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Tristan Prettyman is a rare breed among San Diego's growing crop of acoustic crooners -- she's signed to a major label. Virgin Records released twentythree in August 2005, followed by a ten-month national tour with ex-boyfriend Jason Mraz. She was 23 years old. The title of the album is a reference to the "23 enigma" from Robert Anton Wilson's Cosmic Trigger (and now the subject of a new Jim Carrey film).

YOUR NUMBER-ONE GUITAR?

"My Taylor 714ce. Bob Borbonus and the whole gang over at Taylor have been there for me since day one. I got the 714ce right after I turned 21. It's been my go-to guitar for everything."

WORST GIG?

"For some reason, I seem to have really shitty shows at Maxwell's in Hoboken, New Jersey. I'm pretty sure anyone that came to either of the two shows I played there thinks I'm a really big bitch, diva, unprofessional musician, and professional complainer. Not that there is anything wrong with the place, but both times I played, people were talking through my whole set. It was really loud, I got really upset, and I felt the need to say something. It could just be that it's Jersey, though."

BEST GIG?

"I was on tour with Ben Taylor about a year ago, and we ended the tour in San Diego at the House of Blues. I headlined that night, and I remember being totally blown away. It was pretty much sold out and totally silent the whole show. It was me and my friend Jen Lowe on percussion. I remember it sounding like butter onstage."

WHAT'S IN YOUR CD PLAYER?

"The Shins, Wincing the Night Away. It's pretty much the dopest album ever. I got Cold War Kids and the Whitest Boy Alive up in the mix too."

BRUSH WITH THE FAMOUS?

"I met Ashley Simpson at the G Love show up in L.A. the other night, and then we went to this club, Hyde, afterwards, where I watched Ken Paves fix Jessica Simpson's hair and dance real up close and against her all night. Christina Aguilera was there, too -- she was cute as a button. None of them talked to me. I want to be, like, 'Wow, y'all look so different off paper!' I don't really get that whole lifestyle. I was there for about ten minutes when I pretty much realized that I didn't belong there. I grew up in San Diego, man -- we go surfing and to the Saloon, we don't go to clubs with paparazzi waiting outside."

WHAT DID YOU DO PROM NIGHT?

"The only thing I remember is my fabulous date, Greg. I can't remember much else. I didn't attend many high school events. I do remember eating a pot brownie and going to grad night. That was fun."

FAVORITE SAN DIEGO HANGOUT?

"I love this sushi place in Solana Beach, Masuo's. I must eat there three or four nights a week. The Uncle Sheppie roll is to die for. I spend a lot of time at the Belly Up, too. That place feels like home to me."

WHERE DO YOU SEE MUSIC GOING IN THE NEXT 20 YEARS?

"Sometimes I wish I lived in the '60s when it was all about peace, love, and understanding. I just hope I can keep playing music and continue to tour. Touring is the way to go, or, you know, having a reality show or something. There's so many ways to just get it quick. I don't want to give in so easily. I've always tried to be patient and remember to follow my path. I want to be remembered for something more than just having a hit single or a pretty face.

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