Artist of the day: Rebecca Zapen
Jacksonville native Rebecca Zapen, a recent transplant to St. Petersburg, has been playing guitar, violin and ukulele since childhood, when her musical parents played plenty of classical tunes around the house.
Her most recent album, Japanese Bathhouse, was inspired by -- you guessed it -- a Japanese bathhouse, and is full of quirky, jazzy ditties that sound like exquisite little snippiets of an indie-film soundtrack.
Zapen and her husband, local jazz pianist Jeremy Douglass, are expecting their first child in November. She had a good thing going in Jacksonville, receiving much local acclaim for her music, but says she's happy to be here, too.
"While Jacksonville was very good to me, I immediately felt drawn to St. Pete and found the music scene very welcoming," she said. "Not to mention how beautiful and beckoning the west coast of Florida is, all that blue water and a nice laid-back vibe."
This weekend she's in Nasvhille for the Just Plain Folks Music Awards, a massive celebration of independent music from almost every conceivable genre. Zapen is up for five awards: One for Best Cabaret Album (Japanese Bathhouse), one for Best Music Video (Smile), and three for songs Dolores, Smile and the title track.
Zapen has one more gig before leaving for Nashville; she'll be at Studio@620 in St. Petersburg for the opening reception for "Chromatophore: A Mail Art Exhibit." That show is from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. tonight. But she'll be back in Pinellas Couty for shows in September. You can catch her at Sacred Grounds in St. Petersburg on Sept. 18, and Dunedin's Purple Moon on Sept. 25.
Click here to listen to Rebecca Zapen's track Dolores.
-- Jay Cridlin, tbt*