Getting Real: An Interview with Ohbijou


On July 19, the band Ohbijou announced they were going on indefinite hiatus after three stellar albums and countless other contributions to the local music and arts scene. Fortunately for Ohbijou fans, the hiatus announcement was accompanied by one of those classic Oprah “but wait there’s more!” moments:


Not wanting to leave their fans without a farewell show, Ohbijou and friends will be playing one last time at the Great Hall on September 7. It’ll be a night of celebration and joy.

I had a chance to have a virtual sit down with Casey Mecija of Ohbijou to talk about deep impacting issues such as Syria, singularity, concussions in professional sports and US foreign policies but that got too real, so instead, lets reflect on the music and the band instead.

When a band says they are breaking up or going on indefinite hiatus these days, people tend to take it with a grain of salt. Has Ohbijou given themselves any sort of self imposed embargo in terms of how much time can pass should you decide to reform for a special show or anything?

We won’t be reforming anytime soon. We are all looking forward to different creative pursuits. We are saying goodbye to this musical project, though bittersweet, there are many exciting experiences unfolding for all of us outside of the band.

You mentioned some of the places you visited when you toured. What was the best/most unique place you have played, and what was the worse?

Every place we’ve visited has carried its own unique impacts on us. I wouldn’t say we’ve ever had a bad experience. The most exciting ones have been touring across Europe, going to Japan, Taipei, China and traveling across North America with The Acorn. We have definitely encountered challenges, much like any band. Overall we have many good memories that continue to resonate with us.

In a recent interview, you mentioned that the band was “tired and broke”. Do you regret not taking any of the commercial offers you mentioned in your farewell video, especially since it seems like many bands have no problem with it?

No regrets here. We have been very fortunate as a band. We’ve traveled the world, met many wonderful and kind people, played in front of large and welcoming audiences…I feel like we’ve had a special run at this and there are no regrets. We are proud of our accomplishments.

Reflection time: what were your favorite and/or proudest moments?

One of my favourite moments was playing the Hillside festival last year. The energy of the audience was incredible. I felt lost in many good feelings while singing in that performance.

We were one of first bands to participate in the Banff Indie Music residency. We were given a cabin, access to instruments, a studio, engineer and producer. We were told to spend our time writing music and all around us were mountains and infinite sky. It was a very special experience.

Lastly, participating in the Friends In Bellwoods project and helping to raise almost $40,000 for the Daily Bread Food Bank of Toronto is something we feel proud about.

Finally, what are the odds for a massive “all our friends on stage” singalong at the Great Hall on September 7th?

The odds are pretty high!

Ohbijou plays the Great Hall on September 7th.

Posted on by Ricky in interviews

About Ricky

Britpop lovin Chinaman, consumer of all things irrelevant. Toronto Raptors fan.