It’s protein or bust for rising young star VAN

Where the rhubarb meets the road—iHeart Radio Future Star VAN 

Welcome to the first instalment of Where the rhubharb hits the road, a new feature. 

Our first artist to be featured is VAN, aka Vanessa Piunno. Originally from St. Eustache, Quebec, VAN starred in a number of ad campaigns for chains such as Canadian Tire and Mike’s Restaurant while growing up. She has also appeared in several music videos for artists such as Snow Patrol.

Lately, though, she’s been making music of her own. The 18-year-old was recently named iHeart Radio’s Future Star for September for her debut single, the tropical  “Lock My Love Down” (see below). Produced by Tino Izzo (Celine Dion, Bobby Bazini, Garou, Roch Voisine, Jacynthe), the single has been climbing the charts at Mediabase CHR and Shazam Canada. The single is now available on iTunes, Spotify, GooglePlay and Deezer. A debut album from VAN is expected later this year.

The singer was kind enough to answer our questions (via email) about what she and her band like to eat on the road.

Lyric video—“Lock My Love Down”:

1. Do you or any band members have any special food needs, allergies or eating disorders?

Nope, none of us do. We pretty much like almost everything, none of us are too picky.

2. What/where was the last great meal you had?

The last great meal I had was actually today for lunch, I went to go eat at an all you can eat sushi place called Kanda. I love sushi so much!

3. Are you, or someone else in the band, what you might call a “foodie”? If so, in what way is s/he a foodie?

Myself, yes! I love food! Growing up my dad always made all sorts of different styles of food for my family to try and taste, that’s probably why I’m not very picky.

4. What is the one most important thing that you’ve learned about eating while touring?

It’s important to eat healthy food with protein so you keep your energy up. Candy and soda is definitely not the right way to go.

5. What is the meal-of-last-resort when on the road?

I’ve learned that when you’re on the road, there’s not a lot of options. As I said, protein is very important, so my “meal of last resort” is a good protein bar with some almonds or peanuts and a bottle of water. I stay away from sugar because it’s not good for the voice before you perform, and it makes you tired very fast.

6. How do you find places to eat—crowd-sourced via social media, restaurant reviews, Yelp?

I usually find cool places to eat because of what my friends post on social media like Snapchat, or Instagram. I love going to new places and trying new, different things. It’s always fun.

7. Any shout-outs to venues that are especially memorable due to extraordinary food that comes with playing a show?

To be quite honest, while being on the road I was lucky enough to like every single restaurant that we stopped at. Even the restaurants that were in the hotels we stayed at!

8. Locally-made craft IPA vs. a PBR (or, if neither, beverage of choice):

I don’t really like beer! I’m boring with my drinks and I always stick to water.

Keep up to date with the singer at the official VAN website

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