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“Both are fond of the witty pop standards of the 1930s and ’40s, and Vilray can write fluently and cleverly in that vintage style.” – New York Times


Rachael & Vilray has been a musical act ever since Rachael saw me play a very short set of covers and said she wanted in. Her voice is singular, agile, beautiful, and, as I found when we started performing original music, the most rewarding instrument to write for. In the seven years since we began, our configuration has ranged from an intimate duo to the nine-piece formation you hear on six of these tracks. No matter the set-up on stage, my friend Rachael and I sing right to each other, tell stories about how the songs came to be and relate them to the many old love songs we love to love.

There’s a lyric on this album that summarizes the qualifications of the musicians who made it: “We’ve all heard the legends.” Each of us has keenly absorbed the work of a pantheon of jazz giants that inspires and informs this music. Some names suggest a constellation of techniques, flourishes, and accents that illuminate a corner of the musical universe. And if these original songs provide any light, it is in great part a reflection of some past brilliance that we admire.

Eleven of these songs are my own, and I’ll say a bit about the thrill of writing in this style. I love stories told by characters. The era’s repertoire is rooted in songs for theater and films, so a lot is written in the first person and from the perspective of a dramatist persona, rather than reflecting an omniscient narrator or the writer themself. I also love how the music of language is explored in this idiom. I love to write songs about feelings that feel good to sing.

– Vilray, New York City, Summer 2022

Learn More: https://rachaelandvilray.com/


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