He’s one of my favorite artists to interview. He is blunt, funny, and never afraid to disclose feelings most stars would brush off in a vague, shallow manner. It seems the more I know about him, the more I want to know!
He’s recently released an EP entitled ”Hot Damn!”, and I’ve decided to cover him monthly through 2024 as to follow his new adventure.

This is Van Hechter in 10 questions: June 2024!

Music Authentic: Your new album is more soulful than anything you’ve ever done before. How did that come about?

Van Hechter: Eryck and I were at that point in our journey. I wanted to pour more of my guts out in terms of voice and lyrics, he did the same musically. I’m glad you feel the soul in our work. I hope fans will too. I love our older songs but these new tracks make me shiver when I sing’em because they expose my truth, with no filter and no fear. I’m at this point in my life where I’m like: ”Yep, this is me. Take or leave.”

Music Authentic: I read in EOH magazine that you were going on tour with this album: tell me about that!

Van Hechter: That’s just a wonderful surprise in my life! QMA believed in me, offered me a tour and a tour manager! We will be in cities across the East Coast next fall. If all goes well, I really want to visit the West Coast in 2025. I have fans in Palm Springs and Hollywood, so… By the way: thank you Aliya, thank you Ross for having faith!

Music Authentic: Are you a team kind of a guy?

Van Hechter: Yes I love an orgy, but what does that have to do with anything?
Yes I am a team kind of a guy. I also have an agent in France (hello Paul!) and recently, one in Montreal (hello Ron!).

Music Authentic: Silly, silly man! See but this is also why I like interviewing you… You’ve just made me chuckle, plus we know you love orgies! But back to music: you’ve had a very unusual path. I just learned recently that you’d had a minor hit as a very young man, then nothing for years. What kept you going?

Van Hechter: God that hit was more than minor! But it did make me feel like I was relevant at least to a handful of fans. Then the slump was terrible. For years nothing moved, all projects failed. I think many factors kept me going. I’m stubborn as hell. I have OCD, which is necessary in our business. Also, my love of music is greater than anything, probably. Plus, I’m a huge Joan Collins fan and when I was about ready to give up I thought: ”Did Joan throw in the towel during her slump? No! So, pull your self-pity together and write another album!”

Music Authentic: You’re better looking than I’ve ever seen you look. How do you do that?

Van Hechter: Ok I’ll be totally honest. I rarely am on this topic, or I purposely leave parts out. But here it is: I have great discipline in terms of eating right and working out daily. But also, I have a damn good doctor who drenches me in hyaluronic acid and does everything he can to keep me attractive (shout out to Dr. Love- thank you). This, I realize is a great luxury, something I owe to my father: he left a little bit of ”beauty cash” with the following recommendation (in French but I translate, and Frispoulet was his nickname for me when we weren’t arguing lol): ”Frispoulet, I may not understand your life choices but I know for a fact that you’ll need to look your best at all ages, as a weapon. You were given your mother’s looks. I am giving you what it takes to upkeep them”… Voilà! And don’t ask me this again, I’m not sure I could answer twice, as frankly as I just did!

Music Authentic: What makes you feel beautiful?

Van Hechter: Hmmm, actually: two things. I feel beautiful during our events… Singing for a crowd, fooling around almost doing slapstick to make attendees laugh between songs, interacting with’em. When Aty, my favorite Vanette is with me, I feel even more beautiful. Sharing a stage with someone I love as much as I do her: I become unstoppable.
Then I feel beautiful when I make a homeless person smile. I see so many in Montreal, walking from my flat to the gym. I say hello to quite a few. When they smile back: I feel gorgeous.

Music Authentic: Can anyone be beautiful?

Van Hechter: Anyone with a deeply kind, generous heart ends up being beautiful, regardless of physical traits. In reverse, those born with absolutely perfect physical traits become ugly past 40 if the soul is dead or if the heart is mean.
Now if your face and body are mathematically beautiful PLUS you’re original, funny, loving on the inside: that’s what makes a stunning beauty! Liz Taylor comes to mind, so does my mother who was compared to her all the time.

Music Authentic: What are you doing this month?

Van Hechter: I’m rehearsing and training for the fall tour, which starts in France next September. I have 12 weeks to get myself into athletic shape. My regular workouts are great for maintenance, but if I’m doing Europe in the late summer, then USA right after: I’ll need to be extra-prepared, physically.
Then of course in late June it’s NYC Pride, where I absolutely must be. Ever since I’ve launched these LGBTQ-themed duets with Chauncey Dandridge, who not only is resident DJ at Stonewall but also gets involved in so many causes: I can’t not be with him… By the way, we have one last duet on the way. I can’t say when it’ll come out but it’s my favorite to date, because it’s about how fickle, fleeting and shallow our gay relationships can be. It’s a hilariously tragic song! I won’t perform while I’m visiting but I have a lot of people to see, and my fan-base is too supportive for me not to show up at that parade on the 30th!

Music Authentic: Why is Pride so important?

Van Hechter: I’ll tell you why. 2 weeks ago at my gym in Montreal, which is located in the gay Village mind you, a very hot guy walked into the weight room stating: ”There are too many fucking faggots here, fuck man” to one of my friends. This was his fourth of fifth remark along those lines. ”I hate when men look at me, fuck where are the women?”, ”He told me I was good looking, fuck from a woman I’d take it. Fucking gays”…
In our own damn gym, in a metropole, in 2024, we are still told that we are in the wrong!!! And the shocking part: only my friend David and I stood up to him. All the young gays were like: ”Whatever, this doesn’t affect me” while the older gays were excusing him simply because he’s got a great body! Imagine the same situation with the N word! He would’ve been expelled!
And THIS, my dear, is why Pride is still so important!

Follow and listen to Van Hechter on his

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/7u3uVRB0kOkVtGqzbk26Dn

website: https://neodiscocabaret.com/

Instagram: @vanhechter

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