Home / News / Rachael Yamagata to Release New Album, Tightrope Walker, on September 23rd via Frankenfish Records/Thirty Tigers‏

Rachael Yamagata to Release New Album, Tightrope Walker, on September 23rd via Frankenfish Records/Thirty Tigers‏

Acclaimed singer, songwriter, and musician Rachael Yamagata will release her fourth album, entitled Tightrope Walker, on September 23rd via Frankenfish Records/Thirty Tigers. The album will be available for pre-order tomorrow, July 22nd, from all major DSPs. Those who preorder the album will receive the album’s lead single “Nobody” as an instant grat download.

With its themes of perseverance, relentless, and owning your own power, Tightrope Walker (Yamagata’s first album since 2011’s Chesapeake), represents an artistic rebirth both lyrically and sonically for the Woodstock, NY-based artist. “When [French high-wire artist] Philippe Petit was asked why he walked the tightrope he responded, ‘Why – there is no why.’ This really f–d me up,” Yamagata says.  I was devoting an entire theme of the tightrope walker to my new record: defending the weary spirit and empowering the underdog while using the high wire artist as a symbol of how to get through, but it hadn’t yet occurred to me to contemplate the why of getting through or the why of even my own art.  Beyond that, why continue in an industry that I’d not yet conquered or pursue this when you have to give up so much to do so?  Something propels our survival and search for happiness and it’s this desire to overcome what threatens to break us that continues to fascinate me. If you’re thinking of quitting – anything – this is your record,” she says.

The album began when Yamagata had what she describes as a “mystical vision” at home in Woodstock. “I’m not religious, but I am spiritual and I love the signs,” she says. “Did I ‘see’ a sweat lodge where strangers experienced a cathartic healing after facing their own traumas? Yes I did. They weren’t pains devoted solely to heartbreak in relationships, but also to the desperation of a youth getting pummeled by loss of a loved one, failure of a dream, betrayal by those you thought were your allies – human condition struggles. I started to write and ‘Tightrope Walker’ was born. My musical identity started to shift and the sweetheart of tragedy transformed into grit and hope. My lyrics have become both vicious and optimistic and my musical identity has gone off the map. A 16 year-old indie rocker recently described it as ‘a new genre of music,’ and that suits me just fine.”

For her second independent release, Yamagata launched a PledgeMusic campaign (ongoing since 2014) and became producer, den mother, and manager, turning her “hermit house in the woods” into a studio. In the process, she rounded up an illustrious array of guest performers, including such Grammy Award winners as Owen Biddle (The Roots), Matt Chamberlain, and Victor Indrizzo, as well as celebrated musicians Ben Perowsky (Rufus Wainwright), Zach Djanikian (Amos Lee), Kevin Salem (Dumptruck, Yo La Tengo), Russell Simins (Jon Spencer Blues Explosion) and others. Yamagata self-produced Tightrope Walker and brought her long-time producer, 3x-Grammy nominee John Alagia (John Mayer, Dave Matthews Band) onboard halfway through the process as co-producer.

Yamagata also co-directed and co-edited the video for the album’s first single “Nobody,” which premieres today. Watch it HERE. The video uses dance to symbolize the transformative power of breaking through as we harness the energy of our guides/ muse/ inner potential and go after our dreams.To tackle the project, Yamagata called upon her Philadelphia friends Kate Carbone and Michele Romond. “Kate runs Hoopskirt Productions and Michele has been a longtime choreographer and dancer at Chez Dance Studios in New Jersey,” Yamagata says. “The Chez Dance team had previously used my songs in performances and it has always been a dream of mine to find a way to collaborate.”

Despite having the impressive resume of a major-label artist who turns independent, becomes a PledgeMusic legend, gets profiled in two Berklee College of Music marketing classes, performs for President Obama, earns praise from artists like Gregory Colbert and gurus like Deepak Chopra, and who has played Carnegie Hall and Madison Square Garden and shared stages with Patti Smith, Michael Stipe and Pete Townshend, what defines Yamagata most is this: “I have fully stepped into my role as healer, optimist, entrepreneur, writer, producer, and spirited badass. And that is my ‘why,'” she says.

Yamagata will hit the road for an extensive North American tour this fall. Tickets go on sale tomorrow, July 22nd at 10:00am local time HERE. Please see below for all upcoming tour dates.


Nashville, TN

Mercury Lounge


Atlanta, GA



Charlottesville, VA

The Southern


Philadelphia, PA

Union Transfer


Washington, DC

The Howard Theatre


Brooklyn, NY

Music Hall of Williamsburg


New York, NY

Bowery Ballroom


Pawtucket, RI

The Met


Portland, ME

Port City Music Hall


Toronto, ON

Velvet Underground


Pontiac, MI

The Pike Room


Chicago, IL

Thalia Hall


Madison, WI

High Noon Saloon


Minneapolis, MN

Triple Rock Social Club


Dallas, TX

Club Dada


Houston, TX

White Oak Music Hall


Austin, TX



Denver, CO

Larimer Lounge


Salt Lake City, UT

Urban Lounge


Seattle, WA

Tractor Tavern


Vancouver, BC

Fox Cabaret


Portland, OR

Star Theater


San Francisco, CA

The Independent


Santa Ana, CA

Constellation Room


Los Angeles, CA

Teragram Ballroom

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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