Little Beard, a local band that's been hanging around the Miami scene since late 2008, is still shocked that anyone cares. So when New Times reached out for an interview, the response was, "Um, well." Surely, though, it was a sign of surprise and nothing else. After all, the young indie crew is just getting used to the attention.
In general, Little Beard seems comfortable being called 2011's Best Band You've Never Heard Of. Yet the outfit's lo-fi sound is notably label-worthy. Together, Michael Lee (guitar and vocals), Sarah Attias (vocals and keyboard), Edwin Beauchamp (bass), and Mario Fabregas (drums) pump out an adorably disheveled but incredibly polished sound.
If you want to experience the infectious cuteness, head to Grand Central this Friday, when Little Beard will perform alongside Plains and North & South. To hold you over until then, the band spoke with us about Sonic Youth, growing facial hair, and taking life too seriously.
New Times: How did Little Beard come together? Are you all from Miami?
Little Beard: We are Miami natives that had all seen one another out in bars and at shows but never really talked. Through our mutual friends, we eventually got to know one another. We confessed that none of us really liked one another because we seemed like snobs. That's only half true.
Where did the name come from?
The name came from an ex-girlfriend of Michael's. He's part Asian, so he can't really grow a full beard. A lot of people think we're a folk band. I think we'll try folk next.
At a Villa 221 show in June, you covered Sonic Youth, and Edwin wore a Sonic Youth shirt. Big fans? Who are your biggest influences?
Yes, we are big Sonic Youth fans! The bands we are influenced by are too many to list. But we are influenced by mostly shoegaze, indie pop, country, '60s girl groups, surf rock, postpunk, and hardcore punk music.
How would you describe your sound? And does living in Miami play any role in your songwriting?
Our sound is hard to put in words. We are all over the place in terms of our influences. Miami, however, does play a huge role in our songwriting, as it influences us to write as much as we can, so that when we eventually tour, we'll be able to represent our city.
You were named New Times' Best Band You've Never Heard Of. Think you live up to the title?
We're so unconventional and horrible at promoting our shows. It took us almost three years to release music. So the fact that you're interviewing us is mind-boggling.
Your songs have ultracute titles like "Summer Days in Unicorn Cardigans." Is that how you would describe everyday life?
Of course. Life is too short to be taken too seriously. Happier people tend to live longer.
Little Beard's logo is a little cat. Is it modeled after someone's real-life kitten? Who designed it?
Not at all. We were thinking of a simple graphic that represents both the edgy and cute elements of our sound for our first release. Edwin designed it.
What's the largest show you've headlined?
Probably Sarah's birthday party at Upper Eastside Garden. She dressed up as a ballerina.
What's next for Little Beard?
We're recording a new single that'll be out in a few weeks. We've put a lot of effort and love into it, so we're [eagerly] awaiting people's reactions. We've got the Grand Central show coming up with Plains and North & South. Come out — you'll have fun. It's free and there's cheap drinks. Promise.