Kristen Ford

By Megan Wadding, April 2015 Web Exclusive.

Echo caught up with indie rocker Kristen Ford to talk touring, instruments and Pride with ahead of her performance at the 2015 Phoenix Pride festival.

Echo: Where are you based?

Ford: Currently, I'm living in a van and touring full-time all over the country. But Boston is my hometown.

Echo: Have you been to Arizona before?

Ford: Yep, [I] love AZ! I've toured through a few times. On my last trip through, I ran a half marathon and felt very alive! This trip I'm excited to take in all of Pride and go to the Botanical Gardens! I have a cactus obsession.

Photos courtesy of Phoenix Pride.

Echo: What is your connection to the LGBTQ community?

Ford: [I have] been out since I was 18. The queer community has really been a super nurturing place for me. I want people to see me on tour all over the country, from Wyoming to Mississippi and be like, “There's a lesbian, and she's cool. Maybe gay folks aren't so threatening after all.” Each person you connect with makes the world a little bit friendlier.

Echo: How would you describe your music to someone who has never heard it?

Ford: I play indie rock as a one woman looping band. It's like Ani Difranco got an electric guitar [and] decided to make pop songs like Tegan and Sara, with a healthy dose of humor and rockin’ out!

Echo: What about your music are you most proud of?

Ford: I like that I'm speaking my truth, with a melody and a beat. Feeling the energy of the audience coming in while expression pours out through music is pure magic. I'm totally hooked.

Echo: Will you be playing any instruments during your set?

Ford: I play acoustic and electric guitar, kick and hi-hat, beat box, sing and use looping pedals. One woman band!

Echo: How long is your set at Pride? How many songs will you do?

Ford: I have a 45-minute set, probably eight to 10 songs. Depends on how much banter I get into. Love making folks laugh and having a party.

Echo: What about the performance are you most excited for?

Ford: I love seeing people of all ages there, families, cougars [and] teenagers. Prides are totally different than playing a 21+ venue.

Echo: Have you ever performed at a Pride before? If so, what is the best part?

Ford: I've had the good fortune to play at quite a few. I just love being part of a big family. It's a magical time and it's something that was hard fought. People died, they went to prison [and] they bled for us. It's something that's easy to forget between cocktails and drag shows, but we are so damn lucky and I feel happy to be there on stage every time.

Echo: Do you have any new music in the works?

Ford: I just released a new video album called Tighten it Up it features my one woman show recorded live and filmed. I'm on the never-ending tour been on the road since June and [I have] no plans of slowing down yet.

Echo: Will you be staying before or after your performance to check out the other events at Pride?

Ford: I'll be hanging on Saturday and very excited about the Betty Who show later on Sunday. 

Ford will perform on the Bistro Stage at 5 p.m. April 12. Follow her on Twitter at @kristenfordband.


Keep reading Show less

National Margarita Day

A lot of us have really picked up an interest in tequila and it's no wonder. Its popularity is soaring in the U.S. and doesn't look like it'll be slowing down any time soon. The only contender would probably be whiskey. Meh, but they have their own day. Now, it's National Margarita Day and we put together some of the best margarita recipes around so you can pick one or maybe even all of them to try.

We have a few surprises in there too. Maybe it's not all about tequila but it certainly has a theme going on. Take a look at some of these great tequila brands and start making some amazing margaritas today!

Keep reading Show less
Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

Gender-Inclusive Universities and Student Privacy

For many students, attending university is a profound, often life-changing, transition. It is often the student’s first time living on their own without parental supervision. This lifestyle is also accompanied by a period of self-discovery, of defining and redefining a sense of personal identity largely independent of the influence of family and friends from home.

For students who are members of the LGBTQ+ community, this rite of passage can also be a deeply empowering one. Indeed, attending university may be the student’s first real opportunity to explore their gender identity in a safe, comfortable, and accepting college.

Keep reading Show less

José Cuervo's Reserva de la Familia agave fields

Disclaimer: My trip was provided courtesy of a press trip but all opinions about the trip and events are my own. Please note there are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you make a purchase.

I had the opportunity to visit Mexico for an event José Cuervo was putting on, the unveiling of their premium tequila brand, Reserva de la Familia. The trip was all about tequila, how to drink it properly, how to pair it with food, and of course, visiting various points of interest in Guadalajara while tasting tequila along the way.

Keep reading Show less