Rachael Yamagata. RCA Victor.

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

This powerful debut is a must for those who like the concept
of Norah Jones, yet prefer more bite. Yamagata writes
classic, piano-based pop in the finest confessional
tradition, with rich melodies illuminating poignant tales
like “I’ll Find a Way” and “Reason Why.” But her terrific
voice tells another story: Tempered by an apprenticeship on
the Chicago funk scene, Yamagata’s singing has a raspy,
insistent edge that electrifies the material. In the soaring
“I Want You,” she seems determined to break through the
edges of the song; the sunny “1963” could be a feel-good R&B
classic. Add pithy lyrics that evoke the everyday grit of
relationships — the longing for a hug, the sight of a lover
walking out the door forever — and Happenstance can feel
uncomfortably true to life.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend