lifeblood: listlogs: 2007-071


date:    mon, 4 jun 2007 13:18:14 +1000
from:    sherlyn koo <>
subject: san diego union-tribune article

hi kids,

here's an article from the san diego union-tribune.  you can read it online=


---begin forwarded article---
indigo girls look for the commonalities

by mikel toombs

june 3, 2007

despite their differences, the indigo girls remain a true-blue duo after two=

decades together.

on their new album, =93despite our differences,=94 emily saliers and amy ray
continue to alternate writing credits. saliers opens the album, the indigos'=

10th, with =93pendulum swinger,=94 a pointed political statement with an=
pop sound; ray is just as passionate on her starkly personal portrayal of a=

wasted life, =93dirt and dead ends.=94

but when saliers and ray put their voices together, the connection is

=93i think there's a big difference in the quality of our voices, and the
intricacy of parts and images. but the certain sound that we have when we=
harmonies, it's probably never going to change,=94 ray said by phone from her=
in georgia.

=93We're so different from each other, but we're always able to come together=
make a record and make it work, together. We were thinking about that and we=

were thinking about the world, the idea of being polarized and being able to=

come together and find commonalities.=94

ray and saliers first found common ground in decatur, ga., in the mid-1980s.=

basing themselves in atlanta, the duo updated the singer-songwriter=
tradition of
bob dylan and simon & garfunkel with the 1989 major-label debut album=
girls.=94 the record featured =93closer to fine=94 and =93kid fears,=94 where the=
were joined by michael stipe of r.e.m., which then called nearby athens=

the indigos' sound blossomed with =93swamp ophelia,=94 released in 1994, the=
year that saw their participation in a gender-bending version of andrew=
Webber and tim rice's =93jesus christ superstar.=94 titled =93jesus christ=
a resurrection,=94 the production featured saliers, who often writes on=
themes, as mary magdalene and ray as the title character.

long active in the gay and lesbian community, the cause-oriented ray and=
in recent years have championed honor the earth, described as =93a
minneapolis-based nonprofit dedicated to energy justice within the native
american community.=94

the indigos help their own cause on =93despite our differences,=94 which=
ace session drummer matt chamberlain, by their choice of producer, veteran
mitchell froom. =93We knew we had to work with somebody different, just to
challenge us,=94 ray said, =93to bring in a new perspective and change it up a
little bit. and i think his perspective, when he started working with us,=
that he wanted to have a lot of economy, around notes and sounds.=94

ray takes on a different kind of economy, that of the music business, on=
the cd's angriest track, =93rock and roll heaven's gate.=94 every (bleepin')=
d.j. is
telling me i'm free, ray sings. free to be a loser / free to be a trend /=
to be a backlash, over and over again.

it's a bit startling to hear such fire coming from a 20-year veteran, who
records for hollywood records and headlines tomorrow at humphrey's concerts=
the bay.

=93it came from the world i exist in separate from emily,=94 ray said. =93i do
independent music, too, put out solo records and work in little communities,=

punk-rock communities, where i see bands that are very inspirational to me=
up and not able to make it, for one reason or another. and it was kind of a=

tribute to some of those bands, my friends.=94

ray relates to such on-the-edge bands, she said, =93partly because emily and i=
not that successful. it's relative. We tour for a living; we wouldn't be=
able to
ever stay at home for more than a couple of months. We don't make a living=
our records and it's a struggle, but we're glad to be doing it, and glad=
we're still able to do it.

=93We see the ceiling. We see the way we haven't been able to make a mark
sometimes. but we keep doing it because we don't really care.=94

the indigos spread the joy around on =93differences,=94 recruiting distinctive=
singers (and fans) pink and brandi carlile. having already made her mark on=
pop charts, pink =96 she now goes by p!nk, as if her outsize presence weren't=

enough =96 had the indigos sing on =93dear mr. president,=94 found on her album=
not dead,=94 and the girls returned the favor with =93heaven's gate.=94

the duo was impressed enough with carlile, who sings on =93differences=94 closer=

=93last tears,=94 to have the breakout, seattle-area talent open the current=

=93i love her, as a person and a songwriter and a performer. her voice is a=
from god, from whatever god there is,=94 ray said. =93hopefully, this will be=

mikel toombs is a seattle writer who frequently contributes to the
union-tribune's night & day section.

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