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singer/songwriter fans?

Old 06-17-05, 03:07 PM
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singer/songwriter fans?

Hi there, just getting into male singer/songwriters and I'm looking for suggestions to beef up my collection. I am looking for more obscure recommendations, I already am familiar with biggies like Bob Dylan and Tom Waits. Right now I am most into Jeff Buckley, Rufus Wainwright, and a new discovery of mine, Richard Swift (anyone heard of him?). Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-17-05, 03:33 PM
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Check out Richard Thompson. Not only a great Singer/Songwriter but one of the best guitarists in the biz. My favorites albums of his are Daring Adventures, Rumours and Sighs and his most recent The Old Kit Bag. Also check out his stuff with his Wife: Linda Shoot out the Lights and I want to see the Bright Lights Tonight.
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Old 06-17-05, 04:01 PM
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You might want to check out Lewis Taylor, he's my absolute favourite musician. Writes, sings, produces, plays every instrument (save drums) on his recordings, and his music moves me in a way that nobody else can. He also paid tribute to Jeff Buckley on his second album, covering Everybody Here Wants You, you can hear it here. Lewis takes a 'kitchen sink' approach to his productions, combining his love of progressive rock with soul and funk. The dense soundscapes he creates can be hard to make sense of initially, but his music literally gets better each time you hear it, and you hear new things in it, too. If you can imagine Marvin Gaye's soulful vocals, Jimi Hendrix's guitar pyrotechnics, Brian Wilson's background vocal layering, and the dense, moody production of Radiohead or Pink Floyd on the same track, you're about 75% of the way there.

If you like Lewis, (or even if you don't) you should also check out Todd Rundgren. He's been in the music biz since the late 60's, producing albums as diverse as Badfinger's Straight Up, Hall & Oates' War Babies and the mega-seller Bat Out Of Hell. Initially the guitarist/songwriter for the British-invasion influenced The Nazz, Rundgren became influenced by the likes of Carole King and Laura Nyro, who he dated in the 70's. Unhappy with the direction of his new material, the band resisted and Rundgren struck out on his own with the albums Runt and Runt: The Ballad of Todd Rundgren. He achieved pop perfection in 1972 with the album Something/Anything and the songs I Saw The Light and Hello, It's Me (itself a soulful reworking of early Nazz material) but instead of continuing to churn out pop confection, he went a lot more experimental (read: druggy) with the sprawling, messy masterpieces A Wizard, A True Star and Todd. Like Taylor, I liken him to half musical genius, half mad scientist.

Finally, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention a CD I recently picked up by June & the Exit Wounds called 'A Little More Haven Hamilton, Please' (apparently a reference to Henry Gibson's character in Nashville). Don't be frightened by the name, this is the brainchild of suburban kid Todd Fletcher, and it's gorgeous afternoon pop, influenced by Brian Wilson, but never derivative of him (except perhaps on 'Let's Shack Up Together' - his wry inversion of 'Wouldn't It Be Nice'). Hearing this album for the first time last weekend was like hearing Pet Sounds for the first time - it's beautiful music that I know is going to deepen for me the more I listen to it.
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Old 06-17-05, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by cungar
Check out Richard Thompson. Not only a great Singer/Songwriter but one of the best guitarists in the biz. My favorites albums of his are Daring Adventures, Rumours and Sighs and his most recent The Old Kit Bag. Also check out his stuff with his Wife: Linda Shoot out the Lights and I want to see the Bright Lights Tonight.
Agreed.
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Old 06-17-05, 06:41 PM
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Some recommendations:

Elliott Smith
Ryan Adams*
Andrew Bird*
Brendan Brenson*
Angie Aparo
Amos Lee
Nick Drake


And then there's the singer/songwriters whose names could be a band:
Badly Drawn Boy
The Russian Futurists
Bright Eyes
King of France
(the first album. Salad Days are all songs only by frontman Steve Salad)

and my personal recommendation, the late Matthew Jay, who sounds like a cross between Elliott Smith (sans the sad songs) and Ringo Starr.

* These guys are well represented in the Top Albums of 2005 -- although I personally have ne
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Old 06-17-05, 10:32 PM
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Leonard Cohen. His first 4 albums are incredible. Best lyrics ever.
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Old 06-20-05, 03:47 PM
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Great, thank you so much for the suggestions, all of you.

I am already a huge Leonard Cohen fan thanks to my parents (Suzanne is "their song"). I even have some of his books of poetry.

Lewis Taylor sounds amazing so far, I definitely dig the sound. I am into layered soundscapes that take years to fully unravel more than the gut level sound that hits you instantly.

I am off to hunt for online clips to listen to, gonna go down the list of suggestions. Here's one of my favorites, Richard Swift: http://www.richardswift.us and he has clips on My space: http://myspace.com/richardswift

Thanks again everyone.
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Old 06-20-05, 04:20 PM
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Some of my all-time faves in any category of music:

Paul Kelly (sometimes with the Messengers)
Freedy Johnston
Grant McLennan
Ron Sexsmith

Each one of these guys has released solid album after solid album.
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Old 06-20-05, 05:01 PM
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ben lee and josh roush are great
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Old 06-20-05, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Elldubtoo
Leonard Cohen. His first 4 albums are incredible. Best lyrics ever.
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Old 06-21-05, 02:57 AM
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I am a huge fan of John Wesley Harding, Steve Poltz, and Tim Easton.
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Old 06-23-05, 07:50 AM
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Already lots of good stuff here - I'd like to add 2 lesser known:
Matthew Ryan (start with the "May Day" album)
David Berkeley (check out the "After The Wrecking Ships")
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Old 06-23-05, 08:00 AM
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Pete Yorn
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Old 06-23-05, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Diabolita23
Lewis Taylor sounds amazing so far, I definitely dig the sound. I am into layered soundscapes that take years to fully unravel more than the gut level sound that hits you instantly.
I'm glad you're digging it. His self-titled debut for Island is my second favourite album of all time, and he put out a more rock-oriented album last fall that still retains the same dense approach to his production. In fact, his voice and vocal layering has never sounded better.

His first album on his own label is also going to be released in an expanded edition stateside in September. Hit me with an email and I can set you up with some of his earlier stuff.

In the meantime, you can download some of his b-sides (more experimental stuff, but still fucking genius) here:

Lewis III - like Beach Boys on acid
Waves - more Beach Boys on acid
Trip So Heavy - the name says it all
A Little Bit Tasty - a whisper to a scream
Pie In Electric Sky/If I Lay Down With You - and back again
I Dream The Better Dream - nice, mellow
Asleep When You Come - spooky sounding at the beginning, but builds nicely
You Got Me Thinking - straight ahead funk
Cherry Blossom - a gorgeous ballad, first dance at my wedding
Cover of Jimi's Electric Ladyland

Enjoy!
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Old 06-25-05, 10:26 AM
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Richey Edwards / Nicky Wire
The Manic Street Preachers
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Old 06-25-05, 03:20 PM
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Anything and everything by Michael Penn. And, by the way, he has a new album coming out in August. you can check out a streaming sample of the album at http://www.spinartrecords.com/qt/penn.html

Last edited by A-aron; 06-25-05 at 03:23 PM.
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Old 06-25-05, 08:29 PM
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Check out Josh Ritter's "Hello Starling"
I'd also second Badly Drawn Boy -- especially "Hour of the Bewilderbeast".
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Old 06-25-05, 08:57 PM
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Marc Cohn

John Hiatt
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Old 06-26-05, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by whynotsmile
ben lee and josh roush are great
I second Josh Rouse and add Mason Jennings. Mason just signed a deal with epic records last week and appears to be working with Rick Rubin on the next record.
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Old 06-26-05, 11:43 PM
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I'm interested in checking out a few of these artists. I would also recommend Will Oldham aka Bonnie Prince Billy.
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Old 06-26-05, 11:56 PM
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I second the Will Oldham!

Also into:
Damien Jurado (INCREDIBLE!)
The Mountain Goats (just one guy)
Iron and Wine
Stephen Malkmus
Ryan Adams
Rosie Thomas
Cat Power (one girl)
Rhett Miller
Sufjan Stevens
A. C. Newman
Ben Kweller
Jolie Holland
Joanna Newsom (incredible, unique voice...and plays harp)
M. Ward (guitar player from My Morning Jacket)
Nick Drake
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Old 06-27-05, 12:02 AM
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Since you seconded Will Oldham for me, I'll back you up on Damien Jurado and Iron and Wine ... good stuff!!
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Old 06-29-05, 08:13 AM
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Originally Posted by jaymart
I'm interested in checking out a few of these artists. I would also recommend Will Oldham aka Bonnie Prince Billy.
...aka Palace Brothers aka Palace Music.
Also, if you like his stuff, try SMOG or Bright Eyes.
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Old 06-29-05, 11:03 AM
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Dolorean is the name for singer/songwriter Al James.

"Not Exotic" is a masterpiece of alt-folk. If you like the work of Elliot Smith or Iron & Wine, check it out. Occaisonally his lyrics drift into the disturbed but are full of imagery and emotion. Where he differs from many other singer/songwriters is the simple elegance & beauty with which the songs are carved. His second album ("Violence in the Snowy Fields") lacks the personal immediacy and underlying beauty of the first.

Cowboy Waltzes Rule !!!!
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Old 06-29-05, 11:14 AM
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I'll throw my hat in the ring with Nick Lowe, who really needs a lot of his stuff re-released (most isn't in print in the US anymore). "Lonesome Reverie" from the album "Dig My Mood" is where I took my name from.
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