october has such strong associations in my mind. cloudy, ominous skies. birds cawing. tom waits.
november's got none of that. december does, but november just feels like the month inbetween october and december. it's a fine month in its own right, but since i didn't have any particular musical direction associated with it, i decided to just use this month as sort of a prelude to december. so, that's what we've got: a bunch of dudes with guitars and a few crescendoes to boot. not a bad crop, overall.
you're already quite familiar with m. ward's "chinese translation", but i like it and it's one of the few songs that feels like november to me, so here it is. i first heard of the bowerbirds when i watched the blogotheque video (linked below) of them playing "bur oak" in a candy shop, and couldn't quite understand how their melody could feel so haunting in such a bright and sugary setting. the great lake swimmers are mainly this guy and his guitar, and their music is real nice as well.
final fantasy is another breed entirely. the group's the solo project of a man named owen pallett, who is another insanely perfect violin player, and for some reason or another his music has been somehow, i dunno, important to me for the past couple of months, so here is a song by him, with another to hopefully follow relatively soon. again: haunting. josh ritter is a more straightforward sort of person: he plays the guitar and sings songs, and they're really good. he usually plays with a full band, drums and all, i saw him perform "the temptation of adam" on a really special night in san francisco when it was just him in a suit, his guitar, and a string quartet. haunting indeed. i guess there is a theme to this month after all.
jose gonzalez is a swedish dude who plays excellent music - he's probably most famous for his beautiful acoustic cover of a relatively intense and electronic song called "heartbeats", but i've listened to that song too many times, so here is another one, accompanied by a really good blogotheque video of it linked below. i don't quite know samamidon's story, but i like his music - this song's maybe a tad repetitive, but it's just such a wonderful crescendo that i never get tired of it.
the fleet foxes love nothing more than singing in harmony with each other, and they're really good at it. again, they're more famous for another song, but i like this one and so here it is. you remember cloud cult from september. finally, olafur arnalds is, i believe, an icelandic composer of some sort, and this song was the one that convinced me that he is really good at what he does. starts off a little quiet, but give it two and a half minutes.
see you in december!
every month, i'll put up a new mixtape on the right side of this inter net site, and some words having to do with that mixtape will run down the left side. some tapes will have more or fewer songs than others, and sometimes tapes will have themes. i hope that the one thing that they will all have in common will be that they are all made of good music, and that my mom and anyone else who cares to listen to them will find new music that they like by listening to these things.
which reminds me: this site is a birthday present for my mom. because, in the words of a wise otter, my mom should always get presents because she is my mom. for the technically inclined: this site is powered by php, duct tape, sheer force of concentration, and a modified version of opentape.
my name is jrheard.