THE VIP EXPERIENCE (Virtually in The Palace): Essential Machine
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Essential Machine, it’s safe to say, doesn’t fit the profile of your standard family band. The indie three-piece, which calls the Pittsburgh suburb of Greensburg home, has always been the vehicle of married couple Karen and R.J. Dietrich; they put out their first record under the moniker in 2009. But a funny thing happened in 2014, after the duo had already been recording and playing together for years: They incorporated son Robert into their act, on keyboards.
The core of the band still revolves around lyrics that both Karen & RJ bring and melodies the two craft. Now, as a three-piece, the band’s writing process is more diffuse, but the primary duties remain largely the same.