The Lessers: An Inside Look at the Local Band That's Taking Tallahassee by Storm

If you’re in with the live music scene circulating through Florida State University, it’s likely you've heard of them. The Lessers are a humble band comprised of four talented FSU students who are bringing soulful blues and rock n’ roll to the Tallahassee area. The band itself has been together for about two years and originated by what seems like chance. It all began with a couple of jam sessions between lead singer and rhythm guitarist, Olivier Millour, and his good friend Nathan Tardrew, who is now the lead guitarist. Millour and Tardrew would practice cords in their apartments, which caused some mayhem when their powerful sound would infiltrate the complex. As both musicians progressed, they started to realize something more was there. The two began to flirt with the idea of expanding their comfort zones and potentially starting a band. This is when Millour met their third member, Michael Hughes. Millour and Hughes convened randomly right outside of HCB in between classes. Hughes is now the band’s bass guitarist. Shortly after, a house party then brought them to the final missing link, drummer Paul Adkins. The four instantly clicked and the rest was history.

Just like that, the four had assembled a full-fledged band, which meant they needed a proper place to practice. They transitioned from their apartments to the rented out rooms in the College of Music. The tiny quarters, however, couldn't contain the band’s groove. “We were a nuisance in there, everyone hated us. These rooms were meant for pianists and sax players, not a rock band,” stated Millour. The band’s first several gigs were at the Warehouse for Wednesday Open Mic Night. The first year was spent primarily getting their feet wet and deciding whether or not they were ready to commit. A major determining moment for the crew was at the Jam For Peace benefit concert at the Strip. They had a sixty-person turnout, one of the largest they’d seen at that time. The enthusiasm of the crowd and thrill of playing had them hooked.

As their presence started to become more known, the crew necessitated a need for a name. After much debate, The Lessers, was born. The modest name ended up reflecting the band perfectly. They were a group of guys who weren’t looking for fame and fortune.  They just wanted to have a good time doing what they love and encourage others to live it up while doing so. 

At this point, The Lessers’ core four have now moved into their current house where they can jam freely without any worry of noise ordinances. Through the move, the band also opened themselves up to a whole new type of venue—house shows. With the new opportunity, came new connections. “The local music scene is really one big community,” said Millour. They connected with other groups including Kat Hall with Just Chameleons and even some out of town bands from nearby cities like Jacksonville. Together, the bands organize concerts and house parties in their backyards as well as at various venues. Through word of mouth and lots of networking, The Lessers also formed links with Cat Family Records and the Willbury. “As long as you’re willing to put in the time and remain opportunistic, people will start coming to you,” stated Millour.

The Lessers still organize house shows and play at all sorts of events ranging from philanthropies to parties. They also continue to do so non-for-profit, solely benefiting from the good times and good vibes.  Nevertheless, as lead singer Millour prepares for graduation, the future of the band is unknown. They hope to prospectively record an album or EP, increasing their repertoire of eight original songs while also creating a memento of their accomplishments. Whether or not the band plans to replace Millour is still up in the air. All members have the intention of pursuing their degrees after college but sure have had a great time rocking out in the meantime.

 “You know you’re doing something right when people starting coming up to you at shows and saying, hey! You guys are actually really good!” stated Millour. I can confirm this from personal experience. These guys are in fact, really good! Be sure to follow and like The Lessers on Facebook and keep a look out for future events, merchandise and what is still in store for this band.

All pictures courtesy of The Lessers.