Rachel Garlin Explores A 1940’s Love Affair Between Women With ‘The Ballad Of Madelyne & Therese’

Singer/songwriter Rachel Garlin has announced that she will release The Ballad of Madelyne & Therese, a song cycle built around two women having a love affair in 1940s New York City, on July 21, 2023.

An out and proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, Garlin has crafted “a sonic work of historical fiction about forbidden love” set against “war-torn, socially-staid 1940’s America.” For the album The Ballad of Madelyne & Therese, vocalist, guitarist, and frontwoman Garlin is backed by a full band that features bassist/co-producer Jonny Flaugher (Lady Blackbird), organist Kenneth Crouch (Eric Clapton, Mariah Carey), guitarist David Levita (Tim McGraw), drummer Michael Jerome (Better Than Ezra), along with special guests on horns and flutes.

The album The Ballad of Madelyne & Therese has recently been adapted for the stage as a one-woman show with public workshop performances at the Hotel Cafe in LA and The Lost Church in San Francisco, with more to come. 

Garlin says:

I’ve always been fascinated by stories of non-straight girls and women from eras long ago. As a kid, I scanned the cultural scene for someone, anyone, who was like me — Pippi Longstocking? Punky Brewster? Jo from Facts of Life? But there was rarely confirmation that the characters I admired were living outside of hetero-normativitiy. On a visceral level, I knew that many girls and women who came before me had identities that were outside the norm. That curiosity grew into an interest and study of the subcultures from 1940s that gave rise to LGBTQ+ living long before it had an acronym.

The Ballad of Madelyne & Theresa is an expansive work where each song can stand alone. As a suite, these songs have an overarching theme and a historical context. The new album follows 2021’s The State That We Are In and 2020’s Mondegreens.

Rachel Garlin will be playing select dates in support of The Ballad of Madelyne & Therese. 

Don’t Miss Rachel Garlin Live

July 13               The Lost Church         Santa Rosa, CA

November 22     Freight and Salvage          Berkeley, CA