I met them in the lobby of the Bowery Hotel. Danielle and I elbow-bumped instead of shaking hands—laughing as we did it, as if we were only pantomiming our health anxieties—and the band and I tried to sit apart yet together on adjoining red velvet couches, although six feet had not yet become the baseline of social distancing. Nobody wore a mask, but the lobby was almost empty, eerie. Everything would change within days. Their father, Moti, was a professional soccer player in Israel before emigrating, in , to California, where he met their mother, Donna; the two went into real estate together. Talk of Jewish food—the reliability of the Reuben, the insuperable grossness of gefilte fish—transitioned perhaps inevitably to how our bat mitzvahs reflected our respective personalities. Danielle chose not to have a celebration. The HAIM project has always been in part a mood and a magnetic aesthetic, captured in their trademark walk—a row of sisters in high-waisted jeans, clomping down the sunbaked streets of Los Angeles, inseparable and in sync. They had lifetime memberships to a club that no one else could join, but we could pay a cover charge to hear the music. Much of the record was written in a cramped, windowless studio in Burbank in early
The police came and we all had to run away; we were like gazelles — they never caught us. Now, after two albums and the greatest honour of all — a Saturday Night Live sketch parodying them, starring Tina Fey and Nicki Minaj — they have become one of the most quintessential LA bands of their generation. Recently, they have formed a creative partnership with Paul Thomas Anderson who, like Haim, grew up in the San Fernando Valley, an area of LA often sniffed at by trendier residents on the other side of the Hollywood hills. He directed their last four music videos, including new single Summer Girl, which sees the sisters removing layers of outerwear at various Valley locations. That early musical proficiency and confidence around older wizened rockers quickly defined Haim as artists. Once we get into it, it becomes the clear that their sunny disposition has disguised a difficult period for the band.
It's five weeks into lockdown, and the youngest member of LA rock trio Haim is pining for the rest of her family. I just want to hug my mom and my dad. That's all I want to do. Go to a dance party and just go wild, let loose. Their mother, Donna, a teacher-turned-estate agent, taught them guitar; while their father, Mordechai, a former professional footballer in his native Israel, started them on drums. Together with middle sister Danielle, the girls spent their childhood in a family cover band, Rockinhaim, performing at delis, street fairs and charity gigs around California's San Fernando Valley. Even though they ditched their parents to "go solo" in , the sisters continued to write and rehearse in the family living room, fitting early gigs around Este's degree in ethnomusicology and Danielle's side-hustle as a guitarist for Jenny Lewis and Julian Casablancas. It took the band several years to find their own sound four early EPs will "never be heard" by the public, says Alana but, eventually, they worked out how to fuse their sisterly harmonies with the warmth of 70s soft rock and their passion for Britney and the Spice Girls. In , months after releasing their debut single, Forever, the band topped the BBC's Sound of list, and went on to top the charts with their first album, Days Are Gone. The title came to Danielle in a dream.
The band consists of three sisters: Este Haim bass guitar and vocals , Danielle Haim lead vocals, guitar, and drums , and Alana Haim guitars, keyboards, and vocals. In addition to their primary instruments, each member is also proficient in several others. The group's pop sound on their studio work stands in contrast to the more rock-based music of their live shows. The sisters grew up in a musical family, and began playing instruments from an early age in the cover band Rockinhaim, fronted by their parents, Moti and Donna. The two elder sisters, Este and Danielle, began performing with the pop group Valli Girls in They released a few songs on soundtrack and compilation albums under that name, but left the group shortly after an appearance at the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards. After Danielle became a successful touring guitarist, first with Jenny Lewis and later with Julian Casablancas , Haim reformed as a full-time operation in The group's first release, Forever an EP released as a limited-time download , combined with positive reception at the South by Southwest festival, led to a deal with Polydor Records and a management deal with Jay-Z 's Roc Nation group in mid