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The first impression we got after hanging out with MisterWives — the NY-based indie pop band consisting of lead singer Mandy Lee, percussionist Etienne Bowler, bass guitarist William Hehir, guitarist Marc Campbell and multi-instrumentalist Jesse Blum — and watching their interaction was, “What a fun bunch and how can we get in on this action?”
After chatting with them, it’s clear that the tight-knit group, which performed for the first time at Lollapalooza on Friday, is more than a band.
“It’s more of a family and less of a band. We literally spend every waking moment together. We have the most fun in the world,” Hehir, in a pineapple print tee, told Pret-a-Reporter as we all hung out on a picnic table the day after their performance.
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That said, it’s no wonder they named their first studio album, Our Own House (released Feb. 24, 2015 via Photo Finish Records), as a reflection of how they interpret their friendship.
“As a band, I feel like we’ve created this little world of ours we feel strongly about doing it the way we’re doing it, and I also wrote the album in the tree house that Etienne built,” said Lee, donned in an polka-dot collared shirt and bright green skirt. “It’s kind of a play on that. That’s where I got the inspiration for being in that house. It really inspired me. It’s figurative and literal. It just sums up everything about our friendship and band, the music we create.”
Lollapalooza has always been the one music festival they’ve wanted to be part of, describing it as “the coolest festival ever” and “so, so special compared to other places.” And now that it’s happened (“a pinch me moment,” described Lee), the colorful crew is beyond stoked about crossing that dream from their bucket list.
“It was f–king out of this world. It was an indescribable — not religious — but religious experience,” Lee said of being on stage. Added Bowler: “It was absolutely amazing.”
Simply put, Hehir said: “It was the best day ever.”
Not only does the band have fun onstage (and off), they’re not afraid to go bold with their fashion choices either — whether it’s an outfit printed with cats in space or doing “tea time on fleek” in tulle gowns.
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When asked where they find fashion inspiration, Hehir answered without skipping a beat, “Mandy Lee, definitely.”
To which Lee responded, “Will just wears my clothes — that’s what he means. It’s like we share the same wardrobe. Half the time Will is always either wearing my pants or shirt or crop top.” In his defense, Hehir explained that he used to work in an office where he was required to wear a suit and tie, so now he’ll “go into stores and ask, ‘What’s the weirdest thing you have here?'”
“I just think that music is fun, and we like to have fun so we’re usually wearing things that don’t necessarily match or go together,” Lee continued.
Added Bowler: “I think we always just look like a band. Like if you picked us out if we were scattered around, you’d be like, ‘This guy must be in that band.'”
Read more Lollapalooza: This Is How James Bay Decided on His Signature Look
Seeing how well they all get along, we couldn’t help but wonder — do they ever fight?
“Well, we play poker so sometimes…,” said Hehir, causing the entire group to speak amongst each other with Bowler chiming in: “When I win poker all the time, sometimes the guys get upset.” Regardless of who wins or lose, one thing’s for sure — no one can call bluff on their friendship.
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