On Monday afternoon, a makeshift stage was set up between the volleyball courts on the sand off of Ocean Drive on South Beach, between Eighth and Ninth. Complimentary Dunkin' Donuts iced coffee shots were handed out to those lucky souls who weren't wedged into a cubicle, and at 2:45 p.m. and 4 p.m., the Mowgli’s played two identical 15-minute sets of pop rock that were as sunny as the 92-degree summer day.
This pop-up show was the second of five sponsored by Dunkin' Donuts and Spotify meant to showcase emerging artists. Last week in Philadelphia, Marian Hill performed, and the pop-up series has future dates in Chicago, New York, and Boston about to be announced.
But yesterday was Miami's turn to grab some free caffeine and music. There were a few bikini-wearing teenagers on summer vacation who made the drive out to the beach to sing along, but the sparse crowd present on a weekday afternoon showed Miami might not be as underemployed as previously reported.
But those who did come out cheered on the Los Angeles-based sextet as they ran through a four-song set comprised of “Say It, Just Say It,” “Bad Dream,” “San Francisco,” and “I’m Good.” Singer Katie Earl, barefoot and clad in a black hat and flowered dress, banged her tambourine while she harmonized with guitarist Josh Hogan. It was short and energizing, the musical equivalent of a free shot of iced coffee.
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As Sweat Records owner Lolo Reskin DJ'ed between sets, the Mowgli’s rewarded their fans by having their pictures taken with anyone who brought a camera phone. Much of the audience, though, were sunburnt tourists who just happened to stumble upon a random daytime concert. They struggled to find a free hand to grab an iced coffee while they double-fisted Corona.
The Mowgli’s did not seem panicked by the informal nature of the show or the audience and treated it as a hot, sticky, fun day at the beach, with Earl thanking everyone before and after each set “for coming to our beach party.”