A cold Guinness, a hot steak and Guinness pie, and a slow, sad version of “Danny Boy” drifting in from the distance, all before noon. Not bad, Church Hill Irish Festival. Not bad.
Here’s one of the slowest and saddest versions you’ll find: Harry Belafonte’s.
Harry Belafonte — “Danny Boy” [Spotify/iTunes]
No News and Notes today. No songs. I just want to say thank you to our outgoing president — someone for whom I’ll harbor deep respect and gratitude for the rest of my days.
Above you’ll find video of his farewell address. If you haven’t watched it, I recommend you do — and not just for the way he makes you feel feelings near the end when he thanks Michelle and Joe Biden does finger guns. Watch for the way he steadfastly and convincingly projects hope for the future, even in the face of… you know.
I watched last night and felt genuinely hopeful when he was done, which is better than the way I felt before I watched. That hope may be irrational, but it’s essential in equal measure. To quote Martin Luther King Jr. via Matthew E. White via Monday’s post: “Darkness can’t drive out darkness. Only light can do that.”
I’d also like to post a couple of links to pages where you can donate to worthy causes, in case that feels right today. Here’s where to give to the ACLU, and here’s where to give to Planned Parenthood.
I love you guys. Thanks for reading this blog.
A few quick notes heading into the weekend:
- CD Monday update: CD Monday is on the ropes, y’all. Once again, I didn’t get to listen much to the week’s album — this time it was because Toddler YHT has started requesting “Video Killed The Radio Star” the moment any other music starts playing. As repetitive as it may be, The Buggles are 1000% preferable to Daniel Tiger singing about his feelings. It reminds me a little of when I worked at Buffalo Wild Wings one summer: I thought I’d get sick of chicken wings — I went home smelling like one every night — but I ended that summer more hooked on Bdubs than ever. I think the same thing is happening with “Radio Star,” as my daughter calls it.
- Avers Note #1: My vinyl copy of the new album came in the mail earlier this week, and it’s excellent. Can’t wait to write a longer thing about it.
- Avers Note #2: Congrats to the band on the Billboard advance stream! Love thinking about how many new ears they’ll be reaching.
- Avers Note #3: Tonight’s the big release show at the Broadberry! I’ll be gigging tonight, but y’all should all go and get your faces rocked off. And be sure to hit the merch table while you’re there — Omega/Whatever is a must-have.
- This is very random, but I brought a VCR to the Corolla last week, and one of the movies we watched was Disney’s foxy version of Robin Hood. While it was playing I found out that the Watkins Family Hour album from last year has a fantastic cover of “Not In Nottingham.” Did y’all know Roger Miller wrote that? And the “Oo De Lally” song? How cool is that?
- Ryan Adams writes a lot of spontaneous mid-concert throwaway songs, but this has to be one of his best. By the way, if you haven’t heard his set from Newport — the one he did with The Infamous Stringdusters –it’s definitely worth a listen.
- Next week’s Off Your Radar will cover Gillian Welch’s Time (The Revelator), and I am so damn excited that I have no idea what to write. Tune in on Monday to see what happens when that confused excitement collides with my Sunday submission deadline!
Gonna go see if these nerds are still hanging out. See y’all in a week.
Maxwell — “Lake By The Ocean” [Spotify/iTunes]
Heading to Jersey then Hilton Head for a week. Quick CD Monday Update: After cross referencing the album cut and a random live recording, I’m certain that the orchestral version of “Guyute” is my favorite.
Trey Anastasio — “Guyute (Orchestral)” [Spotify/iTunes]
Heading to Philly for the weekend. Gonna find out if it’s really always sunny there.
Heinz Kiessling — “Temptation Sensation” [Spotify/iTunes]
It’s Friday, y’all! Got a few items of note heading into a hard-earned weekend:
- How’s about a 2+ hour loop of live Thai psychedelia? I managed to do 1:51:26 in one sitting. Reminded me a little of that time I went for a 5-mile run and listened to the same Lady Gaga remix on repeat the entire time. They’re called Khun Narin’s Electric Phin Band, and they have a new album coming in March.
- I’m really enjoying what Negative Gemini (formerly of RVA) has been doing lately, especially “You Never Knew,” which came out late last year. She just released a new song called “Body Work.” According to the website of the label she cofounded, she’s slated to release something on vinyl in the “first half of 2016” — I’m wholly excited for it.
- The Jason Isbell track on this Dave Cobb Southern Family compilation is excellent. Dude can’t write a bad song right now. Side note: If they ever make a Dave Cobb movie… Christian Bale. Just saying.
- Pitchfork reviewed an incredible slate of albums on Monday, especially Anna Meredith’s. I am wild about this album. Before I even read the review I noticed how much “Nautilus” reminded me of listening to Battles’ Mirrored for the first time, and sure enough, Laura Snapes mentioned Battles in her review. The rest are great too. El Guincho. Thao & the Get Down Stay Down (produced by Merrill Garbus). Jennifer O’Connor. Mary Lattimore. All worth a read/listen.
- Blackberry Smoke at the National tonight. My band has been learning their song “Up The Road” — really pretty. I think a few of the guys are going. I’d also recommend Marshall Crenshaw at the Tin Pan on Saturday night. My father-in-law is a big fan. Maybe I’ll start plowing through the Crenshaw albums he passed down to me and get a ticket for tomorrow. Or maybe I’ll just use this weekend to recover from another wild week.
Hope y’all’s weekends are wild in all the best ways.