Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Givin' It A Go....

Ok, so first post.......

i started blogging on my myspace page to try it out. i made a couple of 'Best Of 2007' posts and really enjoyed it, so i decided to move it over to this site. Here are the original posts.

-originally posted on January 12th, 2008 @ 11:57pm

so i've been thinkin a lot lately about starting a music blog since i spend about 90 percent of my time on the internet reading them. for those that may not know these are blogs where people post best of/worst of lists of music, highlight artists they like, or simply talk about music. the best part however, is that these bloggers post links to mp3's of songs mentioned. as far as i know this is legal music sharing, as there is always a link to buy the albums/songs, a disclaimer saying the songs are for sampling purposes only, and artists/labels can request that their music be removed. also, the links normally expire within a few months, so you gotta move fast.
if you're interested in this, try starting out at hypem.com. The Hype Machine tracks a variety of MP3 blogs. If a post contains MP3 links, it adds those links to its database and displays them on the front page.
2007 was a big year for me musically:
- i bought a fiddle; two actually (still workin on that tho)
- i finally took off my 'texas music' blinders and have since found some of the best artists around and redefined what i think good music is (i won't even try to explain what that is).
- i gave in and starting using iTunes as my music library program, and consequently...
- i bought a 160gb iPod to store all this newfound musical goodness (plus, i outgrew my 20gb iRiver).
Because 2007 was good to me, i'll return the favor my starting my blogging career with some best of 2007 lists.
stay tuned for those.......
-originally posted on January 13th, 2008 @ 8:28pm (**these mp3's are linked to other blogs that i found through hypem.com**)

so, as i said, i will commence my music blogging with a look back at the best of 2007.
but first, i'm gonna attempt to explain the music i like:
you can read my interests in music on my page to see a loooong list of artists i like, but i'll try to explain it a little more.
almost everything i listen to is rooted in country in some way. Texas/Red Dirt is still a huge part of what i like, although removing the aforementioned blinders made me realize that some of the artists in this so-called genre that i used to dig on basically blow. i won't give any specific names, but i will say that the mention of things like... uh, beer, bait, and maybe ammo in front of a steel guitar used to do it for me. not so much anymore. but i'm glad for all the music i've gone through on my way to what i now like. (i'll probably look back at these lists in five years and think i was an idiot for listening to this music. right now, i find that nearly impossible, but then again, i would've said the same thing in my rebel-flag flying, mudding high school days). ok back to the task at hand....
so, over the last year, i've gotten into bluegrass music. mainly due to Old Crow Medicine Show (which isn't technically bluegrass, but that's for another day). i dig the sound of a mandolin, a stand up bass, and of course a screamin' fiddle.
i listen to a lot of folk music, which isn't a very good description of genre, but simplified it means country-tinged, traditionally born music. by getting into folk, i, in a sense, rediscovered some artists that i had previously come across and took for granted: Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, Ray Wylie Hubbard, etc.
through folk, i found some 'indie folk', artists such as Iron & Wine and The Everybodyfields, and blog-hunting led me to discover some artists that could be described as 'indie rock': The Kooks, Spoon, Band of Horses, etc.
i'll stop wastin your time with words and show some results:

My Top 10 Albums of 2007

10. Band of Horses - Cease to Begin

This album, as well as number 9, i don't actually own, but from the sampling of songs i've gotten my hands on, i'm sold (and i'll pick them up as soon as possible **edit 1/14/08** i picked this one up today**). The sophomore effort from Band of Horses is killer indie rock highlighted with echoey guitars and sweet harmony.
Band of Horses - The General Specific [MySpace] [iTunes]

9. Patty Griffin - Children Running Through

Patty Griffin, in addition to sharing a name with a good buddy of mine, is the current queen of folk. She's been covered more than waffle house hash browns and her voice sends chills through me (so does waffle house - both in a good way).
Patty Griffin - Heavenly Day [MySpace] [iTunes]

8. Josh Ritter - The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter
There is way too much music out there for me to check it all out, so i try to at least remember the names of artists i come across. If i see the same name show up numerous times across different blogs, i'll check them out. Earlier last year, i saw Josh Ritter's name just about everywhere, including the cover of No Depression Magazine. Wow. What this guy can do with words is kinda like pringles does with chips: there's a bunch in there and they're all good.
Josh Ritter - To The Dogs or Whoever [MySpace] [iTunes]

7. The Everybodyfields - Nothing Is Okay
You know how it seems weird to mix thick, black, licorice-flavored Jagermeister with bright, bubbly Red Bull, but where you do, it's oh-so-glorious? That's kinda like what you get when mix the voices of Sam Quinn and Jill Andrews to form the Everybodyfields. This folk duo (with a fiddle and dobro thrown in for good measure) from Johnson City, TN sings powerful tunes so sad you'll want to forget the Red Bull and just take a pull (or fifteen).
The Everybodyfields - Lonely Anywhere [MySpace] [iTunes]

6. Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga

I visited my sister in NYC last summer before i had really gotten into the whole 'indie rock' thing. i remember seeing this damn album cover on every light pole, subway station, and covered walkway in the city. Then i kept seeing it on all kinda music blogs. Okay, Spoon, you win. Checked it out and here we are. Theses guys from Austin rock hard with more random percussion than a dishwasher. **edit 1/14/08** so, today, i was movin some cd's around and a bonus cd fell out of the back on the Ga Ga Ga... case. how sweet is that? and not just like a 2 track cd, but 12 friggin' songs! i'll report back on what i think of them later**
Spoon - Eddie's Ragga [MySpace] [iTunes]

ok, i'm tired - top 5 tomorrow......


-originally posted on January 13th, 2008 @ 11:32am

5. Ryan Adams - Easy Tiger

Ryan Adams released an album in 2007. It's gonna be on my list.
Ryan Adams - Halloweenhead [MySpace] [iTunes]

4. Bright Eyes - Cassadaga

Conor Oberst, or Bright Eyes, is only like 27 and has almost 20 releases (including EP's) since '98. Some of them are a little obscure for me, but Cassadaga is pure lyrical and musical goodness. Plus, he gets a little help from Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings (kind of a recurring theme in my favorite artists).
Bright Eyes - Classic Cars [MySpace] [iTunes]

3. Deer Tick - War Elephant
John McCauley is only 21 and is the mastermind behind Deer Tick. He sings lyrics as real as Townes or Dylan with groovy guitar licks behind them and unusual arrangements. Hell, i even hear a little Hank in there. i'm anxious to see if his debut effort breaks Deer Tick into popularity, but the fact that his own record label (Feow Records) is sold of of the album and you can only download it on iTunes is a positve sign.
Deer Tick - Art Isn't Real (City of Sin) [MySpace] [iTunes]

2. The Kooks - Inside In/Inside Out

This is my first real taste of the so-called 'Brit Pop', but if it were all like this i think i would've found it a long time ago. The Kooks are huge overseas and fastly getting that way here. The only reason this album isn't 1, is that i just got it at Christmas, but this is one of the best peices of music i've heard. Hook writing masters, the Kooks bring just enough acoustic riffs out in the middle of hardcore reggae rock. Yeah that's right. (Thanks, Ashley, for turning me on to them)
The Kooks - Ooh La [MySpace] [iTunes]

p.s. i know this album was released in late '06, but you can lick me, it's that good.

1. The Avett Brothers - Emotionalism

Scott(banjo) and Seth(guitar) Avett, along with Bob Crawford(stand-up bass) form the Avett Brothers and they are probably the most talented group of guys around. Everyone knows when brothers get together to sing harmony, amazing things happen, but add to that harmony - unique instrumentation (try Seth stomping on a high-hat pedal and Scott stomping on a bass drum pedal all while rockin' hard on their respective instruments) - profound and flowing lyrics ("when you run, make sure you run - to something and not away from - 'cause lies don't need and aeroplane - to chase you down") - mix in a little punk rock (the brothers were previously in a hard rock band, and have retatined a little of their screamo attitude) - and you get my favorite album of 2007. Emotionalism. (By the way, both brothers play the drums and Scott is a painter)
The Avett Brothers - Die Die Die [MySpace] [iTunes]

stay tuned for my Top 10 Songs of 2007......

1 comment:

  1. Payton, this looks great. Looking forward to what else you have to offer.