Orenda Fink

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Orenda Fink
Background information
Born (1975-09-18) September 18, 1975 (age 43)
Birmingham, Alabama, U.S.
GenresIndie rock, Dream pop
InstrumentsVocals, Guitar, Trumpet
LabelsSaddle Creek
Flower Moon Records
Warm Records
Associated actsAzure Ray
Art In Manilla
Bright Eyes
Rilo Kiley
Now It's Overhead
Harouki Zombi

Orenda Fink is an American musician, multi-instrumentalist, writer, and half of the Dream pop duo Azure Ray. Born in Birmingham, Alabama, Fink is also a member of O+S, Closeness, and has previously recorded or performed with Bright Eyes, Conor Oberst, Moby, Rilo Kiley Now It's Overhead and more. She is married to Todd Fink (formerly Todd Baechle) of The Faint, another Saddle Creek Records band.


Fink started her musical career at the age of fifteen in the band Little Red Rocket with Maria Taylor. The band released two CDs on Geffen, Who Did You Pay (1997) and It's in the Sound (2000).[1] The group disbanded during the merging of Geffen with Universal Music Group.

Fink and Taylor later moved to Athens, Georgia where they formed the band Azure Ray. The pair signed to WARM and released their self-titled debut in 2001. The song "Sleep" was later featured in the 2006 Academy Award nominated movie, The Devil Wears Prada featuring Anne Hathaway.[2] In 2015, Taylor Swift included "Sleep" in a 6-song "breakup playlist" made for a fan via her official Tumblr.[3][4] Azure Ray released their second album, Burn and Shiver in 2002. Eric Bachmann (Crooked Fingers and Archers of Loaf) produced both records.[5] After meeting the band in Athens, Bright Eyes frontman Conor Oberst invited the band on tour and introduced them to Saddle Creek. Saddle Creek released their following records, November EP, and The Drinks We Drank Last Night. In 2002, the duo co-wrote and recorded “The Great Escape” (which appeared on Moby's 18) and “Landing” (which appeared on the XXX soundtrack), and afterwards joined Moby on tour.[6] Following the release of 2003's Hold on Love, Taylor and Fink began a 6-year hiatus.

Fink released her debut full-length solo album Invisible Ones on August 23, 2005.[7] She said she had a spiritual awakening while in Haiti and her solo music is inspired, in part, by Haitian folk music.[8] In 2006, she formed a new band, Art in Manila, originally named Art Bell. The band's debut album was "Set The Woods on Fire" was released on Saddle Creek on August 7, 2007.[9]

On November 30, 2008, Azure Ray reformed for a one-off show at Los Angeles's iconic Troubadour.[10] The duo was accompanied by Andy LeMaster of Now It's Overhead and Nick White of Tilly and the Wall.

In 2009, Orenda and her long-time friend, Cedric Lemoyne (bassist for Remy Zero) have collaborated to form a project called O+S.[11] The indie rock-based album derives from sounds Orenda recorded in Haiti and other places and loops crafted by Lemonye out of the sounds. The album was released on March 24, 2009 on Saddle Creek Records. Fink also released "Ask the Night," on Saddle Creek Records on October 6, 2009, which Pitchfork called more "austere and rustic" with "intricate soundscapes." The single "Higher Ground" features guest vocals by Isaac Brock of Modest Mouse.[12] The song "Why is The Night Sad" was later played by Azure Ray at their reunion show in Los Angeles in 2008.

In 2009, Taylor announced on KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic that the band would reform on a semi-permanent basis in July 2009 for "5 or 6" shows before working on a new Azure Ray album. Their fourth album, Drawing Down the Moon, was released in September 2010.[13] Following the release of Drawing Down the Moon, Fink and a pregnant Taylor entered the studio to record six news songs, with a more "hypnotic" "electronica" influence in collaboration with Andy LeMaster and Todd Fink.[14] Azure Ray's six-song EP, As Above So Below, was released on September 5, 2012, on Saddle Creek Records.[15]

Harouki Zombi is music project by Fink and occasional Of Montreal member Nina Barnes, "who decided to form a DJing and performance art duo after hanging out together in Athens, Georgia." Rolling Stone premiered their first single, “Harouki Zombi’s ‘Swamp Theme’ on October 28, 2011.[16] Their debut EP, "Objet Petit A," was released in November 2012.[17] As part of their performance art exploring the "dark and the light of the female condition,” Barnes and Fink occasionally incorporated zombies, sword battles, strawberries and whip cream, paint and glitter, and Asian aesthetic influences into their earlier performances [18] as part of a "hedonistic celebration of all life's earthly delights."[19]

Fink began recording her third solo album in December 2013. Collaborating on the album was her "dream team" of Ben Brodin, husband Todd Fink and Bill Rieflin.[20] Blue Dream was released on Saddle Creek Records on August 19, 2014. Fink was "inspired to write the songs for Blue Dream after her beloved dog of 16 years, Wilson, passed away" and she later began "writing in a dream journal every day, [when] the ideas of the album came forth." [21] NPR called Blue Dream a "collection of distinctly futuristic love songs."[22] In December 2016, Harouki Zombi reunited for a final performance in Omaha, titled “Harouki Zombi: An Aradian Exorcism.” In response to comments made on Facebook about their 2011/2012 performances, the new "cabaret dance party" theme included an entirely "new look, new music, and visuals."[23]

In April 2017, Fink and her husband Todd released their debut EP as Closeness on February 24 via Graveface Records.[24] That same year, O+S released their second record, "You Were Once the Sun, Now You’re the Moon" on Saddle Creek.[25] In November 2017, Azure Ray announced they would once again reunite for a one-off show in Los Angeles at the Lodge Room on January 20, 2018.[26]

In 2018 Orenda formed a band with her sister, Christine Fink, called High Up. Their debut album was released on Team Love Records. Atwood Magazine commented, “ Passionate, heartfelt and energetic, High Up’s soulful debut album You Are Here is a raw, intimate portrait of turmoil and inner strength.” [27] Following their reunion show in January, on September 26, 2018 Stereogum premiered a new Azure Ray single, "Palindrome," from their first new record in 6 years, Waves out October 26, 2018 on Flower Moon Records.[28] Billboard premiered a re-imagination of 2003's "Hold On Love," reflecting the live version the band plays live.[29] KCRW premiered the "hauntingly beautiful" video for EP's second single, "Last Summer in Omaha" (directed by Nik Fackler) on October 25, 2018.[30]


In 2018, Orenda published her first excerpts of memoir in Rockhaven: A History of Interiors, published by Which Witch LA.[31] Hyperallergic.com said, “The narrative strength of the anthology is carried by Adriana Widdoes, Orenda Fink, Johanna Hedva, and Suzanne Scanlon, whose generational accounts of their grandmother, mother, and selves, respectively, are as vivid as they are heartbreaking... Stoic, evocative, and heartbreaking, Fink brings us into the room and leaves us there. Stories of psychosis rarely resolve themselves and this literary choice rings true even if it isn’t traditionally cathartic."[32]


Little Red Rocket[edit]

Azure Ray[edit]


Art in Manila[edit]


  • O+S (2009, Saddle Creek)
  • You Were Once the Sun, Now You're the Moon (2017, Saddle Creek)


  • Personality Therapy (2017, Graveface Records)

High Up[edit]


Other appearances[edit]


  • Bloodline (2005, directed by Nik Fackler)
  • Leave it All (2006, directed by Rudolf Buitendach)
  • That Certain-Something Spring (2009, directed by Chris Lawson)
  • Permanent Scar (2009, directed by Aaron Gum)
  • We Do What We Want To (2009, directed by Chris Lawson and Antonio Scarlata
  • Why is the Night Sad? (2010, directed by Ryan Berg)
  • High Ground (2010, directed by Chris Lawson)
  • This Is a Part of Something Greater (2014, directed by Aaron Gum)
  • You Can Be Loved (2014, directed by Amelie Raoul)
  • Ace of Cups (2014, directed by Nik Fackler)
  • Holy, Holy (2015, directed by Mike Tully)
  • Appeared in the music video for "Lovers Need Lawyers," by The Good Life.
  • Appeared in the music video for "Yellow Datsun," by Neva Dinova.


  1. ^ https://music.avclub.com/maria-taylor-11-11-1798201301
  2. ^ https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0458352/soundtrack
  3. ^ http://time.com/3705388/taylor-swift-breakup-playlist/
  4. ^ https://www.buzzfeed.com/elliewoodward/we-are-never-ever-ever-getting-back-together?bftw
  5. ^ https://www.popmatters.com/azureray-burn-2495829100.html
  6. ^ http://articles.latimes.com/2002/jul/11/news/wk-hochman11
  7. ^ https://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/3348-invisible-ones/
  8. ^ Tim McMahan (August 15, 2005). ""Orenda Fink: Invisible Ray of Love"". lazy-i. Retrieved 2007-08-06.
  9. ^ https://www.popmatters.com/art-in-manila-set-the-woods-on-fire-2496219197.html
  10. ^ http://www.laist.com/2008/11/20/maria_taylor.php
  11. ^ "Saddle Creek | O+S". saddle-creek.com. Retrieved 2016-10-20.
  12. ^ https://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/13702-ask-the-night/
  13. ^ Pitchfork.com. New Release: Azure Ray: Drawing Down the Moon Retrieved 30 Nov 2012
  14. ^ "Azure Ray: As Above So Below EP". 4 September 2012.
  15. ^ Rolling Stone Magazine. EP Premiere: Azure Ray, 'As Above, So Below' Retrieved 30 Nov 2012
  16. ^ https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/harouki-zombi-harouki-swamp-theme-80286/
  17. ^ https://consequenceofsound.net/2012/11/album-review-harouki-zombi-objet-petit-a-ep/
  18. ^ http://hearnebraska.org/events/harouki-zombi-an-aradian-exorcism/
  19. ^ https://schedule.sxsw.com/2012/events/event_MS16184
  20. ^ "Orenda Fink: In Dreams - Philthy Mag". Philthy Mag. 2014-07-20. Retrieved 2016-10-20.
  21. ^ https://consequenceofsound.net/2014/08/orenda-fink-blue-dream/
  22. ^ https://www.npr.org/2014/08/10/338016038/first-listen-orenda-fink-blue-dream
  23. ^ http://hearnebraska.org/events/harouki-zombi-an-aradian-exorcism/
  24. ^ http://www.brooklynvegan.com/closeness-todd-fink-from-the-faint-orenda-fink-from-azure-ray-listen
  25. ^ https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2017/02/exclusive-orenda-fink-and-cedrick-lemoyne-aka-os-a.html
  26. ^ http://buzzbands.la/2018/01/21/photos-azure-ray-elected-whispertown-lodge-room/
  27. ^ http://atwoodmagazine.com/yah-high-up-you-are-here-album/
  28. ^ https://www.stereogum.com/2016025/azure-ray-palindrome/premiere/
  29. ^ https://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/rock/8480277/azure-ray-hold-on-love-revision
  30. ^ http://blogs.kcrw.com/music/2018/10/video-premiere-azure-ray-last-summer-in-omaha/
  31. ^ http://www.whichwitchla.com/print/
  32. ^ https://hyperallergic.com/466450/inspired-by-the-story-of-a-womens-sanitarium-a-book-explores-mental-health-as-a-feminist-issue/

External links[edit]