If you’re anything like me, The Indigo Girls have been around for every major life event and are not going anywhere anytime soon. “Let’s Make Peace Tonight” is your “5 O’clock Somewhere.” “The Power of Two” is your “Unchained Melody.”
Everyone relax. I understand you perfectly.
The Indigo Girls new album, The Lost Day, is a continuation of everything we have come to expect, full of introspective lyrics, with some refreshing new musical differences. And the harmonies on this album—you know the ones—took my breath away.
We grabbed some time with Emily Saliers to talk music, lesbians and more.
AfterEllen.com: Emily, thanks so much for talking with me today, My name is Lianna, I met you eight years ago in Cathy Woolard’s office when she campaigned for congress in Decatur, GA.
Emily Saliers: I totally, totally remember that!
AE: You walked in and I was star struck and panicked. You said, “Hey, where were you the last time I came in?” and I blurted out, “I went to the mountains!” even though I had never, ever been to the mountains.
ES: [Laughs] Oh my gosh, you’re a dork like me!
AE: Congratulations on the new album!
ES: Thank you!
AE: It’s the 14th studio album, is that right?
ES: Oh gosh, I don’t even know. That sounds about right. 14th, 15th, 16th—something in there.
AE: That’s an impressive amount of content. How do you stay so prolific?
ES: Well, Amy and I both love music and we’re both participants of life, in all of its conflict and beauty, its complexity and simplicity. We love finding artists who inspire us, watching good movies, and reading good stuff, all that stuff stirs your pot.
I think we work hard on our song writing so we’re constantly working, making sure we are not repeating the same phrases, of course some of the themes are going to be the same, because that’s life. But yes, it’s been 35 years!
AE: And even yet, the newest album One Lost Day feels like one of your strongest. I did hear some new things in the music. I mean obviously as long as you two are singing, it is so familiar–but can you put into your own words what is different musically about this album?
ES: I think one of the factors of it sounding differently somewhat is working with a new producer. So Jordan Brooke Hamlin produced the record and she is a young woman, and she plays a lot of instruments, she is classically trained in French Horn. So there are some horns, some string arrangements on the songs we haven’t done before. And also we sent our stripped down demos to her and she mocked up and wrote up musical pieces that would fit with the songs, and we loved everything she did and those ended up being in the songs. So there’s a good deal of moodiness and darkness but also a very strong pop sensibility. We also played with new players that we haven’t been there before. So its like you said, we have the glue, our sound, but then we brought new elements in and there’s a cool new musical difference for sure.