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Raelee Nikole offering her Answers May 29 in East Village

Twenty-year-old singer/songwriter's debut full length

Raelee Nikole
Raelee Nikole

“My best local gig ever happened last year on my nineteenth birthday, when I was a final contestant in the San Diego County Fair’s Singer/Songwriter Competition,” says Raelee Nikole.

“Although I only performed two songs, I can still remember the surreal feeling of the entire lawn singing with me and clapping along. All of my closest friends and family were there to support, most of the other contestants were friends of mine, and afterwards, everybody sang me happy birthday and we all went on the Ferris wheel.”

Video:

"I Can't Make You Love Me"

Raelee Nikole covers Bonnie Raitt

Raelee Nikole covers Bonnie Raitt

Nikole says such support buoys her enthusiasm as she preps her debut full-length Answers, successfully fan-funded via Pledge Music and produced by Masen Larsen, who worked on Gregory Page’s most recent album.

“I’m not signed with a label, nor do I have any deals, sponsorships, or management. This album release is going to be completely organic, and really I like that. It has allowed my supporters to be a lot more involved than they would if this was being funded by a label.”

The initial plan was to record an EP. However, “When we announced the fundraiser to the public, and as I wrote more songs, the mood shifted to album. I can’t be sure about how many songs there will be exactly, but I can guarantee no less than eight.”

The release party for Answers happens May 29 at Moniker Warehouse in East Village, taking place just a few days before Nikole’s 20th birthday and choreographed as a rock ‘n’ roll debutante party.

“I envision a photo booth, red carpet, special guests for sure, and there will definitely be surprises. If somebody has never seen me live before, it’s going to be unlike any other performance…for anybody who does support local music, like I know San Diegans love to do, attending a musician’s album release is one of the best ways to do this. It really says, ‘I got you. I believe.’”

Though this will the Nikole’s debut album, she’s already had enough gig experience to share a dues-paying flipside to that “best local gig ever” story. “A few years ago, I was booked for a venue on the same night as a favorite band of mine was in town, during their U.S. tour. I told myself that it was a sacrifice. However, there ended up being zero people in the audience that night. They were probably all at the other show.”

As for other post-release plans, “I'll be playing shows for the very first time in Los Angeles, the Bay Area, Portland, and Seattle. That will be an entirely separate adventure.”

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Raelee Nikole
Raelee Nikole

“My best local gig ever happened last year on my nineteenth birthday, when I was a final contestant in the San Diego County Fair’s Singer/Songwriter Competition,” says Raelee Nikole.

“Although I only performed two songs, I can still remember the surreal feeling of the entire lawn singing with me and clapping along. All of my closest friends and family were there to support, most of the other contestants were friends of mine, and afterwards, everybody sang me happy birthday and we all went on the Ferris wheel.”

Video:

"I Can't Make You Love Me"

Raelee Nikole covers Bonnie Raitt

Raelee Nikole covers Bonnie Raitt

Nikole says such support buoys her enthusiasm as she preps her debut full-length Answers, successfully fan-funded via Pledge Music and produced by Masen Larsen, who worked on Gregory Page’s most recent album.

“I’m not signed with a label, nor do I have any deals, sponsorships, or management. This album release is going to be completely organic, and really I like that. It has allowed my supporters to be a lot more involved than they would if this was being funded by a label.”

The initial plan was to record an EP. However, “When we announced the fundraiser to the public, and as I wrote more songs, the mood shifted to album. I can’t be sure about how many songs there will be exactly, but I can guarantee no less than eight.”

The release party for Answers happens May 29 at Moniker Warehouse in East Village, taking place just a few days before Nikole’s 20th birthday and choreographed as a rock ‘n’ roll debutante party.

“I envision a photo booth, red carpet, special guests for sure, and there will definitely be surprises. If somebody has never seen me live before, it’s going to be unlike any other performance…for anybody who does support local music, like I know San Diegans love to do, attending a musician’s album release is one of the best ways to do this. It really says, ‘I got you. I believe.’”

Though this will the Nikole’s debut album, she’s already had enough gig experience to share a dues-paying flipside to that “best local gig ever” story. “A few years ago, I was booked for a venue on the same night as a favorite band of mine was in town, during their U.S. tour. I told myself that it was a sacrifice. However, there ended up being zero people in the audience that night. They were probably all at the other show.”

As for other post-release plans, “I'll be playing shows for the very first time in Los Angeles, the Bay Area, Portland, and Seattle. That will be an entirely separate adventure.”

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