Jillian Rae is a multi-talented violinist, lead vocalist, and songwriter whose creative and dynamic style of violin playing, along with her lifelong experience as a performer, lend her a captivating stage presence. She has an innate ability to create hook-laden tunes affirming the positives of life in the face of struggle and disappointment.
Like many of Minnesota’s finest musicians, Jillian Rae grew up in the north, on the Iron Range – an environment as open to country, folk (and yes, polka) as it is to pop, rock and blues. Growing up in a music-loving household, Jillian was hooked early when she began taking violin lessons at age 7. From there, she began to sing, dance, perform, and has been working hard at perfecting her art ever since.
The ultimate reward for her years of musical passion and pursuit is the ability to give back. After years of study, performing and teaching, Jillian opened a music school, The Music Lab, in 2011 with her pal and fellow musician, Josie Just. Located in Minneapolis’ Nokomis neighborhood, The Music Lab is Jillian’s vehicle for passing on all she has learned – actively teaching voice, violin and viola to youth and adults, with (of course) an emphasis on performance.
Jillian has been a heavy hitter in the Minnesota music scene for years, playing with as many musicians as humanly possible. In the past, she had been known to lend her fiddle chops in the Duluth-based band Two Many Banjos, and also spent some time fronting the local pop country staple, The Killer Hayseeds, on lead vocals and fiddle. Currently, when she isn’t performing with her own band, you can still catch her playing fiddle and singing with a number of bands around town: Corpse Reviver (Early American Folk, Bluegrass), Steve Kaul & The Brass Kings (Folk Revisionist), Brian Just Band (’60’s California Pop), The Fiddle Heirs (5 fiddles and a bass), and The Blackberry Brandy Boys (Cosmic Country).
Get to know Jillian Rae from these radio interviews:
Northern Spirit Radio: Music Genre ADD (8/2/2015)
Jefferson Public Radio: Jillian Rae Live Session (6/6/2014)
KQAL: The Live Feed featuring Jillian Rae (Summer 2014)
Cities ’97: Oake and Keri Interview Jillian Rae (8/13/2014)