There’s nothing quite like a good country murder ballad, especially if it’s one with a unique spin on the classic construct. And Little Bandit’s “Platform Shoes,” about a working girl (of the Pretty Woman variety) who meets her untimely end, keeps this tradition alive with singer Alex Caress’ dynamic, silky vocals and heavy, honky-tonk-goes-gospel twang. Watch the video of the song from Little Bandit’s self-titled debut EP above, starring Margo Price, Coco Hames, Tristen and another very special cameo.
“‘Platform Shoes’ was the first song we recorded for this album,” Caress tells Rolling Stone Country about the song that accomplishes what Little Bandit does best: blend traditionalism at their will, allowing plenty of winking humor and heartache to seep through in a soulful howl. “We had a chance to record a track at RCA studio B, and this is the one we chose. We made a video for it as soon as we recorded it, before the album had even been made. This seemed like a great chance to re-release this gem of a video featuring so many of our buds, in the context of [Little Bandit’s debut LP] Breakfast Alone. I also love that Ben played the bartender in the video. That’s how so many of us remember him best. Behind the bar with a smirk.”
The Ben that Caress is referring to is Ben Eyestone, a beloved member of the Nashville musical community and talented drummer, who died last month at the age of 28, just before he was preparing to undergo treatment for colon cancer. When not behind the bar at East Nashville’s the 5 Spot, Eyestone played with Little Bandit, toured with Nikki Lane and kept time for his own band, the Lonely H. That’s him in the video pouring a drink for Price, who recently reunited with her old rock & roll outfit Buffalo Clover at a tribute show for Eyestone alongside Lane, Hugh Masterson, Allen Thompson, Derek Hoke, members of the Lonely H and many others. Eyestone’s friends set up a GoFundMe page just a few days before his death; the aim was to raise money for his treatment, though funds ultimately went to help his family with funeral expenses. Anything remaining will go to the Ben Eyestone Memorial Fund, organized to help cover the medical bills of fellow musicians.
One of Rolling Stone Country‘s Artists You Need to Know, Little Bandit’s Breakfast Alone was released in February via YK Records.