The Mrs loves to push boundaries

Austin band gets set to rock a benefit for HEART of Taos

By Ariana Kramer
tempo@taosnews.com
Posted 7/17/19

The Mrs is an Austin-based, all-woman, alt-rock band that aims to have a lot of fun while sending out a message of hope and positivity. The band started a little over five years ago …

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The Mrs loves to push boundaries

Austin band gets set to rock a benefit for HEART of Taos

Posted

The Mrs is an Austin-based, all-woman, alt-rock band that aims to have a lot of fun while sending out a message of hope and positivity.

The band started a little over five years ago when drummer and vocalist Andra Liemandt and her best friend and musical buddy Jenny Mason (bass, vocals) partnered with Mandy Prater (guitar, vocals) and Larissa Ness (keyboards, vocals). The foursome started out by making some serious waves with an innovative music video and self-esteem raising project, garnering the attention of millions of viewers from their appearance on the "Good Morning, America" television show.

Local business owner, "Mattress Mary" Domito, is bringing The Mrs as a benefit for HEART of Taos on Friday (July 19), 8 p.m., at the Taos Mesa Brewing Mothership, 20 ABC Mesa Road, off U.S. 64 west. HEART stands for Hope, Empowerment, Advocacy, Respect and Transitional Housing.

When she was a new mother, Liemandt said she started learning how to play the drums as a hobby. She asked her best friend, Mason, to join her in her new adventure. It didn't take long before their musical pursuits became serious.

"I think when you find something you love and have a passion for, you want to learn everything about it," Liemandt said.

She describes how every aspect of the music industry became fascinating to her, from songwriting to starting up a label. The first song that The Mrs wrote together is called "Enough." The upbeat message, "I'm enough," infuses this song about self-esteem. It speaks as a counterforce to the negative self-defeating messages we hear, see and absorb.

Instead of just creating a music video of their song, The Mrs developed a self-esteem project based around a magic mirror that speaks uplifting affirmative statements to those who gaze into it. Then, The Mrs made a video of the results of that project and featured their song. Titled, "Magic Mirror," the YouTube video has gathered 5.4 million views to date, and can be seen on the band's website (themrs.com).

"For some reason when that video went out it hit this chord with everyone. And, in that moment, I just sat there and I thought, 'This is what it feels like to connect on a level that is so deep,' " said Liemandt.

Liemandt is also the founder of The Kindness Campaign, an anti-bullying project (kckindness.org).

Asked what she enjoys most about being in The Mrs, Liemandt said she loves doing whatever the band is doing in the moment whether it's songwriting, touring or recording. She also loves to try new things and have new opportunities and experiences.

"That's what drives the band," said Liemandt. "Life is too short. You should experiment and try and push your boundaries, and go for it! That's our motto for everything."

The Mrs released their debut, self-titled album in March 2017 and another, titled "Five Minutes," in September 2018. Their music ranges from alt-rock and R&B to pop-rock. The Mrs have been working with the creative direction of Gavin Jasper, band member of the Saints of Valory. It was Jasper who reached out to Taos Lifestyle owner Domito to see if she might want to bring The Mrs to Taos. One thing led to another, and the band is now on its way to Northern New Mexico.

Domito, whose business specializes in home furnishings, was inspired by the fact that The Mrs is an all-woman, alt-rock band. She also likes that "they're women doing what they want to do, not being restricted or held back." Domito is also behind the annual Dogs Days of Summer concert, usually conducted in August as a benefit for the Stray Hearts Animal Shelter in Taos.

"They're playing with joy, and are really committed to this," Domito said. "It's fun music and feel good music with a message."

It seemed a natural fit to Domito to have the band's concert in Taos be a fundraiser for HEART of Taos. Fifty percent of proceeds will go to help the nonprofit organization, which is committed to empowering Taos women who are experiencing homelessness and providing individualized support to help prevent homelessness. This one-on-one support includes assistance with housing, employment, benefits, life skills, health and wellness and basic needs. For more information, visit heartoftaos.org or call (575) 776-4245.

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are available for $8 in advance at taosmesabrewing.com or $10 at the door. For more information, call the venue at (575) 758-1900.

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