Jamie Yost – “Ravens”
-Something about Yost’s vocal reminds me of Ben Abraham, so of course I like it. There’s a poetic phrasing to Yost’s songwriting that reminds me a bit of Isbell. If you know about my love for those artists, you’ll understand why I enjoy this track so much. It keeps moving, but has this emotional core to the lyrics that keep me coming back for more.
Annasara – “Tell me before I leave”
-I’m not sure I’ve ever heard anything quite like Annasara’s music. There’s a definite influence from theater and musicals that makes it captivating. I picture Andrew Lloyd Webber listening to this for fun. Yet at the same time, it has an intimacy and sweetness that feels a little more like accessible pop. I don’t know that everyone will love it for a daily playlist, but if you’re in the mood for this kind of inspirational and cinematic pop music then Annasara has something truly exquisite for you.
Adam Melchor – “I don’t wanna see you cryin’ anymore”
-Adam Melchor is immensely talented, so we keep featuring him. There’s something delightful about this composition that is equal parts sweet in its lyrical sentiment and the easy going acoustic style. You can hear a bit of James Taylor in this sound and it’s so great. It comes across as flippant in its delivery, but really the deep human connection inherent in this track is rare in music today. The harmonies (self overdubs?) are a perfect touch. If you like Rusty Clanton, give Adam Melchor a spin.
Strandels – “Love on repeat”
-Okay, okay you caught me. This is actually indie pop. But you know what I thought it was such a good fit for this playlist that I put it here. Strandels have such an engaging sound that reminds me of a modern day spin on Fleetwood Mac. I just couldn’t skip it! I like this track. It feels like a love song but it’s actually about breaking up. Too sad. Either way, we’re happy to dance along with the Strandels on this one!
Wounded Bear – “Promises”
-The simple acoustic style of this track makes it seem like you’ve heard it before. But it’s not simple and you haven’t heard it before. There are layers here that are deceptive. It feels like something that could have come out in the early 90s alt movement. That said, the poetic phrasing here also feels like a mid 2000s William Fitzsimmons song. Wounded Bear have created something thought-invoking and artful. It’s worth your consideration.
Charlie Straw – “Light Up for Me”
-Straw’s vocal and songwriting styles are really engaging. I keep thinking of someone like Greg Holden when I listen to Straw’s music. He has a powerful pop sensibility to his music. The rock in the background is not simple acoustic singer songwriter fare. Rather, it’s an up tempo and encouraging track that’s meant to get people moving. It’s probably lyrically geared for one person, but I think it can be all of us to think about how we can get up and improve our lives.
Charlotte – “I tell lies”
-There’s a snappy pop sensibility to this song that we really like. It’s not the typical singer songwriter fare that we tend to feature, but Charlotte is ON POINT. The vocal here reminds me a bit of Adele while the lyrics are a bit snappier like a Bruno Mars style. The combination is absolutely engaging. I see no reason why this track can’t take off on the top 40 like… tomorrow.
Eleni Drake – “4”
-If you listen to this track and don’t think of Billie Eilish, I’d be very surprised. There’s a sort of sweetness to the phrasing here. It’s meant to be lo-fi and gritty, but it also hits the bass with some real power. It’s a very “in” sound right now and we don’t even mind. Drake can sling these lyrics with some believability and mild aggression. If you like Eilish or Dodie Clark, you’ll dig this track.
Myna MacArthur – “Main Street”
-Sometimes with music less is more. Myna MacArthur’s song “Main Street” is a woman with her piano and a harmony vocalist through the first half, but it packs more emotional punch than many full band tracks. MacArthur’s vocal is consistently amazing, which makes it a wonderful listening experience. It’s hard to imagine being the person who inspired this beautiful art. The bluesy turn in the melody around the 2:05 mark is worth the price of admission. This is what it sounds like to write music with your heart on your sleeve.