I should be studying, reading, writing, or earning some money but instead I've been playing around at finetune.com. The result of this play is a soundtrack for this blog, which you can listen to using the music player in the right margin. Check it out!
The playlist is an ecclectic blend including some Over the Rhine, Bonnie Raitt, Bob Dylan, Carole King, Mason Jennings, Johnny Cash, Petula Clark, and more, with a total of 45 tracks. That's about three hours of continuous listening pleasure, assuming you like the choices I made.
The tracks can be easily changed, so if you think it's missing a must-have track, send me an email or post a comment and I'll consider rotating it in. Or go to finetune.com and make your own playlist then come back here and tell us about it.
On Minnesota Public Radio, just now on the way home from a Valentine's Day breakfast, I heard a preview of tonight's countdown on "The Current" of the fifty greatest love songs of all time.* The list is derived from listener nominations.
For the third year in a row, the number one song is "The Luckiest" by Ben Folds. My sons are both big Ben Folds fans and so I've heard a lot of his music over the years. This one, however, I don't remember hearing before. The radio played it as part of the preview. It really is beautiful and worth a listen. Here are the lyrics.
"The Luckiest" is from Folds' "Rockin' the Suburbs" album, which, alas, I do see sitting on my son's shelf. I think I'll stick it in the CD player and listen again.
*7 p.m. (CST), The Current, Minnesota Public Radio, 89.3 or via live stream.
The new Over the Rhine Christmas CD, Snow Angels, is out. I have their earlier Christmas CD, The Darkest Night of the Year; in fact, it's playing as I type this. As usual, they generously offer a couple free mp3 downloads from the new album their website. Check out "Darlin (Christmas is Coming)".
A song keeps playing in my head. "Be Here Now" by Mason Jennings, a local guy who just released a new CD called Boneclouds. I think this is his sixth CD. My college freshman (oops, he's a sophomore now) introduced me to Jennings' music a couple years ago and I've been a fan since.
In fact, a couple weeks ago my son let me go with him and two of his friends to a concert Jennings gave at a local independent record store.
I'm not a music critic and so don't have handy the best descriptors of musical performance but let me just say that there is something lovely and good-spirited about his music. He's on a tour right now, so if you hear he's in your city check him out. Tomorrow night he's in New York City, the next Philadelphia, the next Washington DC, and more. Check out his website for concert info and some videos, including "Be Here Now" and if you're there listen also to "Sorry Signs on Cash Machines", another great song. My son even wrote a paper about him for school and turned his professor into a fan--maybe he'll give me a copy and I'll add an excerpt.
"Over the Rhine" has a new CD, Live from Nowhere. In accordance with their ongoing generosity in sharing and previewing music, they are making available two tracks from the CD on their website: Moondance and Looking Forward.
From December 16 through Christmas Day, the BBC is broadcasting continuously over ten days the complete works of Johann Sebastian Bach. You can listen live from the "A Bach Christmas" page at the BBC site. You can also listen to works played previously.