With a voice best described as soulful, but with a husky edge, Rachael Yamagata's sound is graceful enough to bring to mind Norah Jones, yet stirs deep emotions a la Sarah McLachlan. But no amount of comparison can pin down Yamagata. Her songs are uniquely cinematic, and her voice and melodies ascend and fall with a rhythm that is never predictable or mainstream. Each song is a story unfolding. A testament to the engaging nature of her musical narratives is the extent of her fan base which spans not only the US but also Asia and Europe.
Although Yamagata has been touring for roughly 10 years, she will perform in Thailand for the first time on Thursday at the Thailand Cultural Centre small hall. She's planning on bringing a big sound to the venue, and will have both a cellist and violinist on stage: "There are certain songs that I think are just electric if you play with a full band. I really want to showcase the strings. We'll have a total of six people on stage; it's a big sound."
Yamagata says an artist needs to leave a musical footprint when making one's debut performance in a new country. With the band at her side, she feels the audience will experience her songs in all their glory, so their true colours, both in melody and harmony, can filter through.
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