David Ward— Goldtop, “You Possess Me” Like so many other effective love songs, Goldtop’s relatively simple ingredients (two voices, an insistent beat, a tambourine, a lightly tremoloed electric guitar) help to emphasize the message: “you possess me like no one ever has, like no one ever will”.
Terry David Mulligan— Annie Lennox, “Why (Live version)”
Why not this song? Why NOT this brilliant artist? Anne Lennox sent this song into the World in her 1992 Diva album and it’s lived many lives since. It helps that millions identify with the words but the lasting enduring memory will live in Annie’s singing of the song. She gives everything to the song. Every time. You can tell this song is very personal. But unlike many of her peers, she doesn’t oversing the song. But it cuts to the heart every time. See If you can find her SNL video with 3 background singers. If not, please look for her Live at St Luke’s, London 2009.
*A live version of this song is not available on Spotify. Listen to it here.
Lionel Rault— Minor Alps, “I Don’t Know What To Do With My Hands”
There’s palpable chemistry between Matthew Caws (Nada Surf) and Juliana Hatfield on this track. The perfect blend of sugar and salt. A memorable tune from Minor Alps.
Grant Stovel— The Weather Station, “Thirty”
This song has been reverberating in my mind ever since I heard Tamara Lindeman play it almost exactly a year ago! Tamara (a/k/a The Weather Station) played a solo acoustic version on Tom Coxworth’s show, live from the Calgary Folk Fest, and absolutely skewered me. I’m so excited to hear the studio version! It’s beautiful and amazing. The Weather Station’s self-titled, self-produced new album comes out in October.
Monica Miller— Randy Newman, “Sonny Boy”
I think it was Grant who gave me my first Sonny Boy Williamson I and II primer. And it was a fine story, no question. But there was no piano, no horn section, and no Randy Newman. This version of the story has ALL of the above. From Newman’s new release (August 4) “Dark Matter”.
Lark Clark— Modou Toure & Ramon Goose, “Waar”
Modou Toure’s voice is tremendous – soaring and flexible. Ramon Goose accompanies him beautifully on acoustic guitar. The blues goes home to Africa.
Mark Antonelli— Charles Camilleri/Murray McLachlan, piano, “Due Canti”
Two piano pieces from Malta I could have on permanent “repeat” on my cd player or iPod. The music is almost hypnotic in the same way as Erik Satie’s Gymnopedies, and they both share that same sense of timelessness you hear in Satie’s pieces.
*This song is not available on Spotify.
Tony King— Mr. Jukes, “Ruby”
Jack Steadman, former Bombay Bicycle Club member is the creative force behind this new project. Mr. Jukes was conceived in water, that is the concept was formulated while Steadman embarked on a long journey from China to the west coast of British Columbia aboard a cargo ship. Without having to swab the deck or unload freight, the artist was able to play in the realm of imagination and his fertile mind captured the flavours of downtempo, electronica and even a little jazz tucked in there for good measure. “Ruby” is a good example of the tasteful mix of music that Jack Steadman purveys on this new recording.
Lisa Wilton— Neko Case, “Timber”
It’s been 20 years since Neko Case released her debut solo album, The Virginian. She has moved away from the honky tonk sounds of that record and rarely performs any tracks from it live. Still, it’s one of my favourites by her and the kick-off track, Timber, is a highlight from it. Featuring backing vocals from AC Newman of The New Pornographers, it’ll make you want to two-step. Or at least attempt to.
Dianne Donovan— Tears For Fears, “Shout”
Yes, a major pop hit but I think it’s one of the greatest. In fact, it’s one of my 10 perfect songs (adding or subtracting anything to it would lesson/cheapen it). It’s very fresh in my mind, as I just lived a decades long dream of hearing TFF live and “shouting” along with them and the audience.
Oskar Zybart— Pulp, “The Trees”
Beautiful melodies are always stylish, and they fit in all the right places.
Baba— Jane Siberry, “Everything Reminds Me Of My Dog”
It is so very relatable song, listener favorite over nearly thirty years (Bound By The Beauty- released 1989). Jane Siberry is a poet and a very unique artist….!