Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

EXCLUSIVE: Interview With Musician, Rachael Sage

Sage discusses Carole King, being raised Jewish, her latest album ‘Next Destination’ and much more

By: Ashley Baylen

Published: May 7th, 2014 in Culture » Music » Interviews

EXCLUSIVE: Interview With Musician, Rachael Sage

What can be said about New York born and raised singer, songwriter, actress, dancer, and producer, Rachael Sage? We can begin with the impressive list of artistic talents included in the preceding sentence.

As a child, Sage studied drama and ballet before switching to a focus on music. After teaching herself to play piano, she began recording early demos on a 4-track recording system she received as a Bat Mitzvah gift.

With a passion for the performance arts, Sage continued to pursue various artistic platforms. In junior high, she gained admission to the School of American Ballet. Upon graduation, she attended Stanford University, earning a degree in Drama, and later obtained an MFA from the Actor’s Studio.

In 1997, Sage entered her music into a New York talent search, leading to recognition that placed her on the Village Stage at Lilith Fair alongside Sarah McLachlan, Ani DiFranco, and other notable female powerhouses.

While many aspiring musicians attempt to seek major label representation, Sage made the conscious decision to launch her own indie label close to the beginning of her career. This decision permitted full creative control and has secured her a very devout and loyal fanbase throughout North America and Europe.

On May 6, 2014, Sage released her 11th album through her label, MPress Records.

Before beginning her tour in New York City Thursday evening, Sage sat down with us to discuss her latest album entitled ‘New Destination’, her choice to launch MPress Records, finding inspiration in Carole King, and her Jewish heritage.

Find out more about Sage on her official website or follow her on Twitter @RachaelSage.

SHALOM LIFE (SL):You have been involved with the arts from a very young age having experience with dancing and even poetry. What is it about music that attracts you, more so than any other form of art?

RACHAEL SAGE (RS): The incredible thing about music is that everyone loves it. Really – I have yet to ever meet a single person who says “I don’t like” or “I don’t listen to music”. And for those who may not have heard much of it so far, there seems to generally be a degree of openness to listening to new sounds and styles of music that is unique to the art form itself. I grew up with one foot, literally, in the ballet world, and another in acting…but plenty of people didn’t have a taste for dance, necessarily, or didn’t feel an urge to see theater – regardless of my passion for both. Music seems to be unique in that way; and for that reason, it truly is the universal language and the one that has always attracted me the most!!

SL: Can you tell us a little bit about New Destination and how it came to be?

RS: “New Destination” contains several songs I began playing live, over the last 6 months or so of my touring. I wrote them on the road, and my band – The Sequins – and I started arranging them at soundchecks and in hotel rooms…until they just seemed ready to be recorded and presumably, part of my next full album. But when I wrote the title track, and was finally able to work on it with a producer I’ve long admired, Barb Morrison, it just felt like the EP was suddenly whole, and there was no reason to wait to have ten or twelve tracks to share these songs. In a lot of ways, my listeners really encouraged me to put out this EP because they kept coming up to the merch table after each set and asking if I was selling these songs yet! It feels good to be able to tour behind a new release without having to spend a year or more off the road to create a lengthier album; that will come, but in the meantime…it’s Spring, and I have new music so why be a ‘chazer’ about it! 🙂

SL: What sparked the idea to start your own label and become an independent artist?

RS: I think there was a confluence of several factors that sparked it, really. Foremost, I’ve always been interested in business as well as the arts; I used to sell painted jeans and jewelry and barrettes…I’ve been sales-minded and a craftswoman since my early teens, so I had a sense from a very young age just how gratifying it could be to create something expressive and also useful, and have someone actually pay you for it. I made about $5k in seventh grade selling earrings and bracelets to local boutiques, and even though it all went directly to the bank my parents were very encouraging and I think that empowered me in a very concrete way when I decided to be a professional recording artist. I already had a lot of chutzpah, was armed against rejection by sheer force of will, and eventually, became as leery of the Major Labels as I was excited to be in “the biz”, so by the time I graduated college I was pretty eager to make a CD independently and see how much I could do on my own. I’ve rarely looked back!

Check out the second half of our interview with Rachael Sage on the next page!

Seth Rogen, Andy Samberg, Among Those Headlining Just for Laughs Festival Seth Rogen, Andy Samberg, Among Those Headlining Just for Laughs Festival TrendingDave Franco and Conan O’Brien Discuss Shalom Life’s JILF List [VIDEO] Dave Franco and Conan O’Brien Discuss Shalom Life’s JILF List [VIDEO] TrendingAlicia Silverstone Didn’t Circumcise Her Son, Implies God Makes Our Bodies Perfect Alicia Silverstone Didn’t Circumcise Her Son, Implies God Makes Our Bodies Perfect Trending
 

Seth Rogen, Andy Samberg, Among Those Headlining Just for Laughs Festival

May 07, 2014 | By Sarah Bauder
Seth Rogen, Andy Samberg, Among Those Headlining Just for Laughs Festival

Rogen and wife, Lauren Miller will also host their ‘Hilarity for Charity’ fundraiser for the National Alzheimer’s Association at the festival.

Read More

Jewish Hall of Fame: Daniel Auster

May 07, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Jewish Hall of Fame: Daniel Auster

In honor of celebrating 66 years of Israeli independence, we look at the acting mayor of Jerusalem when it became part of the State of Israel

Read More

EXCLUSIVE: Interview With Musician, Rachael Sage

May 07, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
EXCLUSIVE: Interview With Musician, Rachael Sage

Sage discusses Carole King, being raised Jewish, her latest album ‘Next Destination’ and much more

Read More

Amy Schumer’s Interview With a 106-Year-Old Woman is Priceless [VIDEO]

May 07, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Amy Schumer's Interview With a 106-Year-Old Woman is Priceless [VIDEO]

Schumer and Downing attended the same University, despite their 73 year age difference.

Read More

Paul Rudd and Jon Hamm Had a Trivial Pursuit Showdown to Win a Girl’s Heart

May 07, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Paul Rudd and Jon Hamm Had a Trivial Pursuit Showdown to Win a Girl's Heart

The ‘Anchorman 2’ star tells Vanity Fair that he felt emasculated by Jon Hamm’s intelligence.

Read More

Bogus Deaf Interpreter the Face Of Tel Aviv’s Livelens App

May 07, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
 Bogus Deaf Interpreter the Face Of Tel Aviv's Livelens App

A new video sharing app has recruited Thamsanqua Janjtie, the infamous interpreter who signed nonsensical gestures during Nelson Mandela’s memorial service, as the face of it’s viral video ad campaign

Read More

Auschwitz Museum Hit By Theft And Vandalism

May 07, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Auschwitz Museum Hit By Theft And Vandalism

From stealing barbed wire that kept millions imprisoned, to writing "I had a smoke here" on the bunks, tourists have been leaving an unwanted mark on the already scarred grounds of Auschwitz

Read More

More Headlines