Rev up 

One of good spirits and consciousness raising, Emma’s Revolution came to life in 2002, driven by the creative and romantic partnership of Pat Humphries and Sandy Opatow. It took eight years for the fire to spark, but when it did, Humphries was blown away.

“I was really struck by the tremendous ease with which we could sing together,” Humphries said. “But I didn’t really know how the writing would happen. It came together so organically, it was really an enchanted feeling. It was almost like we couldn’t stop the songs from coming.”

The duo attempted many names before settling on Emma’s Revolution, a reference to the famed statement “If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of your revolution,” credited to anarchist Emma Goldman. It’s fitting for an act that doesn’t adhere to folksinger rules.

“When we write these songs, we don’t write it necessarily with our guitar in our hands,” Opatow said. “We write the songs the way they sound in our head. We don’t feel limited by ‘We’re acoustic musicians, so we have to sound like whatever people’s idea of that is.’” Revolutions Per Minute, their
fourth album, is an eclectic batch of tunes, culling from modern rock
and bluegrass. The latter appears on “Occupy the USA,” a track that
invites “the 1 percent in power, meet the other 99.”

Humphries wrote the cut last Oct. 6, just in time to get it on the CD, which came out the following month.

you’re doing social-justice music, that’s how fast time moves,” Opatow
said, “so actions and the music need to move with it.”

Much of Emma’s Revolution’s music is a rallying cry meant to offer hope to those fighting the good fight.

would like us just as a culture to be a more attuned to how easily we
can be manipulated by the powers that benefit from polarization,” she
said. “People are more flexible, tolerant and resilient than we give
them credit for.”

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