Every week, CKUA’s hosts submit their songs for our weekly House Blend playlist: an exciting new release, a beloved classic or just an old personal favourite. We mix it all together to create a sonic concoction that’ll help kick off your week. Check out what’s on this week’s playlist.
Tony King: Michelle Gurevich, “Party Girl”
This track is plucked from a beautiful and dark album curated by Danish musician, Agnes Obel. It’s part of a series called Late Night Tales. In choosing the songs, Agnes Obel touched on a wide variety of artists and themes, the common arc being: “the tracks produce stories in my head.” Specifically, she chose “Party Girl” by Michelle Gurevich because of its bittersweet ironic bite.
Andy Donnelly: Martin Simpson, “Hard Love”
Written by Bob Franke, this is a cracker of a song, a proper heartbreaker beautifully performed by Martin Simpson. “Let The Tears Doon Gently Fa.”
Baba: Norah Jones, “My Heart Is Full”
Norah Jones continues to explore wider spectrums of expression and new idioms of music. This new single is still another welcome direction opening up for her.
Lisa Wilton: Peter Elkas Band, “Goodbye To Dublin”
Great, loose grooves yet tight musicianship. Some memorable ‘blue-eyed soul’ from the new EP, Lion, from the uber-talented Peter Elkas Band.
Matt Masters: Gordon Jenkins feat. Beverly Mahr, “Crescent City Blues”
Released in 1954, Gordon Jenkins’ song predated Johnny Cash’s famous “Folsom Prison Blues”. Johnny admitted to lifting the lyrics and even paid a settlement in the 1970s, but Gordon Jenkins still doesn’t get a writers credit. He deserves one!
Orest Soltykevych: Anja Lechner, Francois Couturier, “Cancion y danza VI” by Frederic Mompou
Frederic Mompou was a 20th-century Spanish composer and pianist who is best-known for his solo piano music. Mompou came from a family of bell-makers which dates back to the 16th century. He would often mention how the sound of bells that was so familiar to him would influence his music.
Cathy Ennis: Ry Cooder, “Jesus and Woody”
From Ry Cooder’s new album, The Prodigal Son, “Jesus and Woody” is a tender, beautiful song that features Jesus asking legendary folksinger, Woody Guthrie, to sit and play for him while he contemplates the world we’re living in. Clever and touching. I love it!
Grant Stovel: Jayme Stone’s Lomax Project, “Lazy John (w/ Margaret Glaspy)”
The first time I heard Margaret Glaspy’s honeyed voice was when she was featured on this version of “Lazy John”, banjo master Jayme Stone’s buoyant take on an old-time folk classic. They’re both headed to Edmonton this summer — separately! Catch Jayme Stone’s Folklife at the Edmonton Folk Fest. Margaret Glaspy’s guitar-driven rock ‘n’ roll band plays this Saturday at Interstellar Rodeo.
Mark Antonelli: Sarah Jeffrey, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Peter Oundjian, Serenade To Music, “Minuet and Musette from Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Oboe Concerto”
A new recording of a rarely-recorded piece. It’s quite the wind instrument workout. The oboist plays constantly during the concerto with hardly any rests. The middle movement features a rustic bagpipe-like drone effect in the oboe part. A surprisingly-mellow piece dating from 1943-1944 while London was under attack from flying bombs.
Amy van Keeken: The Left Banke, “Pretty Ballerina”
Currently obsessed with this baroque pop gem from the same group that brought you “Walk Away Renee”. Released in 1967, it’s been covered by none other than Alice Cooper — his wife is a ballet dancer.
Elliot Garnier: Jonathan Something, “Fine”
This latest single from Connecticut newcomer, Jon Searles, calls to mind the maniacal whimsy of Devendra Banhart. A perfect summer jam.