Playlist #56

Another school year is winding towards a close. Here in Northern Virginia, seniors are taking their final exams this week, and they graduate next week. Week after that, school’s over for everyone else. It’s been a…challenging year, to say the least. I’ll be glad to see the back of it.

Support me on Patreon! I’m about to release the song for May, and it’s a good one, if I do say so myself.

  1. Maria McKee, “Never Be You”: This song was written by Tom Petty and Mike Campbell, and man, does it sound like it. Classic late ’70s/early ’80s Heartbreakers tone and style, through and through. I’d never heard this song before this weekend, but it’s good.
  2. The Black Keys, “Burn The Damn Thing Down”: Bluesy? Or Bloozy? It’s good, either way.
  3. Mike Doughty, “Fort Hood”: It takes some chutzpah to totally lift the coda from “Age of Aquarius” and use it as your chorus, but Mr. M. Doughty pulls it off.
  4. The National, “The System Only Dreams In Total Darkness”: They don’t usually do guitar solos, but they do one here, and it makes you wish they did them more often.
  5. Wilco, “The Thanks I Get”: Still the best Rod Stewart song Rod’s never sang.
  6. She & Him, “This Is Not A Test”: Fun and poppy. Whenever I need a pick-me-up, I still go back to this album. It’s just fun.
  7. Franz Ferdinand, “Do You Want To”: I’ll never understand how these guys aren’t bigger than they are. They do great, straight-ahead rock numbers with lots of arch humor and and nudging asides.
  8. Bruce Springsteen, “Radio Nowhere”: Even on later Boss albums, you can still usually find a good track or two. This one’s pretty solid. Avoid the remake of “Ghost of Tom Joad” he did with Tom Morello on 2013’s High Hopes. Those two are two great tastes that don’t taste great together.
  9. The Jayhawks, “I’d Run Away”: Love me some two-part harmony.
  10. Mark Knopfler, “Speedway at Nazareth”: I just love how this song builds. Not just in terms of the music – though the build to that coda is fantastic – but lyrically as well. Just a master class in how to write a great song.

Playlist #8

I put the playlist together earlier this week, but totally forgot to post it. So, y’know, here it is:

  1. Lucero, “On My Way Downtown”: I’ve liked these guys for a long time, and this is a fun homage to asking a woman in a bar to give a loser a shot.
  2. The Low Anthem, “The Horizon is a Beltway”: That thumping bass drum and the heavy-handed banjo strumming gets me every time.
  3. Moxy Fruvous, “Earthquakes”: I spent a good chunk of my college years just listening to these guys. I don’t regret it.
  4. Greg Brown, “Hey Baby Hey”: Such a beautiful, melancholic song, even if the chorus just ends with “hey baby hey baby hey baby hey.”
  5. U2, “Staring at the Sun”: Reminds me of the new songs off the Beatles Anthologies, though nowadays it mostly just reminds me of this:
Seriously, how did this man end up as President?

6. A Tribe Called Quest, “Can I Kick It?”: Yes, you can.

7. The Walkmen, “Four Provinces”: I think this song might be responsible for my current love affair with reverb.

8. Franz Ferdinand, “No You Girls”: I love these guys and how catchy they are. I haven’t heard a song by them I didn’t enjoy.

9. EL VY, “Happiness, Missouri”: There is no happiness in Missouri. It’s fuckin’ Missouri.

10. The Dodos, “Going Under”: I really dig the drums in this song. They’re simple but very effective.