Bif Naked (born Beth Torbert; June 15, 1971) is a Juno Award-winning, Indian-born American-Canadian rock singer, writer, poet, motivational speaker and actress. She has sold many platinum albums. Born in New Delhi to teenaged parents, Bif was subsequently adopted by American missionaries and lived in the United States before settling down in Winnipeg.
She is heavily tattooed, getting her first tattoo, an Egyptian Eye of Horus, when she was 16. Her tattoos include a symbol of the Tao, Japanese writing, Buddhist poetry and images (such as the Bodhisattva) and Hindu imagery. She has stated on MTV that her favorite tattoo, on her left arm, reads "Survivor."
Bif has always been frank about her bisexuality, and the lyrics of her autobiographical songs (such as 1995's "Everything") detail her attractions to and relationships with women. She is also a strict raw-food vegan for health (as opposed to ethical or religious) reasons. She identifies as straight edge.
In January 2008, she announced that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and underwent a lumpectomy and chemotherapy. Bif Naked blogs on her Web site about politics, her personal life, and dealing with cancer.
Before her solo career, Torbert played with punk bands Gorilla Gorilla and Chrome Dog. She has toured Europe, the United States and Canada as a headlining act, and has performed on bills with Snoop Dogg, Billy Idol, Dido, Sarah McLachlan, Sheryl Crow, Chrissie Hynde, the Foo Fighters, the Cult and many more. She recorded a version of "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" for the MTV: TRL Christmas CD. She was also featured on the Ready to Rumble soundtrack with a cover of Twisted Sister's "We're Not Gonna Take It", the Celebrity Deathmatch soundtrack with "Vampire", and Buffy the Vampire Slayer's soundtrack with "Lucky". The song "Lucky" was also featured in the 13th episode of the only season of Moonlight (2007), an episode titled "Fated to Pretend" and in the 16th episode of the second season of Charmed, titled "Murphy's Luck". The song "Dawn" off Purge was featured in the movie American Psycho 2: All American Girl, starring Mila Kunis and William Shatner. In 2006, she made a guest appearance in the song "Fucker" on Strapping Young Lad's album The New Black.
Bif Naked has also made guest appearances with artists such as SNFU on the songs "One Last Loveshove" and "You Make Me Thick". She also appeared on the Dead Celebrity Status album Blood Music on the track titled "In This Day and Age".
Solo albums include Bif Naked, a self-titled album; Purge, and I Bificus. In 2005, after narrowing it down from over 50 songs, she released Superbeautifulmonster with 13 tracks. The Promise was released in 2009 and was dedicated to her fans. Sick, Bluejay and You'll Never Know were mixed by Juno Award winner Mike Fraser. Bif recorded the album during her chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer. Bif is currently working on writing a book and has an acoustic side project album on the way.
She has appeared in music videos for The Offspring's "The Kids Aren't Alright", Moist's "Believe Me" and "Silver", Liveonrelease's "Get with it" and Simple Plan's "Save You" near the end along with other people (such as Sharon Osborne and René Angélil) who have been treated for cancer. In 2011, she recorded a duet with Will Blunderfield, a Vancouver yogi and Nettwerk recording artist, for the international version of his album Hallelujah.
Tropes associated with Bif Naked:
- Alien Abduction : Her song "Spaceman" is a request for a spaceman to take her away.
- Ambiguously Brown: Good luck placing her ethnicity without reading the intro.
- Author Appeal: Really likes singing about BMX bikes, for some reason.
- As Herself: One of many acts to do so on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
- Asian Store-Owner: Plays one in The Boys Club. Well, South Asian in her case.
- Bare Your Midriff: A staple of her wardrobe.
- Bowdlerise: For a while, MuchMusic would credit her music videos to simply "Bif" before giving in and crediting her full stage name.
- Comical Overreacting: "Honeybee," an entire tongue-in-cheek song about Bif going to prison for 40 years and descending into guilt-ridden madness...because she squashed a bee in her kitchen.
- Determinator: Despite being diagnosed with an inoperable heart aneurysm and breast cancer, Bif just keeps on going.
- Ink-Suit Actor: The character Alison from the Daria TV movie "Is it Fall Yet?" is modeled on and voiced by Bif.
- Zoe Payne from the SSX series became one once Bif started voicing her in SSX Tricky, and if it wasn't obvious then, it became even more so in SSX 3. From On Tour onwards, however, different people voiced Zoe, and the character's look has strayed accordingly.
- NEET: "Let Down" is about being one.
- Nice Shoes: "Tango Shoes," natch. The video upgrades them to full-blown Tricked-Out Shoes, powered by magic and capable of forcing people to copy Bif's dance moves.
- Not That Kind of Doctor: She was awarded an honourary doctorate from the University of Fraser Valley in 2013.
- Odd Couple: Was once married to Vancouver Sun sportswriter Ian Walker.
- The Oner: The video for "Moment of Weakness" features one that covers everything up through the bridge after the second chorus.
- Out-of-Genre Experience: "Succulent" takes a left turn from the rest of the album's angsty alt-rock into...singing over a laidback '90's hip-hop beat?
- "Rich and Filthy" is a rock song, but every so often, it pulls a techno break for a few bars before getting back to the usual sound.
- Parental Abandonment: The subject of "Daddy's Getting Married."
- The Pollyanna: Bif describes herself as an "outrageous optimist," and the way she finds upsides to the hardships in her life lives up to that.
- Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Seems to be the subject of her song "Tell On You." Although it might also be about Abusive Parents.
- Rearrange the Song: There's two versions of "Lucky"; one with a string arrangement and one that builds into a more traditional 90s Power Ballad. The latter also shortens the second verse.
- Rooftop Concert: The second half of the video for "I Love Myself Today." A Shout-Out to others of the type, such as the scene in Let It Be and U2's "Where the Streets Have No Name."
- Screw Yourself: By the power of Acting for Two, she pulls it off in the "My Greatest Masterpiece" video.
- Screwed by the Network: Or, in this case, label. Her first album, Bif Naked, was released by Plum Records, which went under shortly thereafter, without telling anyone. With some struggle, she got the rights back and released the album on her own label.
- Shady Real Estate Agent: Probably not the "shady" part, but it's the only trope that applies. She sold real estate before she began singing professionally.
- Slobs vs. Snobs: "Rich and Filthy," where Bif plays the slob and sings at the snob, contrasting their lifestyles in various ways.
- Tank-Top Tomboy: Also a staple of her look, probably to help show off her tattoos.
- Wham Line: "Chotee" sounds like a breakup song for most of the way...and then it gets to the last verse, and you realize who she's really singing to.He didn't really want you'Cause he didn't want meDidn't wanna be a husbandDidn't wanna be a daddyI hope you can forgive meI hope you can forgive meMy baby
- Working Title: I, Bificus was supposed to be called Nang Sim, after a particular Groin Attack technique she knew, purely because it was funny. But the record label didn't like it, so she had to change it.