Live Concert Photography: Adeline with Ava Raiin at Elsewhere Rooftop 7/24/18
Over the course of this site’s eight year history, I’ve written quite a bit about the acclaimed New York-based dance music/neo-disco outfit Escort, which features their indomitable frontwoman and bassist Adeline Michele. Now, as you may recall that she actually released a solo album a few years ago; however, her forthcoming self-titled, full-length album slated for a November 9, 2018 release is something of a sonic and aesthetic reset button. “Emeralds” which I wrote about earlier this summer, was a slinky, 80s Quiet Storm-inspired bit of synth soul that recalled Prince and others centered around a sinuous bass line and Adeline’s sultry vocals. “Before,” was centered around a funky, disco-inspired bass line, twinkling keys, shimmering and arpeggiated synths and Adeline’s pop superstar vocals with the song heavily nods at Chaka Khan and Rufus‘ “Ain’t Nobody,” Mary J. Blige’s “Be Happy,” Patrice Rushen‘s “Feels So Real” and classic Chicago house music.
The renowned Escort frontwoman headlined an outdoor summer set at Elsewhere’s Rooftop that consisted of material from the new album, including “Emeralds,” and “Before” — and goddamn it, it self-assured and sexy as hell. Opening the night was the up-and-coming Minneapolis, MN-born, New York-based singer/songwriter Ava Raiin. Check out photos from the show below. (Yes, it’s been a very busy summer and I’m still catching up with photos from — well, everything.)
Ava Raiin is an up-and-coming Minneapolis, MN-born, New York-based singer/songwriter, who grew up singing in school choirs and split a rather unconventional childhood living with her single working mom in Minneapolis and her father, a pimp and entrepreneur in the outskirts of Houston, TX. After attending the University of Texas, Austin, Raiin relocated to New York, where she began to collaborate with a number of local producers and made the rounds performing across the open mic night circuit. As the story goes, after a number of fateful meetings and introductions led to Rain touring as a background singer with a diverse and eclectic array of artists including Blood Orange, Carly Rae Jepsen, Melissa Etheridge, The Chainsmokers, Bleachers, Lupe Fiasco, Chrisette Michele and others. After spending a couple of years of gigging, Rain took a break from music and took up a full-time job as a creative producer with an apparel brand in NYC, but eventually she quit to tour with Solange and work on her own music full-time. A friend of hers introduced her to producer David “Sisko” Siskovic and they instantly clicked — and along with Raiin’s best friend, singer/songwriter Sye Elaine Spence and producer/songwriter Robert Maxwell, the group collaborated to create a unique, abstract soul sound centered around lush organic arrangements and shimmering electronics. Solange called the Minneapolis-born, New York-based singer/songwriter an “audio-diva superhero” on her blog Saint Heron, and adding to a rapidly growing profile, Raiin has quickly amassed commercial success. Her self-titled, full-length debut landed at #9 on Billboard‘s R&B Album charts and ranked highly on 4 other Billboard charts. The album debuted at #6 on the iTunes R&B charts and Top 40 across all genres on iTunes — and this was done as a completely indie artist. Additionally, “Eagle Eye” was released to praise from Afropunk and was named as a Vimeo Staff Pick.