Interview with Shanheea Dax and Will Crewdson of She Made Me Do It

Interview with Shanheea Dax and Will Crewdson of She Made Me Do It

By: Delilah Reynolds

Delilah Reynolds: What components would you say have changed the most in the music industry over the past 20 years?

Will Crewdson:

The whole distribution and promotional aspect have changed beyond recognition. Having been in bands tied to record labels in the past I can only say good things about the way things are now.

Apart from the fact that you can do anything yourself, the possibilities of who you share the business side of music with are endless. Second chances and experimentation are far easier happen.

DR: Is staying up with the times a hardship, or an interesting ride to join in on?

Will Crewdson:

I don’t think we even try to. There are contemporary bands that still influence is but mainly our inspirations come from the past. We’re happier to use more modern subjects for the lyrics which seems to blend well with this.

DR: Does the sound and imagery of She Made Me Do It necessarily fit the quid pro quo of rock music and does it matter to you whether it has?

Shaheena Dax :

We definitely could fit within different genres as we are influenced by many, yet I quite like that we have managed to create our own unique sound.

Our imagery comes from the heart – I love making videos and Will loves artwork so our visuals have all been created through collaborations where we are completely involved.

I’ve never really wanted to ‘fit in’ to anything in life – I also don’t like being told what to do – I love being different and having my own ideas about things – so for me, being in this band is about creating something thought-provoking, captivating and intense from our heart and soul.

DR: This past year found some major changes for the band didn’t it?

Shaheena Dax :

Yes, exactly one year ago, I found my beautiful ‘78 Fender Precision bass – I bought it in memory of Sudan the last male Northern White Rhino who sadly died that day.

The bass has changed how we write songs and we’ve also added a live drummer to our gigs so it feels like we’re back to our rock’n roll roots with some electro stuff still going on. Our EP ‘Drenched’ represents where we’re at in our creative development as a band and this new sound feels genuine and exciting.

DR: How has the development of your musical styles and tastes influenced where you are now with this band?

Will Crewdson:

People seem to be picking up on the new EP really well but it’s hard to know whether that has to do with the sound developing or just these particular songs.

It’s easy to change the older stuff to become harder and more organically based so it can still stand level with our newer material.

DR: Does living the life of a musician ever find that stride and balance between family, friends, work, and creating?

Will Crewdson:

Personally, I need the traveling life of a musician to be able to appreciate those other parts of life so it all works out.

DR: Each day brings many new inspirations. What else does each of you find pleasure in?

Shaheena Dax :

I love films and documentaries, art exhibitions, I read all the time, I like browsing in bookshops, I enjoy walks in London parks looking at birds and trees, I love animals, I love vegan food, my cat Lance…Inspiration is everywhere – mostly in darker places for me though.

DR: Talk to us about this single, and EP. Give us a track by track image.

Shaheena Dax :

Bones – Obsession on a foggy London night in the East End.

Broken Morning – Heartbreak in Highgate.

Ashes – The madness of men and war.

Time – A dimension between Hiroshima and The Road.

DR: Do either of you, in particular, have a favored song from this EP or do you sparkle and glimmer over each one being uniquely their own star?

Will Crewdson:

I think “Broken Morning” is our most complete song to date. By that I mean all the parts flow together naturally to create an overall great song. Nothing is wasted on that track.

DR: At times a song played in a studio will pronounce itself somewhat differently when performed live. How close do you stay to the recording or do you find stage performance freedom to take on its own soul?

Will Crewdson:

I definitely try and vary the guitar parts whether that be with different effects or slightly different melodies. It keeps it fresh for me. Sometimes we add extra keyboard parts live that aren’t on the recording. It just adds to making it more special.

DR: How important is it to you as a band to maintain a certain amount of technical control over the whole process from beginning to end in writing/recording/mastering?

Shaheena Dax :

Extremely important – we always choose with whom we’ll work with and we’re ultimately in charge of our sound. We’re lucky to have found a great collaborator for this EP – the mixes by Nat Chan are unbelievably powerful – he completely got it.

DR: How about the business end of the band? Who do you find to be taking the lead and how important is it today to have one band member at least understand and develop the business side?

Shaheena Dax :

We’ve both learnt a lot from being in our previous band Rachel Stamp and we are both much savvier and aware of the ways of the music industry – we try and stay informed as it’s ever-changing – Will is definitely the best at online presence/communication but we discuss how we’ll answer to things and make sure we agree so we’re a united voice.

DR: You both have come from other projects along the way. How did the two of you connect and what makes this project tick for you both?

Shaheena Dax :

Will and I met in our previous band Rachel Stamp – She Made Me Do It is the epic result of this long-standing songwriting collaboration.

DR: For your live performances I understand you have added a drummer? Who is he, will he be joining you in the studio next time and are you looking to bring in anyone else on this project?

Shaheena Dax :

Will met Joe Holweger as they both play in Adam Ant’s band. Joe plays bass in that band and said he’d be happy to play drums with us – he came down to our rehearsal – it worked out straight away and he’s now an important part of our live sound. He’s also recorded drums for us for the first time on this new EP.

DR: Finally, in times of unrest, whether socially, politically, etc… do you each find your music as artists should or needs to be?

Shaheena Dax :

Music and the arts can be great sources of support and comfort, they can bring energy and hope, and of course, can be essential paths into escapism for some as well. Humans have always used song and dance to bring people together – are these things essential – not like clean water and antibiotics – but they can maybe help keep the human spirit alive and focus in times of need.

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