Music to Your Ear: Jukebox Concert Bites
I had the opportunity to sit down with Lizzie & The Makers Frontwoman, Lizzie Edwards, about her upcoming album, life, and the new innovative platform, Jukebox Concert Bites, which is opening a new door for emerging artists to connect with fans nationwide, often on a personal level, through watch parties delivered to bars through AMI Jukeboxes.
Lizzie & The Makers’ sophomore studio album, Dear Onda Wahl, embroiders their potent Southern-tinged rock with art-rock, dream-pop, and ethereal elements to spawn something all their own. Launching on November 5th, it’s one of those rare records that combines single-minded artistry with broad commercial appeal.
Created around the dusky yet soaring timbre of force-of-nature frontwoman Lizzie Edwards, the upcoming LP was produced by Grammy winner Mario McNulty (David Bowie, Prince) and Cure guitarist Reeves Gabrels (Tin Machine, Bowie). Their influence, alongside the textured six-string and pedal-steel expressions of Edwards’ writing partner (and Gabrels protégé) Greg McMullen, ensure an intriguingly adventurous, hugely dynamic – and occasionally otherworldly – take on the traditional.
Defying her constant comparisons to Janis Joplin, the classically trained Edwards summons a heartfelt, nuanced mezzo-soprano shaped by Memphis soul legend Ann Peebles, Heart’s Wilson sisters, and jazz icon Billie Holiday. She’s assertive, yet vulnerable; defiant, yet proudly flawed.
OR: Who inspired you in your early years?
LE: Billie Holiday, Bonnie Raitt and my dad!
OR: Any idea of the moment the light went off and you knew music would be your career?
LE: Probably when I was in 7th grade.
OR: What artists have people compared you to?
LE: Stevie Nicks, Chris Robinson, Annie Lennox, Janis Joplin
OR: Is there an artist would you most like to collaborate with?
LE: Mavis Staples
OR: How are you and your team growing your fan base? Any unique strategies?
LE: Yes, we recently connected with Emerson Amusements and the AMI Jukebox Concert Bites team. The second I heard about what they’re doing, we signed on. They recorded one of our favorite performances from the Bowery Electric and are now bringing a bite-sized version of the concert to fans through TV screens in bars.
OR: Are the Jukebox Concert Bites guys easy to work with?
LE: They are! Bob Rose their talent wrangler, is refreshingly genuine, creative, and fun to work with. He’s fully aligned with our band’s goal of building our fan base. We’re doing the first Jukebox Concert Bites event at the ACE bar in Manhattan on October 6th. Our partnership ensures that AMI jukeboxes will promote Dear Onda Wahl; plus, every song I’ve published will be available on thousands of AMI jukeboxes around the country.
OR: Some people believe you are on the cusp of breaking out. Can you share your thoughts with us?
LE: I mean, I feel like until you break out, you are always on the cusp! It’s a constant hustle and I’m lucky that I love what I do. You never know when or if that breakthrough is going to happen, so it’s important to take it one day at a time and focus on the present.
OR: Where have you performed? What are your favorite venues?
LE: So many places! I love Rockwood Music Hall and The Cutting Room as well as Bowery Electric. I also love Hotel Cafe in LA and am hoping to get back there soon!
OR: Do you have any upcoming shows?
LE: Oct 13 at Bowery Electric and November 10 at The Cutting Room.
OR: How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?
LE: Although I do believe the internet helps bring your music to people around the world who otherwise might not hear you, it’s unfortunate that everything seems to be based on algorithms and not talent.
OR: How would your best friends describe you?
LE: My friends would certainly describe me as kind, funny, intense, empathetic, and driven.
OR: What is the best advice you’ve been given and would share with any up-and-coming musician?
LE: Don’t compare yourself to other artists, focus on your voice and being your most authentic self.
OR: Do you have any causes you are aligned with?
LE: Yes, I’m pro-choice and involved in a fundraiser on 10/23 that is raising money for pro-choice organizations in Texas.
OR: If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?
LE: It would be great if musicians could get paid enough to make a living, especially through streaming services. I have three jobs in addition to being a musician so I can afford my own expenses as well as afford to pay my band, record, make merch, etc. People don’t realize how costly it is to run a band and no one seems to want to compensate us for our time and talent.
OR: What’s next for you?
LE: We are releasing our next album Dear Onda Wahl on Nov 5! Hoping to tour in support of it.
OR: Thank you for taking the time to interview with me. I wish you good luck on your upcoming shows and the release of your new album.
LE: It was my pleasure.
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