HomeMusicFeatures & ListsArtist of the Week: HAIM

Artist of the Week: HAIM

2013Haim_Press4_240913The Beginning
The Haim sisters, Este, Danielle and Alana, grew up in San Fernando Valley singing lyrics to their parents’ classic rock vinyl. While they were young, the Haims had a Partridge Family vibe to them, creating their own family band called Rockinhaim to play at local charity fairs. Their father Mordechai was the group’s beat keeper and their mother Donna was on guitar.

As they got older, the idea of playing in a band with their folks became less appealing, Danielle and Este started The Valli Girls, an all girl pop group inspired by Pat Benetar, Blondie, and Gwen Stefani. In 2005 they had a notable appearance on the soundtrack of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants with their song “Always There In You”. It was in 2006 that the three sisters wanted to start incorporating contemporary R&B into their pop tunes, and that’s when HAIM was born. For 5 years they had to grind it out playing local venues but they didn’t see a ton of progress as each sister had other commitments on the go.

haim 2Este was studying at UCLA and graduated in 2010 with a degree in Ethnomusicology. Once high school was finished, Danielle was asked to play drums for the opener on a Jenny Lewis tour, leading Lewis to recruit her to play guitar on a future tour. Julian Casablancas was in attendance at one of those Jenny Lewis shows, and he too asked Danielle to be a part of his upcoming solo tour. It was after Este graduated and Danielle got a serious taste of touring that they wanted to focus solely on HAIM. Their youngest sister Alana spent a year in college before dropping out to get more involved with their band. 

After supporting artists like Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, The Henry Clay People, and Kesha, they released their three song EP, Forever. It was made available on February 10th, 2012 as a free download on their website. The EP garnered the trio a lot of attention from the public and labels. After a successful gig at South by Southwest in March of the same year, they signed a deal with Polydor Records in the UK. HAIM then went back into the studio to write around the three songs they had, and created a full length record. Their debut album, Days are Gone, was released on September 27th, 2013. Make sure to catch them this Thursday at Kool Haus!

Did You Know?

  • Each Haim sister can play multiple instruments: 

Alana plays keys, guitar and percussion, 

Este plays guitar and bass, and 

Danielle plays drums and guitar.
  • Este got her Ethnomusicology degree in only 2 years instead of the usual 5.
  • Danielle was a part of Cee-Lo Green’s backing band, Scarlet Fever.
  • HAIM is a part of Kid Cudi’s song “Red Eye”, and Danielle is featured on Childish Gambino’s mix tape, Royalty.

Forever EP (2012)
Days Are Gone (2013)


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