“I don’t want to be dark cabaret; I don’t want to be gypsy,” says Carrie Gillespie, the pianist and singer for Street of Little Girls. “I just want to be a rock band. We’re very normal people.”
Often drawing comparisons to dark cabaret duo the Dresden Dolls, Gillespie says, “I actually never heard of them until people started telling us we sounded similar. We’re more into ’90s Chicago and New York music. Swans were a pretty big influence. The Paper Chase. Shellac. Q and Not U. Stuff like that. We have some darker musical influences, but it’s more like Nick Cave and Tom Waits.”
Gillespie and fiancé Scott Feller (bass) have gone through three line-up changes since the inception of the band in 2008. “[Original guitarist] Adolf is still in the band,” Feller explains during happy hour at Live Wire. “He’s just in a different country.” Adolf is teaching English in South Korea this year.
“Carrie and I have known each other since we were 16 and have been playing music together ever since,” says Feller. The group has since performed with Scout Niblett, the Legendary Pink Dots, Black Heart Procession, and the Paper Chase.
Their name derives from a line in the Situationist International Anthology, a collection of texts from an international group of revolutionaries founded in the late ’50s and influenced by Marxism, Dadaism, and Surrealism.
“We’re inspired by the spontaneity and playfulness of it,” says Gillespie, who started playing the piano at six years old.
“I want it to be a big rock show,” she laughs regarding their wedding next year. “I’m going to assign my friends several covers to play,” Feller adds, “because I can’t actually get Jonathan Richman [of the Modern Lovers] to play.”
“My lyrics usually start as a rant about people I know,” Gillespie says when asked about her song titled “Why I’m Not a Buddhist,” “but it’s not necessarily about them. It’s more just something I see people representing.”