How musician Tegan Quin spends her money


A voice coach, seaplane ride and Thai food are part of pop star Tegan and Sara’s budget

Tegan Quin and her sister, Sara, have been striking indie-pop gold since the mid-’90s. Two decades and 10 albums later, the duo are gearing up for a fall tour – their first after a three-year hiatus. – in support of their latest effort, Crybaby, released on October 21. This week, Tegan invested in singing lessons and a disappointing bridge to tile and share Thai food with her twin.


Sara and I decided to work with a vocal coach to prepare for the tour. I only did it once and hated it. I also hated today’s 30 minute lesson ($225). I learned that I use my neck muscles a lot to sing, when you’re only supposed to use your voice box. I hope this is a problem that I can solve in the next couple of months.


My partner, Sofia, and I recently purchased a 70’s cabin on one of the Gulf Islands. There are some grubby vinyl tiles on the back deck, but we’re not allowed to pressure wash them due to water restrictions. Our compromise was to put white recycled plastic tiles ($792) on top. The day after installation, it was bubbling in the sun. It looked like a flying carpet. I got a full refund.


We had a date night at the Port Browning Marina Pub ($109) and brought our dog, Georgia, a Border Collie/German Shepherd mix. I ordered a meat lovers pizza, Sofia had a vegan pizza and we shared a green goddess salad (no egg). We ate everything on a patio overlooking the water.


My 92-year-old great-aunt just moved from Saskatoon to Vancouver, and I’ve planned a visit to help her settle in. Normally I would take the ferry to Vancouver, but I don’t have a driver’s license, so I hopped on a seaplane ($148) instead. Before her move, my aunt hadn’t flown since 1958.


Sara and her partner came and we ordered Thai food ($67). We spent most of the evening without talking about work, but we ended up arguing about it. I always say we’re like a divorced couple: we have our own interests and our own families, but we still spend 100 hours a week co-parenting our child, our music career.


If I want to promote something, I have to invest in it first. Crybaby is the first full album we’ve released in five years, and we asked our longtime creative director, Emy Storey, to design a special-edition box set. I ordered one ($197). I felt like I was putting my money where my mouth is.


My stepdad was in town and he had never taken the SkyTrain before, so I bought a ticket ($3) and we rode it together. The next morning I returned to the island. My Vancouver apartment is lovely, but it’s hot like a greenhouse. It’s much nicer to be at the cabin when I have to practice music for three hours a day.

—As said to Isabel B. Slone

This article appears in print in the October 2022 issue of Maclean’s magazine. Buy the number for $8.99 or better yet, subscribe to the monthly print magazine for only $29.99.


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