amd know-how to a signature model guitar line put out by the folks at Ernie Ball. She designed the good-looking ax to be lightweight, to look sleek and to have “room for a breast or two.”
4. At Sundance 2017, Clark made her directorial debut with The Birthday Party, a segment of the horror anthology, XX.
5. After studying at the Berklee School of Music for three years, Clark decided it wasn’t for her and moved to New York without telling her parents.
6. In 2016, while playing a benefit show for St. Vincent drummer Matt Johnson’s son that suffered from seizures, Clark performed her whole set dressed as a purple toilet.
7. As Annie Clark, she played in Sufjan Stevens’ traveling band in 2006.
8. In her younger years, she played guitar in a hardcore Dallas band called Skull Fuckers. With a little bit of digging you can find some photos of Clark and the rest of Skull Fuckers playing an acoustic set after destroying their drum kit on tour.
9. Her uncle, Tuck Andress, is a jazz guitar virtuoso, and his finger-style technique helped form the way Clark plays guitar. (Speaking of Andress, here’s an interview we did with him and his wife Patti in 2015.)
10. Ahead of her most recent album, St. Vincent made a short film to preemptively answer all of the mundane interview questions she would have had to deal with. She called it her “interview kit” and she wrote it with Carrie Brownstein of Portlandia and Sleater-Kinney fame.
11. Speaking of interviews: St. Vincent once hosted a series of interviews inside of a pink cube. Right as MASSEDUCTION was about to be released, she did her normal rounds of interviews — but, this time, they we all hosted inside of four-by-four-meter wooden box that was painted neon pink.
12. She started work on her second album, 2009’s Actor, using the GarageBand app on her laptop while in her Manhattan apartment.
13. A long time fan of Nirvana, Clark was able to perform “Lithium” with the surviving members of that band at their induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
14. The American art-rock band Swans featured Clark on a few tracks off of their 2014 record, To Be Kind.
15. The name St. Vincent comes from the name of the hospital where poet Dylan Thomas spent his last days.
16. She’s a big fan of the game Whirlyball, but admits she’s nowhere near as good at the game as her pals in Arcade Fire are.
17. The title of her 2007 album Marry Me references to a recurring line spoken by Maeby Fünke in an episode of Arrested Development.
18. She was featured in two Twilight movie soundtracks (New Moon and Breaking Dawn), which explains her friendship with Kristen Stewart.
19. On St. Vincent’s website, you can fill out a form to with your email, name, and reason why a St. Vincent mixtape would benefit your life — and, if you’re lucky, she might just make you one.
20. At age 16, she acted as the tour manager for her aunt and uncle’s band, Tuck & Patti.
21. In a 2017 Vogue interview, she claimed that all her songs were actually about John Mayer.
22. In 2012, she put out an album with David Byrne of Talking Heads fame called Love This Giant — a collaboration that began in late 2009, right after St. Vincent released Actor.
23. She’s said to have signed on to direct a film adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s Picture of Dorian Grey. (This news came out in August of 2017, and has since gone quite.)
24. While growing up in Garland, Clark would frequent the Dallas music store Zoo Music on Garland, which is where she bought her first guitar — and where she took her first lessons, too.
25. She describes her persona on her now-Grammy-winning 2018 album MASSEDUCTION as a “dominatrix at the mental institution… just a regular gal.”
26. She has said she learned how to sing by doing karaoke as a teenager, singing along to songs by Billie Holiday, Nirvana, Pearl Jam and others.
27. After year of working exclusively with Dallas producer John Congleton, Clark worked with Bleachers frontman Jack Antonoff (Taylor Swift, Lorde and Pink) on MASSEDUCTION, which perhaps helps explains its more poppy direction.
28. She was one of the faces of Tiffany & Co.’s fall 2017 campaign, and even got her own fragrance. To promote the line, she covered “All You Need is Love” by The Beatles.
29. She wrote a commentary on Arcade Fire’s Reflektor LP. It’s not really about the album, but it’s fun read
30. In 2012, she broke her foot after stage-diving from an eight-foot riser during a performance. On the same tour, she kicked a fan in the face with her heels — by accident, of course — and sent them to the hospital.
31. Her first live performance came when she was 13. It was in Deep Ellum, and she covered Jimi Hendrix’s “The Wind Cries Mary.”
32. Including half- and step-siblings, Clark has eight brothers and sisters.
33. The avid soccer fan has a great rainbow kick — here’s video proof.
34. For 18 months, she dated British actress and model Cara Delevingne, who also sings on her 2017 track “Pills.”
35. She says she is petrified to check her voicemails, and describes her aversion to the chose as a full-on phobia. Apparently, she is afraid she will hear some terrible news if she ever does.
36. Clark has previously credited Chris Penn, the co-owner Chris Penn of Dallas’ own Good Records store, as introducing her to a lot of the obscure music she now enjoys.
37. After initially moving to Manhattan after dropping out of college, she only lasted three months before returning to North Texas, broke. It was upon her return to Dallas that she auditioned for Dallas’ The Polyphonic Spree, which she would join just two weeks later.
38. To date, Clark is the only person credited as playing guitar on any of her records.
39. She borrowed the chorus from her Strange Mercy track “Surgeon” — “best, finest surgeon, come cut me open” — from Marylin Monroe’s journal notes about an old acting mentor of hers.
40. Only after releasing three solo albums did she decide to take her first voice lessons.
41. She typically doesn’t play her guitar in standard tuning, instead preferring to drop each string a whole step down.
42. As a Garland teen, she played in a metal cover band, where she learned many Iron Maiden and Pantera songs.
43. The first song she learned on guitar was Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World,” and she later got to play it on stage with Pearl Jam.
44. Her first Grammy came when her 2015 self-titled album took home the top honors in the Best Alternative category. While MASSEDUCTION earned a nomination in that same category this year, it didn’t win; but her MASSEDUCTION title track did win the Best Rock Song title. Meanwhile, MASSEDUCTION was also honored as with the Best Recording Package award.
45. She’s calls herself a workaholic, and claims to never stop working, which she once succinctly explained in a tweet: “Work is more fun for me than fun.”