Lake Street Dive

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Lake Street Dive
Origin Boston, MA
Genres Southern rock, indie pop, blue-eyed soul, jazz, folk rock
Years active May 2004 - present
Labels Signature Sounds
Members Rachael Price
Mike "McDuck" Olson
Bridget Kearney
Mike Calabrese

Lake Street Dive is an indie pop band that was founded in 2004 in Boston, Massachusetts. The band consists of Rachael Price (lead vocals), Mike "McDuck" Olson (trumpet, guitar), Bridget Kearney (upright bass), and Mike Calabrese (drums). They met while attending the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. The band was named after a street with many dive bars in Olson's hometown of Minneapolis, Minnesota. The band tours in both North America and Europe from their base in Brooklyn.[citation needed]

Early History[edit]

"The initial idea (2004) was for the band to create a 'free country band' — as in country music, played free. This concept was quickly abandoned in favor of something that actually sounded good. But its roots remain". "[citation needed]

The band recorded a song written by Bridget Kearney which was submitted to the John Lennon Songwriting Contest. As a result, Kearney won the Jazz category in 2005.[1] With the cash and 1000 CDs award, Lake Street Dive recorded their debut CD in 2006, in this episode.... They did another self release called Promises, Promises and a video filmed live at the Lizard Lounge in 2010.

In the early years, Lake Street Dive juggled their commitments and tours with other bands. Between their first brief performance in a Des Moines Iowa rock club in 2007 and their May 2011 appearance at The Berkeley Cafe in Raleigh North Carolina, they performed around 100 times in 24 states.[citation needed] In September and October of 2011 they traveled to 13 states and played in 22 venues.[citation needed]

Signature Sound Era[edit]

Lake Street Dive signed with Signature Sounds Recordings. They released Lake Street Dive in November 2010.

By 2012 the four-piece band decided to make a strong commitment as a group and to tour. Bridget Kearney left her other band to concentrate on Lake Street Dive.[2] They went into the studio[3] to record an album and some singles in November 2012. Lead singer Rachael Price was still under contract with another label, Claire Vision. This prevented them from releasing the album recorded in the Fall of 2012 featuring Price. In late 2013 an agreement was reached and Lake Street Dive announced the release of their album Bad Self Portraits in February 2014.[4]

In 2013 and 2014 they played over 300 gigs in more than 175 different cities, spread between 43 states and 8 countries.[5] Their Bad Self Portraits tour sold out in 40 venues at the start of 2014.[6] "We love all the same songs...We sing along in the car" is the opening line from the only song they co-wrote together and tells something of their life on tour.

They have come to the attention to many via their Jackson 5 YouTube cover of "I Want You Back" gathered around a single microphone on a Brighton, Massachusetts street corner. Their performance at the 2013 FreshGrass Festival[7] was filmed and directed by noted Brooklyn audio/visual collective Mason Jar Music. In December 2013, T Bone Burnett asked them to perform on the Another Day, Another Time show at The Town Hall (New York City) featuring music from and inspired by the Coen brothers film Inside Llewyn Davis. Lake Street Dive has appeared in on many television shows: The Colbert Report,[8] The Late Show with David Letterman,[9] Conan , and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.[10] The band have uploaded numerous videos, including their annual, humorous Halloween covers.[citation needed]

The band is touring again in 2015. After ending the year with 3 nights at The Sinclair in Cambridge, Massachusetts, they took 2 months off. In late February they will start touring in Australia and New Zealand.[11]


All the band members were singing and/or playing musical instruments by the time they were in 3rd grade. Most had some classical music training growing up and their parents were musicians. Each member in their own way had migrated to jazz when they met. However, band says they were influenced by the music their parents were playing at home. This ranged from classic Jazz to '60s Soul to Rock and Roll.[citation needed]

All profess to love the entire Beatles discography. Kearney wrote "Hello? Goodbye!" and the band plays "Don't Make Me Hold Your Hand", both seem to be whimsical references to Beatles tunes. Olsen says he was inspired by McCartney's love/vice lyrical concept in "Got to Get You Into My Life" when he wrote "You Go Down Smooth".

Their traditional Halloween specials and covers on the EP release Fun Machine[12] give an idea of the genres that influence them. These range from songs by The Mamas and the Papas,[13] ABBA, The Drifters, Fleetwood Mac, Hall & Oates, Jackson 5 and Paul McCartney.

The band have been influenced by classic pop and swing era jazz. "We want it to sound like the Beatles and Motown had a party together," says drummer Mike Calabrese.[14] Critics describe their music as "Sounds Like: Llewyn Davis's favorite pop group; Motown meets the Brill Building in jazzy, soulful, woulda-been Sixties chart toppers."[15]

With their recent rise in popularity, their performances are influenced by the audience in front of them. "We are translating [crowd energy] on stage, trying figure out what kind of energy to put out to the crowds. For the first time we feel we can mould the energy of a room." [16]


See external links below for video releases.


Rachael Price - lead singer, ukulele/guitar
Mike Olson - trumpet/guitar, vocals
Bridget Kearney - standup bass, vocals
Mike Calabrese - drums,vocals


External links[edit]