The downside of being a DJ is that I find that I don’t listen to music as much as I used to outside of the bar. I spin a 6 hour+ music set that starts in R&B and then works into dance. The only time I really get to listen to music is at work and I listen to very different music than I spin. I thought I’d give you a list of the current song list on my iTunes at work.
Mad Mrs. Leroy Brown – Loretta Lynn. This is a rip roarin’ country song from the “Van Lear Rose” album which was produced by Jack White of The White Stripes. This album kicks some major ass. It’s by far some of her best work in years. The true queen of country.
P!NK – I can’t pick just one song from her new album “I’m Not Dead Yet.” This is some damn good rock n roll. Though I like the message of the song “Stupid Girl,” I don’t like the song itself. Too pop-ish for me. The rest of the album is more rock with some awesome acoustic ballads. These songs have some of the best hooks I’ve heard in a long time. This album goes from acoustic to Pat Benatar to Elton John. “Dear Mr. President,” performed with The Indigo Girls (love them) is one of those songs that I wish I had written.
Extraordinary Thing – kd lang. I do believe she is one the absolute best vocalists of our generation (remember, I’m 37). Her voice is like silk. This song just blows me away. I’ve been listening to a lot of her music lately. I’m kinda stuck on the two albums “Invincible Summer” and “Hymns of the 49th Parallel.” She could sing the phone book and I’d listen.
Army Reserve – Pearl Jam. I’m pretty psyched these guys finally put out another album. The new one is a great rock record. I love the whole thing. Nice to hear rock music address the state of our world again. This song just gets under your skin. It’s my favorite on the album.
Something New – Benjamin Hammond. I hung out with Ben Monday night. He stopped by the bar to do a sound check for his gig tomorrow night. He’s a great guy. This is one of the catchiest and fun songs I’ve heard in a long time. This would sound great in a convertible, on a hot summer day, cruising down by the beach. This is Ben’s Portland debut, but I promised to help him break into the scene. Go to his website to hear some more of his tunes. He’s the real deal. Stop by Springstreet tonight of you want to hear him live. Hopefully, we’ll make him a staple in the Portland music scene. He won’t be a hard artist to break here.
Whole of the Moon – Mandy Moore. A few summers ago, Mandy released an album called “Coverage.” She covered some great songs from the 70’s and early 80’s. It’s a great album and the arrangements that compliment her voice. Her cover of this Waterboys song is flawless. I’ve always liked her because she hit the scene the same time as Jessica, Britney and Christina and she’s the only one who seemed to NOT go off the pop star deep end into Slutville…or is it Whoretown?
Reason Why – Rachel Yamagata. I saw her play at a club in Portland last year. She’s amazing. This song is so good. I can put it on repeat and listen to it over and over. I’d like to hear more of her on the radio and less of the pop crap that seems to be sucking up the airwaves like the black plaque.
Nineteen Days – Raw Deluxe. I discovered this CD by pure accident. I was shopping on CD Baby when I came across it. They let you download 2 minutes of each song. You have to order a CD from this site just to get the shipping letter. It’s hilarious. Here’s a little about the band: After years playing side-man for the likes of Grammy-award winner Itaal Shur, Cooly's Hot Box, Nikka Costa, and Future Freedom Ensemble, Chris Smyk decided to take matters into his own hands and produce, in the truest sense of the word, a great rock and roll record. Chris had known underground house-music sensation Lisa Shaw for some time and the two decided to team up. Shaw would pen lyrics and Smyk would write the music. The line-up was completed when Smyk, enlisted the help of Nick Ferrante to play drums. The resulting album, This Is A Radio Reply, lives up to its name. It’s concise rock and roll songs filled with incredible hooks, bittersweet lyrics and a certain sense of soul that has been missing in modern rock for quite some time. “Nineteen Days” is a great song, but this is a truly amazing record and Lisa Shaw has the coolest fucking voice. Makes me wish I had a 70’s muscle car to tool around town in blasting this music. Turns out, I’ve been spinning Lisa Shaw tunes for awhile, since Naked Music cds are a big part of my play list. How cool to find out what a versatile artist she is! Also ck out Lisa's solo stuff--groovy martini sippin' soul music!
Waiting for my Real Life to Begin – Colin Hay. This is good homegrown music from the lead singer of the 80's band Men At Work. A great acoustic ballad that reminds me a lot of Joe Henry. This is one of those songs I could listen to over and over again.
Rain – Patty Griffin. I think Patty is a Maine native. I saw her in an acoustic show in Boston a few years back with Shawn Colvin, Dar Williams and Mary Chapin Carpenter. She’s amazing. This song just gets right inside your soul. Mandy Moore says it best, “In a perfect world, I would open my mouth and Patty’s voice would come out.”