Bill over at Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child sent me the Frances England song "Charlie Parker" a long time ago. He loves this album and I understand why. Now. See, I didn't love the Parker song and so I dismissed it as a rare fluke where Bill and I don't see eye to eye. Then Frances herself wrote me and offered up the CD. I took it, kind of hoping that maybe I just didn't like the one song and the rest would be delightful. And that's pretty much what happened.
Frances England comes to us by way of San Francisco and this CD is meant for children with its tunes about bicycles and trains and pancakes and kid books. And you know, I'm not a lover of the genre "kids music." But this one is sweet and a little sassy and purty and smart. And I do applaud musicians who like connecting with children and families who are trying to do something other than what is expected (i.e., either cartoonish, sappy-gross or Kidz Bop-esque.) And I think when my daughter gets off her rock kick (perhaps the same one Aiden, son of Zak, my guest poster later on the week is on) she is going to really like this gal's voice and this CD. But I can't tell you what she thinks of it currently, because she just wants to listen to Blur and the rocking-est Ben Folds songs right now. I still don't feel the love for the Charlie Parker song. Sorry! But the Daddy song is tops as are the lover-ly two I have posted here today. So, end result is that if you actually have children, even young children, and aren't just here for curiosity sake, I recommend this one to you as a cool down, back porch, rainy day kind of CD. She got a lovely write up too, in the hipster parenting magazine, Cookie. That was nice to see, I hope it spikes her CD sales, I think she deserves it.
Unrelated side note: When I was in the hospital, my hubby brought over my iPod. I couldn't listen to it. I tried once, but it was too much. When you're raw like that music can be wonderful and soothing or help you express feelings that you aren't otherwise able, but for me, it just made the floodgates open and I was not ready for that. So I put it, and my music, away. Until this past weekend.
We got the Golden Smog CD, Another Fine Day on Friday. If you read this with any regularity, you know, I kind of think Jeff Tweedy is a genius. And Golden Smog does claim as a member Jeff Tweedy. And he's great here, for sure. But the combination of Gary Louris (another one of my most favorite voices, ever) and Kraig Jarrett Johnson and Dan Murphy and Tweedy singing is just well, it really does I think physically, warm my heart. I think this CD is just phenomenal, fun exuberance in musical form. I highly recommend it. My favorite two tracks right now are "Corvette," a retro rocker that is to me, unexpected and the title track, which I present to you here because, it's how I feel most of the time these days. At once completely lost and oddly thankful. I love how Gary (lead) and Tweedy (back-up) seem to almost be singing the chorus through gritted teeth (or maybe that's just how I'm singing along.) And the drums, well those are provided by Jody Stephens (Big Star!) A gem from the swirl of the start to the bombastic chorus to the fuzzed out end.
Frances England, "Sometimes"
Frances England, "Where Do They Go?"
Bonus Not-Exactly-For-The-Kids Song:
Golden Smog, "Another Fine Day"
Just a friendly reminder: If you like these songs, purchase the CDs.
More about: Frances England, Golden Smog