Playlist
Who can save us from the infidels of Christmas commodity? Look no further, tired shopper, for your hero arrives as the diligent songwriter Sufjan Stevens, army of one, banjo in one hand, drum machine in the other, holed up in his room, surrounded by hymnals, oratorios, music charts, sacred harp books, paper-clipped-photo-copied Readers Digest Christmas catalogs - singing his barbaric yawp above the snow-capped rooftops.His song is love; his song is hope; his song is peace, conjuring the fruitcake world of his own imagination with steadfast affection for the unattainable bliss of Christmas Promises summoning the company of angels, the helper elves, the shepherds keeping flock, the coupon-clippers, the marathon runners, the grocery store baggers, the bridge and tunnel drivers, the construction workers, the street sweepers, the single mothers, the rich and the poor, the walking dead, the Virgin Mary, the Holy Spirit, the Prince of Persia, and all the invisible hosts of heaven to participate in this absurd cosmic adventure, pursuing holly-jolly songs of hope and redemption with a sacred heart for the enduring love for the holiness of Christmas, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Silver & Gold
Sufjan Stevens
Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
Year: 2012

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Catholic Boy
The Jim Carroll Band
People Who Died
Year: 1980

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No Cities to Love is the first album in 10 years by Sleater-Kinney (guitarist/vocalist Carrie Brownstein, vocalist/guitarist Corin Tucker, and drummer Janet Weiss), who came crashing out of the '90s Pacific Northwest riot grrrl scene, setting a new bar for punk's political insight and emotional impact. Formed in Olympia, WA in 1994, Sleater-Kinney were hailed as "America's best rock band" by Greil Marcus in Time Magazine, and put out seven searing albums in 10 years before going on indefinite hiatus in 2006. No Cities to Love was produced by the band’s longtime collaborator John Goodmanson.
No Cities To Love
Sleater-Kinney
Bury Our Friends

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No Cities to Love is the first album in 10 years by Sleater-Kinney (guitarist/vocalist Carrie Brownstein, vocalist/guitarist Corin Tucker, and drummer Janet Weiss), who came crashing out of the '90s Pacific Northwest riot grrrl scene, setting a new bar for punk's political insight and emotional impact. Formed in Olympia, WA in 1994, Sleater-Kinney were hailed as "America's best rock band" by Greil Marcus in Time Magazine, and put out seven searing albums in 10 years before going on indefinite hiatus in 2006. No Cities to Love was produced by the band’s longtime collaborator John Goodmanson.
No Cities To Love
Sleater-Kinney
Surface Envy

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Explicit version of Ben Folds' 2008 album Way to Normal. Ben Folds is best known as a solo artist and as the front-man pianist of Ben Folds Five. He is celebrated for a sound that bridges the worlds of Jazz and Power Rock. Consistently touring, Ben Folds has earned a reputation for his wit, musicality, and energetic live shows. With songs like 'Hiroshima' (which recounts his falling of the stage and hitting his head in Japan), Folds has proven to be a story-teller for the piano-rock generation. Way To Normal is the first full length release since Songs for Silverman, a very honest look at the last few years of Folds' life. Folds collaborated with Dennis Herring (Counting Crows, Modest Mouse, Elvis Costello) and the track 'You Don't Know Me' features a duet with indie songstress, Regina Spektor.
Way to Normal
Ben Folds
Errant Dog
Year: 2008

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Explicit version of Ben Folds' 2008 album Way to Normal. Ben Folds is best known as a solo artist and as the front-man pianist of Ben Folds Five. He is celebrated for a sound that bridges the worlds of Jazz and Power Rock. Consistently touring, Ben Folds has earned a reputation for his wit, musicality, and energetic live shows. With songs like 'Hiroshima' (which recounts his falling of the stage and hitting his head in Japan), Folds has proven to be a story-teller for the piano-rock generation. Way To Normal is the first full length release since Songs for Silverman, a very honest look at the last few years of Folds' life. Folds collaborated with Dennis Herring (Counting Crows, Modest Mouse, Elvis Costello) and the track 'You Don't Know Me' features a duet with indie songstress, Regina Spektor.
Way to Normal
Ben Folds
Cologne
Year: 2008

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Explicit version of Ben Folds' 2008 album Way to Normal. Ben Folds is best known as a solo artist and as the front-man pianist of Ben Folds Five. He is celebrated for a sound that bridges the worlds of Jazz and Power Rock. Consistently touring, Ben Folds has earned a reputation for his wit, musicality, and energetic live shows. With songs like 'Hiroshima' (which recounts his falling of the stage and hitting his head in Japan), Folds has proven to be a story-teller for the piano-rock generation. Way To Normal is the first full length release since Songs for Silverman, a very honest look at the last few years of Folds' life. Folds collaborated with Dennis Herring (Counting Crows, Modest Mouse, Elvis Costello) and the track 'You Don't Know Me' features a duet with indie songstress, Regina Spektor.
Way to Normal
Ben Folds
Before Cologne
Year: 2008

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Explicit version of Ben Folds' 2008 album Way to Normal. Ben Folds is best known as a solo artist and as the front-man pianist of Ben Folds Five. He is celebrated for a sound that bridges the worlds of Jazz and Power Rock. Consistently touring, Ben Folds has earned a reputation for his wit, musicality, and energetic live shows. With songs like 'Hiroshima' (which recounts his falling of the stage and hitting his head in Japan), Folds has proven to be a story-teller for the piano-rock generation. Way To Normal is the first full length release since Songs for Silverman, a very honest look at the last few years of Folds' life. Folds collaborated with Dennis Herring (Counting Crows, Modest Mouse, Elvis Costello) and the track 'You Don't Know Me' features a duet with indie songstress, Regina Spektor.
Way to Normal
Ben Folds
You Don't Know Me (feat. Regina Spektor)
Year: 2008

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Pink Martini should be known as the little orchestra that walks a fine line in its music. The Portland, Oregon, outfit is deeply influenced by Latin music, jazz, cabaret, cinema scores, and a smattering of other styles. But rather than simply aping legendary artists in their prime--and fooling only a few dim bulbs in the process--band shakes things up by writing its own material, or at least creating tasteful new arrangements that fit within the band’s unique post-lounge framework. The band keeps the playful musical vibe on Hang On Little Tomato, but jettisons what kitsch factor it had, choosing to focus wholly on original material or stuff that isn’t recognizable to the average music fan. It’s been a seven-year wait for fans since the band’s fun debut, Sympathique, and while the blush is now off the rose, the band’s creative ambitions and talent are never better displayed than here on their second effort. – Tad Hendrickson
Hang On Little Tomato
Pink Martini
The Gardens of Sampson & Beasley
Year: 2004

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Pink Martini should be known as the little orchestra that walks a fine line in its music. The Portland, Oregon, outfit is deeply influenced by Latin music, jazz, cabaret, cinema scores, and a smattering of other styles. But rather than simply aping legendary artists in their prime--and fooling only a few dim bulbs in the process--band shakes things up by writing its own material, or at least creating tasteful new arrangements that fit within the band’s unique post-lounge framework. The band keeps the playful musical vibe on Hang On Little Tomato, but jettisons what kitsch factor it had, choosing to focus wholly on original material or stuff that isn’t recognizable to the average music fan. It’s been a seven-year wait for fans since the band’s fun debut, Sympathique, and while the blush is now off the rose, the band’s creative ambitions and talent are never better displayed than here on their second effort. – Tad Hendrickson
Hang On Little Tomato
Pink Martini
Hang On Little Tomato
Year: 2004

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Digitally remastered and expanded edition of this 1970 album. From the driving 'Whisky Train' to the watery depths of 'Whaling Stories' and all points in between, their brilliant fourth album (here featuring two bonus cuts) further demonstrated what Procol Harum fans already knew - that the band had a world class singer in Gary Brooker, one of the greatest drummers around in B.J. Wilson, a vastly underrated guitarist in Robin Trower and a fantastic lyricist in Keith Reid. 12 tracks. Salvo.
Home
Procol Harum
Whaling Stories
Year: 1996

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new life dreaming
Steve Roach
where i live
Year: 2005

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new life dreaming
Steve Roach
perfect dream
Year: 2005

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new life dreaming
Steve Roach
the ancients' way
Year: 2005

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Mysterious Traveller
Weather Report
Scarlet Woman
Year: 2002

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Multi-faceted Hip-Hop superstar Common is prepping his highly anticipated seventh album, Finding Forever, for a August 7th release on G.O.O.D Music/Geffen Records. The album is the follow up to the four times Grammy nominated, critically heralded and Kanye West produced Be, which spawned hits including The Corner, Go, and Testify. Finding Forever, finds Kanye again taking the bulk of production work with help from Will.I.Am on the sultry I Want You, the late great J. Dilla on So Far To Go, featuring a surprise guest appearance by D'Angelo and G.O.O.D Music producer Devo Springsteen on Misunderstood. On Finding Forever, Common, rips the mic like a hungry newcomer. The street single The Game produced by Kanye with scratches by the legendary DJ Premier is a horn drenched, vintage NY rap boom-bap banger from the Chi-town emcee, no less. The resounding lead single The People finds Common lyrically asserting why and who he creates his music for over regal strings, delectable keys and hard to get vocals by Gil Scott Heron. This is the vinyl version.
Finding Forever
Common
So Far To Go
Year: 2007

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Ys
Joanna Newsom
Sawdust & Diamonds
Year: 2006

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2009 release, the seventh studio album from renowned American Blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa. Produced by Kevin Shirley (Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, The Black Crowes) the album sees Bonamassa deliver another collection of rocking Blues workouts. Featuring six original tracks penned by Bonamassa himself, he also takes on six covers, including Tom Waits' 'Jockey Full Of Bourbon', Sam Brown's 'Stop' and the Newley/Bricusse penned classic 'Feelin' Good'.
The Ballad Of John Henry
Joe Bonamassa
Happier Times
Year: 2009

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Glaciation
Patrick O'Hearn
A Safe Return
Year: 2007

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The biggest smash of Steely Dan's career-their #3 album from 1977, featuring three classic hits: Peg; Deacon Blues , and Josie . This jazzy album was also their biggest critical success, and this reissue adds new notes by Fagen and Becker!
Aja
Steely Dan
I Got The News
Year: 1977

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Blood Money is up there with Waits's best albums from the mid-'80s, veering as it does from sexy insomniac circus music to gorgeously heart-tugging lullabies to woozy zigzag bluesy romps to what can only be described as Oscar the Grouch singing out of tune on top of the soundtrack to an old French film. Blood Money's 13 songs were cowritten by Tom Waits and longtime collaborator and wife Kathleen Brennan for a Robert Wilson production of Georg Büchner's unfinished, protomodernist 1837 play, Woyzeck, about a Kafkaesque German soldier who goes crazy after doing medical experiments for money and kills his girlfriend after witnessing a perceived infidelity. The album's worldview is, necessarily, bleak. The lyrics are hilariously misanthropic, occasionally hallucinatory, and ring with the truth of Tin Pan Alley clichés turned inside out. "Coney Island Baby," in particular, is a grand statement, with Waits delicately croaking the lines "She's a rose, she's the pearl / She's the spin on my world / All the stars make their wishes on her eyes." The album's manifesto, however, is to be found in the title tune, as Waits spits out the words "If there's one thing you can say about mankind / There's nothing kind about man / You can drive out nature with a pitch fork / But it always comes roaring back again." Released at the same time as the lyrical, lovely Alice, the ragged and rhythmic Blood Money marks the return of one of our most gifted meta-singer-songwriters to the top of his game. --Mike McGonigal
Blood Money
Tom Waits
Woe
Year: 2002

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Diary
Ralph Towner
The Silence Of A Candle
Year: 1973

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Pat Metheny's most ambitious solo project is also his most emotionally rich work as composer. A conceptual song cycle inspired by a tumultuous relationship frames the CD's alternately intense and introspective motifs with sweeping orchestrations and a shifting array of global musics spanning Asia, Europe, and the Americas. With a vast cast (including numerous Metheny Group members past and present), and Metheny himself marshalling percussion, horns, and keyboards as well as guitar and guitar synthesizer, Secret Story is by turns lush, heroic, heartbroken, at once epic and intimate. --Sam Sutherland
Secret Story
Pat Metheny
Not to Be Forgotten (Our Final Hour)
Year: 2007

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With four solo guitar albums of original material released to critical acclaim, two live performance DVDs, and more than 22 million views on YouTube, Antoine Dufour has emerged as a young star of fingerstyle acoustic guitar, building a worldwide reputation for innovation and creativity.
Convergences
Antoine Dufour
South Side of the Sky
Year: 2010

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With a bold, confident voice that commanded listeners to take notice and a body of work boasting some of the most upbeat and romantic recordings of the past three decades, Whitney Houston (1963-2012) has long solidified her place as one of the 20th century s most significant performers. But her ability to stun live audiences with her powerful vocal gifts has never been documented on an official release - until now. Whitney Houston Live: Her Greatest Performances will capture decades of live recordings and unforgettable memories of a true music legend.From the moment Clive Davis introduced a 19-year-old Houston on The Merv Griffin Show, audiences knew this was more than your average talented voice.Whitney Houston Live: Her Greatest Performances includes that seminal performance, plus others from three decades of stellar live appearances, from talk-shows (The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The Oprah Winfrey Show) to awards ceremonies like the American Music Awards - and all the extra-special performances in between including 1994 s Concert For A New South Africa.This CD/DVD package will, for the first time, illuminate a brilliant career as seen under dozens of stage lights and remind audiences of Whitney s truly original voice - often imitated but certainly never surpassed.DVD Tracks:1. Home (The Merv Griffin Show, 1983)2. You Give Good Love (The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, 1985)3. How Will I Know (The Brit Awards, 1987)4. One Moment In Time (The 31st Annual Grammy® Awards, 1989)5. Greatest Love Of All (That s What Friends Are For: Arista Records 15th Anniversary Concert, 19906. I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me) (That's What Friends Are For: Arista Records 15th Anniversary Concert, 1990)7. The Star Spangled Banner (Super Bowl XXV, 1991)8. All The Man That I Need (Welcome Home Heroes, 1991)9. I'm Your Baby Tonight (Welcome Home Heroes, 1991)10. A Song For You (Welcome Home Heroes, 1991)11. Medley: I Loves You, Porgy/And I Am Telling You Im Not Going/I Have Nothing (The 21st Annual American Music Awards, 1994)12. I'm Every Woman (The Concert For A New South Africa, 1994)13. I Will Always Love You (The Concert For A New South Africa, 1994)14. My Love Is Your Love (Music Video BONUS DVD-ONLY MUSIC VIDEO)15. My Love Is Your Love (Late Show With David Letterman, 1998)16. When You Believe (with Mariah Carey) (The 71st Annual Academy Awards, 1999 BONUS DVD-ONLY DUET PERFORMANCE)17. I Believe In You And Me (The 16th Annual World Music Awards, 2004)18. I Didn't Know My Own Strength (The Oprah Winfrey Show, 2009)
Whitney Houston
Whitney Houston
How Will I Know
Year: 1985

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With a bold, confident voice that commanded listeners to take notice and a body of work boasting some of the most upbeat and romantic recordings of the past three decades, Whitney Houston (1963-2012) has long solidified her place as one of the 20th century s most significant performers. But her ability to stun live audiences with her powerful vocal gifts has never been documented on an official release - until now. Whitney Houston Live: Her Greatest Performances will capture decades of live recordings and unforgettable memories of a true music legend.From the moment Clive Davis introduced a 19-year-old Houston on The Merv Griffin Show, audiences knew this was more than your average talented voice.Whitney Houston Live: Her Greatest Performances includes that seminal performance, plus others from three decades of stellar live appearances, from talk-shows (The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The Oprah Winfrey Show) to awards ceremonies like the American Music Awards - and all the extra-special performances in between including 1994 s Concert For A New South Africa.This CD/DVD package will, for the first time, illuminate a brilliant career as seen under dozens of stage lights and remind audiences of Whitney s truly original voice - often imitated but certainly never surpassed.DVD Tracks:1. Home (The Merv Griffin Show, 1983)2. You Give Good Love (The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, 1985)3. How Will I Know (The Brit Awards, 1987)4. One Moment In Time (The 31st Annual Grammy® Awards, 1989)5. Greatest Love Of All (That s What Friends Are For: Arista Records 15th Anniversary Concert, 19906. I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me) (That's What Friends Are For: Arista Records 15th Anniversary Concert, 1990)7. The Star Spangled Banner (Super Bowl XXV, 1991)8. All The Man That I Need (Welcome Home Heroes, 1991)9. I'm Your Baby Tonight (Welcome Home Heroes, 1991)10. A Song For You (Welcome Home Heroes, 1991)11. Medley: I Loves You, Porgy/And I Am Telling You Im Not Going/I Have Nothing (The 21st Annual American Music Awards, 1994)12. I'm Every Woman (The Concert For A New South Africa, 1994)13. I Will Always Love You (The Concert For A New South Africa, 1994)14. My Love Is Your Love (Music Video BONUS DVD-ONLY MUSIC VIDEO)15. My Love Is Your Love (Late Show With David Letterman, 1998)16. When You Believe (with Mariah Carey) (The 71st Annual Academy Awards, 1999 BONUS DVD-ONLY DUET PERFORMANCE)17. I Believe In You And Me (The 16th Annual World Music Awards, 2004)18. I Didn't Know My Own Strength (The Oprah Winfrey Show, 2009)
Whitney Houston
Whitney Houston
How Will I Know
Year: 1985

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2008 Two CD set of 23 tracks by Tommy Emmanuel, The 2008 Guitar Player Magazine Readers' Choice Awards for "Best Acoustic Guitarist" Results of Guitar Player magazine's annual Reader's Choice Awards for 2008.
Center Stage
Tommy Emmanuel
House of the Risin' Sun
Year: 2008

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Lonely Avenue
Ben Folds & Nick Hornby
Practical Amanda
Year: 2010

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Virtuoso #3
Joe Pass
Dissonance #2
Year: 1977

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Grinderman is the sound of indie rock legends growing old disgracefully, and that is by no means a criticism. From the opening rant of "Get It On," this is an album with all the menace of an angry drunk, dripping with anger and testosterone (as the surfeit of facial hair in the band's interior photo will attest). It could even be the sound of Nick Cave's midlife crisis, but it doesn't matter, because Grinderman rocks. It's the sound of four musicians having a grand time, turning the volume up to 11 and really cutting loose. For that reason, it's the more upbeat tracks here that are probably the best: "Honey Bee (Let's Fly to Mars)" with its driving electric organ, the primal urgency of "Depth Charge Ethel," and the strutting album closer "Love Bomb." After all the po-faced seriousness he's displayed in recent years, it's good to know that Cave has rediscovered his sense of humour: "I cleaned the sheets on my bed, I combed the hairs across my head, I sucked in my gut and still she said, 'I don't want to,'" he sings on "No Pussy Blues," with his tongue firmly in cheek (amongst other places). Simply put, Grinderman is a hoot. --Ted Kord
Grinderman
Grinderman
Love Bomb
Year: 2007

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Gracefully blending the nostalgic and the contemporary, thisalbum includes contributions from Greg Kurstin (Beck, BenHarper), Greyboy Allstar bassist Chris Stillwell, and formerCake drummer Pete McNeal.
All Rise
Inara George
Fools in Love

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Accidental Experimental
Inara George
Can't Say No
Year: 2009

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The Age of Adz (pronounced Odds) is Sufjan Stevens' first full-length collection of original songs since 2005's conceptual pop opus Illinois. While the sounds on this record are distinctly "artificial" (drums machines and analog synths reign supreme), the proclamations of the songs are unabashedly visceral, sung loudly, with a backdrop of insistent orchestration. The result is an album that is perhaps more vibrant, primary and explicit than anything Sufjan has done before, incorporating themes that are neither historical nor civic, but rather personal and primal (if even a little juvenile).
The Age of Adz
Sufjan Stevens
Impossible Soul

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On her fifth studio CD, folk-rocker Patty Griffin employs three timeless themes--childhood, flight, and death--to craft her most musically diverse and accessible album yet. But while moving through jazz, beatnik, classic and modern folk, gospel R&B, Americana, and moody piano ballad, Griffin keeps her backing quiet and spare, all the more to showcase the power of her deft storytelling and the bell clarity of her unadorned soprano. On song after song, the characters who waft through her experience are on the move, chasing one thing and fleeing another--on trains, ships, buses, in cars, even on the aerialist's bar--ultimately trading an ending of one kind for a new beginning and transference. Sometimes--as on the Rickie Lee Jones-ish "Stay on the Ride," where an old man with no name answers an existential urge for going--they don't even know what it is. "Trapeze," the most resonant offering, follows an aging circus performer who'd rather work without a net than take her chances in love. Here, Emmylou Harris adds one of her most aching harmony lines to Griffin's exquisite, ethereal lead, while in the next track, "Getting Ready," the singer turns a 180, laying a sneering Dylanesque vocal over a fiercely scrubbed acoustic guitar and an occasional dissonant kiss-off. "Baby, baby, you were my drug/And I was just your cigarette," she drones knowingly. One suspects that particular object of her affections will soon regret it. --Alanna Nash More from Patty Griffin 1000 Kisses Living With Ghosts Impossible Dream Flaming Red A Kiss in Time
Children Running Through
Patty Griffin
Burgundy Shoes
Year: 2007

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Keith Jarrett at the Blue Note: The Complete Recordings
Keith Jarrett
You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To
Year: 2000

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The former jazzman-turned-punk is now more middle-of-the-road than a yellow stripe. But Ten Summoner's Tales is by far the most engaging of his solo records. The singles "If I Ever Lose My Faith in You" and "Fields of Gold" prove the man can lighten up long enough to go deep. "She's Too Good For Me" would have been a good Police single if it weren't for the pseudo-classical midsection that takes its joke far too seriously. Still, you wish he would loosen up and enjoy the rock once in a while. --Robert Wilonsky
Ten Summoner's Tales
Sting
Fields of Gold
Year: 1993

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Gates of Gnomeria is a collection of Andy McKee original songs and two covers. His cover of Bjorks, Venus as a Boy is a stunning multi-track arrangement of one of her best known songs from her debut. Join by Bassist Jeff Schmidt on two songs, A Sphere and Dependant Arising, the songs on Gates of Gnomeria as a collection are more laid-back than on Art of Motion and larger musical ideas at the same time. Andy is the most innovative and exciting fingerstyle guitarist to emerge in years. Still in his 20's, Andy has developed a mastery of the 6-string guitar and the harp guitar that leaves me speechless. I find myself listening to his tunes over and over again, discovering new nuances every time. He is the most textural player of the instrument since Michael Hedges, and he creates sonic architecture worthy of the great modern composers for any instrument. - Don Ross
The Gates of Gnomeria
Andy McKee
A Sphere
Year: 2007

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XTC's frothy, Beatle-esque concept album about birth, death, and the passing of the seasons is hardly soft-headed: its melodic inventiveness and lush orchestrations supports bitterness ("That's Really Super, Supergirl"), displacement ("The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul"), and agnostic tirade ("Dear God") as often as it does the pleasures of sun and shower. The greatest achievement of XTC's post-Drums and Wires career, Skylarking is a must-have for the first days of spring. This deluxe, remastered version of the album contains a bonus track, "Mermaid Smiled." --Rickey Wright
Skylarking
XTC
Another Satellite
Year: 1986

Amazon MP3

CD/DVD combo. 2007 live release from the singing/songwriting legend, an intimate retrospective of 40 years worth of songs and the people, places and events that inspired them., Features new performances of some of Taylor's most popular recordings interspersed with his insightful and humorous anecdotes on the inspiration behind the songs. The CD features 19 songs while the DVD contains the same tracks plus bonus footage and outtakes. Concord.
One Man Band
James Taylor
You Can Close Your Eyes (Live)
Year: 2007

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After having played in either trios or mid-sized group in recent years, Metheny goes the solo acoustic route on One Quiet Night. As the title implies, Metheny is in a contemplative mood, as he records a mix covers and old and new originals in his home studio. Playing his baritone guitar in a low country music tuning, Methany explores tonal shading throughout 12 relatively short tunes that are more impressionistic meditations than songs build around traditional jazz arrangements. The Norah Jones hit "Don’t Know Why" is born anew, but the new original pieces point in a particularly fresh new vein for the great guitarist. --Tad Hendrickson
One Quiet Night
Pat Metheny
My Song
Year: 2003

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To gauge the magnitude of Israel Kamakawiwo'ole's popularity in his native Hawaii, consider this: following his death in 1997 (at age 38, attributed to his profound obesity), Kamakawiwo'ole's body lay in state in the state capitol, only the second person to receive such an honor. Kamakawiwo'ole's appeal lies in his love for prestatehood, precondominium Hawaii and the expressiveness of his gently passionate voice, which can float through higher registers with an ease that brings Johnny Mathis to mind. Several selections ("Ka Pua U'i," "White Sandy Beach of Hawai'i," the sun-kissed "La 'Elima") feature Kamakawiwo'ole in a traditional mood, using only his ukulele to adorn the charm of his native lyricism. Others, such as the Jimmy Buffett-like "Maui Hawaiian Sup'pa Man" add playful contemporary touches that suit Kamakawiwo'ole's style. Most touching are the string-backed laments that open and close the album, "Hawai'i '78 Introduction" and "Hawai'i '78," initially a reflection on his father's death, later on the passing of Hawaii's native culture. Best known is his medley "Somewhere over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World," which played over the closing credits of the film Meet Joe Black. --Terry Wood
Facing Future
Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
Ka Pua U'i
Year: 1993

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"Play with Fire", is The Reign of Kindo's 3rd full length record and 1st with newest member Danny Pizarro Jr. on piano. Newly relocated to New York City as a base, Kindo has released possibly their best record yet. The record starts out with "The Hero, The Saint, The Tyrant, and The Terrorist a song that screams "The Reign of Kindo" and would be a fit on any thier first two records. "Help It" has a killer bass line and sounds like every band member is having a musical conversation with one another, a perfectly in sync and melodic conversation. "Sing When No Ones Around" is more guitar driven than past records and the percussion kills when it comes in. "Dust" is a brilliant tune pulsing with rythym and slide guitar licks. Rare is it to find modern music that pinpoints the middle ground between a respect for past greats and a boldness to pave tomorrow. This is, quite modestly, the definition of The Reign of Kindo. Citing influences from Dave Brubeck to Ben Folds to Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto to John Mayer, there's not a degree of pomposity in this sound, just an honesty in the group's craft to blend such diverse influences into an identity
Play with Fire
The Reign Of Kindo
Don't Haze Me
Year: 2013

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Mysterious Traveller
Weather Report
Jungle Book
Year: 2002

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Hotel Vast Horizon
Chris Whitley
Assassin Song
Year: 2003

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Goldfly
Guster
Airport Song

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Goldfly
Guster
Great Escape

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Goldfly
Guster
Demons

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Keep It Together
Guster
Careful

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Keep It Together
Guster
Amsterdam

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Ganging Up On the Sun
Guster
Satellite

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