He’s sexy and stylish, his voice reminds us of the late 70’s/80’s, his blue eyes are troubling, he could be scary intense at times but the next second he smiles and his presence feels like bursting light… These last 3 years, he’s seduced USA’s underground with solo songs and duets that just stick with us for days, ”Love Elastic’‘ and ”The Delight” being my two personal favorites. The UK, Germany and France like him too, yet he’s Canadian of French-Georgian descent- and insists upon living in Montreal, where he produces his tracks, with a small team of very passionate friends…
One thing that struck me the first few times I spoke to him was his humor – which made me understand his work even better… I think this next interview highlights just how hilariously self-mocking Van is…
Music Authentic: Hello Van! How are you today right right right now?
Van Hechter: I don’t really know. Aside from talking to you which I love, today is a tax/doctor/dentist Friday. Basically a reality day. I much prefer my normal routine of keyboard, sky gazing, heavy workout and writing. I live in La-la land most of the time, you know. Suits me a lot better than form filling and questions involving numbers! Errrrhh!
Music Authentic: I say you sound a lot like Depeche Mode with a little 70’s disco/soul mixed in… What do you think you sound like?
Van Hechter: I say a lot of the time I sound like a congested monkey being squeezed. But like– a really nice monkey with a colorful personality who then sings well during the final take… I suspect that Depeche Mode guy might be a monkey too, btw.
Music Authentic: You are launching 2 new songs next June, on with Eryck Wyseman, one with Sainte Croix…
Van Hechter: Yes. ”Electrical Blue” on June 1st, because it was funnier than calling it ”Electric Blue”. This is a single by Eryck Wyseman, my longtime associate. I love the sound, I had so much fun writing the lyrics: all about a tragic love affair which in hindsight became a splendid comedy to sing about..
Then in late June I release a special project with my Lycée buddy ”Sainte Croix”, a super disco anti-wokeism track entitled ”My Kind Of People”… Very precious to me. I’m fed up with this new form of puritanism, spreading like wild fire in our Western world. I was never for hurting people- ever. But we are loosing our sense of humor as a society and that’s very dangerous. In the bridge I say: ”It’s not the word, it’s the intent. Sometimes I think the mighty righteous don’t know what more to invent”.
Music Authentic: You are very smart, you know that?
Van Hechter: Well, thank you, but FYI 3 + 8 is intellectual torture for me! Go figure! Perhaps I’m an idiot-savant!
Music Authentic: And an album is on the way?
Van Hechter: Yes, ”Hot Damn!” – I am recording it at the moment. It may come out in the fall – or we may wait until the Spring of 2024… We’ll see.
Music Authentic: Who filmed the videos?
Van Hechter: Ahhhhhhh! Gio Spano. Earlier this year he filmed 3 videos for me. We’d worked together before. He’s really cool. He understands camp, you know??? I think this is what unites us.
Music Authentic: Alright, Van. I have trivial questions…
Van Hechter: Ohhh. I thought you’d already started… OK! Hahahahah! Kidding kidding. OK drench me in triviality! Go!
Music Authentic: Fragrance: yay or nay?
Van Hechter: Yayyyyyyyyyyy! It’s an invisible accessory. I bathe in it. From very daring scents onstage to mild ones that blend in with my pheromones by day- I am always saying something through scent, even before I’ve spoken.
Music Authentic: What do you always remember on a person?
Van Hechter: Skin texture on all genders and penises on men.
Music Authentic: OMG you actually said that! I love you! What do you easily forget about someone?
Van Hechter: I’m terrible with names.
Music Authentic: Speaking of skin, what do you wear on yours?
Van Hechter: FPS 60 by day, serums by night. And I have a shocker for you: I wash my damn face with soap. I’ve been told for years that this was as sin: yet look at me- I’m not decomposing!
Music Authentic: Are you gorgeous?
Van Hechter: No but when I bring myself to feeling that way I become it.
Music Authentic: Something you can’t stand in a person?
Van Hechter: Anyone who hurts or ignores others for the thrill of feeling superior. That— drives me bananas.
Music Authentic: Does age matter?
Van Hechter: No, but size does… (Bursts into laughter) OK, in all seriousness I truly believe that one can look fantastic and be super interesting at 90!
Music Authentic: I can’t wait to hear your new songs in June!!!
Van Hechter: Next time we chat, they’ll be out, darling!