LIISA LADOUCEUR Freelance Journalist

LIISA LADOUCEUR Who are you? My name is Liisa Ladouceur. I live in Toronto where I write about music and unpopular culture and help make documentaries for film and TV.

What do you do? Career highlights? I’m proud to say I’ve been in this writing racket for more than 10 years and have had too many highlights to count, working for everyone from Eye Weekly/The Grid to CBC Radio to The Toronto Sun to MuchMoreMusic. My first book, Encyclopedia Gothica, came out in 2011 and that was about as good as it gets. Anytime I get to interview artists who know why they do what they do and want to talk openly about it is a dream job, but I guess memorable moments include making the City Sonic series of short films on Toronto music history, having Bjork write me a poem from those little magnetic words and having Bret Michaels from Poison serve me soy milk shakes on his tour bus but asking me not to reveal his bar is stocked with healthy drinks and not booze. (Oops.) I also proudly served for many years on the Polaris Music Prize board of directors where I reinforced my belief that art is not a contest but rewarding artists for good work is good work indeed.

What makes a good video? What stood out about your picks? My picks for the Prism video prize were clips that had strong story and an element of surprise. I also feel it’s important to incorporate the artist, and to reflect and reveal something of their personality. There will always be beautiful abstract video art out there, but when I think about the best music videos ever made, 99 per cent of the time the artist is prominent. (That %1 is for “Da Funk.”) Basically, I want to be compelled to watch all the way through. Those that did that, got my vote.