- Be Be Your Love
- Letter Read
- Worn Me Down
- Paper Doll
- I'll Find a Way
- Under My Skin
- Meet Me By The Water
- Even So
- I Want You
- Reason Why
- Moments with Oliver
- Ode To...
This Chicago-based singer-songwriter has drawn comparisons to Fiona Apple (for the starkly confessional tone of her lyrics) and PJ Harvey (for the wild mood swings in her melodies), but her full-length debut reveals an artistic fluidity that transcends such pigeonholes. The 13 tracks on Happenstance take in everything from the jazz-tinged boho-pop of "Letter Read" -- one of the season's more acerbic bust-up songs -- to the brassy, intricately arranged sing-along "1963," which takes a decidedly more upbeat look at matters of the heart. Yamagata's keyboards are the chief sonic focus of most tracks, but contributions span folks as diverse as guitarist Kevin Salem (a mainstay on New York's roots-rock scene) and classical french horn player Robert Carlisle (who happens to be the singer's uncle). And while Yamagata knows how to throw melodic curveballs, she's every bit as capable of cutting loose with an immediately accessible ditty -- as evidenced by "Worn Me Down," which sets a downcast tale against a deceptively bouncy background to good effect. Her influences certainly show through from time to time -- "Meet Me by the Water" evokes the spirit of the aforementioned Harvey circa To Bring You My Love -- but Happenstance is remarkably fully realized for a first offering.
Performance CreditsRachael Yamagata Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Piano,Tambourine,Vocals,fender rhodes,Wurlitzer
Kevin Salem Synthesizer,Banjo,Bass,Dobro,Guitar,Piano,Electric Guitar
Rob Arthur Organ
Robert Carlisle French Horn
Lisa Gutkin Violin,Group Member
Frank London Trumpet,Muted Trumpet,Group Member
Norbert Stachel Clarinet,Group Member
John Alagia Synthesizer,Rhythm Guitar,Hammond Organ,Shaker,fender rhodes,Guitar (Tremolo)
Mark Batson Guitar
Aaron Comess Percussion,Drums
John Conte Bass
Brian Jones Drums
Oliver Kraus Strings,Cello
Matt Walker Percussion,Drums
Stewart Myers Bass
James Johnston Bass
Jason Singer Baritone Saxophone
Peter Fox fender rhodes
Technical CreditsKevin Salem Composer,Producer,Engineer
Niko Bolas Engineer
Lisa Gutkin Arranger
Frank London Arranger
Norbert Stachel Arranger
Dan Wilson Composer
John Alagia Arranger,Composer,Producer
Mark Batson Composer
Oliver Kraus Arranger
Stewart Myers Engineer
Helicopter Art Direction
Jeff Juliano Engineer
Rachael Yamagata Arranger,Composer
John Atschiller Engineer
Peter Fox Arranger
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Happenstance based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
I just bought this CD as a fan of many other female singer-songwriters. I was shocked at how much I liked it on just the first listen! She is truely a wonderful new talent that has her own sound!
i bought one for me and one as a gift i love it,, so melodic, relaxing and some more upbeat, great CD,, I LOVE IT
Rachael Yamagata's "Happenstance" is a testament to great contemporary music with her prophetic voice and lyrics, which all add to the mature sound of her new CD. It's a great collection of songs to listen to anytime, anywhere -- I've been listening to her songs for a couple of months now, and still can't get enough. If you enjoyed her previous track "Collide," you will love the tracks on this cd, which include my favorites "Be Be Your Love" and "Under My Skin." With a variety of songs and moods on the CD, Yamagata is sure to be a household name.
Tracing her roots to the Chicago-based funk band Bumpus, this funk edge is neatly apparent in Yamagata's anything but cookie-cutter full-length deubt. From the tastefully boho "I Want You" to the achingly beautiful "Reason Why" that continues to play in your head with its uplifting melodies, each cut is unique and appealing. Take heed: two snoozers, "Paper Doll" and "Even So" may not be catchy, but they are wondrous all the same. An album that lacks filler material is an album well-worth my shelf and the shelf of everyone who calls themself a music fan.
you will find a...Nora Jones-rough-yet-smooth kinda voice. she is way too cool. really this cd was great! I havent been able to get this cd out of my player!
This woman has the vocals kissed by God himself. She is phenominal, do not hesistate to purchase this record, it is well worth it, you will not leave home without it. She is one of the few female artists I admire in modern times. She writes her own musis and lyrics, she is a treasure and I can't stop smiling because of her. Ode to... is the best song in the world, in my opinion, but that's just me relating to it. She will make your ears have tiny orgasms, I promise!
Rachael Yamagata’s debut “Happenstance” is one of the most beautiful and striking debuts in memory. Despite the introspective focus on love’s minefields and joys that has been explored countless times before, the 13-song disc is as original as anything issued in all of 2004. The singer-songwriter’s use of jazz, pop, soul and R&B genres is held together by her stylistic play on the piano and emotive vocals that are equal parts Norah Jones and Diana Krall, with a bit of Margo Timmins' ethereal soprano thrown in for outstanding measure. When the young Chicago songstress sings “I’ll Find a Way,” her voice layered atop a mix of piano and growing mix that includes synthesizer, electric guitar, cello and French horn, anyone with a heart will be hooked. If you’ve ever loved Beth Orton, Roberta Flack, Patti Smith or Emmylou Harris, you will find plenty to admire in Yamagata’s songbook, which includes the excellent “Be Be Your Love,” “Worn Me Down” and “Meet Me by the Water.”
I eagerly awaited the follow-up to Rachael's EP, and Happenstance does not disappoint. Her music is varied on this album, ranging from energetic to mellow. The instrumentals were great, as well as her voice, which although it has drawn comparisons to Norah Jones and Fiona Apple, I think she has a voice all of her own. Among my favorite songs are: Be Be Your Love, Under My Skin, Quiet, I Want You, and I'll Find a Way. Once you get this album, you'll be mesmerized.