PAGING UP

In late 2012, musicians Robin Rütenberg and Richard Colado (RickoLus, Julius Airwaves) met at a house show in Arlington. Over the next few months, the two singer-songwriters got together periodically to bounce ideas off one another. Eventually, they started writing songs together.

“We didn’t form as a band for a while,” says Rütenberg of those early stages. “We finally gave the project a name in early 2013.”

The Little Books is a Northeast Florida indie pop duo blending soulful vocals, with Rütenberg on keys, guitar, flute and percussion and Colado on guitar, percussion, harmonica, and melodica.

Their MAGNIFI profile describes The Little Books as “garage folk indie island goth music … their voices take turns as the lead and give the songs a dynamic quality that only a male and female vocal together can produce.”

“All of our shows are super-high energy,” Rütenberg says. “We’re only two people, but we’re filling out the entire sound of a band. It’s kind of like watching an octopus play drums, guitar and banging on cymbals all at once.”

In June 2014, The Little Books released their debut full-length, Bridges And Empires, an eight-song album recorded at The Green Shed, a studio Colado set up in a shed in his parents’ back yard in Jacksonville Beach.

“It was basically birthed from our early hangout sessions,” Rütenberg explains of the record. “Writing songs, lyrics, especially, can be a very vulnerable thing when you’re doing it with someone else. Instead of recording like we were making an album, we were just capturing the songs and it ended up being a pretty seamless process.”

With Colado, a thirtysomething longtime studio rat, at the helm, the debut proved to be “a really cool example of what two songwriters and multi-instrumentalists can do,” as relayed by Rütenberg.

“Earlier this year, I went and got my audio engineering degree at Recording Workshop in Ohio,” explains the songstress. “I thought it was necessary because we do everything ourselves. Pretty much the entire music industry is DIY these days.”

In 2014, shortly after the completion of Bridges and Empires, Rütenberg and Colado got to work on their next album, a four-song EP recorded at The Living Room Recording, a full-service studio in Atlanta.

Appropriately named The Living Room Recordings, the album clocks in at less than 12 minutes and will be officially released on July 24 at Rain Dogs.

“This was our first experience in a studio with paid staff and microphones and all of that,” says Rütenberg. “We really wanted the studio experience, but didn’t have the money for a full-length. I think that the sound we captured was really amazing.”

The upcoming Rain Dogs CD release party will feature some cover songs the duo has been working on as well as brand-new, unrecorded tunes. In addition to an appearance at Riverside Arts Market on June 24, they’re also set for a few “weekend jaunts” through the Southeast starting on July 10.

Rütenberg, a 27-year-old University of North Florida graduate, will be working around her schedule at Intuition Ale Works, while Colado takes off his green Starbucks apron for touring responsibilities that take them from Charlotte to Raleigh to Atlanta.

“Being a two-piece, there’s a lot more accountability in the band,” says Rütenberg. “So things move faster. We’re tight-knit and more efficient. I’m most excited about the sound and dynamics that can happen with two people than other projects I’ve been in.”

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