Rachael Yamagata

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Rachael Yamagata
Rachael Yamagata2005.jpg
Rachael Yamagata on stage in 2008
Background information
Born (1977-09-23) September 23, 1977 (age 38)
Arlington, Virginia, United States
Genres Adult alternative
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter
Instruments Piano
Labels RCA Victor
Warner Bros.
Frankenfish Records/Megaforce Records
Associated acts Bumpus
Website www.rachaelyamagata.com

Rachael Yamagata (born September 23, 1977) is an American singer-songwriter and pianist from Arlington, Virginia. She began her musical career with the band Bumpus before becoming a solo artist and releasing four EP's and three studio albums. Her songs have appeared on numerous television shows and she has collaborated with Jason Mraz, Rhett Miller, Bright Eyes, Ryan Adams, Toots and the Maytals and Ray Lamontagne.[1][2]

Early life and education[edit]

Yamagata graduated from the Holton-Arms School in Bethesda, Maryland and attended Northwestern University and Vassar College.[3][4]


Yamagata became the vocalist for the Chicago group Bumpus and spent six years touring, writing and recording with the band before leaving in 2001 to begin a solo career. In September 2002, she obtained a two-record deal with Arista's Private Music and her self-titled EP produced by Malcolm Burn, Rachael Yamagata EP was released in October.[citation needed] Her first full-length album, Happenstance, followed in 2004. The album was produced by John Alagia at Compass Point Studios. Yamagata toured with Mandy Moore and contributed a song to Moore's 2007 album, Wild Hope.[5]

In May 2008, Yamagata released a three-song EP, Loose Ends. Her second full-length album Elephants...Teeth Sinking Into Heart was released in October 2008.[6] Billboard characterized the album as much darker and sadder in tone than its predecessor.[7] That month, her two-song live acoustic video performance appeared on LiveDaily Sessions and featured the songs Faster and Sunday Afternoon.[8] In April 2009, Yamagata performed her song Elephants on the television drama One Life to Live.[9]

Yamagata digitally released a new album in the fall of 2011 through Pledgemusic. Her third studio album Chesapeake was released through Frankenfish Records in October 2011.[10] In 2012 Yamagata released her next EP called Heavyweight.[11] Yamagata has appeared numerous times as a guest vocalist for other artists including: Jason Mraz's Did You Get My Message?, Fireflies and The Believer by Rhett Miller, and on Toots & the Maytals's album True Love, the song Barfly by Ray Lamontagne, and several songs on Ryan Adams' Cold Roses album. She contributed vocals to six songs on the Bright Eyes album Cassadaga.[12] Yamagata contributed writing, keyboards and vocals to the song Kaleidoscope by Jill Cunniff a former member of Luscious Jackson. Yamagata also performs with an ensemble cast on the 30 Rock episode "Kidney Now!"[13] The soundtrack for the film Dear John features the song "You Take My Troubles Away", Yamagata's duet with Dan Wilson. She also performs the Muppets song I'm Going to Go Back There Someday on a cover album, Muppets: The Green Album.[14]

Her songs have appeared on the TV shows The L Word, Charmed, How I Met Your Mother, ER , Nip/Tuck, Men in Trees, Alias, One Tree Hill, Los Serrano, Brothers & Sisters, Grey's Anatomy and The O.C..[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Yamagata has a twin brother, Benji.[1] Her half brother, Josh Ruben, is an actor and director for CollegeHumor.[15]


Studio albums[edit]



  • "Worn Me Down"
  • "Letter Read"
  • "1963"
  • "River"
  • "Be Be Your Love"
  • "Elephants"
  • "Faster"
  • "Sunday Afternoon"
  • "Starlight"
  • "Deal Breaker"
  • "Even If I Don't"


Other contributions[edit]

Songs in other media[edit]

Yamagata's songs have appeared in a number of films and television shows. These include:[17]

Year Title Type Song
2003 Miss Match TV series episode: "Who's Sari Now?" "Worn Me Down"
2004 One Tree Hill TV series episode: "The Trick is to Keep Breathing" "Be Be Your Love"
2005 Elizabethtown Film "Jesus Was A Cross Maker"
ER TV series episode: "Back in the World" "I'll Find A Way"
In Her Shoes Film "Collide"
The O.C. TV series episode: "The Second Chance" "Reason Why"
TV series episode: "The New Kids on the Block" "Worn Me Down"
One Life to Live TV series episode "I'll Find A Way"
Prime Film "I Wish You Love"
Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants Film "Be Be Your Love"
Smallville TV series episode: "Smallville Beginnings" "Reason Why"
2006 Bella Film "Meet Me By the Water"
How I Met Your Mother TV series episode: "Nothing Good Happens After 2 A.M." "Quiet"
Brothers & Sisters TV series episode: "Patriarchy" "Be Be Your Love"
The Last Kiss Film "Reason Why"
One Fine Day TV series episode "I'll Find a Way"
Men in Trees TV series episode: "The Caribou in the Room" "I Want You"
TV series episode: "Talk for Tat" "I Want You"
2007 Definitely, Maybe Film "Meet Me By the Water"
Holiday in Handcuffs Film "I Want You"
The L Word TV series promo: Fifth season preview "Be Be Your Love"
Los Serrano TV series episode: "Las Fases del Amor" "I'll Find a Way"
2008 Brothers & Sisters TV series episode: "Just A Sliver" "Duet"
Cashmere Mafia TV series episode: "The Deciders" "Reason Why"
The L Word TV series episode: "Lifecycle" "The Other Side"
2009 30 Rock TV series episode: "Kidney Now!" "He Needs a Kidney" (as part of supergroup)
The City TV series episode "Horizon"
Fuga de cerebros(Brain Drain) Film "The Reason Why"
Grey's Anatomy TV series episode: "I Always Feel Like Somebody's Watchin' Me" "Brown Eyes"
TV series episode: "I Will Follow You into the Dark" "Duet"
Hotel for Dogs Film "Reason Why"
One Life to Live TV series episode: "Elephants" "Elephants"
Private Practice TV series episode: "Homeward Bound" "Don't"
So You Think You Can Dance TV series episode: "The Top 16 Perform" "Be Be Your Love"
Taking the Stage TV series episode: "Dance Off" "Elephants"
2010 Gravity TV series episode: "Damn Skippy" "Elephants"
Life Unexpected TV series episode: "Love Unexpected" "Duet"
2012 Hope Springs Film "I Don't Want To Be Your Mother"
A Gentleman's Dignity TV series episode 1 ″Saturday Morning"


  1. ^ a b Garcia, Cathy Rose A. (2009-03-31). "Singer Rachael Yamagata to Take Stage for First Time in Seoul". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2009-05-18. 
  2. ^ Jenkins, Mark (October 28, 2011), "Rachael Yamagata: Album review: "Chesapeake"", Washington Post 
  3. ^ Notable Alumni, School of Communication
  4. ^ Vassar Hub
  5. ^ "Mandy Moore's 'Wild Hope' Set for May Release". KEYT3 Santa Barbara. 8 February 2007. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 12 August 2014. 
  6. ^ "Rachael Yamagata - He Loves You Deep Inside". YouTube. 2009-11-24. Retrieved 2014-08-12. 
  7. ^ "Rachael Yamagata - New Album Teaser". Billboard. 2008. 
  8. ^ [1] Archived October 10, 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "SOAPnet.com". March 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-02. 
  10. ^ [2][dead link]
  11. ^ "Rachael Yamagata :: Store". Rachaelyamagata.spinshop.com. Retrieved 2014-08-12. 
  12. ^ Cassadaga liner notes
  13. ^ [3] Archived May 18, 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ Lifestyle News, Wawzenek, Bryan. My Morning Jacket, Amy Lee, Weezer Cover the Muppets, Gibson.com, 27 June 2011.
  15. ^ Ruben, Josh. "JOSH'S MINDHOUSE". Retrieved 22 September 2011. 
  16. ^ "Here Comes The Reign Again: The Second British Invasion by Andrew Curry — Kickstarter". Kickstarter.com. 2014-07-03. Retrieved 2014-08-12. 
  17. ^ "Rachael Yamagata Filmography". Retrieved 2010-07-15. 

External links[edit]