Church Girls | Photo by Charlie Wrzesniewski | courtesy of the artist

Philly four-piece Church Girls just released their debut LP Thousand Lives (read The Key’s review here) and are gearing up for a record-release show on Friday at Johnny Brenda’s.

Frontwoman Mariel Beaumont recently wrote for Medium about her experience growing up in Philly and going to shows, and how these long nights spent squished in sweaty basements led her to trash her plans for grad school and instead form Church Girls.

“I started [Church Girls] as a side project to fill the musical void in my life,” Beaumont writes. “In the last year, however, it has fully absorbed me in the best way possible, even causing me to leave my job of six years that I loved to pursue a new path in the music industry.”

Beaumont may have never started Church Girls were it not for Johnny Brenda’s. Seeing acts like White Denim and Perfume Genius at the Fishtown venue had a sort of transformative impact on Beaumont. She recounts fondly, “We drank (local only) beer from pint glasses, I was 5 feet from the band, and the sound was perfect, and the crowd was there to see music.”

She continues:

“Certain events seem to come at the right time, as if our brains were primed for them. Sometimes a record or a book will crack you wide open, even if you’d tried getting into it years prior to no avail. These shows were memorable because they were the perfect storm: the right band at the right place at the right time in my life.”


On Friday, Beaumont will yet again find herself at Johnny Brenda’s, but she won’t be in the crowd. This time, she’ll be on stage.

Listen to Thousand Lives below. You can grab tickets to the show at the XPN Concert Calendar.