Jillian Rae with a young violin student in 2015.
Full band concert at St. Mane Theatre on Saturday, July 13
Lanesboro Arts presents an evening with the Jillian Rae Band at the historic St. Mane Theatre in downtown Lanesboro on Saturday, July 13, at 7:30 p.m. Returning to St. Mane after a memorable 2016 performance, Jillian Rae is a multi-talented singer-songwriter and vocalist that has cultivated a reputation as the go-to violin accompanist for dozens of roots, rock, and Americana bands (including The Okee Dokee Brothers, Corpse Reviver, Adam Levy, and Steve Kaul & the Brass Kings). An Iron Range native based out of Minneapolis, Minn., Rae assembled her own band in 2013 that performs a palatable mix of roots, Americana and pop. Expanding on her upbringing as a classical violinist, Rae has become one of the most powerful and unique voices in the Twin Cities music scene.
In her new full-length album “I Can’t Be the One You Want Me to Be,” Rae has pivoted from the country-tinged musical stylings from her 2017 EP, “Wanderlust.” With contributions from Matt Patrick, as well as drummer Alex Young, guitarist and longtime collaborator Eric Martin, and bassist Jimmy Osterholt, the new record is saturated in heavy grooves, moody arrangements, and unflinching honesty — and, of course, her voice, which has never sounded better, more dynamic, or more true than it does on this collection of songs.
This concert will also serve as the capstone event of a mini-residency with Rae, who will be participating in various storytelling, songwriting and music events throughout the week of July 8 with Lanesboro-area residents as part of the Performing Artist Engagement Program supported by the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council. Rae’s flexible and accessible approach to songwriting will serve as a catalyst for individuals of any ability in the Lanesboro community to create and learn with confidence.
• Rae will visit the Surprise Sculpture (12-2 p.m.) and hold open studio (3-5 p.m.) sessions on Tuesday, July 9, to help lead art-making projects while sharing her experiences as a working artist with participants.
• On Thursday, July 11, Rae will give a mini-performance at Kenilworth Apartments, following SEMCAC Senior Dining.
• Rae will participate in a public creative songwriting workshop at the High Court Loft on Thursday, July 11, at 6:30 p.m. The regular open mic at High Court Pub will take place following the workshop.
• The Over the Back Fence Variety Show will feature Rae as a musical guest, and she will perform alongside community members in the show. Those interested in participating may attend rehearsals on Tuesday, July 11, and Friday, July 12, at 5:30 p.m. at the St. Mane Theatre. The variety show will take place on Friday, July 12, at 7:30 p.m. at the St. Mane Theatre.
• On Saturday, July 13, Jillian will present a capstone concert with her full band in the listening room environment of the St. Mane Theatre at 7:30 p.m.
Rae co-founded and teaches at Music Lab, a music school offering workshops and private lessons to students of all ages. Over the years, she has also taught several master classes, led workshops about the business of being an artist, and is an advocate for the power of creativity to bring people together and overcome barriers. Rae’s flexible and accessible approach to songwriting serves as a catalyst for individuals of any ability in the Lanesboro community to create and learn with confidence.
Rae’s songs are full of heartache, truth, and often a beguiling sense of playfulness. Her songwriting is not easily pigeonholed, and neither is her playing. You can find her playing country fiddle on one tune, rock guitar on the next, or driving her violin through synthy guitar effects on another. As engaging as her arrangements can be, the real highlight of her records or live performances is always her effortlessly powerful voice. When Jillian Rae sings, you believe her. Music journalist Youa Vang called Rae a heavy hitter whose “voice will stay with you long after the show is over.”
Tickets are $15 ($12 for Lanesboro Arts members) and sold online at www.lanesboroarts.org, at Lanesboro Arts Gallery by calling 507-467-2446, and at the St. Mane Theatre box office beginning at 6:30 p.m. on the night of the performance.
This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through an Arts Tour grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.