Rae was the lead singer and songwriter of the Toronto alt-country band, Crybaby. Lasting just three years, Crybaby won serious critical acclaim with their 1996 debut, Paintings. Toronto's Eye Magazine placed it alongside offerings from Lyle Lovett and Blackie & The Rodeo Kings as one of the Top Three Country Albums of 1996, with scribe Greg Boyd praising 'the weary sensuality ' of Rae's vocals. The band also elicited kudos south of the border, specifically at Austin's famed South By Southwest festival in 1997. Among the many positive reviews, visiting Nashville Scene writer, Michael McCall, characterized their music as 'tangy country soul' and called Crybaby one of the 'notable moments' at the festival. Though it wasn't til the early 90s that Rae started writing songs, it's clear that her varied life experiences help account for the depth of her work. Born in London, Ontario, Canada, Rae has lived in 8 cities across the country and also London, England. An art school drop out from the Emily Carr College of Art in Vancouver, Rae followed the wind and the wheel across Canada, landing in Toronto and finally Hamilton. After the loss of her closest friend in the early 90s, Rae began to write songs and eventually hooked up with Clive MacNutt, lead guitar (the Nils), and Richard Gregory, bass (the Lawn), and the three created Crybaby. After disbanding the group in late '97, Rae retreated from the local club circuit to re-enter the studio of noted Toronto producer Peter J. Moore, whom she'd worked with on Paintings. This sonic sculptor has a well-deserved reputation for getting the best out of strong female voices, such as Cowboy Junkies' Margo Timmins, Holly Cole and Oh Susanna. Moore suggested recruiting an elite roster of Toronto players: bassist Peter Cardinali, drummer Kevan McKenzie, keyboardist Dave McMorrow, and guitarists Rick Whitelaw and Rob Philipp. Their credits include the likes of Sylvia Tyson, James Taylor, Rough Trade and Anne Murray, and their seasoned professionalism spurred Billing to new heights. 'Playing with them, I felt I was looking over a fence onto a whole new vista,' recalls Rae. 'My voice opened right up.' The results are immediately audible on Rae Billing, an album that is again causing the critics to reach for superlatives. Toronto's NOW magazine writer Tim Perlich awarded it four stars. On his cool Top Ten list of 'Anti-Hits', The Toronto Sun/CANOE's John Sakamoto placed 'Walking In A Dream', the closing cut from the album, as Number 3, describing it as 'a heartbreaking rumination on a mind 'slipping sideways.' On a list populated only by Brits and Americans, Sakamoto praised Rae's album as 'an astonishingly assured solo debut.' Walking in a Dream is just one highlight on a disc devoid of lowlights. From the gently haunting lilt of opening track 'Ribbons On The Wind,' and the poignant ballad 'Old Game,' to the toe-tapping up-tempo 'Long Streets,' and the gospel passion of 'Smiles and Little Knives,' this is an album without filler. Described by music editor Mary Dickie of Eye Magazine, it is 'as fresh as ever... full of wide-open spaces and bittersweet emotions.'