I wish I could quit this song

One more on the mellow side before I launch into some newly converted cassette tapes (yes, cassettes!) from my past. So who’s seen Brokeback Mountain? I probably won’t until I run across it on HBO or Cinemax, but if this song is any indication, the soundtrack is worth a listen.

My knowledge of Rufus Wainwright’s work is pretty much limited to that great version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” that I first heard while sitting down to some popcorn and the movie Shrek. Beautifully done. And so is this one.

Rufus Wainwright: The Maker Makes (mp3)  from the Soundtrack to Brokeback Mountain

State of Independence, I have a dream

Former Pretenders drummer James Hood and Grant Showbiz (who later produced the Smiths and Billy Bragg) formed Moodswings in 1989. Moodswings is electronic, chill, semi-ambient, kick back and relax music. All the songs on their albums basically blend together and make for a very satisfying listen. Their first release, Moodfood, was released in 1992. Tracks 8, 9 and 10 are the “Spiritual High” trio (parts 1, 2 and 3). Chrissie Hynde was recruited to sing Part 2 (State of Independence). Part 3 features an excerpt from Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech. I’ve always found the King excerpt quite poignant and powerful. It really fits well into the song.

Moodswings w/ Chrissie Hynde: Spiritual High (Pts. 1, 2, 3) (mp3) | from Moodfood (1992)

Spiritual High, Part 1
Spiritual High (State of Independence), Part 2
Spiritual High, Part 3

My Other Favorite Bruce

Every now and then, I find it imperative to spread the good word of Bruce Cockburn. So here’s a soothing, laid back ballad from the Good Man from Canada.

Bruce Cockburn (pronounced Co-burn for the uninitiated): Live On My Mind (mp3)

  • Written in Maui, January 1993
  • Bass: Rob Wasserman, Drums: Gary Craig, Vibes: Gary Burton, Keyboard: Janice Powers, Harmonies: Jonatha Brooke, Resophonic & Electric Guitar: Bruce Cockburn

Gone Fishin

A deep, smooth, and throaty selection for you tonight. One of the best albums I own is Chris Rea‘s ‘Auberge’ [Amazon]. It has some great love songs on there: “Heaven”, “Sing a Song of Love to Me”, and “The Mention of Your Name”. But thrown among these great ballads is “Gone Fishin'”, a beautiful song with a melancholy edge. “You ain’t ever gonna be happy, any time, any way…So I’m gone fishin’, and I’m going today.” You tell her Chris.

Jeez, my sensitive side’s comin’ out this week. What the…….

Chris Rea: Gone Fishin’ (mp3)

Prine Time – Long Monday

I don’t mean to bring everyone down with a song called “Long Monday” at the very end of the weekend, but since I’m experiencing a Springsteen hangover from last night’s great show, and I’ve been wanting to showcase a tune off of John Prine’s brand new release, ‘Fair & Square’ [Buy it Here], well, it’s just right.

Though nothing in John Prine’s catalog has ever matched ‘The Missing Years‘ for me, this is a great CD, full of John’s witty & and often hilarious lyrics (e.g. “I felt about as welcome as a Wal-Mart superstore”), and laid back acoustic tunes.

‘Long Monday’ includes harmony from Mindy Smith, who I know little about, but I’m about to jump into her web site. In a nutshell, she’s a country-folk songstress from Nashville whose debut album came out last year. Anyhow, yep, another week begins, take it away, John.

John Prine: Long Monday (mp3)

Down in the Basement

Basement Apartment. This Minneapolis band came to my attention recently while listening to Radio Paradise. From the handful of samples I’ve heard, they’re a mellow bunch. To me, they remind me of a little Mazzy Star here, a little Luna there. This song, “Empty Skies” is a right up my alley. Laid back slide guitar, beautiful harmonies, and basically just a breath of nice clean air.

The audio to “Empty Skies” is from the Quicktime video available on their web site, which I highly recommend checking out. Go to their web site, click the Images link, and you’ll see the link for the QT video. They also offer a few mp3 downloads, as does CNET’s Download.com.

The band is the brainchild of Vince Caro, who used to be in a band called Pilot Light. Don’t know anything about ’em, but – ah yes, – I shall investigate.

Basement Apartment – Empty Skies (mp3)

Buy Transistor! on CD Baby.

Well I’ll Be…

I’ll lose some sales and my boss won’t be happy
But I can’t stop listening to the sound
Of two soft voices blended in perfection
From the reels of this record that I’ve found

Read all of the lyrics here.

Wow. It’s rare that a song blows me away like this. I heard “Homesick” for the first time yesterday, and I’ve just listened to it about 6 times in a row, and I plan on listening some more. And then I’ll buy the CD. Just beautiful. Sad. Melodic. Good stuff. I played it for my wife. She said, “sounds like Simon & Garfunkel”. Yeah, I guess she’s right. Again. 🙂 To those who the words “Simon & Garfunkel” might make you scroll immediately down the page, just give it a try anyway eh?

Kings of Convenience are made up of two fellows from Norway. These boys set quite a mood.

Kings of Convenience – Homesick (mp3) – from ‘Riot on an Empty Street’, 2003, Kindercore -{Amazon}
See their Offical Web Site