Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Breakthrough Jew – July Talk’s Leah Fay

Leah Fay is a member of the much-lauded Canadian indie pop rock group, July Talk.

By: Sarah Bauder

Published: May 22nd, 2014 in Culture » Music » News

Hot, hip, and heady, the next wave of Jewish artists and influencers has already arrived. This is Breakthrough Jew, your weekly showcase of those on the verge of discovery and ready to be a regular figure in pop culture; setting trends, redefining genres, and simply getting it done-whatever ‘it’ is. These days, it’s not enough to know what’s hot now; you need to catch someone when they’re just starting to simmer.

Featuring those in film, fashion, food, and beyond, we’ll find the story before substance is obscured by style, before hype meets backlash, and before talent and purpose gets lost in a maze of Internet chatter. See an artist in the cozy bar before they hit the amphitheater, dine at a chef’s new restaurant before the line begins, and catch a young writer’s work before the demands of ratings and longevity encroach.

Follow our lead and we’ll follow yours – send us tips or suggestions via email, comment below or tweet us @ShalomLife, as we explore the Jewish landscape for pop culture pioneers.

Name: Leah Fay (Goldstein)

Age: 27

Hometown: Toronto, ON

Breakthrough Cred: Member of the much-lauded indie rock band, July Talk

From an early age, Leah Fay (Goldstein) had a penchant for performing on a stage. Fay completed a BFA in Contemporary Dance at Concordia University in Montreal. It was whilst studying at the aforesaid institution that she met two fellow dance students, Emma-Kate Guimond and Julia Thomas. The trio formed WIVES, a performance art collective based in Montreal and Toronto that “melt together embodied gesture, love song, video, drawing and analogue projection into fragile situational compositions”.

Years passed, and one fateful night Fay found herself on trendy Ossington Ave in Toronto.

“Remember the blackout that Toronto had a few years ago? Every year on Ossington they have this anniversary party where they turn off all the lights in all the bars and everything’s candlelit. I was out with some of my friends and we ended up at the Communist’s Daughter where we were sat by the jukebox. We noticed there was a guitar so we picked it up and we started singing songs. Peter and his friend came and just parked themselves down right in front of us. They were just right up in our faces listening to us. Peter picked up these two beer bottles and started banging them together in time with the music and then they just smashed all over the floor at the perfect time. Like, right at the end of the song. And I was like, “Who’s this 17-year-old looking little boy and who let him in here?” Then the guitar started getting passed around and he had this really deep, grovel-y voice that sounded like he’d been smoking since he was 8 years old. Anyways, he tried to hang out with me, and my friend that night. He says he asked for my number, I don’t know,” Fay explained to OTMzine.

The “Peter” in question, is one Peter Dreimanis. A native of Alberta, he was a filmmaker and musician, who had a number of bands under his belt. What birthed from that chance encounter would eventually be the indie rock band, July Talk.


“It took a little while. There were probably quite a few months of just getting together weekly and talking about what we were doing. I was kind of going through a bit of a harsh time – so I think that by the time I came around, the one thing that was really solid in my life were these meetings that I was having with Leah and another friend of ours, Ian…it all ended up turning into this band. And I think that watching our lives develop since then, it comes out of a blind faith that we all had – that ‘this is really something I should give the time of day to, this is something that I think we can make really good’. And so we just worked away at it since,” Dreimanis told The Examiner in 2013.

Find out more about Leah Fay and July Talk on the next page!

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