It’s past midnight and I really should be sleeping, but first I need to quickly praise singer-songwriter Caroline Spence and her new album Spades & Roses. I heard her name several times a couple years back when the debut came out, but I’m a slow blogger and even slower man so it took me until 2017 to properly listen to her songs. This new one came out in early March and this time I didn’t make the same mistake. I bought a download and fell in love with this marvellous record. I have a huge stack of new stuff to listen to, but I’m a little bit stuck on this at the moment. But hey, this is a rather good place to be blissfully stuck. Wrapped into folk and country songs that are extremely easy to get into, but keep on revealing more depth and beauty with each listening session. Here’s the video for album outtake Hotel Amarillo.
Our First 100 Days: Courtney Marie Andrews & Bonnie Prince Billy – I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free
Our First 100 Days is a project that aims to protect the important causes that are under threat by the policies of Trump’s administration. One rare and/or exclusive song will be released every day during the first 100 days of Trump’s presidency and all the money raised will go to organizations who are fighting the good fight. Participating in this project is like a win-win situation for a music fan. You’ll get a lot of amazing new songs to cherish and at the same time you are doing a small part in supporting human rights, preventing climate change etc.
We are in day 74 now and it would be easy to pick a couple of dozens outstanding songs. Perhaps my biggest personal favourite is this duet by Courtney Marie Andrews & Bonnie Prince Billy. They make a stunning rendition of 60s civil rights anthem I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free.
The songs of Aimee Mann and cats are both so very dear to me. Cats even more so of course, but that’s not taking anything away from Aimee Mann whose music has been on my side since the nineties. Cats just are more important than music could ever be. The reason for this intro was that Aimee Mann has a new music video and an absolutely beautiful cat is the true star of the video. Goose Snow Cone is an outtake from Aimee Mann’s new excellent album Mental Illness that came out on 31st of March. A mighty good album too based on the first few spins, but I guess that goes without even saying. I think there’s better songs on it than this Goose Snow Cone, but this one is also awesome. And the video of course is just love, love, love.
Lately I’ve let things slide and it hasn’t done me much good. I don’t know know where to start or whether I should even start, because I already have at least twenty 2017 albums or songs that I should write about. I won’t be able to catch up anymore, so maybe I’ll just go with what I’m listening to today. These were mostly Carolina Spence’s latest and this brand new Jake Xerxes Fussell album What in the Natural World that came out on friday on the great Paradise Of Bachelor label. The debut was a bit of surprise favourite for me, but this time I knew to expect a wonderful record and that’s indeed what I got. Jake Xerxes Fussell is mastering the art of bringing back old American folk and blues songs and interpretenting them with heartfelt warmness to a new audience. Such a damn fine and enjoyable album. This is Jake’s version of Duke Ellington’s Jump For Joy from the new album What in the Natural World.
Something rather special is happening within a couple of weeks. A magnificent French born, but Berlin-based songwriter Freschard has joined forces with Finnish band Is This Really Me and together they’ll do a short Finland tour that includes dates in Helsinki, Turku and Jyväskylä. I’m super excited, because as you might have noticed I’ve been extremely addicted to her songs and albums during the past few years. Shh.., Boom Biddy Boom and Sunday Night are all awesome. You’ll find some personal favourites at the end of this blog post. Clemence Freschard will be touring with another great tunesmith Stanley Brinks who plays guitar on these Finnish dates.
I’m also very eager to see Is This Really Me live for the first time. Their album The Iron Door was one of the finest Finnish albums of 2016.
Freschard & Is This Really Me Finland Tour:
30.03 Tenho, Helsinki
31.03 Flavour of the Month, Pikku-Torre, Turku
01.04 Art Museum, Jyväskylä (notice early showtime 16.00)
Freschard – Tweet Tweet (from Shh..)
Freschard – Not Ready (from Shh..)
Freschard – Investigate (from Boom Biddy Boom)
Freschard – Eagle Eyes (from Sunday Night)
Is This Really Me – Folk Song (from The Iron Door)
Is This Really Me – Cave (from The Iron Door)