Winter Gloves

This Q&A is part of a series with Paper Bag Records artists to celebrate the label’s 10th anniversary. Interview by April Robinson.

A few years ago while taking a breather from heavy guitar rock, Quebec native, Charles F., penned some light-as-air synth tracks as a personal  musical exercise. Almost immediately however, his electronically-driven ditties met with unexpected praise, encouraging him to stash the guitar and officially form Winter Gloves.

Fleshed out by Vincent Chalifour, Patrick Sayers and Nico Ormiston, the new quartet’s earliest music was released by way of chucking discs at the crowd during gigs. Luckily (and with thanks to their lively, engaging sets) they later signed to Paper Bag Records — in Spring 2009 to sort out something more… err, strategic. About a Girl, their first LP, closely followed and landed on various “Best Of” lists, including “Best New Artist” from iTunes Canada. Tours with then label mates Tokyo Police Club and You Say Party! We Say Die!, along with performances at the Virgin Festival, the Osheaga Festival and SXSW, and 2010 follow-up, All Red, officially launched the band not only within their homeland of Canada, but to the world.

Charles F. kindly takes some time to reflect back to his bands’ earliest days, and to fill us in on Winter Gloves’ warm, fuzzy relationship with the tight-knit gang at Paper Bag.


What one word went through your head when you first met Paper Bag Records founder,  Trevor Larocque?
Uh…None? I met Trevor at our 2nd show in a very small venue in downtown Montreal. We had a chat on the phone a few days before where I remember telling him: ‘Oh, you know, we shouldn’t talk at the show ’cause it’s loud and I’ll have to pretend I get what you say.’ He agreed. So that night we met, shook hands, but didn’t say a word.

What was the deciding factor in signing your name with PBR?
For me it was two things, really: Trevor’s vision of a real independent label that gives freedom to the artist and full support at the same time. Basically, I knew I could do the music I wanted and still have somebody to challenge me.

Describe the PBR culture in one sentence.
People with lots of ideas that are a little too good looking.

Favorite PBR artist?
You Say Party!

Favorite PBR song?
Laura Palmer’s Prom by You Say Party.

Favorite PBR album?
Say It by Born Ruffians.

What’s the craziest/most fun thing PBR has pitched you?
The Madonna True Blue cover project. Most of the PBR artists participated and it just felt awesome.

What’s the sweetest/most endearing/warm and fuzzy thing PBR has done for you?
Got to keep this a secret to not make the other bands jealous. But… sharing the office WIFI would be a classic.

What’s your career highlight since signing with PBR?
Playing summer festivals in the UK.

If this were a PBR high school yearbook, what would you write?
Larocque showing off his pipes in the tub at the afterparty…that’s all I can remember. CF


The Rural Alberta Advantage will play Thursday, September 27th at Paper Bag Record’s 3-night PBR10 Anniversary Concert Series at Toronto’s The Great Hall. Look for more Q&A’s from PBR artists to hit in the coming weeks. Oh — in case you missed it, You Say Party’s PBR10 Q&A is here , PS I Love You’s is here and The Rural Alberta Advantage’s is right here.

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