A certain blonde rockstar may want to start rearranging her furniture. The style-sensitive Owen Pallett is considering moving into her pad in Hollywood. At least that’s become his backup plan since he started experiencing some difficulties with the provincial government.
It’s not like Pallett is asking for much. He simply applied for his new Ontario health card. Apparently, he was denied because he had not been in the province for the minimum five months required.
Pallett is Final Fantasy, the creative Polaris prize-winning solo act, which features him on violin and keys with an fascinating assortment of electronic effect pedals. Although based in Toronto, it’s true that Pallett is not often at home. He’s busy with several side projects while touring his 2006 release, He Poos Clouds and writing new material for the upcoming album, Heartland.
Pallett sounds stunned as he describes his latest dilemma.
“I was so mad, I went home and got together all my cell phone records and my bank records and proved that, in fact, I’ve spent exactly five months and 10 days in Ontario of the last 12. I am embarrassed to admit, but I pulled a Larry David and brought in my University of Toronto diploma, my copy of Now Magazine when I was on the cover, my membership to the YMCA and my membership card to the video store. They weren’t having it. I still got refused.”
Sense of humour still intact, Pallett says that the battle’s not over yet.
“I’ve already written a letter to Olivia Chow. If they don’t give me an OHIP card I’m going to move in with Avril Lavigne in Hollywood.”
It’s an embarrassing situation that an award-winning Canadian artist, an ambassador for both the queer community and Canadian musicians in general, is denied a health card because he’s been working a little too hard outside the province.
Sure, we’ll give you a prize for your art. But a health card? That’s pushing it.
Skirmishes with the Ministry of Health aside, Pallett is keeping very busy. He’s now touring his beloved Canada, playing with hip-hop act Cadence Weapon.
And what else?
“I’ll have a new EP shipping before the end of the year. It’s called Spectrum 14th Century. I have a new 7 inch. And another EP called Final Fantasy Plays to Please which is a big band EP with covers of songs by Alex Lukashevsky and his band, Deep Dark United. There’s a bunch of other stuff as well. I’m working with Nico Muhly on something, and arranging an album for a stupidly famous British musician, Alex Turner from Arctic Monkeys.”
All in a day’s work. And you wondered why he was out of the province so much. This boy’s been working.