Who is Monique diMattina?
For the purposes of the exercise let’s call her a Melbourne based pianist, composer, singer/songwriter, dog lover and mother of two. She likes to think of herself as a decent cook/organic earth mother but also likes to think of herself as supporting local business which resonates well with how tired she is most days at 6.00pm, so let’s also put her down as frequent patron of the local Vietnamese.
What would you do differently from what you do now?
Be re-incarnated as a lizard sun baking. Under a rock ledge. The ledge angle is just so. Sun streams in but I’m not vulnerable to predators.
Who inspires you and why?
My aunty. She is kind to everyone.
What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Put the women folk in charge. It wouldn’t be perfect, but on balance there’d be less noise. More listening.
Favourite holiday destination and why?
My kids are young enough to do what I say, so most school nights I manage to achieve Reading For Leisure on a blue velveteen bean bag while we all participate in Family Reading Time, 30 minutes on the clock, heads down, feet up, a designated quiet space save the crunching of carrot & cucumber sticks. I don’t dare hope for more than that.
When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
The Uptown Jazz Café, tucked upstairs at 177 Brunswick St, Fitzroy. Proper jazz five nights a week and a proper jazz proprietor that always wears a beret. Yes, my New Orleans gangsta jazz band Monique and the Dopamine is also playing there Thursday 27 May.
What are you currently reading?
There are 21 books and one Rhythms magazine on my bedside table. I’m enjoying Sum by David Eagleman – a tiny book of imagined after-life scenarios that squeeze your brain into interesting spaces. Also How Equal Temperament Ruined Harmony: And Why You Should Care by Ross Duffin.
What are you currently listening to?
Birds outside my window and playground squeals. Usually always: Bach (JS and CPE), Astor Piazzolla, Mercedes Sosa, Joan as Policewoman, Ray La Montaigne, Lili Boulanger, Jelly Roll Morton, Nat King Cole, Kate K-S, and Gillian Welch.
Kids playing at the beach. Or just lying on a beach without kids. Yeah – that’s better.
What does the future hold for you?
Same as it holds for us all – climate collapse. Even a hippy musician like me gets that climate collapse is the ultimate health crisis. It is horrifying to see governments bend over themselves with drastic, immediate, effective pandemic responses while doing nothing drastic, immediate or effective to counter that much bigger threat to all of our futures.
Monique has recently released her third solo piano album, TIDES, which was written during last year’s lockdown. For more information, visit: www.moniquedimattina.com for details.
Image: Monique diMattina (supplied)