Derek Miller Derek Miller
Born & Raised:

Pahokee, Florida / Jupiter, Florida


Brooklyn, New York

Sleigh Bell Origins:

Working as server at a Brazilian bistro in Brooklyn, Miller met Alexis Krauss and her mother when they came in for a meal. Back in his native Florida, Miller had been part of metalcore outfit Poison the Well, but as he explained to mother and daughter, he was looking for a female vocalist for a new project. Although in her first year of teaching, turns out that Alexis had formerly been in a teen group called RubyBlue. Miller shared his email address and eventually Krauss got in touch, leading to the formation of the noise pop duo.

The band name Sleigh Bells comes from the label Miller would write on CD-Rs that he had recorded demos on.


Public Enemy, Deftones, Depeche Mode, Cure, Funk Brothers, Amy Grant, Belinda Carlisle

First Song:

The first song Miller learned to play on guitar was “Plush” by Stone Temple Pilots.


"Initially I just loved the way that Jackson guitars felt, the way that they played and the way that they looked. They make me want to pick them up. I think that’s huge. That’s a huge part of your initial reaction to an instrument, and when you’re a kid, well, that never really left me. I played Teles for a couple of years but the necks were, actually, I still love them, but the necks are a little more like baseball bats. They’re a little harder to play. Jackson’s are lightweight and I think they are beautiful. When they are sitting around, I just want to pick them up. They make me want to play more.

"With Sleigh Bells, I think people thought that I was playing it ironically because people consider us an indie band, and if you see the show, it doesn’t sound or have a lot in common with indie whatsoever. It’s confrontational. The second record especially is like a cartoonish metal record. It’s high-gain guitars, double bass… the only thing that’s not metal about it would be the vocals, which are more melodic. The Jackson brand is classic and I wanted that as part of our aesthetic." - Derek Miller