By: Denise Warner
The Indigo Girls are hitting the high seas with Olivia Cruises in
February 2014 to the Eastern Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale, but this
ain’t your everyday fun in the sun vacation. It’s all that but the Women
in Equality and Leadership Cruise also features some of the most influential
leaders of the women’s movement, including Dr. Maya Angelou
and Edie Windsor. You can also get a chance to see the Indigo Girls live
at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach in January and later in March
at University of Florida Performing Arts in Gainesville. She Magazine
caught up with Emily Sailers about the upcoming Olivia Cruise and the
legendary career of the Indigo Girls.
The indigo girls have 14 studio albums, 3 live recordings, 3
greatest hits compilations, 7 gold records, 7 grammy nominations,
and one grammy Win. With such an immense and distinguished
career, is there a certain amount of pressure When
you step into the studio to record the next project?
Not because of our career. We work hard on our songwriting and arranging,
and we’re fastidious about who we work with and who produces our
projects, so it’s all a focused, combined effort. The most important thing
is to make songs that we really like. Of course we don’t want to repeat
the same thing over and over, but for us there’s no pressure to recreate
ourselves. We just strive to do the best that we can on whatever we’re
working on at the time. The pressure is just to do our best, really.
i read someWhere about all the changes in recording labels,
and hoW it’s Changed your Way of thinking When you
actually get into studio noW, making the proCess more of “the heart rules our performanCe more than the head.”
How did that happen and What does it mean?
We were with Epic Records for a long time and had a good relationship
with them. When we fi rst started out, the projects were a lot bigger. The
whole industry was different when we got signed in 1988, a long time
ago. Record companies were nurturing bands like us, and R.E.M. There
was much more of a regional vibe with radio stations before they started
getting snatched up by major corporations. I’m not naming any names
(laughs), but you know what I mean? So, we worked through that, and
we watched the whole industry change. CD stores started closing, record
companies began charging too much and music sharing started
happening. Then, regulated radio got bought up and became sort of
homogenized, and of course, technology changed. People started making
records cheaper and easier. With social media, they didn’t need the
same avenues of large record companies or the old archaic ways, so
we signed with Hollywood, but they dropped us after one record. At that
point, we just thought, “Well, we’ve got the songs, we’ve got the relationships,
we’re going to start our own label.” We’ve got distribution with
Van guard, who we respect and love, so we have everything we need to
continue on without a major label. It’s made us really, really happy. We’re
more prolifi c, we don’t have to wait for decisions, we decide what we like
and move forward with it. honestly, we’re having a blast being independent.
It’s a new world, but luckily for us, we’re not a band that counts on radio play. It’s liberating. Amy and I are very fortunate that things have
worked out as they have, meaning we’ve developed long lasting relationships
with managers, agents and publicists. That’s hard to find. It’s one
day at a time, but as of today, we’re both writing songs. We’ve got plans
for a new album in 2014, so we’re happy and talking about the future,
with no signs of stopping. We’re thankful...
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