Favorite Songs of the Year 2021

And last but not least the favorite international songs of the year. Just quickly doing these songs lists, because I badly need some kind of Christmas break from the blog stuff. So just like the Finnish one, this is mostly a mega long playlist of favorite songs from the year. I’m sure there’s something important missing, because such a long playlist becomes an uncontrollable monster at some point and I have no idea anymore what I already added. So something might be missing solely because I already thought it was there. Most of my favorite songs of the year already have been mentioned on the album list, so I just thought I highlight a few non-album tracks that I loved wholeheartedly and then select a top three.

Kelly Sloan – I Wanna Wake Up / Tangled / Worse Way To Go

Absolutely loved this beautiful run of timeless singles from Canadian songwriter Kelly Sloan. Sorta goes into Carole King, Carly Simon territory and does it ever so beautifully.

Keven Louis Lareau – Not All Songs Have Been Sung

This beauty from Keven Louis Lareau also takes me into the 70s, but more in the west coast folk rock type of surroundings. Thanks to New Commute for the introduction back when this came out.

Anna Tivel – Two Dark Horses (Fluff & Gravy Records)

Anna Tivel is one of my absolute favorite songwriters in the world and I still feel bad for leaving out her wonderful album from the album list. I love all the songs on that record and new piano-driven versions were oh so beautiful but I’ve also heard them before in some shape or form and therefore gave that spot to albums with completely new material. I can make a little bit of amends by adding the only brand new song to this song list.

Katy Kirby – Portals (Keeled Scales)

Another one that could have and maybe should have been on the album list. This Katy Kirby album was one of the last few cuts, but I can also make amends here by putting the song I love the most on this song list. Portals is such a special song.

Jeffrey Martin – I Know What I Know (Fluff & Gravy Records)

A new Jeffrey Martin song is always something to love and cherish and this quietly powerful new song is not an exception to that simple rule.

CARLENE – Time Passes / Looking Out My Window

These two beautiful folk singles from Canadian songwriter Carlene were among the music I loved the most during this strange year. There’s a full album on the way in 2022 and I can’t wait to hear it. Carly’s dog Ruby also delivers my favorite music video performance of the year in that video below. Pure gold.

3. Isaac Vallentin – Diane in the Morning Light / The Ballad of Nunangat

These two masterful folk songs from Canadian songwriter Isaac Vallentin can share the third place here. Beautiful, moving and captivating storytelling.

2. Will Stratton – Infertile Air (Bella Union)

Next Will Stratton’s softly monumental song about state violence, family separation and the people who are interpreting inhuman laws on the field. First you get hooked into a sweet melody and soon you’ll find yourself in a gut-wrenching story. Such a beautiful song about such a heavy subject. A song you won’t easily forget from one of the finest albums of the year.

1. Melissa Carper – I Almost Forgot About You (Mae Music)

And my favorite song of the year is I Almost Forgot About You by Melissa Carper. This comes as no surprise for anyone who is following my social feeds, because I’ve probably mentioned it a few times already that it’s going to be this one. Such a sweet softly swinging old time country beauty and I just fell in love with the first time I heard it and the feeling is the same after listening to it countless amount of times. Simply the song I loved the most during the year and therefore fully worth the song of the year title on this little blog. Below you’ll find the bandcamp link and the Western AF video. Please do visit the the Western AF youtube channel, because it’s probably the best place there is on this internet thing-y.

Tidal Playlist

Apple Music Playlist

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Hurry, Drew Beskin, David Myhr and The Dungeon of Skeletons

A quick sunday morning round up with some recent or fairly recent (should be) pop hits. This blog entry was inspired by falling madly in love with the new Hurry album Fake Ideas that came out on Friday on Lame-O Records. I’ve been somewhat familiar with this Philadelphia-based power pop band led by Matt Scottoline for a couple of years, but I didn’t fully understand how great they were until I listened this new album yesterday. Totally my kind of pop music. That double hit of It’s Dangerous and A Fake Idea in the beginning for example. Total Teenage Fanclub meets 90s US power pop perfection. Maybe a bit dangerous to feel so strongly after just few spins, but definitely feels like an instant classic and one of the best pop records I’ve heard in recent years. Monstrously highly recommended on the old Not Lame scale.

Hurry at Facebook

Next we move to Athens, Georgia to meet up with long time blog favorite Drew Beskin. I’ve loved all his work both solo and with the bands The District Attorneys, Party Dolls and PURSES. His new solo album Problematic for the People will be released 2nd of July by Super Canoe. To get a headstart, here’s a couple of gorgeous songs from the forthcoming album.

Drew Beskin at Facebook
Drew Beskin Website

Moving over to Sweden where former Merrymaker David Myhr continues to make us smile with melodic pop treasures. His new EP And Now This came out on the always great UK power pop label Lojinx. Here’s the fabulous lead single We Wanted to Shine from the new EP.

David Myhr Website
David Myhr at Facebook

Last stop on this pop goes the world tour is Nashville, Tennessee. Dungeon of Skeletons is a new one for me and I only found them some months ago. They have three singles on their Bandcamp and oh my, they are all pretty perfect pop songs. Hopefully there’s more on the way, because it doesn’t get much better than this. Here’s a couple of those singles. 2020 lyric video for Valencia and the most recent single Gonna Be Alright.

Dungeon Of Skeletons at Facebook

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Carlene and Jeremy Ferrara

This June 25 release date is something else and it might take a day or two to get the new music weekly ready, because there’s so much to love and cherish. One of the key songs on it will be CARLENE’s remarkable new single Time Passes. She is a Canadian folk singer-songwriter and this is the first single from her forthcoming album Looking Out My Window that she has been working on for ten years. It’s a magical folk song and I can’t wait to hear the full album sometime this fall.

Carlene Website
Carlene at Facebook

More recent folk treasures. This time from Portland’s Jeremy Ferrara who made one of my favorite albums of 2020. He already has a new one lined up and and Everything I Hold will be released by American Standard Time Records on the 9th of July. There’s a couple of great singles out there already. I’m especially fond of this beautiful and deeply moving song called Fictional.

Jeremy Ferrara at Facebook
Jeremy Ferrara Website

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