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Singer-songwriter Emm Gryner on the royal pregnancy (Anthony Jenkins/The Globe and Mail)
Singer-songwriter Emm Gryner on the royal pregnancy (Anthony Jenkins/The Globe and Mail)

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Singer-songwriter Emm Gryner on the royal pregnancy Add to ...

Singer-songwriter Emm Gryner has recently released the two-CD Emm Gryner: The best of. Her new band has just released the self-titled Trent Severn. She will be playing the Arden Theatre in St. Albert, Alta., on Feb. 2, Foster’s Inn in Stratford, Ont., on Feb. 7 and the National Arts Centre in Ottawa on Feb. 23.

Are you a mom?

I’ve got two kids – 2-1/2, and five months.

How private were those births? Could you stand the scrutiny the royal couple will be under?

I never put any pictures of my kids on Facebook, which is not the norm. I wanted to keep my family life as private as possible. In the case of the Royal Family, I feel people feel this baby belongs to the world and not to the couple. That would be very daunting as a mother to think of it in the spotlight.

This child has been in the spotlight even before it was conceived. The world has been watching Kate’s stomach since the wedding. The pregnancy is heralded as a good news story. Is it?

I think so. Whether you think anything of the monarchy, it is the system that is in place. After seeing how people fawn over my baby in the grocery store – which was a surprise to me as well – there is no question that the birth of the royal baby is refreshing because people love babies and people love the Royals. There is a lot of bad news lately, and people are loving this, obviously.

Even in celebrity babies, you’re not sure what their path in life will be – whether they’re going to go down the anonymous route or choose fame as well. But with this baby, there is no choice. One day, it will be the queen or king of England. That, I suppose, is a fairy tale itself, depending on who you talk to.

Fairy tales in the 21st century? A beautiful princess giving birth to the future monarch, and the peasants rejoice?

I’m not an expert in how relevant the monarchy is. I feel the people need something to look to that is sort of a fairy tale. Right now in the news or on the Internet, everything seems to be dragging people down.

The royal wedding was a huge event. The pregnancy speculation and announcement likewise, and the birth will be an orgy of headlines and coverage. Is it all too much?

I’m sure it will be. You wish that the media had some scruples. But the fact is they don’t.

Hey, I got scruples! The rest of them are bastards.

I wish you’d print that! [The royal couple] are well aware of what’s ahead of them. But any hope for privacy, that’s a distant memory.

Is the media frenzy in response to public demand. Or is the media creating the demand?

I think it must be a little bit of a vicious cycle and one fuels the other. On the other hand, a lot of people didn’t know about her condition. They thought: ‘Morning sickness? Oh, it’s just something that happens.’ I suppose one positive thing about it is it brings to light things that women don’t get to talk about.

Is this a new beginning for the monarchy? Diana was a refreshing change to a staid tradition, and now William and Kate and their unborn child are being very well received?

I guess so. I also think, whether you believe in the monarchy or not, the fact that they’ve changed the laws and we don’t have to wait five girls [for a boy] is a good thing. If it is a girl, she’ll be third in line for the throne. That’s slightly encouraging.

To further the revitalization of the monarchy, should they move with contemporary trends and name the baby Brittny or Dakota or Jake?

I’m not really a fan of trendy names. I gave my children ancient Irish names – Ronan and Aoife (pronounced Ee-fah). My bet is it will be a classic name that balances the new with the old.

Whatever the name or gender, this unborn child will one day be your head of state, will be on your money and may one day drive by in a landau giving you a wave of a gloved hand. How do you feel about that?

I probably won’t be around to see that.

Oh, come on! Might you find yourself one of those little old ladies lining the barricades, waving flags and holding bouquets of flowers they hope to present to the monarch?

I don’t flip out when the Royals come to Canada. I suppose I should. I suppose that might remind me that this baby will be born close to my child, so maybe one day my daughter and the future king or queen of England could just hang out.

Maybe they could marry and you could be the mother of the monarch.

It sounds like a band name. I like it!

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