Thursday, April 16, 2009

Five Songs I Love that I'd Never Have Heard of Without Lin Brehmer

Way back in my youth, I used to be really into 45s. The very first one I bought was Billy Paul's "Me and Mrs. Jones." I was driving down Walnut Grove in my 1979 Ford Fairmont wagon, 16 years old, and so flush with the thrill of driving that I happily ran evening grocery store errands for my Mom. The car didn't have FM radio, so I was listening to some cool AM R&B radio station (god, I AM old) and that song came on. I'd never heard it before. World: rocked. The next Saturday, I headed out to Pop Tunes on Summer Avenue and bought it on 45. From that moment forward, I became a devotee of the 45.

Buying songs from iTunes is the same concept, only much easier since you don't have to fit that wonky plastic thing into the center of the record so it'll fit on the record player (oooollllllldddddddd).

Today I was shuffling through my purchased playlist and it occurred to me how many songs on it I owe to morning drivetime radio on WXRT. Normally, I wouldn't geek out on music like this, since I'm too busy geeking out on poetry or science fiction. But I was thinking about it today, so I jotted down songs that I heard at work today while I was shuffling through the purchased list on my iTunes player. I think you'll enjoy!

1. Alejandro Escavedo "Always' a Friend". Dude, I love this guy's voice. Here he is doing the song with Bruce Springsteen... keeps good company, that guy!

2. Richard Thompson "1952 Vincent Black Lightning". I'd actually heard this song before done regular bluegrass style. But I really dig this version (writing about music and I find myself using words like "dig")

3. Guster "Amsterdam". Just a flat out AWESOME pop song.

4. Fleet Foxes "White Winter Hymnal". I love the happy happy music and happy happy imagery and happy happy happy chorale all serving to set up the lyric "turn the white snow red as strawberries in summertime." It's just fucking brilliant.

5. The Hold Steady "Sequestered in Memphis". Ahhhh, rock and roll!

6. Mike Doughty "I Hear the Bells". Mike Doughty does things to me with his sexy, sexy songs and sexy, sexy voice.

7. Ray Davies "Working Man's Cafe". When I saw him, he prefaced this song with an acknowledgement that the world is a lot better in a lot of ways. But, it's not hard to love this modern world and mourn the old ways at the same time. Globalization is kind of sad.

8. Lucinda Williams "Can't Let Go". This one is kind of a cheat since I didn't buy it on iTunes, since it came out before iTunes. But I did hear it on WXRT and it did send me to the record store. Lucinda Williams is so cool. And can't she just sing?!?

Eight's a weird number to stop at... but really, I have SO much work to do tonight.