Rachael Yamagata Returns with a Sneak Listening Party on The Time Machine
Singer-songwriter Rachael Yamagata returns to The Time Machine with a sneak listen to her forthcoming album "Chesapeake". The album is set to be self-released by Rachael herself this October. After her debut album "Happenstance" on RCA (Sony BMG) and her second double album "Elephants...Teeth Sinking Into Heart" on Warner Brothers, this around with this album, she is on her own. Rachael shares the behind the scenes process in releasing her third album and how you can be involved. Before the sun rose at Chesapeake Bay a little after 4AM, Rachael sat on the front porch of producer John Alagia's home, "I’ve just woken up from another end of the world dream where Bon Jovi was an alien planting explosive devices in cupboards that eventually cause massive flooding when I decide I need to do a morning coffee run (ok, I need cigarettes) so I grab my keys and head to town. Erob (Eric Robinson), our engineer, is just going to bed after working late on a vox comp for ‘You Won’t Let Me’ and it occurs to me how I’ve truly lucked out with the people involved in this next record."
"I am in the studio. And when I say studio, I mean Alagia’s house that we’ve spent weeks reconverting into a studio – shipped gear, borrowed microphones, amps, guitars, a grand piano that is living in his bedroom because that’s where we get the best sound, vox mics that are housed in his shower for some natural reverb and of course the porch where I write this – a past scene of pre production jams complete with drums made out of cardboard beer cases and recycling bins, cellos stuck in wads of duck tape so as not to slip on the floor, a wurly set up by the table of receipts I’m calling ‘my office’ etc. I packed my car what seems like months ago chock full of air mattresses, giant breakfast skillets, keyboards, snow boots (unusable) and of course my diva tent – an 8 person banana yellow monstrosity that I’ve been sleeping in for some time now to carve out a little private space for moi as well as leave room for the house full of amazing musicians that have come to play."
"There have been rounds of plumbers and air conditioner technicians, trips to Target for the inflatable pool that has since garnered a crop circle impression on the lawn for a mere $79.95, and thank you dad for the grill donation – let there be burgers."
"The cast is my dream team, the kind that has taken years to find and have histories with. We’ve been saying ‘there’s a lot of love in the room’ and there must be because schedules have been routed, carpools arranged – anything to help a girl now financing her own career full throttle. Victor Indrizzo has a week off from Sheryl Crow’s tour and when he’s not doing the dishes has laid down some of the most bad ass drum tracks that I’ve ever heard. Mike Viola (Candy Butchers, Walk Hard, Get Him To The Greek) has already tracked harmonies to rival The Beach Boys and The Carpenters and truth be told wears sunglasses in his pajamas. Michael Chaves (John Mayer, Five For Fighting) is the guru of vibe on guitar, only wears black and insists on sleeping on the couch as if it’s the best room in the house. Kevin Salem (Dumptruck, Yo la Tengo) is still doing additional tracks he dreams up between producing underground Pakistinian superstars as well as shuttling English cellist Oli Kraus (Sia, Duffy) down from NYC – the same cellist I once leaned over to my friend at a Beth Orton concert 8 years ago saying ‘someday I’ll have strings like that’, but that’s another story… And of course Tom Freund who will forever be known as Starfish for the way he spreads out in a bed – not that grown men are sharing beds here or anything. He can make you cry when he plays upright."
"There is no label, no A&R and I’m pretty sure the artwork for this record will come down to the I phone app that works wonders on pictures and the stash of cash that Dad put away for my wedding has been put to use here along with whatever frequent flyer miles I knew I’d use someday. I’m about to launch my PLEDGE campaign, which a psychic recently told me was karmic, as well as form my own independent team of folk to get this record out. And yet, I must say it is all going along swimmingly. The reunion with Alagia and the people in the room have been on instinct the best contribution I’ve made to this entire process. Viola, Kevin and Chaves have all been in the driver’s seat for some of my recordings and who knew you could get multiple producers in the room with no trace of ego whatsoever. It is Big Pink and the drums are set up in the kitchen, it fulfills every idea of ‘camp’ and when the band decides one track out of ten didn’t feel at the right tempo they will recut it 3 hours before their morning flight because they care so much.. I am in a constant state of Faklempt and the looseness of this whole shebang made a perfect transition into creative spontaneity that I think is going to surprise many. We had a mid point listening party bbq tonight where one person said to me that the songs sound like I’m in control of my own life now and I think she is right. It’s still too early to know what this record will become, but it’s been made with a lot of love in the room (and tequila) and like the frankenfish who can swim and walk on land is suprising the hell outta me."
As always, it's a treat for The Time Machine Radio Crew to have Rachael on the broadcast as a guest. Rachael's vocals have graced Maui's FM dial for years as she continued to keep busy between each of her albums by co-writing and singing on albums of other artists. The list is long and varied; Ryan Adams & The Cardinals, Robin Danar, Mike Viola, Margaret Cho, Toots & The Maytalls, Ben Lee, Graham Colton, Katherine McPhee, Rhett Miller, John Francis, Jill Cunniff, Dan Wilson, Bill Deasey, Ray LaMontagne, Chris Holmes, Ben Arthur, Jason Mraz, Bright Eyes and Mandy Moore...with so many music projects outside of her own, it appears that she will continue to be on our playlists for years to come (and hopefully we'll get a chance to hear her unreleased EP with Mike Viola).
Her debut release "Happenstance" produced by John Alagia kept pulling in our listeners and locking her status as "most played artist" right up until the end of 2007. Perfect timing for us because her sophomore double album release "Elephants...Teeth Sinking Into Heart" was released in 2008. That album was produced by Mike Mogis (with a couple of songs produced by John Alagia) and it was an album worth the wait filled with many talented musicians like Kevin Salem, Michael Chaves, Daniel Clarke and Mark Goldenberg adding their musical gifts to the project. Now "Chesapeake" has John Alagia producing again along with the return of musicians Michael Chaves and Kevin Salem plus Victor Indrizzo, Oli Kraus and Mike Viola.
Rachael's music has had a home on our playlists and in our hearts since her debut release. While waiting for her third album release this October, be sure to pick up a copy of her first album, "Happenstance" and her second, "Elephants...Teeth Sinking Into Heart". Rachael currently topped our airplay chart for 2010 with her song with Semisonic's Dan Wilson, "You Take My Troubles Away" and closed out the year with her yuletide song, "Baby Come Find Me At Christmas". This past year, "I'm Going To Go Back There Someday", Rachael's cover of the classic song from The Muppets where Gonzo sang around a campfire in 1979's "The Muppet Movie" has been embraced by The Time Machine staff and listeners to make it one of the most played songs of the year. The song sees its official release on Disney's tribute album "The Muppets: The Green Album" next week Tuesday (August 23rd) in preparation for Disney's November release of the Jason Segel film "The Muppet Movie". Other artists featured along with Rachael include; Weezer & Paramore’s Hayley Williams, OK Go, Sondre Lerche, Andrew Bird, Matt Nathanson, The Fray and My Morning Jacket.
In addition to Rachael Yamagata's first single "Starlight" off of the upcoming album, Rachael's work with Ben Arthur and John Francis are featured along with Mike Viola and Bumpus. New music also featured on this aircheck include Fountains Of Wayne, Imelda May and Brad Paisley. Other artists heard on this Maui afternoon FM broadcast include; The Beatles, Scandal, The Smith Bros., The Monkees and The Carpenters.
Offical Website for Rachael Yamagata
Official Website for Pledge Music
Rachael Yamagata on Facebook
Rachael Yamagata on MySpace Music
Rachael Yamagata on Twitter
Although Rachael has done a number of guest slots on The Time Machine, you can also check out two of her extremely detailed interviews with host Michael McCartney on The Time Machine's archived broadcasts below. You can download them as podcasts or listen to them from the embedded players on the webpage itself.
Rachael Yamagata Interview
Rachael Yamagata Interview from 2008
Offical Website for John Francis
Official Website for Ben Arthur
Official Website for Imelda May
Official Website for Brad Paisley
Official Website for Fountains Of Wayne