Tag Archives: James Vincent McMorrow

One Sunday Morning: A Playlist

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“The making of a good compilation tape is a very subtle art.  Many do’s and don’ts.  First of all, you’re using someone else’s poetry to express how you feel.  This is a delicate thing.” (High Fidelity)

Over the past few weeks, one of my work projects has me thinking about playlists a lot: about how they can capture a mood perfectly, about how they can change your mood more effectively than almost anything else, and how they indeed are a very subtle art.

As the first of what might become a regular feature of this blog, I’m going to share a playlist.  This one seeks to capture the feeling of the song title that wraps it up: one Sunday morning.

Here’s the screen shot of the songs and artists; below is a link that will take you to the music itself (technology willing).  Enjoy.

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One Sunday Morning

The Best and Brightest of 2011: Day Four

Although I realize that I’m breaking rank from everyone from rock critics to rap stars, you can have Bon Iver.  If we’re going to choose teams of falsetto folk rockers for our year-end lists, I’ll take James Vincent McMorrow.

With tracks that are more short story than sing-along, McMorrow crafts moments more memorable than most anyone I’ve heard in 2011.  As I’ve written about him several times before, this will be familiar to many of you.  But for those of you who haven’t yet, give it a listen.  And for those intrigued, it’s worth a follow-up for more.

If I Had a Boat, James Vincent McMorrow

Is it too early to start daydreaming of summer music festivals?  With a sun-drenched sound and lyrics simple enough to sing along yet witty enough to want to remember, Dawes is made for your next outdoor concert and the daydreams you’ll need to make it through the snow that stands between you and that show.

It’s lyrics like these that just belong in rock songs:

If I wanted someone to clean me up, I’d find myself a maid
If I wanted someone to spend my money, I wouldn’t need to get paid
If I wanted someone to understand me, I’d have so much more to say
I want you to make the days move easy

If I Wanted Someone, Dawes

A Year: NYC

I’ve spent much of this year in and out of NYC, on a rocket ship ride of a new job.  It’s been exciting, unexpected, crazy, funny, stressful and revelatory in ways big and small.

So when I came across this film, it kindled many memories of the year that has been in NYC.  Music track by James Vincent McMorrow– if you’re not up on him as an artist yet, the time is now.

A Mini-Mix for Weekend Work

Quiet afternoon around the house today as we’ve both had to delve into the work week a half day early.  To ease the frustration of spending a summer afternoon bathed in the glow of a laptop, I put together the following mini-mix.  Perhaps you can apply it to moments a bit less mundane.

To start it off, here’s a brand new (to me) track from an artist called St. Lucia.  With a hazy mix of synths and sax, it immediately feels like an old favorite from the 80’s.

All Eyes On You, St. Lucia

While that I know that everyone thinks that Bon Iver is the king of the folk falsetto, I might suggest that James Vincent McMorrow is as good if not better.

If I Had a Boat, James Vincent McMorrow

This group from Seattle, The Head and the Heart, opened for Iron & Wine in Millennium Park earlier this summer.  It wasn’t even close: these guys outclassed Iron & Wine on every measure.  A few more summer festival appearances and these guys are going to hit it huge.  And full disclosure: my wife is the one who tipped me off to these guys, not the other way around as I would typically lead you to believe.

Down in the Valley, The Head and the Heart

To keep the summer vibe, here’s a sultry Johnny Cash cover.

Folsom Prison Blues, Rachel Goodrich

And, to wrap it up, why would I take a day off from hyping Frank Ocean?  Sorry about the tags; this song hasn’t been released officially.

Ohh In Love [Prod. Midi Mafia], Frank Ocean

Vivid, But Not Obvious

Sometimes the best-written songs are those cloaked in a bit of mystery.  The images are vivid, but the meaning not immediately apparent.  In that vein, I share with you a song by James Vincent McMorrow.

Here’s how the story begins.  Click below to delve further into it.  You’ll be glad you did.

“If this is redemption, why do I bother at all
There’s nothing to mention, and nothing has changed
Still I’d rather be working at something, than praying for the rain
So I wander on, till someone else is saved.”

We Don’t Eat, James Vincent McMorrow

BTW, this post goes out to those who have encouraged me to get back to posting… and who have encouraged me to broaden out a bit from “the hip-hop.”  You know who you are.  ;o)