Escaping Hardship With a Pickle | Music | Salt Lake City Weekly
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Escaping Hardship With a Pickle 

Singer/songwriter 26fix releases debut singles as a solo artist

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IAN KELLEMS
  • Ian Kellems

Music provides the perfect escape. Whether you're a musician or an avid listener, there's something for everyone to fall into when times are hard. Trauma and difficult life events can drive us to begin creating, in order to offset those negative feelings. For singer/songwriter Erica Goodwin, diving into creating new music helped her out of some tough times.

Goodwin—also known as 26fix—began creating music as a solo artist after playing guitar in the band Brother for approximately the last six years, she said; "We were based in Provo for a long time, and then during COVID, we all spread out throughout Utah."

Before this, Goodwin dabbled in solo work in high school, but it wasn't her best work. "It was garbage, but my family and friends would come. That was about it," she said. "And then I went to school, and I met my band mates from Brother and started playing music with them, and put my own writing on the back burner, and just focused on playing in that band and just having a good time."

It's a common story these days, but COVID forced Goodwin to focus on other endeavors during lockdown. "After so many years playing [in the band], and then especially during COVID, I didn't feel the same excitement or reward, and I just felt something was missing," she said. "I went through a lot of stuff, and then I remembered how much happiness and joy came from writing music, and I thought, 'I just need to start writing music again.' That's when I started my project, 26fix."

Although it's a short title, 26fix holds a lot of meaning. The number 26 signifies Goodwin's lucky number, and also represents big changes in her life. On her golden birthday a few years ago, pivotal events triggered her to begin writing music again. She began writing her singles that are out currently: "A Pickle," "Peggy Paradise" and "She Hit Me First." These tracks are bass-y, psychedelic and distinctive. Goodwin wanted the bass to stand out because her favorite music tends to be bass-heavy. "I notice that a lot of my favorite songs have really prominent baselines, whether they're groovy or just punchy," she said. "It's always bass that makes me love a song. I think that's what really carries music, too. As well as the percussion, all of that is the bones of a song."

These singles are building up to a concept EP, following a girl who chokes on a pickle and ultimately dies. "I'm just getting started and it's a lot of fun. I definitely write about my experiences and what I'm going through in life, but I kind of like to hide it and twist it into a story," she said. "It helps with the creative process and helps me feel like I'm not being too vulnerable."

Each track is a different perspective from a character in the story. "A Pickle" is from the point of view of the devious vegetable, while "She Hit Me First" is from the perspective of the girl's awful boyfriend, and "Peggy Paradise" depicts the imagery after the girl in the story has died.

These singles are just scratching the surface for Goodwin, who has big plans for her music in the coming months. "I'm working with different producers, and getting everything ready," she said. "I've got a whole bunch of songs ready. It's just figuring out the right time. I definitely plan to release the EP next year." With 2022 rapidly coming to a close, knowing more music from 26fix is coming in the future is a treat for listeners.

Goodwin has been very active in the local music scene, playing tons of shows and drawing crowds ready to hear bits from this inventive story. Being a frontman is a different experience, so Goodwin has faced a learning curve, but she's embraced the challenge. "I do love performing live, but what I really love is making the music and creating," she said. "Playing as a frontman is scary. It's a whole other thing; I wanted to make sure I had my sound right, and who I was as a musician and get that together. I feel like I finally figured that out fully as I've had this year to kind of gather who I am."

Goodwin wants people listening to her music to know that it means the world to her; "Creating this music gives me so much joy, and if they get joy out of listening to it, that makes me happy as well," she said. "And there's more to come. Lots more to come. I've been a little slow to start just because when I first started, it was to heal and to recover, and then all of a sudden it turned, more songs and more songs came. I've got a bunch more coming, and all the support means a lot."

The best way to keep up with 26fix is on her Instagram, @26fix.26fix.26fix. Her next show will be Friday, Nov. 4 at Metro Music Hall where she's playing in support of local group Cop Kid and their latest release. Tickets for the 21+ show are $10 and can be found at metromusichall.com.

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Emilee Atkinson

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