Tag Archives: R & B

Singles Mixer II: I like dreams, except when they're scary.

If, as mine is, thy life a slumber be,
Seem, when thou read’st these lines, to dream of me…
–John Donne

I haven’t had much time for posting lately, so I thought I’d throw a bunch of tracks at you at once.  Today’s theme is: Dreams.

Totem Pole, from West Palm Beach, FL, released an EP titled Caves and Tunnels, Mountains and Stairs (streamable and downloadable here) way back in July, but for some stupid reason I’m only finding out about it now.

Totem Pole, “Voyeuristic Tradition”

Nothing too scary about that.  In fact, it’s sort of soothing in a psychedelic, early Pink Floyd-meets-the Beach Boys kind of way.  But that’s about to change.

This next track is off the Resident’s 2008 release, Bunny Boy.  Like every Residents’ release, it was a weird concept album.  Bunny Boy is about a Non compos mentis friend of the Residents, who enlists the band’s help to track down his apocalypse-obsessed brother, Harvey, who may or may not actually exist, but whom Bunny Boy claims has disappeared on the island of Patmos, where St John of Patmos authored the Book of Revelations.  I saw this album performed at the Trocadero in 2009.  It was…a trip.

The Residents, “Fever Dreams” [Buy Bunny Boy]

Sleep tight; don't let the bedbugs (thanks a lot NYC) bite. (Image from an episode of The Outer Limits, "The Zanti Misfit".)

Pretty weird.  Fortunately, the next track isn’t scary, exactly.  If I were Jennifer Lopez in The Cell, there would definitely be worse dreams to walk into than Gary Wilson’s.  It would be a pretty awkward scene, though.  Wilson released You Think You Really Know Me in 1977, but never made much of a splash until Odelay-era Beck cited him as an influence.  Since then he’s developed a significant cult following, and in a surprise twist is now poised to release a brand new album, Electric Endicott, in November.

Gary Wilson, “When You Walk into My Dreams” [Buy You Think You Really Know Me]

He’ll be performing on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon this Wednesday, Oct. 27, backed by the Roots.  I’m pretty excited for it.

Lastly, because it’s the weekend, here’s a Billy Ocean classic.  Decide for yourself whether it’s scary or not.

Billy Ocean, “Get Outta My Dreams, Get Into My Car” [Buy Billy Ocean – Greatest Hits]

Posted in It's the Weekend | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Isn't Canada just the worst?

Some of you know that my brother has been teaching English in another country for a little over a year now. Last year, on July 4th, instead of the usual lesson he decided to lead a discussion in his advanced class about patriotism, national identity, and America by playing for them two songs that together make for a pretty thought-provoking contrast, which, for the benefit of all of us, I’m reproducing here.

Derroll Adams, “Oregon”

The Impressions, “This Is My Country”

Enjoy your holiday weekend.  Be careful when handling fireworks.  Don’t drink and drive.

Posted in Random Noise | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

"Just Bees and Things and Flowers"

In Brazil, where Seu Jorge is from, the longest day of the year is in December, but where I’m from it’s today, and the forecast says it’s going to be a hot one.  So hot, in fact, that the meteorologist recommends you find yourself a cool song to get you through it.  Preferably something in the R&B/Funk range.

You might remember Seu Jorge as Pele dos Santos, the safety expert aboard the Belefonte who provided The Life Aquatic with its mostly diegetic score of bossa-nova lite versions of all your favorite Bowie tunes.

For example:

Seu Jorge, “Suffragette City”

Anyway, he’s got a new album coming out at the end of July, Seu Jorge and Almaz, and its first single, a cover of Roy Ayer’s “Everybody Loves the Sunshine,” is available for download.  The track is lazy and a little ominous, just like the original, and it’s just the thing to beat the heat for when all you can manage is to sit and sweat.

Seu Jorge, “Everybody Loves The Sunshine”

Buy the full album here when it’s released.

Seu Jorge plays at the Trocadero in Philadelphia on July 28.

Posted in Upcoming Shows | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Time and Taxes

It’s taxday, so while you’re enjoying your free Starbucks coffee (provided you walk in with a reusable mug), relax and give a listen to a song about dealing with things at some later date.

Laura Burhenn of Georgie James and Richard Swift have teamed up to release What We Lost in the Fire We Gained in the Flood as The Mynabirds, named after reverse-supergroup The Mynah Birds.  The album is due out April 27th, but you can stream the whole thing from here.

The Mynabirds, “Give It Time”

Posted in Random Noise | Tagged | 2 Comments