SF Chronicle, 96hours Bandwidth: Thursday, June 15, 2006

Sometimes you don't get to choose a band name because a band name has already chosen you. Such is the case with San Francisco's romantically moody rockers Rykarda Parasol and Her Band. Singer, songwriter Parasol was named after her father, Ryszard (roughly translated: "powerful leader" in Polish), but ended up with her own pronunciation thanks to her mother's Swedish accent. The first incarnation of Rykarda Parasol and Her Band dates to 2002, when she was asked to replace a front man who'd gone missing on a heroin bender. Four years and a few lineup changes later, the heroin front man is still missing while the heroine and powerful leader will be onstage tonight.

1. Rykarda Parasol's music should be filed between: Rock noir and Americana boudoir. Nick Cave meets Nico and the Velvet Underground meets the Black Heart Procession.

2. The soundtrack to what movie would your music best match?
"The Fugitive Kind" or "Blue Velvet."
3. If you could collaborate on a song with any person, living or dead, who would that be?
Daniel Defoe or John Cale.

4. If a junior high school asked you to play a cover song at the next talent show, what song and school would you choose?
"They're Hanging Me Tonight," by Marty Robbins at the Spence School in Manhattan, with an after-party at Cokie's in Brooklyn.

5. What is the meaning of life? I don't know about you, Mr. Bandwidth. But my own meaning of life is to prop my skinny rear end up on that stage and take a shot at sending drunk and stoned folks into a state of rattling snakes, torn attire and broken spirits. And maybe even getting them to reflect on the meaning themselves -- no matter their state. Oh, and I really like foxy young men too.

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