Guitarist Marcela de Campos’ new album, Dimmed Lights, is an electrifying tribute to the Blues greats who inspired her playing.

Filled with captivatingly upbeat songs and aching ballads, the record intends to take the listener through a journey of lights and shadows.

“Dimmed Lights” portrays Marcela’s main influences on guitar, such as Albert King, Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Joe Bonamassa, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Eric Gales. The combination of the strong vocals of Melissa Raye and Marcela’s powerful guitar solos is the highlight of the album, perfectly expressing the intensity that Blues music asks for. 

Listen to Dimmed Lights

We caught up with Marcela to dig into the album and its recording.

The WIMN: Tell us the story of Dimmed Lights! How did these songs come to you and what inspired them?

Marcela de Campos: Since I started playing guitar I was always leaning towards Rock but most of the bands I grew up listening to had a very strong Blues influence like Aerosmith, the Black Crows and Led Zeppelin. Around 2018 I started to get more drawn to the Blues and really dived in to learn the vocabulary and nuances of the style. 

In 2019 I met Melissa Raye (my singer) at the legendary club, Bitter End, in New York City and we started to talk and eventually play together. After a while I realized that we should record, I just loved how her voice sounded in combination to my guitar. I started to mature the idea and put the band and the songs together- I wanted to do a record that celebrated Blues, so I chose some of my favorite Blues songs and added a couple of originals. 

The album title track Dimmed Lights talks a little about my path, places I’ve lived and how the Blues helped me through the many ups and downs of life. I planned for this record to take the listener through this journey of lights and shadows as the title suggests.

The WIMN: What was the recording like? Any stories to share from the sessions?

Marcela de Campos: I was very fortunate to have great musicians playing on this record: Dave Previ on drums, Trevor Brown on Bass, Jason Laney on Keys and Melissa Raye on vocals. The recording sessions were mainly remote, only for recording vocals me and Melissa were together at the studio. 

Recording can be a long but also surprising process- you never know what takes are going to have that special ingredient.

I love the feeling of recording a take that sounds just as when we are playing live. There is a certain spontaneity that can’t be rehearsed or planned. When I was recording the scratch tracks, I played some solos just to give the band an idea of what I was going for but I figured I was going to re-do them later. Some of these solos came out exactly as I wanted- nothing I recorded after matched that spark. 

Dimmed Lights is available to stream on all platforms.

The Record Release Concert will be on July 7, at the Mercury Lounge in New York City, where the band will perform the record along with some more Blues classics.

Listen to Dimmed Lights

Get Tickets to see Dimmed Lights at the Mercury Lounge

Meet Marcela de Campos

Marcela de Campos is a Brazilian Blues Rock guitar player who has played with renowned musicians such as Guthrie Govan and Philip Bynoe (Steve Vai).

The guitarist’s debut EP was released in 2016, featuring some special guests such as the guitar legend Scott Henderson. She has toured all over Brazil, Mexico and the U.S. promoting her original music and giving guitar masterclasses. 

Keep up with Marcela de Campos