New show announced:
Friday, May 17th -- Berkeley, CA
2500 San Pablo Street
with Shelley Doty X-Tet
8pm / $10
Early Praise for Rachel's new album, "Put Out The Stars":
Balancing fragility and strength, introspection and unblinking observation, Oakland singer, songwriter, and pianist Rachel Efron sets her lambent, poetically charged lyrics to soft, caressing melodies. -- Andrew Gilbert, SF Chronicle >> link to full review
"It's not fair to leave a radio host speechless." -- Derk Richardson, during live performance and interview on KPFA's "Hear & Now"
Efron proves herself to be an exceptional singer-songwriter-pianist. Literate lyrics and haunting melodies make this collection special. Efron’s vocals are genuine, delicate and deeply moving. This is profoundly pleasurable pop with rich classical influences woven throughout. -- Paul Freeman, Mercury News >> link to full review
Rachel is a very good pianist and her beautiful plaintive voice is perfectly suited for her music. The piano intro for “Closing Day” with its unexpected chord changes is a good example of her clever compositions. -- A.J. Wachtel, The Noise: Music New England >> link to full review
On her new album, 'Put Out The Stars,' Efron breaks the imaginary pane of glass that separates herself from her listeners. -- Teresa Thomas, Ashland Mail Tribune >> link to full article
Efron has forged a distinct 'art-pop' sound for herself at the corner of jazz and pop with poetic lyrics and persuasive piano. -- Aimsel Ponti, Portland Press Herald
On May 5th, a dear friend came to my door with strawberries (vitamin C because I’d caught a cold on the planeride home from my East Coast tour) and Are You My Mother: A Comic Drama by Alison Bechdel, because, she said, she was “giving daughters presents on mother’s day this year.” Why that meant so much to me is the subject of a blog or many that I’m not yet equipped to write, but suffice it to say, I am deep inside Are You My Mother, swimming in its brilliance, obsessiveness, pain, self-doubt, hope. The ways I can’t relate to it are a relief; the ways that I can are, too.
The latest of the ways I can is a passage in which Bechdel submits a piece of her writing to a literary magazine, unaware that Adrienne Rich is the reader. Yes, dear reader, this is actually a blog about Adrienne Rich. She gets a response from Rich stating, “I think it would be useful to go back and ask yourself some real questions as to the meaning of each incident, and its context… Writing is a very long, demanding training, more hard work that luck. Strength to you.” I, too, have submitted my writing to Adrienne Rich… in my mind, that is. And interestingly, she has given me a very similar response to the one she gave Bechdel. My internalized Adrienne Rich lets me know when my work falls short of honesty.
The voice in my head is hers because she proved herself again and again to be so bravely honest. Throughout my life, for every place inside of myself that I feared but felt compelled to visit, it was as though Rich had just been there. She spoke to me from just ahead on the trail.
I have had many imaginary dialogues with her, including two of my recorded songs: “Solstice”, which responded to her poem, “Towards the Solstice”, and “High Tide: August, 2005”, which was simply a fantasy about looking out from her eyes upon a beach and upon her life. In the actual world, we never had contact, yet I will miss her dearly.