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Rachael Yamagata

Singer/songwriter Rachael Yamagata grew up listening to Carole King, Roberta Flack, James Taylor, and the like, for music was the one thing in Yamagata's life that remained consistent. Her parents divorced when she was two, forcing her to find a balance between her German-Italian mother's apartment in New York City and the Washington, D.C. residence of her third-generation Japanese father. Such frequent travel readied Yamagata for a way of life that would eventually lead her to a professional singing career. By the time she reached Northwestern University in the mid-'90s, Yamagata had one year of piano lessons and a spiral notebook full of songs under her belt. After pursuing a degree in French for one year, she relocated to New York to become an Italian theater major at Vassar. Sporadic changes loomed ahead, however. When her acting coach at Vassar moved to Barnard College, Yamagata thought she would go, too. She eventually opted to return to Northwestern instead, where she joined the theater program and befriended the funk band Bumpus during her junior year. Bumpus was a mainstay on the club circuit in Chicago, and Yamagata soon landed a gig singing with the band. She spent six years in the lineup, recording three albums and touring the country along the way. By 2001, however, Yamagata felt her time with Bumpus had run its course. She had a solid batch of songs that didn't gel with the band's funkafied formula, and a solo career was soon launched. In September 2002, Yamagata landed a deal with Arista's Private Music, and her self-titled EP arrived in October. Her first full-length album, Happenstance, followed in June 2004. Featuring production from John Alagía, who had previously helmed such albums as John Mayer's Room for Squares and Dave Matthews Band's Busted Stuff, the album's pop-tinged sound found its way onto several teen-driven TV shows, including The O.C. and Alias. Happenstance also endeared Yamagata to such musicians as Ray LaMontagne, Jason Mraz, Ryan Adams, Conor Oberst, and Rhett Miller, all of whom invited her to perform on their albums as Yamagata readied her sophomore effort. Boosted by such support, she returned in 2008 with Elephants...Teeth Sinking into Heart, an eclectic release that featured both intimate material and PJ Harvey-inspired rock. Yamagata used the crowdfunding website PledgeMusic to create her third full-length, 2011's laid-back Chesapeake, and again in 2016 to help fund that years highly anticipated Tightrope Walker. ~ MacKenzie Wilson & Andrew Leahey
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Stations Featuring
Rachael Yamagata

    Indie Chill

    Indie Chill
    8 songs

    Female Focus

    Female Focus
    3 songs

    Late Night Mix

    Late Night Mix
    1 song

    Adult Alternative

    Adult Alternative
    1 song

    Adult Rock

    1 song

    Coffeehouse Corner

    1 song

Albums by
Rachael Yamagata

Top Songs by
Rachael Yamagata

  1.   Song
  2.   Elephants
  3.   Even If I Don't
  4.   Starlight
  5.   Worn Me Down
  6.   Duet
  7.   Reason Why
  8.   The Only Fault
  9.   Don't
  10.   Would You Please
  11.   Quiet
  12.   What If I Leave
  13.   Brown Eyes
  14.   Be Be Your Love
  15.   River
  16.   Known for Years
  17.   Sidedish Friend
  18.   1963
  19.   Over
  20.   Collide
  21.   EZ Target
  22.   Worn Me Down by Malcolm Burn
  23.   Meet Me by the Water
  24.   I'll Find a Way
  25.   Black Sheep
  26.   Would You Please/These Girls
  27.   Money Fame Thunder
  28.   I'm Going Back
  29.   Break Apart
  30.   Let Me Be Your Girl
  31.   Dealbreaker
  32.   Full On
  33.   The Way It Seems To Go
  34.   Miles On a Car
  35.   You Take My Troubles Away by Dan Wilson
  36.   Both Sides Now
  37.   These Girls
  38.   Pause the Tragic Ending
  39.   Horizon
  40.   Little Life
  41.   Accident
  42.   Sunday Afternoon
  43.   I Wish You Love
  44.   Moments With Oliver
  45.   Paper Doll
  46.   Letter Read
  47.   I Want You
  48.   Under My Skin
  49.   Even So
  50.   Rainsong
  51.   Nobody
  52.   Elephants Instrumental [Album
  53.   Hand of God
  54.   Stick Around
  55.   I'm Going to Go Back There Someday
  56.   Baby Come Find Me At Christmas
  57.   Faster
  58.   Over and Over
  59.   Ode To...
  60.   Jesus Was a Cross Maker
  61.   Tightrope Walker
  62.   Edith
  63.   I Don't Want To Be Your Mother
  64.   You Won't Let Me
  65.   Saturday Morning

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