Ray LaMontagne

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Ray LaMontagne

LaMontagne at Prospect Park, July 12, 2006
Background information
Birth nameRaymond Charles Jack LaMontagne
Born(1973-06-18) June 18, 1973 (age 39)
Nashua, New Hampshire
GenresFolk, folk rock, folk blues
InstrumentsVocals, guitar, piano, harmonica
LabelsRCA
Notable instruments
Martin D-35, Bourgeois Guitar Country Boy w/Sitka Top, D-150, Custom DS-260, Victoria Parlor models.[1][2]
 
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Ray LaMontagne

LaMontagne at Prospect Park, July 12, 2006
Background information
Birth nameRaymond Charles Jack LaMontagne
Born(1973-06-18) June 18, 1973 (age 39)
Nashua, New Hampshire
GenresFolk, folk rock, folk blues
InstrumentsVocals, guitar, piano, harmonica
LabelsRCA
Notable instruments
Martin D-35, Bourgeois Guitar Country Boy w/Sitka Top, D-150, Custom DS-260, Victoria Parlor models.[1][2]

Raymond "Ray" Charles Jack LaMontagne (play /lɑːmɒnˈtn/; born June 18, 1973) is an American singer-songwriter. LaMontagne has released four studio albums, Trouble, Till the Sun Turns Black, Gossip in the Grain and God Willin' & the Creek Don't Rise. He was born in New Hampshire and was inspired to create music after hearing an album by Stephen Stills. Critics have compared LaMontagne's music to The Band, Van Morrison, Nick Drake, and Tim Buckley. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife and two children.

Contents

Early life

LaMontagne was born in Nashua, New Hampshire, in 1973. Despite his father's background in music, LaMontagne avoided it and spent time reading fantasy novels in the forest. In his early teens he lived in Morgan, Utah and was more interested in drawing images of Dungeons and Dragons than in his school work. [3] After graduating from high school, LaMontagne moved to Lewiston, Maine and found work in a shoe factory.[4]

Career

LaMontagne has a unique vocal style, which he says is created by singing through his gut instead of through his nose.[5][6] He cites Stephen Stills, Richard Manuel, and Rick Danko as strong musical influences while critics have compared LaMontagne's music to The Band, Van Morrison, Nick Drake, and Tim Buckley.[7][8]

1999 to 2005

LaMontagne was inspired to quit his job and begin a career as a singer-songwriter after listening to Stephen Stills' album Manassas.[9][10][11] LaMontagne began performing in 1999, while maintaining a part time job as a tutor.[9] In the summer of 1999, he recorded 10 songs for a demo album that was sent to various local music venues including Maine's Oddfellow Theater, where he was hired as an opening act for John Gorka and Jonathan Edwards. A business executive introduced LaMontagne to Chrysalis Music Publishing and they recorded an album and sold it to RCA Records in the USA and Echo Records in the UK[12]

In 2004 LaMontagne recorded the album Trouble with producer Ethan Johns and it was released on RCA Records. The album featured performances by Sara Watkins and Jennifer Stills, daughter of musician Stephen Stills.[13] The album sold over 250,000 copies in the USA and 500,000 worldwide.[4][14][15] During a 2005 tour, LaMontagne performed on the TV show Austin City Limits.[16]

An EP of LaMontagne's performance at the Bonnaroo Music Festival was released in 2005 and his song "All the Wild Horses" was part of the soundtrack for the TV series Rescue Me and the 2009 film The Boys Are Back. His song "Trouble" appeared in the TV series Alias and his song "Jolene" was heard in the credits of the 2010 film The Town. His song "Hold You in My Arms" was featured in the 2006 movie, She's The Man.[17]

In 2005, he performed at two charity events, a NYC fundraiser for the victims of Hurricane Katrina and at the "Warren Haynes Christmas Jam".[18][19]

2006 to the present

LaMontagne performing in Dublin, January 2007

LaMontagne's second album, Till the Sun Turns Black, was released in August 2006 and featured horn and string sections on several of the songs with Rachael Yamagata providing additional vocals on the song "Barfly". The album peaked at #28 on the Billboard 200 album chart, selling 28,000 copies in its first week of release.[20] The album spawned the single, "Three More Days" and in 2006 LaMontagne performed on The Tonight Show.[citation needed]

The song "Till the Sun Turns Black" was featured on the television show "ER",[21] and the songs "Lesson Learned" and "Within You" appeared on the CW drama "One Tree Hill". His song "Be Here Now" was heard on the trailer for the movie Away From Her, in the film 27 Dresses, on the TV shows Bones and Covert Affairs.[citation needed]LaMontagne performed at KYSR's Lounge for Life charity concert on October 5, 2006 at the House of Blues in West Hollywood, California. He also auctioned off one of his guitars on eBay for its charity auction. Funds raised from the concert and auction went to breast cancer research.[22]

LaMontagne released his third studio album, Gossip in the Grain on RCA Records in 2008, and it debuted at #3 on the Billboard Charts with 60,000 units sold. Working again with producer Ethan Johns, the album featured LaMontagne's touring band of Jennifer Condos on bass, Eric Heywood on guitar, and Ethan Johns on drums and guest vocals from singer/songwriter Leona Naess.[23][24]

LaMontagne at The Sage Gateshead in 2009

The song "You Are the Best Thing" was featured in the movie I Love You, Man and in the television series One Tree Hill. LaMontagne performed on Saturday Night Live in March 2009.[25] The song "Sarah" appeared on an episode of House. His song "Let it be Me" was featured on the television series Parenthood and was included on the Parenthood soundtrack in 2010. It was also used in an episode entitled "JJ", from the sixth season of Criminal Minds (TV series).

LaMontagne's self produced studio album, God Willin' & the Creek Don't Rise (Ray Lamontagne and the Pariah Dogs), was released in August 2010.[26] In December 2010, LaMontagne received Grammy nominations and won the award for Best Contemporary Folk Album.

In August 2010, he performed at a Nashville, TN, charity event to raise money for victims of a local flood.[citation needed] The song, "Empty", appeared on an episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent in 2010 and was heard during the film credits for the movie The Conspirator. It also appeared in Tony Kaye's film Detachment in 2011, released in the US in 2012. LaMontagne performed on the program Live from Abbey Road in October 2006.[citation needed]

In 2011 Ray sang a duet with Irish singer Lisa Hannigan on the song "O Sleep", one of the tracks from her Choice Music Award-nominated album, Passenger.

Awards

For his debut album, LaMontagne won four awards, including three Boston Music Awards (Best Male Singer/Songwriter, Album of the Year, and Song of the Year) and an XM Nation Music Award for Acoustic Rock Artist of the Year. LaMontagne has received a nomination from the Pollstar Concert Industry Awards for Best New Touring Artist, the BRIT Awards for International Breakthrough Act, the MOJO Awards for Best New Act, and was given the title of Best Voice in 2006 by Esquire.

In December 2010, LaMontagne received two Grammy nominations and won the award for Best Contemporary Folk Album.

Personal life

LaMontagne lives in a farmhouse in western Massachusetts with his wife and two children.[27] He refers to himself as a "very private person", and rarely gives interviews.[28]

Discography

Studio albums

References

  1. ^ Fretbase, Ray Lamontagne's Guitar - The Martin D-35
  2. ^ Pantheon Guitars
  3. ^ Martin, Gavin (September 2004). "Ray LaMontagne: Troubled Soul and Backwaters Blues from Camera-Shy Maine Man". UNCUT. 
  4. ^ a b "Ray LaMontagne: Looking for trouble". The Independent. 2007-05-13. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/profiles/ray-lamontagne-looking-for-trouble-448564.html. 
  5. ^ "Ray LaMontagne: Who Is He?". The Sunday Times. 
  6. ^ "The 2006 Esky Music Awards". Esquire Magazine. April 2006. 
  7. ^ Jurek, Thom. "Ray LaMontagne: Till the Sun Turns Black (review)". Allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/album/r849659. 
  8. ^ Hoard, Chris (August 21, 2006). "Ray LaMontagne: Till the Sun Turns Black (review)". http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/raylamontagne/albums/album/11203936/review/11216345/till_the_sun_turns_black. 
  9. ^ a b Williamson, Nigel (September 2004). "Old School, New Class". The Times. 
  10. ^ "One to Watch: Ray LaMontagne". The Fly. September 2004. 
  11. ^ "Q&A Ray LaMontagne". SoundSpike. June 2011. 
  12. ^ "Ray LaMontagne: Biography". AllMusic. http://www.allmusic.com/artist/ray-lamontagne-p96200/biography. 
  13. ^ See Trouble album liner notes.
  14. ^ "The Billboard 200". Billboard. September 17, 2005. 
  15. ^ "Ray Lamontagne Profile". http://www.raylamontagne.com/profile.php. [dead link] Last accessed October 15, 2006
  16. ^ "Austin City Limits - Ray LaMontagne". Austin City Limits. https://austincitylimits.org/archives-artistspages/artists/all/item/root/raylamontagne. Retrieved 2010-10-26. 
  17. ^ "Internet Movie Database - The Town". IMDB. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0840361/soundtrack. Retrieved 2010-12-22. 
  18. ^ "From the Big Apple to the Big Easy: The Concert for New Orleans". http://www.fromthebigappletothebigeasy.com/.  Last accessed October 15, 2006
  19. ^ "Warren Haynes Presents: The X-Mas Jam". http://www.xmasjam.com/2005/index.php.  Last accessed October 15, 2005
  20. ^ "Dylan Earns First No. 1 Album Since 1976". http://www.billboard.com/bbcom/search/google/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003117383.  Last accessed October 9, 2006
  21. ^ "RCA Records Official website". http://www.rcarecords.com/.  Last accessed October 10, 2006
  22. ^ "Ray LaMontagne Official Site". http://www.raylamontagne.com/.  Last accessed October 24, 2006.
  23. ^ Hasty, Katie (June 3, 2008). Ray LaMontagne Works Against The 'Grain' Billboard. Retrieved on June 4, 2008.
  24. ^ "Ray LaMontagne Tour Dates". Idiomag.com. 2009-02-01. http://www.idiomag.com/peek/62255/ray_lamontagne. Retrieved 2009-02-05. 
  25. ^ "Ray LaMontagne Letterman Appearance". YouTube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0L62d3QOS3c. Retrieved 2009-08-16. 
  26. ^ "Ray LaMontagne". Columbia Records UK. http://www.columbia.co.uk/artists/ray_lamontagne/. Retrieved 2010-10-26. 
  27. ^ "Ray LaMontagne, Gossip in the Grain, Exclaim.ca interview". http://www.idiomag.com/artist/ray_lamontagne#/43432/1/. 
  28. ^ Huxley, Phill (March 5, 2005). "Ray LaMontagne @ Rescue Rooms 03/03/05". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/content/articles/2005/03/04/entertainment_music_reviews_2005_03_ray_lamontagne_feature.shtml. 

External links