Skirts-Always

Skirts-Always was written out of heartache.Despite the tension, it leaves the listener with a soothing and gentle calm

photo by Charles Knowles

Alex Montenegro is behind the band, Skirts. She is a young talented songwriter from Dallas, Texas, and even though she has been releasing music since 2017, her latest album Great Big Wild Oak has garnished some serious attention. Her first release from the album was “Always”, a low fi, soft, hazy, dreamer of a song. The melting guitar adds texture and depth to the bittersweetness of the tune. There is a soothing quality to every intonation and a calming feel to the music. Skirts has a real vibe that I am loving right now…a must listen.

Skirts-Always

“You wanted to mention
That I left a lasting impression
But I watched you walk away
Step into a house that isn’t mine

Take a breather, step to the side
I look for you in every eye
I turn left when the light is red
I hope it’s you who slams on the brake

Can’t always be the right one for them”

2016 Music for January, February, and March

An incredible music playlist from the first months of 2016

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I thought you might enjoy the immersed in cool music playlist from the first quarter of 2016. It includes so many great musicians and bands I have featured in the first three months of 2016. I am a true fan of all of these artists and hope you are too! Follow it and enjoy the songs you probably already love and maybe even find a new one to play on repeat.

Savannah Stopover-24 Bands in 2 Days-Day 2

Music at its finest, Savannah Stopover

So the other day was the official St Patrick’s Day, luck of the Irish to y’all! I imagine Savannah is a very different place today than it was last weekend. Maybe they are still partying. Despite the fact that it was a week ago, I am still basking in the exhilaration of Savannah Stopover.

Yes, I really saw 24 bands in 2 days.

If you want to see my last post you can click here. Otherwise, let’s get going on the happy band joy of the last day at Stopover!

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Who wouldn’t love waking up to this gorgeous view every day? Happy that the sun was shining, but admittedly dragging a bit due to my late night, I was on a mission to find strong coffee, and some food for sustenance. Fortunately, not far from the hotel was a perfect brunch spot, The Collins Quarter! Lingering over yummy food, coffee, and warm sunshine is a beautiful thing. I anticipated the task ahead and needed to gather energy for one ginormous day of killer music.

The first music of the day was a band I have heard a great deal of buzz about, The High Divers from Charleston.

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The High Divers

 

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I was wistfully wishing for summertime, as I sat on the outdoor patio and listened to this band jam their roots rock and roll with an updated twist. If you haven’t heard their hit tune, Give It Up” (go on and click it) from the album, Riverlust, then you should. You will be like me and wanting the entire album. They have down home good tunes with familiar vocals that remind me of southern rock at its finest.

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Yep, I was a little worried that this guy had a concrete patio as his pillow, but his family of multiple generations seemed to be so very happy all together, listening to this band. It was an honest lighthearted nap moment.

More power to those gatherings, where some can dance and others can close their eyes in quiet meditation, right?

After meeting up with The High Divers and the visionary behind their label, Hearts and Plugs, we headed out to seek out other new music.

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Oxenfree

Midday, at The Jinx, Brooklyn’s Oxenfree played a nice set of guitar driven music. I loved that one of the band members wore a shirt with peaches all over it. Yay, Georgia, the peachy state! Their tune “Make Out” is a favorite of mine.

We then hightailed it to see Dear Tracks at Congress Street Social Club, which seemed to be a hub for the local bands. Oddly enough, Dear Tracks is from Grand Rapids, Michigan. I often think some of our best and brightest bands come from this part of the country due to harsh weather and few chances to get outside, so they all learn an instrument, play in a basement, and thrive at the ease of the instrument’s power.

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Dear Tracks

It was a perfect afternoon for the dreamy shoegaze wonderment of Dear Tracks.

Without a moment to spare, I rushed to listen to a must see artist…..Your Friend. Worried I was late, I actually arrived ahead of time and the magic of karma allowed me to see a band I have blogged about before, Joy Again.

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Joy Again

They were fun and I loved it when a group of College of Charleston students began dancing to the beat of the music. You can check out my previous post here.

After their set, Your Friend was up. I was thrilled that they came all the way from Kansas to play at Savannah Stopover. Her voice is amazing and the songs on the most recent album, Gumption, are a beautiful combination of electronics and echoey vocals with powerful lyrics.IMG_8139.jpg

At first there were some sound issues, but after working out the kinks, it was an amazing show.

 

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Your Friend

After their set we hunkered down and ordered food, (you know…wings and such) in anticipation of Alex G. But low and behold, the band was beside us ordering too. So I got a chance to chat with them and meet them.

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This is an action shot, but I had to share a view of my new friend, the drummer, who shared a beer and some laughs with us! What a great guy and who couldn’t love a prankster who buys fun tricks at South Of The Border on the drive down to Savannah?

Alex G has an interesting show. He is a bit irreverent and kind of argumentative in his conversation between songs. Perhaps, it might be a defense/distraction mechanism for the deeply personal expression in his songs.

Afterwards, I rushed back to The Social Club to see Hos[ital Ships and Des Arks, both local and on the local record label Graveface.

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Hospital Ships was a welcome relief of meditative tunes reflecting heart-felt concerns. Soft, lovely, and quietly powerful, their set cleansed my musical palate in a way. It was a moment of deep reflection for the packed house.

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Then the mood changed when Des Ark played, directly following Hospital Ships. With an overlap of musicians, it was a natural order. Listen to “Ties”.

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Okay, okay….I admit my sluggish mode to taking pictures at this point. A little lazy that I sat on a bar stool and listened, but honestly I enjoyed chatting with a guy from Graveface and the Savannah Stopover social media gal. So in between songs, we were talking music shop, and that makes me a happy camper for sure!

I was such a happy camper in fact, I made a trip to their amazing record store on Sunday. Talk about a wonderful selection of albums new and old. It was a joyous discovery, and purchases were made.

Going back to Saturday, I trucked back to Trinity Church to catch SALES.

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They proved to be a pleasant, happy surprise. Every song in their repertoire was amazing.

Then, it was time to rush to the outdoor venue, Ships of the Sea Museum, to see Susto.

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Working our way through the packed house, we found a comfortable spot right up front. There are so many talented musicians in this band. One of the most intriguing is Johnny Delaware. There is a mysterious mystique about him and his music sensibility.  The pictures of mine confirm it without a doubt.

IMG_8187.jpg Whoa! Caught in the hazy mist without his guitar, so cool.

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The crowd was a happy bunch, along with a wholehearted fan, ME!!

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I have to give a shout out to Clay for playing in two bands, (that I know of, it might be more). He is a music fiend that seemed to be everywhere I was at Stopover, and that makes me so happy. Trumpet on dude!

It was a difficult decision at this point, but I had to choose between seeing Beverly and Porches. I love both, but have honestly embraced Porches new album as a major favorite for this year’s music. So, Porches it was…..

I ran back to Trinity Church to be in the front row. I was surprised they were a bit behind schedule and I was lucky enough to catch Twin Limb’s set.

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It was cool to see how their music revolved around an accordion. It was quite unique and beautiful. A stumble upon talent….and sorta makes a blogger’s heart sing.

But then…Porches arrived on the scene.

Wow, just wow!

How can I even begin to describe the experience? It was a packed house, but I was in the front and never knew anyone else was in the audience. I felt as if it was a concert just for a few close friends. When can you experience anything like that from a talented band that will sell out shows from here on out?

It was completely off the chain and a lifetime moment that shakes my psyche. Porches is one of my top albums this year. You are probably saying, Ha , it is only March. I  say , well you are absolutely right, but nevertheless…..the album, Pool, speaks to my ears and my heart.

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I could have gone back to my hotel completely happy and done….but no, there was more to experience.

We ran to see Triathalon, but sadly they were ahead of schedule and their set was over. I have to share a favorite song of mine.

The only good side to missing them was being there for the entirety of New Madrid’s set.IMG_8234.jpg

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See, I told you I saw a boat load of bands last weekend. Happy to be home, but fondly reminiscing about my listening experience. Put Savannah Stopover on your calendar for next year, it can only get better and better!

 

Echosmith-I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day

A perfect song for the season. Merry Christmas y’all!

 

I heard the bells on Christmas Day


Their old familiar carols play


And wild and sweet, the words repeat


Of peace on earth, good-will to men!



Till ringing, singing on it’s way


The world revolved from night to day


A voice, a chime, a chant sublime


Of peace on earth, good-will to men!



And in despair I bowed my head;


“There is no peace on earth” I said;


“For hate is strong and mocks the song


Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”



Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:


“Oh God’s not dead and not asleep


The Wrong shall fail, The Right prevail


With peace on earth, good-will to men!”



Oh peace on earth, good will to men


Oh peace on earth, good will to men


Oh peace on earth, good will to men


Oh peace on earth, good will to men

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Echosmith recorded this song a couple of Christmases ago, but it honestly seems more poignant today, especially with the weird times in which we live. Echosmith is an American indie pop band from California. The band is four siblings: Graham, Sydney, Noah, and Jamie Sierota. “I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day” features incredible vocals from Sydney and emphasizes the real reason for the season. After listening to Christmas songs on repeat for the past month, it is fun to find an unknown gem.

Christmas should always remind us of the deep love we share with those nearest and dearest to us. Blessings to all of you. May peace and good will rise above hatred and strife today and everyday. Merry Christmas!

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Father John Misty-I Went To The Store One Day and True Affection

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Love is _______

Fill in the blank. I could probably insert any adjective to complete the sentence and it would apply to a moment we have all experienced. Right?

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We seek it, we wish for it to last forever, we complicate it, we sometimes suffocate it, as well as not tend to it, often enough. We may be tinged with regret and nostalgia, or perhaps, we are fighting restlessness.  We may wish we could figure it all out by making lists of expectations, characteristics, and focus on finding a perfect love “fit”.

We may be giddy and gushing with it.

Does love find you, right now, at this very moment? Is it a dream or a hope somewhere in the future? Or, is love lost in a memory of the past that seems to be forever locked in your mind and heart?

I know, I know, many complain about Valentine’s Day, but isn’t it a joyous idea to put aside a moment to celebrate love, to question love, wonder about love, and try to understand love?

Simply 24 hours to acknowledge the power love has over our thoughts, memories, and deepest connection to one another. I don’t know about you, but I’m all in.

Father John Misty is an unlikely singer of love. He is gregarious, quirky and downright odd. Lovingly odd. What’s not to like about him?

Father John Misty’s musical fame came as the drummer in Fleet Foxes. In his own words, he describes his participation humbly,

“People have really exaggerated my involvement with Fleet Foxes; they had two records done by the time I joined the band and the writing was already on the wall that they were going to be the next big thing. I just learned the drum parts for their songs and tried to execute them as best as I could.”

Fleet Foxes was a perfect stepping stone to finding his true voice and the vast audience to appreciate it.

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Now living in New Orleans, he speaks his mind honestly and twists his thoughts, in songs, with welcome surprises. You have to ponder his words and lyrics, and his voice is undeniably effective as you follow it to the sweet high notes. I experience chilly bumps when I listen to these two songs.

The first, “I Went To The Store One Day”, is the dream of what we all wish for in love. It weaves a lovely story of a surprising encounter in a parking lot, finding your soul mate completely unexpected, and spending the rest of your lives together. Actually, it describes Father John Misty’s true story of meeting the love of his life.

Beautifully blindsided by love and the wowing, crazy possibility of it. Romantic indeed.

 

 

The second song is an upbeat popping tempo that will entice you to move to the beat. “True Affection”, reminds us of the importance for a face to face connection, sweet conversation, and the need to nurture love, by tossing aside electronic devices. More importantly, making your love, your focus.

 

 

Vastly different, but both songs are all about love.

His album, I Love You Honeybear, is filled with passion and powerful moments where it gushes out and seeps into your psyche. You really need to listen to all of the magical songs on the album. But, for heaven’s sake, don’t take it all too seriously, because Joshua Tillman (J. Tillman aka Father John Misty) is the first one to laugh at the music industry, and at himself. He is all about satire and mystery. A pied piper of sorts, and it ultimately compels us to follow him and listen to his every note.

 

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Take a chance, be honest, and tell someone you love, that you love them this Valentine’s Day or any day.

Do something nice for someone who needs love in their life.

Be caring and loving to others.

I am sure you will feel the warmth of love bounce right back to you, one day.

But while you are waiting……

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Mood Monday-Orthy-Oasis

Mood Monday.

I’m in need of a chill, mellow, vibe for this holiday Monday. I hope you were off from work and able to dream, volunteer for others, catch up with friends, or recuperate from the weekend.

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For me, I had a happy surprise visitor (Yay!) and also a catch-up lunch with a dear friend that I have been missing for way too long. Don’t you love it when you practically close a lunch place down due to compelling and thoughtful conversation catch-up? Well, we weren’t the last ones to leave, but almost!

When I check in with my dear friends, I realize that there are some you just pick up, right where you left off. They are good listeners, and honestly want to hear about what is happening in your life. The really “true friends” make the time to be there for me.

I love that.

I need to check in more often with people in my life and make the time to be a good listener for them, as well. Doing so, opens my eyes to exciting possibilities that I may not have ever thought to explore. Today is a case in point.  Travel ideas, expanding our network of friendships and relationships….maybe even a part time job!

Dreaming and believing in another person brings so much joy right back into my life. Boomerang! They have no idea about the positive influence that they infuse in my life. Thank you….

So chill with me and enjoy a sultry, cool vibe.

The band is Orthy from Austin, Texas. Okay, serious disclosure, Austin is my dream destination right about now……I love the idea of going to SXSW and blogging about my experiences. I just can’t put the money together, but I will one day and maybe even see Orthy live!

 

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Orthy is Ian (Ian Orth), Jeramy, Jordan, Markus, and Michael. They create a somewhat chill electric dance music that pulls in all of your senses and you inadvertently tap your toes and toss your hair at the beat and the harmonies. The esoteric loveliness of the harmonies has me a fan forever! Amazing swirling sounds of intricate layers of smooth instrumental music, makes for a mood Monday joyous tune. Thanks for the happy Monday Mood Vibe!

I can’t leave you with just one tune…. This one is another favorite of mine because it is more guitar driven. Enjoy!

 

 

 

Your December Playlist

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All of the songs I blogged this past month and a fun pop surprise from Banks. Enjoy!

If you aren’t a premium Spotify member, you are completely missing out on incredible music. I highly recommend checking it out if you love learning about new bands or you catch a cool sound and want to listen to their entire discography. Happy Listening!

September Playlist

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Rabbit rabbit!

Happy October to you! Here’s the music that I shared in the month of September, ten songs for about 40 minutes. The Tallest Trees and Jesse Taylor aren’t on Spotify yet, so I added two songs that I have been listening to this month. I think you’ll like these amazing songs from Luke Sital-Singh and Aphex Twin. If you haven’t already, follow me on Spotify and enjoy all of the playlists that I have created this past year. Enjoy!

 

Jesse Taylor-In My Bones

I remember a moment in college, when I couldn’t get in touch with my parents who were 10 hours away. I felt compelled to call them, despite the fun I was having. I just wouldn’t give up, I knew that it was extremely important, but I didn’t know why.

I finally talked with my parents that weekend, and they had dropped everything to travel to Alabama to care for a dear relative that had suddenly become ill.

Intuition is an instinct, a hunch, a premonition, a gut feeling.

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Do you ever get a sensation, an image, or a dream that steers your mind in a direction that you didn’t quite understand?

The telephone rings and you intuitively know who it is. You change your path that you take almost daily, to find out something occurred on that path that you were happy to avoid.  You have vivid dreams about questions in your life, and then wake up knowing exactly what to do. You sense that a friend isn’t telling you the “whole” story, or even fudging a bit. You meet someone for the first time, and instinctively know you are going to be great friends.

I have been experiencing this kind of intuition for many years. I make a point to pay attention when I feel something in my gut, or sense something about to change or happen. It is the ability to kind of think, without thinking. It sounds a little crazy, but I believe it is a small gift that must be nurtured.

Intuition honestly helps to solve a portion of my life’s heartache, and on occasion, it can even bring it on. Either way, I am fortunate to have that unique feeling….in my bones.

Jesse Taylor was born in Queensland, Australia and is a singer/songwriter that speaks to me. He has been writing and performing music since he was 16 years old. After studying music and the music business in college, he most recently has decided to pursue music as a career. With the release of his debut single, “In My Bones”, he is off to a fantastic start.

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Even though Jesse admits that the lyrics for “In My Bones” was written in around 30 minutes. They are “an expression of something he needed to say in a not-so-upfront manner”. While dozing off to sleep at 2 in the morning, he said, “the melody somehow magically appeared in my head”.

With a simple beat that feels like the pulse of a heartbeat, I love that his vocals enter in, delicately and emotionally.  The song builds to a crescendo that mimics the feeling that I associate with my own intuitive side. You know, the “Aha” moment. “In My Bones”, reminds me to trust my inner feelings whether they may warn me of impending danger or provide solace and comfort. A pretty powerful sound, for a debut single. I hope he trusts his gut and brings us more. Music is definitely in his bones.

 

 

Meg Myers-Make a Shadow

Today seems like Sunday, but happily, it is only Saturday. It has been a slow, calm day compared to the furious intensity of The Fourth of July. A napping in the sun day is a nice luxury and joyfully welcomed. But, after hearing this tune, I must get going.

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Photo by Rock Subculture Journal

Meg Myers is a fierce femme fatal and songstress with emerging talent. From the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee and former Jehovah’s Witness, she is now in Los Angeles celebrating birthdays. Her music has come to me with perfect timing.

Her song, “Make A Shadow”,  reflects those moments in my life when I might lean on the side of being a slug, because it is just so darn easy to do. It is a reminder to embrace youth and live life to its fullest. She is telling me to close up my computer right now and get out there, so that the fun can begin.

Isn’t this a perfect song for this long vacay weekend. My soul urges me to make, and then take, special moments and cherish them. Today is a day for creating your own real-life fireworks by pushing your normal limits and spending quality time with the people you care about.

Now, I must really get up and go, move my aching muscles from the 10k I ran yesterday, and get on with it…..you know…..life.

Happy Fourth of July weekend, y’all. Aren’t you glad it is only Saturday?

“My heart is fire, my heart is young”

https://soundcloud.com/meginthedark/make-a-shadow?in=meginthedark/sets/make-a-shadow-ep