Return of the gypsy


Photo By Micah Vacatio

Navé, a luminously smiling presence in the Chico arts and music scene of the 1990s, whom some may remember as the singer of the all-female pop-rock band Purr, is back, at least temporarily, in our fair burg. In the mid-'90s, the talented singer and artist packed her few belongings and departed Chico to explore the Seattle art and music scenes. But by late 2005, the gypsy spirit again possessed her, and she moved back to California to the Bay Area, which led in a circuitous manner to her current temporary residence in Capay, an agricultural district northwest of Hamilton City. Our interview took place over a glass of cabernet, with the music of Fats Waller adding a cartoonish ambience to the artist’s often droll comments. Navé can be contacted for art commissions or shows at <script type="text/javascript" language="javascript"> </script>.

What convinced you to move to the Bay Area?

The Golden Gate Bridge. It’s been my life-long ambition to roller-skate across it.

Have you made it yet?

Half way. On the way across I met a jogger who told me that there was no coffee cart at the other end, and I knew I’d never make it back without caffeine. Also, I was wearing the wrong outfit. I was in a pink Spandex body suit, and I’d meant to make the trip in my black catsuit with embroidered flames, so once I found out the coffee thing wasn’t happening I turned back.

What drew you back to Chico?

I’m a glutton for punishment. [Laughs.] Actually, a local artist, Chase Lundgren, called me up and asked if I’d be willing to apprentice with him in creating some mural art in some new custom homes, and since I wasn’t overwhelmingly busy in the city, here I am.

What else is up?

I’m going to be performing soon with my new band, Ruby Twolips and the Lickety Splits, who will be performing classics in a very elegant and offensive way. Are you familiar with the song “Me So Horny"? I’ll be doing that Sinatra-style with smooth lounge music. Martini-and-cigarette-holder music for folks with a bent sense of humor. We’re going to shoot for gigs at joints where people like to have a good time and a stiff drink. I also want to do a show in the lovely downtown plaza; its beauty is without compare. Unless you remember how beautiful it used to be when it had trees and grass. I can’t wait to rinse off in the fountain after the show. Feel free to join me.

Are you planning more art shows for Chico?

You betcha. Possibly another show at Monks in March. And I’m totally open to other venues. Venues are cool.

What’s Navé’s Secret of Life?

Hmm. That’s tough. Once you’ve found it … tell no one.