If you go
What: He’s My Brother She’s My Sister
When: 9 p.m. Friday
Where: Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St. Boulder, 303-443-3399
The roots could be traced back to New York City, where tap dancing drummer Lauren Brown met singer and percussionist Rachel Kolar. In the early days, once the whole band came together, Brown just tap danced with them. But when the drummer left, she start to learn, and blend both talents.
He’s My Brother She’s My Sister was solidifying into its current shape — with the help of a California dive bar and venue called Pappy & Harriet’s in the brazen, rocky landscape of Joshua Tree, Calif.
“It’s interesting, it’s like the desert has become it’s own music scene,” Brown said. “I think people equate it to a very specific image or sound now, and I think that’s grown out of the Joshua Tree scene in California, at least for us.”
The place is a favorite of the Black Angels and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and He’s My Brother She’s My Sister lean a little toward the Edward Sharpe side of things. Their kind of folk rock is something less hippie and more poppy and urban, though. There’s a vibe of the New York City roots.
Eccentricity oozes from the band’s live show. It goes well beyond the quirky wardrobes — bright silks meet flannels and suspenders for a blend of gypsy, folk and hipster — and much of it comes from Brown’s simultaneous drumming and tap dancing.
“I’d never played the drums. After [the last drummer] left, because the band is so awesome they said, ‘Why don’t you try to do them both together?” Brown said. “I just worked my butt off trying to learn the drums, but also trying to learn them in a way that they work together. It’s full-body percussive. And every tour now I just work on it. Nobody else really does this, and it’s a blessing and a curse. It’s a curse because I have nobody to give me tips about it because it’s so different.”
He’s My Brother She’s My Sister’s October 2012 release, Nobody Dances In This Town, has had them touring steadily for most of this year, including a UK tour after the album’s release there this summer. The current leg of touring brings them through Colorado for five shows, starting with the Fox Theatre on Aug. 30, then Tour De Fat in Fort Collins on Aug. 31, Aspen on Sept. 4, Telluride on Sept. 5, and the Tour De Fat in Denver on Sept. 7.
They’ll have a few days off to explore Colorado — they booked a “really cool house” on Airbnb — and the rest should be nice for Brown and her tapping toes.
“The thing I’m just grappling with is trying to stay on the whole set. I never want my energy to go down by the end,” she said. “It’s a little tiring, but I think it’s like going to the gym. I’m always so tired before I go to the gym and after I feel really energized.”
“In a nutshell, as a professional performer, I’m just excited to have a job. It’s really great and the songs happen to be really fun.”
Contact Ashley Dean at 303-473-1109 or firstname.lastname@example.org