It’s extremely likely you’ll fall headfirst for Little Bird, mere moments after hearing the band’s 2018 release Familiar. The heady mix of ambient soul, R&B, and trippy jazz puts them in the kindred spirit category to everyone from D’Angelo and Erykah Badu to Australian jam band Hiatus Kaiyote. And their unique sound is showcased by musicianship of the highest order.
Founded in Annapolis by vocalist/guitarist Jay Hurtt and guitarist James Rubush, Little Bird gained three additional members when the two friends moved to South Carolina to, as Hurtt puts it, “pursue higher education.”
The current lineup also includes Noah Jones on keyboards, Ben Mossman on bass, and Oleg Terentiev on drums. Occasionally Shelby McDaniel provides additional vocals, though she’s not always on tour with the group.
In the coming year, Little Bird plans to market itself through comedic means. “We’re always writing little comedy skits in the [touring] car,” says the 24-year-old Hurtt, noting that 2019 will see a collection of SNL-inspired skits uploaded to the band’s Instagram account. Meanwhile, they’re hard at work on a sophomore album, set for a spring release, with a single, “Ghost of the Yost,” dropping in February.
On Saturday, January 5, the band will play an intimate set at the 180-seat Soundry, which the Clyde’s Restaurant Group recently opened in Columbia as a sibling to the local chain’s crown jewel, Hamilton Live.
Hurtt is refreshingly frank about what he’d like the audience to get out of the evening. “We’re working to get everybody laid,” he laughs. “Everybody should come and everybody should have a good time and everybody should get laid at the end of the night.”
Little Bird performs Saturday, Jan. 5, at The Soundry, 10221 Wincopin Circle, Columbia. Novo opens the evening. Doors at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 to $15. Call 443-283-1200 or visit thesoundry.com. Following Little Bird on Instagram at @thisislittlebird.