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Two years ago, when Emily Wolfe stepped into the studio with Alabama Shakes’ keyboardist Ben Tanner at the board, she had already mapped out just about every sound she envisioned for the record. “The good thing about Emily is that she knows the sound when it’s there. The songs were fully formed in her head by the time she got the studio,” said Ben. Emily, a native of Austin, Texas, has spent the last several years making a name for herself as an electrifying, blues-driven live rock act, accompanied on the road by her trusty Epiphone Sheraton (picked up at Guitar Center Austin at the start of her career) and ever-evolving pedal board. With the release of her debut self-titled album, she effortlessly harnesses the raw power of her live performances in collaboration with Ben’s in-studio experimentation - creating an album that marries the roots of rock with the soaring choruses of modern pop. We sat down with Emily and Ben to talk about inspiration for the album, the process and gear behind nailing the sound, and how they brought to life Emily’s genre-bending dream of mixing “Demi Lovato with Queens of the Stone Age.”
During our recent visit to the UK, we stopped by the home studio of Mary Spender – a YouTube-based musician whose channel has already amassed a whopping 6.2 million views thanks to her “Tuesday Talks” YouTube series, in which she deep dives into music topics of her choosing with artists like K.T. Tunstall, James Valentine and more. We joined Mary for a Tuesday Talks of our own, covering the topics of her YouTube origins, evolving her process as a musician through social media, and how to kickstart your own YouTube channel with just an iPhone and a great mic.
As a live performer, Madame Gandhi aims to incorporate her message of female empowerment and versatility by using a wide range of instruments and techniques onstage. "I show I’ve rehearsed the drums, I've built the soundscapes, and I’m using the technology to impact my vocal through loop pedals and sensory percussion triggers. That’s why I do so much on stage, because I really want to embody this three-dimensionality of not only the female experience, but the human experience." We captured Madame Gandhi's live first impressions of the new Moog Grandmother, while also discussing her multi-faceted stage setup as a means for spreading message through example.

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