Rachel B Table for Three

To see Rachel B Table for Three put on a show is as if being transported to a 1920s speakeasy, but the aesthetic of the band is Grease merged with country rock. This musical couple is only two of the five members of this ensemble, but their rockabilly American roots style music has the ability to light up a dimly lit coffee bar. Hearing Rachel, the lead singer, go back and forth between rough soul and high breathy notes was mesmerizing. The pitch and diction was very precise and the vibrato in her voice sounded on point with the chosen cover songs for the set list. The guitarist Greg and her have great chemistry and their cohesive nature shined fully on stage. I loved how he used a looper when executing more layered and complicated songs. Greg’s electric guitar skills are exemplary and he doesn’t over power Rachel’s voice. From an audience perspective, their musical presence felt effortless and appeared as if they’ve always been in a band together. It was nice seeing such a connection from only two people performing.

Embrace the heart warming experience of getting to know Rachel (R) and Greg Billingsley (G) more in depth.

1.) How long have you been playing and have you always performed alongside your husband? 
R: "I [haven't] actually. We've been playing for 5 years together [as] the five of us. When we started, another guitarist [named] Jamie Lockhart [and I had performed] together in coffee shops and stuff. [Altogether] we played for like 10 years. Greg had to stay home and take care of our kids so I could go be [in] a band."  
G: "So I stayed home and watched them while they were little and Rachel would come out and sing. Once they got old enough, then we would have a sitter or like tonight they're now old enough."  
R: "Our oldest is 14, so they can be alone."  
G: "They can handle themselves and so now I get to play with them (the band) which is kind of fun. This is my third year. Yeah."  
R: "Third year to play altogether, but Rachel B has been playing together 5 years."  
G: "But then you personally have been singing all your life." 
R: "Yes, my mom was a concert pianist. I grew up on the road with her traveling and singing gospel music. It's in my blood. That is a lot of my influences [with] this genre [and] this style. This is what I enjoy." 

 2.) What do you feel makes your music unique or different? 
R: "I know that we do covers, but I have written my songs as well. It's more kind of Americana bluegrass style when I write stuff. This [is] music I love to share. I think what makes it unique is my delivery of it. It's got a little 'gospely' to it, so hopefully that makes it stand out a little bit and I have a great time."  
G: "We try to work the music to her voice. It's a mix of jazz, blues [and] a little bit of rock and roll in there. We kinda try to mix it together and [we] love taking songs that we hear and then kind of work 'em up our style as well."  

3.) Is there a deeper meaning behind the name Rachel B Table for Three?  
R: "So, we're actually fading out [the name] Table for Three. We're just going to do Rachel B Band because we started with Rachel and there's three of us ya know? So it was Rachel B Table for Three, but now we have more members and we're like 'Okay that doesn't work.' If only two of us show up, ya know? It's confusing. The guys were like, 'Oh, I don't know?' [about the name and I said,] 'It's cute. Let's do it.' So we did [Rachel B Table for Three] for 3 or 4 years. This summer we were like 'Let's go by Rachel B Band especially with COVID and nobody knows how many of us are coming. Is it table for two or table for five?' So, it was just a funny name. It just came to me."  

4.) Describe what inspires you musically?  
R: "Lots of things. I'd say the foundation of my background being gospel music. Big voices inspire me. Aretha Franklin, Billie Holiday [and] Lake Street Dive. She's amazing. I just have a girl crush on her. Very large female voices I'm inspired by. I'm inspired a lot by even old hymns because that's the basis of blues. So blues, gospel, jazz [and] classical. I enjoy all of it except for country. "  
G: "The closest song we do to country is Nora Jones 'Lone Star' which is actually a jazz song and she does it in jazz piano. That's the closest country song."  
R: "[Our] influences are all over the map. We both enjoy different kinds of music."  
G: "For me from a guitar perspective, I [listen] from Led Zeppelin to ya know? I grew up in the 90s with Pearl Jam [and] even Guns N' Roses. So those were all my influences. [Also I like] Smashing Pumpkins."  

5.) Do you have a favorite song you like to sing or play?  
G: "You sing all sorts of songs, so I'll let you think about that. For me, John Mayer lately. I've been playing a lot of his stuff. Sometimes he gets better after being a little pop. Guitar-wise, he is incredible. He has been for years [and] one of the best guitar players I ever knew. That's probably the most popular person and [then] there's YouTube stars like Joey Landreth [and others]. They're these guys that are just amazing that have small followings, but [are] just incredible guitar players."  
R: "I'd probably go with just a classic like 'At Last'. I really feel that one and that whole genre."  
G: "Which comes as a problem because I don't know how to play 'At Last'. Our other guitarist Jamie plays that one."  

6.) What inspired you to continue on the path of music to where you are now? Where do you plan to take it?  
R: "You know what? I did the whole Nashville thing. I got signed to a label. I was 19. I was there doing that whole thing and I ended up in a program where they kinda wanted to spit me out as the next Jewel. They wanted me to dye my hair a different color and it slowly was like, 'This does not feel right.' I was sitting in my apartment and I was like, 'What do I do now?' because I'm supposed to come here. This is what's supposed to 'make it.' Ya know? I've made it, but I'm not happy. [I thought to myself] 'Where did I feel happy musically? Where did I feel supported?' Fayetteville, Arkansas. I'm from California. So I bounced around. I've been here for a long time, but I came back here. I started working at a geriatric hospital in the kitchen just trying to figure it out. I started playing with a guy I played with before. From that, a band came out of it and they ended up going on tour. I ended up getting to do all the things I wanted to do that I thought Nashville was going to give me. I am just so grateful for us. The Lord made a way for me. He was watching out for me and got me where I needed to be, which is not where I thought I needed to be. Since meeting Greg, we've done some albums together. I just appreciate that he also feels that even with having family, having girls, and all this stuff that music is still a necessary form of our lives. So we just make a place for it."  
G: "Probably one of the best pieces of advice I got [told] before we got married was 'You need to make sure your wife has an outlet to sing. No matter what it is, figure it out. No matter what you're doing, figure it out.'"  
R: "Because I cease to be me if I'm not singing."  
G:"That was always in my mind, 'Hey let's work to make sure that you had an outlet.' Somewhere you could sing. It doesn't have to be huge auditoriums. It can be even coffee shops or just enjoy it.  Even with kids, it was, 'Hey, you go sing and I'll watch 'em. The house is going to be a wreck when you get home, but the kids are going to be safe.' We're gonna make it. We've really tried to do that as much as we can."

To get in touch with the soon to be Rachel B Band, they can be contacted through Facebook or Instagram. There are also multiple videos of them throughout YouTube.

Links on Instagram:
11/13/20 @  Six Twelve Coffee House & Bar - Rachel B Table for Three https://www.instagram.com/p/CHk6v8uB72V/ 

Never stop asking yourself, “What makes me happy?” When you discover the answer then you will find the secret to your own happiness. Go get your brain drained to something that makes you want to get up in the morning. Stay sane & love you all.

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