I was expecting nothing but a stream of strange, awkward and amazing when I dialed up Australian singer Sia-- playing Wed/14 at the Regency Ballroom-- but her super quirky banter wouldn't be the only sound traveling the wires. Ring ring and the blondie answered with a cheery "How are you sweetie?", followed by, "How do you feel about me taking a leak while we chat?"
"Some people are really weird about it," she continues. Talking to one of my most favorite musicians while they relieve themselves doesn't happen very often-- or ever. I was creepily excited to bond with 'The' Sia Furler in this fashion, as girls often do, gossiping and gabbing in the powder room. I tell her it's cool and I don't mind...but then click; we get disconnected before I can finish my sentence. I try calling her back, but it goes straight to voicemail. She was totally doing her business, sparing me the audio experience. My chance at a bathroom gab session flushed down the toilet.
To my relief, after three more tries Sia answers. "I'm so sorry, I don't know what happened," I tell her, a bit frantic. "Oh, I know what happened-- my phone is fucked." We laugh and I explain that I hadn't hung up on her due to grotesque request. "Becuase I had offended you so much with talk of wee wee," she kids. From potty-talk to her music and love of Beyonce, no converstaion topic is awkward with Sia. Always brutally honest, a bit shocking, childish and delightfully funny, this woman has consistently been an open book throughout her career, offering up genuine bits of personal info to whoever inquires.
I saw her in Minneapolis a few years back when she was suffering a nasty case of what she called, "Uh-oh bum," due to a pre-show Taco Bell dinner. Having no fear or shame, Sia told the crowd her unfortunate situation and even left the stage in a hurried fashion at one point to get things out and under control. Usually I'd be totally grossed out, but her rosy cheeks, bright bob, crooked smile and pink jeans made the sick situation kinda cute-- a reminder of the human that's behind her deep vocals.
A pop-singer with soul, Sia's repertoire has been historically a bit more laid-back, ballads with catchy melodies and sing-along choruses. Her new album,We Are Born [Song Music] will be released June 7 with a dancier-attitude she's hiding for years. Calling it a "departure from her old style," Sia's new tracks definitely throw a hint to her current lover, JD Samson from Le Tigre, and inspired a whole lot of movement with scratchy guitars, fast chimes, and vibrating bass.
Before picking up the phone to call Miss Sia, I spied her latest Tweet and learned of her plans to color her hair in between interviews. Sia, under a mop of any color besides blonde would be not be so sweet. I asked her to elaborate on her said plans.
SFBG: So what color is Sia going to become?
Sia: Well, four or five weeks ago I bought some Manic Panic and put it on in spots.
SFBG: Spots? Multi-colored?
Sia: Ya, like my fingernails. A little matchy-matchy with my nails. Purple, pink, blue, lavender, red. I painted it on my hiar and when I washed it out, I realized hair doesn't really work in circles. Instead I had small squares and rectangles.
SFBG: That sounds odd...
Sia: My girlfriend thought it was funny. I thought it was beautiful. You know how a crystal reflects in the light- the beautiful rainbow? That's what it looked like. People just thought there was a reflection on the side of my head.
SFBG: Are you going to try that again? Or something new?
Sia: I might do stripes. Then I'd have a total rainbow head. I'm waiting for my new 13-year-old stylist to tell me what to do on Twitter. She's the fucking best dresser.
SFBG: Fashion advice from a teen fashionista, huh?
Sia: I met her a fashion show, during New York Fashion Week. I thought she was this amazing, cute granny. She had feet drawn on the top of her shoes. I only saw her from behind. She was just this beutiful, interestingly dressed little person with gray hair. I was transfixed by her. And then two weeks later, Perez Hilton said something mean about her. What the fuck dude? This kid is a clean version of Lady Gaga!
And a few more highlights from our conversation:
On Twitter: It's a great place for the squirrels to bathe. I can have seven squirrels simultaneously conversing about whatever they're thinking about.
On other people's children: I met this lovely little boy, who began to stroke my face lovingly, with such adoration. And then, in his sweet little voice he says, "Hey you've got a little mustache." Thanks. Thank you for pointing that out.
On her love life and kid-friendly future: Absolutely want kids. We (her and partner JD Samson) even have it narrowed down to four sperm donors. It's great because I don't really know if I'm straight or gay and my girlfriend doesn't really know if she's a boy or a girl-- so it works out! So within the next 18 months or so, I'm going to get pregnant. I mean, I'm 34, and I don't want my eggs to get old.
On possible names for her offspring: Humility. Wonder, like Stevie Wonder. And I really like Tada!-- complete with exclamation point.
Wed/14, 8pm, $31-33
The Regency Ballroom
1290 Sutter, SF