Little Racer gives all the shoe-gaze, dreamy, surf rock bands of Brooklyn a run for their money. I saw the guys perform recently at our mutually favorite venue Baby’s All Right and instantly fell in love with their alternative, beachy vibe. We sat down after the show and these guys are just as cool as their music would lead you to believe.
Elliot: I started playing music in a band in high school and went to Berklee where we met. The band officially started after that when we signed with Paper Cup.
Ish: I’m from Queens, New York… Hollis and Jamaica. With 50 cent and Run DMC, hip hop has influenced a lot of what I’ve done with my life. Actually thats not even true; A better way to say it is, I wish hip hop influenced more of my life.
Elliot: I’m from Wisconsin so you can kind of hear that beach lifestyle. It’s really laid back there and coming out here was a big switch. What Racer is about is mixing that high energy New York lifestyle with a more laid back earth centered view.
If you were on a desert island and could only listen to one band, who would it be?
Elliot: You’re gonna go pop music?
Ish: I’m not! I’m going to go with Ottis Redding!
Why is that?
Ish: Something about him, if you listen to an Ottis record at night or a Sunday morning, it just kills you. That’s the most emotion I’ve ever felt, that guy crushes me. If I’m alone on a desert island, that would make me feel at least some emotions.
Elliot: I was going to say something along the same lines but totally different, not a lot of people know this guy but Antonio Carlos Jobim. He’s a brazilian artists from the 60s who did bossanova and he’s done so many songs you would know. These are songs I could listen to the rest of my life! He’s so classy and so cool. Girl From Ipanema is his whole vibe. “Split For the Coast,” our song is totally Jobim.
What era of music would you go back to?
Both: Late 60s!
Elliot: Rock and roll was young babe! Everything was new and fresh. That’s when rock was happening.
Ish: Every cool new thing that happened in rock and roll happened right then. That’s such a dad rock thing to say out loud but I don’t even care. Nobody gave a fuck! They were all such weirdos, Lou Reed, Bowie.
Elliot: Everyone was on fire, it was the social message of the time! There was no social media, rock and roll was the message.
Ish: We totally agree on that, there are more than a few reasons we are in a band together.
Who would you dream of co-headlining a tour with?
Elliot: Can we sidebar for a second? Can we pick a huge name?
Ish: The band I dream of touring with is Spoon.
Elliot: You think spoon is big? I’m going with even bigger.
Ish: Spoon is a million times bigger than what were doing right now.
Elliot: If you’re gonna go big you gotta go big, I’m going to supplant Coldplay and undermine all their fans. Anyone who listens to Coldplay should buy three of our records. Not even hating, they appeal to such a wide audience there is a sector of their audience that would really love what we do. I’m coming for you Chris Martin!
Where does your band name come from?
Elliot: It’s a Beach Boys reference, kinda speaks to our vibe.
Ish: Back then, all we were listening to was the Beach Boys so it’s a huge reference for our band.
What is your favorite spot to play a show?
Ish: Our favorite city to play is Savannah, Georgia. It’s the TOWN. There are ghosts everywhere!
Elliot: Those ghosts love music.
Ish: We played a packed show at 4 pm and for the rest of the night people were coming up to us and complimenting us and it was so fun to be in a town that loved music.
Elliot: Not that people don’t love music here but everyone is so inundated with it. If we had to pick a New York venue, Baby’s Alright for sure. I love it. There’s no other venue that matches the charm.
Ish: The backdrop is insane too, it’s all old ashtrays from Pianos.
What was the weirdest gig you’ve ever played?
Ish: There were some weird ones in London.
Elliot: The weirdest one we ever played was a billiards and darts place in Georgia.
Ish: It’s important that you know it was darts night.
Elliot: Lets just say the dart stage was right in front of the musical stage so there was a large amount of people throwing things at our faces.
Ish: And directly 90 degrees from the stage was a dart throwing line so no one was facing us. Everyone was there for the darts.
Elliot: They were all wearing like jingo jeans from 1999 so they had seen some shit and indie rock was not what they were about. Those guys were like going to go out build a house or something at like 5 in the morning so no hate- we definitely appreciate their working lifestyle.
Little Racer is currently working on a full length LP and have a September tour planned. They are not yet sure where they are going but they “just want to get out there”. They have several spotify releases, and you should definitely listen to their tracks “Jack Knife” and “Dancing” which are personal favorites of the Atypical Beasts.
Written by Alessandra Licul