Andra Liemandt is a mom-turned-musician with a powerful message for every woman, as our intrepid chronicler Jonathan Spindel learns
It’s as unlikely a story as any Hollywood rock and roll rise to fame: A mom takes her daughter to piano lessons; the instructor suggests she give music a try, too; she picks up the drums, and before long she’s got a band with radio hits, music videos and touring performances. This is the story of Andra Liemandt and her band, The Mrs. Since it formed last year, they’ve taken the world by storm, releasing hit singles including their viral hit Enough and empowering women with their musical message.
“I wouldn’t say it was the most traditional start,” she admits as she tells the story of the band’s origin of recruiting her best friends to play with her. They started playing cover songs, meeting up for jam sessions after dropping off the kids at school. “What we called it back then was more like a book club, but it was a band club.”
“It became a real passion and a real love for all of us in the band.” The more they practiced, the better they sounded, so they started playing shows around town. At first it was all about having fun – they weren’t setting out to become rock stars. “It was more about an experiment for us to learn and to grow as women,” she says. And grow they did.
They named themselves The Mrs., a wry acknowledgment of the members’ family backgrounds. The band earned a popular a reputation playing to enthusiastic local audiences. Before long, they were on the road and performing with big names in the music industry. “We’d go open up for Jon Bon Jovi in Florida at the House of Blues,” she recalls. “We would go play other corporate gigs and open up for Maroon 5. You name it, we were doing it.”
The Mrs. had arrived. Andra Liemandt and her band mates achieved success on a path on which they never expected to embark. They began writing original material, which took them on an introspective journey. Reflecting on their lives as mothers and wives, they thought about the challenges so many women face: The struggle to find strength, self-confidence and positivity while taking care of a family. The challenges of professional and family life can lead some women to live with a negative self image. Thus, Enough was born.
It became an anthem that resonates with women of all ages, based on the several million YouTube viewings it has already garnered. “They get to see a glimpse into their own heart,” Leimandt says, “And what it could be to experience their dreams or to liberate themselves in that way. To know that they’re enough.” That has led to The Mrs.’ project of taking their message I’m Enough to shopping malls across the country as an interactive installation. Participants face a mirror and engage with a personalized message especially meant for her and her current challenges.
Leimandt’s story is truly inspirational, and she feels you can experience that kind of transformation, too. Erin Driscoll, style blogger extraordinaire, tells us how The Mrs. inspired her. “Andra has been guiding me toward finding and accepting my own sense of inner abundance for years now,” Erin says. “It’s pure joy to witness Andra’s path with The Mrs. ebbing in a direction where all her nourishing brilliance is impacting others – so many of them and in so many places and on so many levels.
It may be daunting to undertake a new project, but Andra Leimandt encourages fans to give it their best shot. “A year ago, I didn’t think that this was possible,” she says. “So my message to women out there is stay true to who you are. If you believe in something enough, go for it.”
Keep an ear out for new songs by The Mrs., including an EP planned for release this fall. “They’re all centered around messages that speak to women, and speak to things that we’re all very passionate about,” she says. “If anything, we just really want to encourage women to empower themselves, to know that they’re enough, and to really embrace who they are.”