The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Doris Cellar Isn't Your Run of the Mill Musician

3 min read

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With a big personality that exudes warmth, creativity and passion Doris Cellar of Freelance Whales is a new generation of the rock star. Cellar is full of lovable quirks ranging from crocheting mini flowers and bow ties to painting on her iphone, but it’s her music that shows who she really is.
Cellar and her band have come a long way in the last few years. From finding each other on Craigslist and through friends, Freelance Whales have moved from the subway platform of New York City to the stage of Coachella last summer and is now currently working on its sophomore album. The Freelance Whales’ first album, “Weathervine,” is available on iTunes and at most major stores. The band was featured in a Starbucks commercial and went on tour last summer of 2011 as an opening act to popular British band The Foals.

With Freelance Whales consisting of four men, Chuck Criss, Judah Dadone, Jacob Hyman and Kevin Read, Cellar jokes, “ Being the only girl is great, I give the guys their period all the time.”

The band itself is multi-instrumental from the banjo to the accordion; they can only be described as experimental pop of and the experience of seeing them live is one every lover of music should have.

When on stage Cellar has such a strong presence and a unique style that your eyes are consistently drawn to her and it’s not just because she is the only girl amongst a group of handsome and talented men.

With a growing fan base, the new album is sure to be successful and its success is sure to make the band a household name in music. But as we wait for that release Cellar has recently released some of her solo material on, which is now available for instant download at a bargain price of $5.

Playing music for as far back as she can remember, Cellar recalls that her dad used to take her out to a Greek night club where she would sing and dance on a stage with an old band and that money would be thrown at the floor and patrons broke plates at them. Though it sounds odd it seems fitting for this musicians past.

Graduating from the City College of New York with a Bachelor’s degree in music, Cellar plays as many instruments as she can get her hands on and has been writing her own music and recording in a home studio before she went on tour with her band.

Yet, weeks after being on tour at a stop in Austin, Texas, Cellar got the urge to begin writing again and picked up a ukulele from a store due to the smallness of the instrument and accessibility on the road. She wrote eight songs that year and the ukelele seems to be one of the main instruments she uses in her solo material.

Every one of her songs has a rawness that makes you as a listener feel the emotion that she is singing. Though not recorded in a professional studio it’s the quirk of knowing that one song was in fact recorded on her rooftop at 5a.m. that makes you feel a connection to her as she sings.

She also isn’t afraid of social media and often tweets on various issues that she cares about, the most recent one being against Fraking in New York State, to tidbits of her life.

By opening that form of communication Cellar in a sense is able to connect with new and old fans alike. Though she has big personality, Cellar is often shy when it comes to her solo material, but with a voice and talent like hers, hopefully Cellar will keep making music that brings immense pleasure to the ears. If good music is what you are looking for, make sure to go ahead and download her album.

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