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A Dirty Dozen with BETH HERBRUCK from MAMADRAMA – June 2020


According to a recent press release: “MAMADRAMA is a mom-only band made up of five moms who rock by night, and roll (with 11 kids) by day. What’s more punk than a kickass mom band?! When not rocking out, they are small business owners, entrepreneurs, and a Kindergarten teacher. “We met at Lakehouse Music Academy in Asbury Park, NJ, where our kids took music lessons. We dreamed of something more than the endless mom grind: piles of laundry and miles of errands. Those flashbacks of freedom and concerts before stretch marks inspired us motivated mamas to meet up once a week and form a mom band. We realized what the band meant for us – we didn’t want to lose sight of who we are and who we once were. Another chapter is just beginning after kids and you can have (and want) more. The energy is fierce and the jokes are feisty but the beating heart of MAMADRAMA is living out a dream that is never too late!” says the band.” We get singer Beth to discuss new music, influences, and much more…

Photo Credit: Lauren Klain Carton

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Our main goal for this first release was to share a song that introduced who Mamadrama is at our core – we are a band of hard-working, passionate mamas that love to have fun! “MILF (Moms In Leather Forever)” is a vibe of celebration and liberation and a reminder that it’s never too late to do what you love and rock out while you’re at it.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

My parents would say I came out singing. I’ve had music and performing in my blood from day one – dancing, singing, and lessons in piano from a very early age. I picked up the guitar in high school and played in a band a bit as well as performed in chorus and choirs so it’s safe to say that music and rhythm are a bit part of my DNA.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

That’s almost an impossible question to answer! Where to start? In elementary school Janet Jackson blew my mind with dance moves that made my head spin. In middle school, I fell in love with the 10,000 Manics – Natalie Merchant’s song writing was at the top of her game. Then in high school I fell hard for everything from Morrissey to Bjork, Dee-Lite to Depeche Mode, OutKast, Erykah Badu, Siouxie and the Banshees… from indie rock to EMO, goth to raves I was curious and in love with so much. I’m still the same – It just depends on my mood. I’m definitely drawn to passionate performers (Karen O, Brittney Howard, TV on the Radio, Arcade Fire) and one of my favorite live shows of all time is still Jane’s Addiction. Perry’s energy is through the roof!

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

Again with the tough question! I’m going to answer this I’m relation to our band. With Mamadrama, I find that I channel the creative courage of Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs), the dark grit of Alison Mosshart (The Kills, Dead Weather), the vocal brilliance of Brittney Howard (Alabama Shakes), the funk and swagger of Betty Davis and the confidence and cool of Erykah Badu.

5. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

Leon Bridges. That man has soul for centuries.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

We’ve definitely been compared to The Runaways and early stuff by The Go-Go’s but that’s obviously because we’re an all-girl band. On one hand I’m okay with that, because encouraging ladies to rock out in their own style is something I fully support. On the other, comparison is a tricky game and I don’t like being narrowed down to one style or genre. I think our sound is punk, it’s good energy and a fun performance all in one.

7. When your band is hanging out together, who cooks, who gets the drinks in, and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

Carey is the Band Mom for sure! Drinks, snacks, cozy+kick ass practice space – she brings it all. Renee keeps us laughing our asses off – if we’re not having fun, it’s just not worth it and she makes sure we’re focused but having a blast. Maria brings new creative ideas to the table and is always down to learn a new audio trick or tool we can work into our songs. Kim brings the love – she’s supportive, encouraging and always seeks out the positive side. I think I bring energy and can help with focus and direction when things can sometimes spin out a bit when we’re exhausted.

8. When was the last time you were starstruck and who was it?

Karen O. Hands down. Shes a goddess.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

Music saves my soul and I’m lucky to have found other ladies that want to keep it in their lives as much as I do. I love performing and putting on a fun show for an audience feels like a gift – we have an opportunity to help people smile and escape for a few minutes and enjoy the moment. No matter what my “day job” is, music will always play a part.

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

Hmm… nothing comes to mind.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over,” even if it didn’t change your current situation?

My senior year in high school I was in a band and we were playing at one of our graduation parties and an ex-boyfriend came up and said my voice sucked. That really hurt and I actually stopped singing for a number of years after. Glad I was finally able to let that go! I hate thinking about how much that one comment held me back.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

I’ve been listening to Jill Scott a lot recently and her live album Experience: Jill Scott 826+ was recorded in 2001 in Washington, DC with the most incredible audience. To be part of that would be magical! The vibes are SO good and the improve and interaction with the crowd are the best. You can feel that energy – it’s full of positive super powers.

BONUS QUESTION – Due to the current world situation with COVID-19 / quarantine / shelter in place, what have you discovered you miss the most from your life before the pandemic struck?

These are wild times. So many things have changed. What I miss the most is the simple gathering together of friends and family – for coffee, for lunch, for long dinners. It’s that personal connection and interaction in real time that simply can’t be replicated virtually. We’ll get back there. In the mean time, I’ve been loving the nightly DJ sessions on Instagram and live performances by my favorite singers and bands in their homes and apartments. Humans need connection and it’s inspiring to see the creative ways we’re all doing that right now.




Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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