“It’s like, you collect all of these things, and then never do anything with them,” The Bird & The Bee’s Inara George says, scanning the framed mementos that quilt the walls of the seven-bedroom, 3,800-square-foot Los Feliz property she has owned for the past five years. “I thought it would be fun to put everything up.”
THE FAMILY KEYS: “This was my grandmother’s. It actually played by itself, but we took the guts out and made it back into a regular piano.”
There are cards from friends and collaborators like composer Van Dyke Parks and director Michel Gondry, press clips of the band (“We made it into The New Yorker!”) and the 1960s record cover her model mom appeared on. A hand-drawn cartoon shows the 5-year-old son and 3-year-old twins that George, 41, shares with director-husband Jake Kasdan (New Girl).
“I love to hear music,” says the California native and daughter of founding Little Feat member Lowell George. “But to really listen to a record takes so much concentration. When you have kids, it’s one more sound in your life, and I’d rather listen to them.”
TOP IT ALL OFF: “We wrote a song about David Lee Roth called ‘Diamond Dave.’ We wanted him to be in the music video, and he was like, ‘You can use my hat in it.’ And we did!”
Family life — the outdoor excursions to nearby Griffith Park’s Trail Cafe, the home-cooked Shabbat dinners in her recently renovated kitchen (“My favorite room of the house”) — put George’s music career on hold; the electro-pop indie band’s third album, Recreational Love (out July 17), has been five years in the making. “[Bandmate] Greg Kurstin and I would only get together once a week for a couple of hours, if that. In the time since, he’s had two kids, and I’ve had three,” she says. Though the duo will play shows for the new record, when it comes to this moment in time and this home, George admits, “I can see myself being here for a while.”
COLORFUL COMFORT: “I wore these hand-painted silk caftans in our ‘Will You Dance’ video. When it comes to personal style, comfort is everything to me.”
SIMPLY CHARMING: “It’s really old-fashioned,” says George of the bracelet handed down by her grandmother. “I believe each charm was given to her individually.”
DRESS REHEARSAL: “I wore [this] for the first record cycle,” says George. “I met this designer named Valerj Pobega, and she’s helped with costumes since we’ve been playing live.”
This story first appeared in the July 25 issue of Billboard magazine.