One Microphone, One Street Corner, One Band
For many music fans, Lake Street Dive thundered onto the scene in 2012 with their mesmerizing cover of the Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back”, recorded standing around a single microphone on a Boston street corner. The recording was in promotion of their upcoming album release, Fun Machine, but it did a whole lot more than sell CDs — it introduced music heads to the stunning vocals of lead singer Rachael Price, along with the incredible talent of the rest of the band. Over 4.5 million views later, Lake Street Dive is a powerful force in the musical landscape.
We welcomed Lake Street Dive to Vermont last Friday as part of our Concerts on the Green Series, and we sure weren’t disappointed. Opening act River Whyless was a real delight with string-centric songs with their sultry folk sound. It was a great intro to set the stage for another great night on the green.
And when Lake Street Dive took the stage, the crowd of revelers was eating up every word of their Motown-esque and bluesy “Bad Self Portraits,” followed by the high-tempo and boot stomping “I Don’t Care About You” into “Rabid Animal.” They kept up the tempo through the sunset and all the way through their two-song encore, sending fans into their weekends with a little extra bounce in their step.
Collaboration Is So, So Sweet
Lake Street Dive didn’t just happen to choose Boston to record their breakout Youtube performance. No — the foursome met as students at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston and formed the band in 2004. In the early days, their influence was pretty local, but their talent soon attracted national attention. Lead vocalist Rachael Price, bassist Bridget Kearney, guitar and trumpeter Mike "McDuck" Olson, and drummer Mike Calabrese originally wanted to form a country band, but that concept was quickly abandoned for a more mid-century pop-inspired sound. It’s tough to put them in a genre-specific box, though — their songs have the fingerprints of jazz, soul, rock ‘n roll, and pop all over them.
This summer their tour schedule is exhausting, with dates from Florida to California to New England. And they’ll be sharing the stage with some of rock’s biggest names, like Daryl Hall and John Oates, Amos Lee, Ziggy Marley, Dispatch, and other heavy-hitters.
Supporting Local Communities
As they’ve risen to fame, Lake Street Dive has maintained their belief in supporting local communities. With good deeds such as playing at a food bank in northern Virginia and at a benefit for Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts also in Virginia, it’s clear that they want to see communities flourish alongside their own musical careers.