Rachel Zylstra | Most of It Is True

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Most of It Is True

by Rachel Zylstra

"Michigan's answer to Nellie McKay," according to the Village Voice, Rachel captivates her audience with rich, edgy, alto vocals laced over driving piano work. Sort for yourself fact from fiction within this clever and intimate collection of songs.
Genre: Pop: Piano
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Lost
5:13 album only
2. Shiver
3:57 album only
3. The Prince
2:39 album only
4. Living in Fantasy
3:16 album only
5. Go Around
3:32 album only
6. Fortuneteller
4:55 album only
7. Time Like Snow
4:01 album only
8. Into This Town
3:37 album only
9. The Answer Lady
4:03 album only
10. Another Again
5:34 album only
11. So Fair
3:33 album only
12. Game
3:19 album only


Album Notes
"My days are numbered/ time slips by like snow/that melts on my windshield/as I drive myself home/I start to wonder/holding fast the wheel/when it stops falling/how will I feel"

The lines unfold with the pacing of well-spun prose, as self-conscious musings or as keen observations from the perspective of an unsuspecting character. Singer/songwriter Rachel Zylstra performs in a way that evokes the playful interaction of chamber music, bringing the piano to the forefront and showcasing her classical training. Having honed her dramatic flair on the theatrical stage during college, she fluidly relates to her audience with an easy self-deprecating charm that sharpens to intense emotional precision during each song's delivery.

She recorded and released her first collection of songs, Out the Window Next to Me, in 2000, and in 2001 received an honorable mention in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest for the song "Contentment" from that album. Her career continued to pick up steam when, in September 2001, she was accepted into the songwriting study program of the Contemporary Music Center on Martha's Vineyard. The opportunity afforded her a second release, The Vineyard Sessions, which receives regular airplay on local radio in Grand Rapids, MI, and was nominated for best local folk album at the 2003 WYCE Jammie Awards.

Having collaborated with Joe Spix for art and design (whose credits include work on albums by Robert Plant, Nelly, and others), Rachel released her first full-length album, Most of It Is True, on October 15, 2005. She performed at the legendary Bitter End in Manhattan's Greenwich Village to an enthusiastic crowd of over 100 people, sixty-two of whom purchased the album that night.

Most of It Is True is delivered cleverly, her piano echoing at times the quirky dissonance of Sondheim and Bernstein together with the intimacy of Joni Mitchell's autobiographical narrative. One gets the impression that this album was woven in the chill of a mid-western winter, mittens and all.

Rachel continues to write and has begun compiling songs for a fourth album. She is currently in the planning stages of a midwestern tour, spring of 2006.

For more information, visit www.rachelzylstra.com.



to write a review

sue leal

I Loved, Loved Loved it, did I say I loved it?
I really liked the variety of the songs on the CD. Usually you end up only liking one or two of the songs on a CD. I enjoyed everyone of them. I loved the fact that the songs were easy listening.

Suzanne Winter

Poignant and playful, thoughful and thought-provoking.
Zylstra's insightful lyrics and flowing piano music are well matched to enable the effortless move from poignant ("My days are numbered/Time slips by like snow/That melts on my windshield/As I drive myself home"--"Time Like Snow") to playful ("You said your name was Boo-Boo/And I mighta took it as a terrible sign/And thought you were an odd duck/But instead I said 'Well, you can call me Boo-Boo, too.'"--"Game"). Thoughtful and thought-provoking, many of her songs deal with the confusion of life and relationships for the emerging adult. When Zylstra sings, it is as though she is singing from your heart, not only her own.

Jeff Jackson

Rachel has a voice the penetrates your heart!
This CD is a wonderful buffet of the abilities of Rachel Zylstra as a singer/songwriter. Some songs captivate your heart with their warmth and honesty, some give you a tune in your head that you can't stop humming, and others share a story of confusion, desire, and longing. Rachel is to be classified with great female vocalists such as Nora Jones, Whitney Houston, Amy Grant, etc.

Hank Wait

I heard of this women through my friend john McgRail (also outstanding) and this is excellent music.


Most of it is good
The first two songs are amazing. Her voice is unique and beautiful. The lyrics were poetic, and her piano sounded great. After that however, her voice and style change so abruptly from song to song that it makes me feel as though Roger's and Hammerstein musical numbers and Veggie Tale sing-alongs are thrown into the middle of a Vanessa Carlton CD. Not that any of the songs were bad, but the lack of continuity in style felt a little jarring.Also, whenever she voiced over to harmonize to her own voice, it sounded unnatural, almost as if the two tracks are slightly out of phase with each other. She sings in several kinds of voices on the CD. When she uses her throaty lush voice, it works. When she switches into a nasaly child-like voice it feels out of place.

The songs that I think worked the best were the ones where she had other instruments filling in around her keyboard. She does better as a lead singer than as a solo artist. Trying to carry a fast song with no drum set is a hard task! Some of the songs would sound fuller and if they had a rhythm section to fuel her.

Some songs were good enough to listen to on repeat for hours. Others (such as "Living in Fantasy") just don't hook me in.

Overall, pretty good CD. Very talented young woman. I think that with the help of a good producer for her next CD she could really go places.