Tess Roby: The ‘Monday Is OK’ Mix


Tess Roby has an eye and an ear for capturing beauty.

Working across a few different creative disciplines, predominantly in music and photography, the Montreal-based artist’s output feels intimate and ethereal.

When she isn’t shooting otherworldly images, you’ll find her crafting music that takes you somewhere else – her stirring vocals drift over a bed of twinkling melodies and dreamy atmospheres, that draw inspiration from dream pop, new wave and ambient.


So far these productions have found a home on Mike Simonetti and Johnny Jewel’s Italians Do It Better label as well as Tess’ own imprint, SSURROUNDSS, which she launched this year as a space for her own productions.

When she’s not making music solo, she’s producing and singing as part of Dawn to Dawn: a collaboration with friends Adam Ohr and Patrick Lee. The group have been crafting off-kilter dream pop soundscapes since meeting in 2018, and are now working towards the release of their new album which is set for release this summer on SSURROUNDSS.

Following the release of Tess’ sophomore album, Ideas of Spaceagain on her own imprint, she pieces together a mix to ease sore heads on this fine, sunny Monday.

Please introduce yourself… Who are you, where are you and what are you

Hello! My name is Tess – I’m a musician and photographer currently based in Montreal, Canada

What does your music sound like? 

Like the sparkly visions that appear when you look up at a crystal clear blue sky.

Where was the mix recorded?

In my home studio : )

What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?

By the water would be nice, but anywhere with a view– or driving somewhere beautiful, with someone you love next to you

What should we be wearing?

Something that makes you feel like yourself

What would be your dream setting to record a mix: Location/system/format?

I’ve never been to Japan but I look forward to one day visiting one of the hi-fi listening bars in Tokyo – obviously recording a mix there would be incredible. But it would be very nice also to have a studio by the water, with a view of the ocean, and I could record a mix with the sound of the waves in the background.

Which track in the mix is your current favourite?

Hard to choose. The first song, Starfruit by Sunju Hargun, is a song that brought me a lot of calm through this hard winter. Endless Rain by Chris & Cosey is also a personal favourite. Right now I’m obsessed with the Priori track off his new live 2021 cd. And the closing track, ‘Silent’ by Kit Grill, is off his album ‘Obsession’ which I have probably listened to over 100 times and never get tired of. 

What’s your favourite recorded mix of all time?

I’ve have this dreamcycles mix saved to my iTunes from a few years ago that I always come back to: dawn boat to you. It always makes me feel something new

If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?

Jen Monroe.

What was your first DJ set up at home and what is it now?

No proper DJ set up, just a record player and a cassette deck!

What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?

In a mix it might be the track you start with – sets the whole mood and all… but playing out it’s definitely the one you end on!

What were the first and last records you bought?

The first 2 records I bought were Substance (1981) by New Order and The Velvet Underground and Nico. I still listen to both of those. The last was a 12” of ‘Here Comes the Rain Again’ by Eurythmics – can’t get that one out of my head lately.

If this mix was an edible thing, what would it taste like?

Mmm… the dessert after a meal with an espresso

If it was an animal what would it be?

A hummingbird.

Upcoming in the world of … 

I’m looking forward to the beautiful Canadian summer– swimming in the lake, driving down country roads, and drinking wine with my friends. I have my record releases in Montreal & Toronto next month, followed by a few live dates this summer. My band Dawn to Dawn will release our record on my label in September – check out the first few singles.

Anything else we need to discuss?

If you like my music or the music in this mix, support it on bandcamp 🙂 Thanks for listening ♡