Catching Up With Kimmy Drake From Beach Day

Delicate vocals, vintage surf-garage rhythms, and tight production define the music of South Florida's Beach Day, sweeping up listeners and floating them down a lazy summer afternoon with no worries. 

Singer/guitarist Kimmy Drake and drummer Skyler Black met in Hollywood — Hollyweird, as they call it — back in 2011. Since then, they have released a couple of albums and a variety of singles and have played all over the country. Ahead of their show Friday opening for Ra Ra Riot with fellow locals Jacuzzi Boys at Revolution Live, we had the chance to pick Kimmy’s mind and get to know a little more about Beach Day’s sound, motivation, and plans. 

"I'd love to write a soundtrack for an indie film like Magnolia. That Aimee Mann soundtrack is awesome."

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New Times: Beach Day was born when you and Skyler met at a local show and bonded over '60s music. What were those first rehearsals like, and what was the first track you guys made together?
Kimmy Drake: It was crazy. We wrote like the first five songs in our first rehearsal. It was like a burst of creativity. We were in North Carolina rehearsing for another band we used to be in. When we were through with the other band's rehearsal, we always stayed behind to play more alone. The very first song we wrote was "Beach Day." We named the band after that song. We had the sweetest space here in Hollywood, though! It was all decorated with tikis and lights, and we would rehearse at like 2 to 3 a.m. It was the best.

You say your music isn't "retro, it’s classic.” How do you combine the vintage elements of garage and girl-group vocals with new rhythms to keep your sound fresh?
Girl groups, surf music, and garage music are all classic American styles. They really couldn't have happened anywhere else. We have such a diverse, amazing music history here. I think we keep it fresh by not trying so hard. We just love to play!
Even though you started out local and independent, you've since been signed to two labels, Kanine Records (U.S.) and Fastcut Records (Japan). On top of that, your music has reached thousands of ears around the world. What has been your biggest challenge so far?
Everything's a challenge! But you've gotta get through the challenges. That's how you succeed. Just staying focused and setting small goals — making them happen. Then moving on to the next. I think intention is really important. Meditation, intentions, and action. That's how I get through anything in life. Navigating the music business is insane. It's like a playground. But you just have to rise above it and stay on your own path.

Listening to your songs summons images of classic films like Cry Baby or Johnny Suede. If you could choose to write the music for any film, what would the plot be like? 
I love those movies!!! I'd love to write a soundtrack for a movie like Endless Summer, where a bunch of dudes are just going from one surf spot to the next around the world. I've had the opportunity to write songs for TV shows and movies. I always find that I can write from a completely different place, and it opens up new viewpoints. I love that challenge. I'd love to write a soundtrack for an indie film like Magnolia. That Aimee Mann soundtrack is awesome.

It's been a while since your last release, Native Echoes. What's next?
We have five new songs recorded, and we'll be looking for a new avenue to release them in the next few months. Meanwhile, I've released one new track under a solo thing I'm doing called Pale Moths. Just a mellow thing. No biggie.

Beach Day
Opening for Ra Ra Riot with Jacuzzi Boys. 8 p.m. Friday, April 29, at Revolution Live, 100 SW Third Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $21 to $24 plus fees via
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