Citizen Cope – I Could Explain Why

Citizen Cope – “I Couldn’t Explain Why” Clarence Greenwood built his career as Citizen Cope the hard way, surviving label shuffling and building a loyal audience through relentless touring. This song, from his latest self-released record The Rainwater LP, showcases the sound that he has made his own: a combination of acoustic guitars, live breakbeat-style… Read more »

Whiskeytown – Don’t Be Sad

Whiskeytown – Don’t Be Sad Whiskeytown – “Don’t Be Sad” This song, from 2001’s critically acclaimed Pneumonia, was released after the band had broken up. Produced by Ethan Johns (Counting Crows, Ray Lamontagne, Kings of Leon), this swan song is considered by many to be the finest example of Ryan Adams’ early songwriting and his… Read more »

Steely Dan – Dirty Work

Steely Dan – “Dirty Work” Possibly one of the greatest songs ever written about an illicit affair, this song comes from Steely Dan’s 1972 debut Can’t Buy A Thrill. Donald Fagen and Walter Becker tried to sell their songs to Brill Building publishers for other artists to cut, but decided to form their own band… Read more »

Grace Potter & The Nocturnals – Tiny Light

Grace Potter & The Nocturnals – Tiny Light Grace Potter and the Nocturnals – “Tiny Light” Potter and her band, a product of Vermont, came onto the music scene by way of several summer festivals that grew an audience for their blend of 60’s and 70’s rock and funk. Potter’s bluesy rasp drives songs like… Read more »

Talk Talk – It’s My Life

Talk Talk – “It’s My Life” This Mark Hollis-fronted quartet was lumped in with the New Romantics of the early 80’s: Duran Duran, Roxy Music, and others. However, after achieving commercial success with It’s My Life and The Colour of Spring, they decided to change their sound, stretching into more ambient sounds and what is… Read more »

Alejandro Escovedo – Tender Heart

Alejandro Escovedo – Tender Heart Alejandro Escovedo – “Tender Heart” Though he has made music of all types: early alt-country with Rank and File and the True Believers, chamber music with his string quartet, and his own solo records, Alejandro Escovedo has probably gained more acclaim from his most high profile fan, Bruce Springsteen. The… Read more »

Spoon – Out Go the Lights

Spoon – “Out Go The Lights” Britt Daniel has gained critical acclaim with his band’s stripped-down version of pop music. Since forming Spoon in 1994 with drummer Jim Eno, the band has released a series of records to a growing audience that appreciates their tense, often sparse sound. Their latest, Transference, continues this trend, though… Read more »

Soul Coughing – “Circles” This song, from Soul Coughing’s 1998 record El Oso, features a few of the band’s signatures: Mike Doughty’s stream-of-consciousness lyrics and repetitive, almost hypnotic bass and drums. After scoring a minor hit with “Super Bon Bon” from 1996’s Irresistible Bliss, the release of this single garnered them national acclaim, though they… Read more »