Metro Weekly

Cinematic Details

Patrick Watson is no one-man, chamber-rock band

Patrick Watson creates what you could call ”chamber-rock music” – something like a more expansive and happier Antony & The Johnsons, or a dreamier, more instrumental Rufus Wainwright.

But make no mistake: Patrick Watson is no one-man band.

Patrick Watson

Patrick Watson

(Photo by BrigitteHenry)

”When we started, we didn’t think we were going to be a band. We were [just] doing a multimedia project,” explains Watson, who studied classical and jazz composition in his home base of Montreal and started his career composing incidental music for film and TV. He had initially corralled guitarist Simon Angell, percussionist Robbie Kuster and bassist Mishka Stein to play the music he recorded to accompany a photography book. They got along so well they never stopped performing. ”It happened by accident,” the singer says. ”By the time we realized we were a band, people knew us through my name.” And so the name stuck.

Watson, born in California, the son of a U.S. Air Force pilot, started singing in a choir when he was only 7, after the family had moved to Quebec. These days, in his eponymous band, he often sings in that same boy’s voice. ”I don’t know when the falsetto voice came,” he says. ”I don’t even look at it as falsetto. I never really think about it when I sing.”

Doug Rule covers the arts, theater, music, food, nightlife and culture as contributing editor for Metro Weekly.