Skip to content

My Favorite Things: Wild Flag


This week: Wild Flag, the female indie-rock supergroup of Carrie Brownstein (Sleater-Kinney), Janet Weiss (Sleater-Kinney, the Jicks), Mary Timony (Autoclave, Helium), and Rebecca Cole (the Minders). Their self-titled debutdrops September 13 via Merge Records, and this October the band will hit the road for a 26-date North American tour.

NOTE: The ladies insisted on writing their own questions, which was fine by us.

Janet Weiss:Revolver. Not really a dud in the bunch here, but this one works best for me as a complete album. The four Beatles still sounded as if they liked each other, like a real band playing in a room.”

Rebecca Cole: “Is it cheating to claim the entire Anthology? I listen to that thing so much. It has everything from that gorgeous version of ‘In Spite of All the Danger’ to ‘Piggies,’ and so many cool alternate takes like the one of ‘You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away’ with John Lennon chatting away at the start.”

JW:Exile on Main Street wins hands down. I listen to it quite often, and I love it each and every time. Hearing it makes me excited about the power music has over me. It stirs my imagination and allows me to dream about recording the perfect album someday.”

RC:Exile on Main Street is probably my favorite record of all time. I don’t have the language to describe the feel of that record, I just know they nailed it.”

JW: “I was born in late September, which is touring season, so I have enjoyed the majority of my special days on the road. In the fall of 2002, Sleater-Kinney had our second night of three at the Fillmore in San Francisco. I woke up and thought, ‘What would I love most to do today?’ So we rode horses on the beach, and then played a rock show in one of the most beautiful and historic venues you can imagine. Shannon Wright, our opener, rented a bear suit and surprised me, dancing around while holding a birthday sign during our encore. I knew it was her from her shoes!”

Mary Timony: “Getting to open for the Raincoats at the Knitting Factory in New York City a few years ago. That was a great one!”

Carrie Brownstein: “The good ones are pleasantly uneventful. My least favorite was when a friend hired a stripper dressed as a cop for my birthday party. I nearly cried out of sheer horror.”

JW: “On a long flight, it’s worth checking in early online to try and nab an exit row. Check out It will change your life.”

CB: “Any seat far away from someone who brought their own food or who didn’t wear socks.”

RC: “The kind where I have conversations with people I can’t talk to in real life. It makes me miss them a little less.”

MT: “I recently had a dream in which the band had acquired some kind of complicated synthesizer 15 minutes before a big show, and for some reason we decided I needed to re-learn all my guitar parts on the new synth. Rebecca was teaching me how to play the parts, and I was sweating and scared out of my mind! Maybe it doesn’t qualify as a favorite, but it was really funny when I woke up!”

CB: “I hate when people tell me about their dreams. So, the untold kind.”

JW: “Like, really late. 11 P.M. or so, when there’s nobody in the gym except other weirdos like myself who like to work out at 11 P.M.”

MT: “Wild Flag show time is my favorite time of day for exercising.”

CB:First thing in the morning before any of the day’s distractions and when I’m still too tired to remember that I don’t love exercising.”

JW: “Tuna in olive oil with goat cheese, pear, arugula, and mayo on toasted Dave’s Killer power seed bread. Can’t beat it.”

RC: “The mortadella sandwich from Lardo in Portland, OR, is perhaps the most delicious sandwich in the world. It’s too rich to eat often, but when I’m craving one there is no substitute.”

MT: “I’m not much of a sandwich eater unless you count tacos. Favorite tacos? Korean tacos from the Koi truck in Portland.”

CB: “The kind of sandwich that is more commonly referred to as ‘the burrito.’

JW: “A cozy club on a tropical beach, looking out over ivory sand and a blue-green ocean.”

RC: “As small and intimate as possible, with a decent enough PA that the vocals are audible. I don’t like a lot of distance between the band and the crowd.”

MT: “My favorite venue that we’ve played was a VFW hall in Calgary. It was a gigantic hall that looked like it had been furnished in the ’40s and never updated, and there were some regulars hanging around who looked like they had been there since then. There was a gigantic mural of aircraft in flight on the wall, and also a mosaic water feature with fake lily pads.”

JW: “Ice water #1, margarita #2.”

RC: “A frosty margarita (fresh, please, not from a mix) on the rocks, with salt, and maybe a little squeeze of orange juice too. Preferably consumed on a patio with friends.”

MT: “Fresh Lime-ade from Pho Pasture Vietnamese restaurant in Boston”

JW: “You can gaze at The Birth of Venus by Sandro Botticelli over and over in art history class. However, nothing prepares you for how stunning and vivid it is in real life. It is absolutely captivating.”

RC: “Last week I was talking to a friend about how I’ve never been deeply moved by a painting in a museum.I’d rather spend the afternoon with the mummies and marbles at the British Museum than taking in the work at the Tate.”

MT: “Any painting from the visionary art museum in Baltimore. It’s all outsider art.”

CB: “Probably something by Ben Shahn, Mark Rothko, or Peter Paul Rubens.”

JW: “I grew up in Hollywood, in the heart of Los Angeles’ amusement parks — Disneyland, Magic Mountain, Universal Studios, and my personal favorite, Knott’s Berry Farm. They had a burro ride that my two older sisters and I loved. The donkeys were tethered together and you’d hop on and walk around in a straight line. MUCH more fun than any roller coaster.”

RC: “My first of many trips to King’s Island in Ohio. We took the boat voyage through Hanna-Barbera Land and I loved everything about that ride, especially all the characters in the tunnels and the music that was playing. What a relief it was to be out of the hot sun and sitting in a boat in some air-conditioning and sound the water made against the boat. A few years later they turned Hanna-Barbera land into Smurf land, but I was cool with that since Smurfs was my favorite cartoon.I desperately wanted to live in a mushroom and be three apples high.”

MT: “Last year I went to a state fair in Maryland and I witnessed the most bizarre baking contest I have ever seen. There was a room full of cakes and baked goods that had won ribbons, but many of the cakes had melted in the heat and some had mold on them. I also got to see the tallest horse in the world.”

CB: “Being at Disneyland during a minor earthquake. They shut down all the rides and everyone sort of wandered around and reveled at the quiet and stillness.”