Thursday, April 26, 2012

Levon Helm

RIP. These are probably my two favorite songs by The Band. Both clips are from Martin Scorsese's doc, The Last Waltz. Levon Helm was quite a talent.

(Side note: I played trumpet on a version of "The Weight" in high school.)

Friday, April 13, 2012

Heartless Bastards – "Only for You"

Here's a version from a live radio session.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

First Aid Kit – "Emmylou"

This one keeps getting stuck in my head. Every time I hear that chorus, I think, wow, the scansion of "Gra-ha-ha-ham" is terrible, but damn, that's one hell of a come-on. Plus, the band is two Swedish sisters, only 22 and 19 years old, mostly doing their own songwriting, and writing and performing in a second language, not to mention an American genre. Overall, I'd say they're pretty impressive, and their best work is hauntingly gorgeous.

I feel it all comes through in the song itself, but here are their comments on this one:

The artists we mention in 'Emmylou' are some of our all-time favourite singers and songwriters. They have inspired us endlessly and in a way this is a tribute to them. When they sing together it's an otherworldly power. You can hear the love seeping through those vocals chords. The song is about the intimate connection you get when you sing together. Johnny and June were obviously married and although Emmylou and Gram never were an official couple there are certainly rumours. To us the song is saying: 'We may not be able to be together, but at least we can sing together.'