Shiny Thing: Leon Bridges

This album is getting heavy play at our house these days. If you get him started, Josh will marvel at the way it was recorded and describe to you the little details you might miss like, for example, that “they killed absolutely no transients on those drums…” (I assume this has more to do with production technique and less to do with whether or not any homeless people were harmed during the recording of the album.)  I will say much less insightful things like, “Singing, good. Music, nice.”

It is soulful, and out of a different time, and too busy being awesome to worry about a bunch of post-production “sanitizing.” It sounds real and a little raw… like music should. Your ears should hear it.

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Mix Tape: The Singles of 2014

I’m ignoring the fact that I’m in a bit of a mix tape rut on the ol’ blog here, and plowing ahead with another to round up some favorite tunes from 2014. I feel like I lost track of the music scene a bit during the last year, but there were still a few singles that caught my attention. Your job is to tell me what I missed.

Mix Tape: The Singles of 2014

Gooey – Glass Animals
A Little Lost – Sufjan Stevens
Two Weeks – FKA Twigs

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Mix Tape Decade

Mix Tape: The First 10 Years

Exactly 10 years ago tonight, I fumbled a handful of ice cubes at a friend’s holiday party. Looking around sheepishly to see if anyone had noticed, our eyes met. He noticed. I do not believe in love at first sight, but I don’t have any other way to explain what happened that night. And the rest, as they say, is history.

A troubled history, in this case, at least for the first few years. And then there were the two years of long distance (first Seattle-to-Toronto and then Seattle-to-Dallas), during which time we saw each other in the flesh only four times. (FOUR times in TWO years!!). And then there was the unexpected pregnancy a mere month after he returned to Seattle, which forced us to figure out how to parent together before we’d even fully figured out how to live together.

I think everyone’s a little surprised we lasted.

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Mix Tape: Big Sister Edition (circa 1987)

I spent a lot of time in my younger years tagging along after my older step-sister. She was 3-1/2 years my senior and always doing cool older sister things, like telling jokes I didn’t quite understand, playing exclusionary games, and having longer and blonder hair than me. I tried so hard just to keep up with her, but she was always at least 12 steps ahead of me–literally and figuratively.

By the time we were both in our tween-age years, my dad and her mom had divorced and we saw each other only infrequently. On one rare visit, I wandered into her bedroom and wasn’t told immediately to leave. (Success!) She was sitting on the floor, drawing, and I sat down next to her and watched silently. When the cassette she’d been listening to ended, she offered me a coveted honor: selecting the next tape.

She looked at me expectantly. I knew if I chose incorrectly, I would likely break the spell and be kicked out of her room. I scanned my memory banks for bands she’d previously proclaimed to be worthy. “Duran Duran?” I asked nervously.

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