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Archive for February, 2007

Chris Martin

Sorry for such a late post today. As you know, Sundays are special ‘days off’ for me musically. Today I’m posting a song near and dear to my heart. This was the first Coldplay song I had ever heard, and at the time I had written them off. I wasn’t crazy about this song at first. In fact, it was a bit of an annoyance to me. However, after their second and third singles released, i realized this band was no one-hit-wonder. Now, I love this song.

This particular version is from Sounds Eclectic Too — an amazing radio program. So many great bands have been featured on ‘sounds eclectic’ albums. Go out and buy this album. It’s worth it.

From the Album: KCRW – Sounds Eclectic Too

Escaflowne – Sora

From Escaflowne

I wouldn’t dare try to pronounce the composers on this album, but here they are: Maaya Sakamoto,Yoko Kanno,Hajime Mizoguchi.
I’ve had this album for quite a while, and I’m not really sure why. I love the work of Hayao Miyazaki (Spirited away, howl’s moving castle), and for some reason while thinking of those, this song popped into my head. The japanese have an interesting sense about art and storytelling. In some sense, they’ve picked up where Disney left off with that sense of magic in movie making.

From the Album: Escaflowne

Tegan and Sara,Tegan & Sara
“Where does the good go”

I heard this song on an episode of Grey’s Anatomy from the second season. I thought it was a bit whiny, but still an interesting song. I’ve since excused the “whiny”. This song is a slight departure from other songs found so far on the site. I may be slowly diverting into other areas for a while. Please tell me the “sappy” tunes haven’t all been tapped? We’ll see.

From the Album: So Jealous

Zap Mama – Mupepe

Zap Mama

I have a soft spot in my heart for music with African influences. Zap Mama was started in Belgium and mixed European and Moroccan musical styles. This a capella female group has created some amazing music.

“Marie Daulne and Zap Mama make music that sounds like a one-woman multicultural movement, melding African percussion, American soul and European urbanity.” – Time

By the way, happy Valentine’s day.

From the Album: Adventures in Afropea, Vol. 1

Satchmo – Some Day

Louis Armstrong
“Some Day”

Today, I’ve decided to commemorate Black History Month. African-Americans have added to the richness of our national culture, and nowhere is this more true than in Music. The contributions African-Americans have made to music in this country is astounding. One of my favorite musicians of all time is Louis Armstrong (a.k.a. “Satchmo”). “Some Day” isn’t one of the more known of his works but is a special one for me. I used to listen to it while playing a WWII game, and since then it has always reminded me of WWII.

“The influence of Armstrong on the development of jazz is virtually immeasurable. Yet, his irrepressible personality both as a performer, and as a public figure later in his career, was so strong that to some it sometimes overshadowed his contributions as a musician and singer.

As a virtuoso trumpet player, Armstrong had a unique tone and an extraordinary talent for melodic improvisation. Through his playing, the trumpet emerged as a solo instrument in jazz and is used widely today. He was a masterful accompanist and ensemble player in addition to his extraordinary skills as a soloist. With his innovations, he raised the bar musically for all who came after him.” – Wikipedia

From the Album: Louis ‘Satchmo’ Armstrong: Portrait

Sia – Breathe Me

“Breathe Me”

A couple of months ago a friend introduced me to this song. I love the sound of the upright piano. There’s something very organic and unaffected about it. One person’s interpretation of this song: “it is about being alone and wanting a friend to talk to about the worries and cares in life.”

I could certainly agree to that.

From the Album: Colour the Small One

Nicole Nordeman – River God

Nichole Nordeman
“River God”

I listened to this song last night for the first time in about 2 years and knew I had to post it today.

When I first heard this song many years ago, I was struck by the lyrical skills of Nicole as well as her mastership tickling the ivory. The words she chose here fit perfectly with the high piano notes. The piano part is so affecting and stirring because she counters these high piano parts with really deep root chords at the end of her phrases — It will touch you.

From the Album: Wide Eyed

Nick Drake – Pink Moon

Nick Drake
“Pink Moon”

This song was originally released in 1974. The saddest thing about Drake’s music is that this song is being used to sell Volkswagens. He should be remembered for more than just a car commercial.

I relate to Nick’s style of guitar playing as itt closely resembles a style I used to play. I put Nick’s style of music in the same eccentric circle of artists such as Tom Waits, Neil Halstead, Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, and others.

Sadly, Nick committed suicide. He battled depression, kept his own hours, and had trouble sleeping during the latter years of his life. He was withdrawn, retrospective, and had a sense of disquiet about him. The UK Press said he had come to represent a certain type of ‘doomed romantic’ musician. There are others in my mind who have gone down a similar path as Nick: The Black Crowes, Lane Staley, Kurt Cobain. Heroine seems to be a common thread. Some make it out the rabbit hole, and some don’t.

If you like this song, check out more of his music.

From the Album: Pink Moon

A.J. Croce – All about you

A.J. Croce
“All About You”

Today I feature A.J. (Adrian James) Croce. Yes, A.J. is Jim Croce’s son.

When I was a kid I idolized everything about my dad — especially his music. I wouldn’t know who Jim Croce is without his influence on my musical tastes. That’s why when I saw AJ was making music, I needed to check it out. Some of AJ’s music reminds me of Tom Waits. He has a way-older-than-his-years voice that I really like. It’s not terribly evident in this song, but check out “Trouble in Mind”. You’ll really get a taste of his Waits-like scratchiness. Most of his songs include either a guitar or a piano.

From the Album: Cantos

Fats Domino is on the Bayou

Fats Domino
“Jambalaya (On the Bayou)”

Being from Louisiana has given me an acute sensitivity to anything related to it. Today is Mardi Gras. I’ve decided to feature a song sung by a New Orleans native — fats Domino.

If you remember, Fats stayed home during Hurricane Katrina because of his wife’s poor health. They live in the lower 9th ward of New orleans — one of the worst areas struck by the HUrricane. They lost everything.

It is reported that over 700,000 revelers attended Mardi Gras this year. Thanks for supporting New Orleans and Louisiana.

From the Album: Fats Domino Jukebox

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