Robin Pecknold

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Robin Pecknold
Robin Pecknold (2011).jpg
Pecknold performing with Fleet Foxes at Atlantico Live in Rome, Italy in 2011
Background information
Birth name Robin Noel Pecknold
Also known as Robin Noel Vaas, White Antelope
Born (1986-03-30) March 30, 1986 (age 30)
Origin Kirkland, Washington
Genres Indie folk, baroque pop, folk rock
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter
Instruments Vocals, guitar, mandolin, keyboards
Years active Early 2000s–present
Labels Sub Pop (US)
Bella Union (UK)
Associated acts Fleet Foxes, Dolour

Robin Noel Pecknold (born March 30, 1986) is an American singer, songwriter and guitarist. He is best known as the principal songwriter for the indie folk band Fleet Foxes,[1] with whom he has recorded two studio albums.


Robin Pecknold was born in Seattle in 1986. He is said to have written his first song at the age of 14. The song is called "Sarah Jane" and tells the story of a runaway who turns to prostitution.[2][3] Pecknold released the song along with six others as a demo CD called St. Vincent Street around his hometown as Robin Noel Vaas. Later, the music of Bob Dylan would become Pecknold's primary influence.

In 2005, Pecknold toured as a bassist with Seattle's Dolour. Pecknold formed Fleet Foxes in 2006 with Skyler Skjelset. He knew Skjelset from school, where they already played original music together.[4] He reportedly ran up considerable debt setting up the band.[1]

Besides his work with Fleet Foxes, Pecknold goes under the moniker White Antelope for solo output. He also started a band with sister Aja, called Rainbow Fang, and has worked with Past Lives' Morgan Henderson on "film score-type music".[5]

In January 2014, Robin Pecknold toured as part of the Gene Clark No Other band, performing Gene Clark's album No Other in full with other singers such as Iain Matthews

In January 2015, Pecknold's latest project was an off-Broadway play, entitled "Wyoming" for which he wrote the score.[6]


Pecknold plays a Martin D-18 six-string guitar for most Fleet Foxes work. He also uses a Martin D12-35 12 string and a Gibson CF-100 6 String. Both of these guitars date back to the 1960s.[7] He has also been known to use a recent Epiphone Casino electric guitar, and a Fylde Oberon acoustic guitar.

Personal life[edit]

He has an older brother, Sean, and an older sister, Aja. His brother is a director and the founder of Sean has directed five music videos for Fleet Foxes. His grandfather, Bob Valaas, is Norwegian. Pecknold comes from a musical background; his father, Greg Pecknold,[8] played in the Seattle-based soul band The Fathoms in the 1960s and his elder sister, Aja, was a rock critic for magazine Seattle Weekly and is the band's manager.[9]

He has said he experiences social anxiety and in 2008 said: "I don't really hang out with anyone. I'll hang out with my band, because I love them, but I don't have any friends aside from that."[10]

In 2009, he stated that he discovered virtually all of the music he listened to by using online file-sharing program Napster. He also spoke of his support for online file-sharing and the positive effect he believes it to have on music, both as an art form and as an industry.[11][12]

In November 2013 Fleet Foxes-member Morgan Henderson mentioned that Pecknold had relocated to New York City where he is enrolled as a student at the Columbia University School of General Studies.[13][14]


Pecknold in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 2009

With Fleet Foxes[edit]

As White Antelope[edit]

  • False Knight on the Road (2009)[15]

As Robin Pecknold[edit]

  • Three Songs (2011)
  • Music for the movie "Birth Story: Ina May Gaskin & the Farm Midwives" (2013)