Rebekah Pennington and Rebecca Wilson are a good argument for not skipping math class. They met in high school and formed a fast friendship, which led them to professional musicianship with the band the Arcadian Kicks. When the Kicks broke up, Rebekah and Rebecca formed EKKAH (get it?). Now they’re about to release their first EP, Last Chance to Dance (out November 24 on One Year Recordings/Honeymoon). What does it sound like, you ask? Listen for yourself—we’ve got an exclusive stream of the whole dang thing right here:
Rebekah Pennington took a break from watching some fireworks (casual!) to talk to me on the phone, where she talked about the importance of female friendship and told me the duo’s mantra: positive mental attitude (PMA). If you desire additional EKKAH: Follow ’em on Facebook or listen to EVEN MORE of their work on SoundCloud.
ANNE: Congratulations on the new EP!
REBEKAH PENNINGTON: Aw, thank you! We’ve really enjoyed putting it together.
You met in school, right?
Yeah, when we were about 15. We met in math class, [then] we did a music competition at school. I asked Bex to sing with me because I liked her voice—it was incredible.
What song did you perform in that first the show?
We performed a cover: “Dancing in the Moonlight” by Thin Lizzy. I played the saxophone and slid across the stage on my knees!
That’s amazing! How long was it before you knew you guys realized you could really work together this way?
Well, we were in the Arcadian Kicks for about five years. When the band broke up, we both stood in my kitchen and cried. And she said, “I don’t want to give up,” and I said, “I don’t want to give up.” I think that was the point we both realized we were always going to be there for each other and that this is what we want to do. So we were like, “We’re going to do it, just the two of us. We’re going to make it happen.”
I saw your video for “Last Chance to Dance,” and I love that it’s about you two just, like, having fun. What do you guys like to do together, aside from creating music?
We had a weekend off a few weeks ago, and all of our spare time we have off the band we spend together anyway, so we climbed Snowdon, which is this huge mountain in Wales. We drove out there for the day and it took us about seven hours [to climb it]. That was really fun. We like to get outdoors and do things that aren’t really music-related.
I like it when creative teams are best friends in real life. You really get to put the feeling of, “I want my friends to do well,” into practice.
Yeah! I think people are supporting [one another] more, and I think everyone kind of wants everyone to do well. We believe in being nice. We have this saying—”PMA.” It means “positive mental attitude.”
I like that!
We always say it to each other! When times are hard, we’ll be like, “PMA!”—have a positive outlook. Me and Rebecca really focus on being friendly and being fun and, like, trusting that we’ve got each other’s backs—we don’t have to worry. That’s really important to us.
There really is nothing like female friendship.
No, you can’t beat it. We really hope that people who listen to our music know that’s what we’re about, that they have fun when they listen to it, and that they value the people they have in their lives, too—we don’t take anything for granted, so we hope that comes across, too. ♦