here are our songs for this week:
1. Benjamin Clementine – Difference
2.Alvvays – Belinda Says
3. Bria – Where have all the Cowboys Gone
4. Alex G – Runner
5. Tierra Whack – Dora
6. Bad Bunny, ‘Titi Me Preguntó
7. The Sarandons – Letting On,
8. Steve Lacy -Bad Habit
9. Busty and the Bass – all the Things I Couldn’t Say to You
Alvvays – Belinda Says # 1 Pitchfork
has been probably been featured on Old Guys as much as any artist. They are a Canadian band based in Toronto. The track, Belinda Says is from their third album, Blue Rev, was released on October 7, 2022. Pitchfork Magazine named this song #1 in its top 100 songs of 2022. To quote “ Alvvays frontwoman Molly Rankin recently cited the Canadian short story master Alice Munro as an influence, noting the way the writer’s work can “knock the wind out of you.” Rankin and her band offer their own bracing wallop with “Belinda Says,” a heartbreaking sketch of an unexpected pregnancy that’s also a modern power-pop classic. She only needs one line to render vivid scenes: a warm vodka cooler chugged behind a hockey rink, a tense phone call with a would-be father, a forlorn move to the countryside soundtracked by Belinda Carlisle’s “Heaven Is a Place on Earth.” Like a heroine in one of Munro’s timeless stories, the narrator’s life is altered forever by a single choice of impossible magnitude”
Allvays are a Canadian band who are clearly creating a stir outside the borders of their home and native land. The Blue Rev album is showing up in many end of years best of lists. here is the MUCH Music parody video for Belinda Says
Alex G – Runner
Alex G is an American musician who has recorded 9 albums. He started releasing his stuff on Bandcamp. He later signed to Domino in 2017. His ninth lp God Save the Animals was released last September. A track from this album, Runner was considered by Pitchfork Magazine to be the #4 song of the year. You be the judge. Watch him perform the song on The Tonight Showhttps://pitchfork.com/news/watch-alex-g-perform-runner-on-fallon/
Bad Bunny, ‘Titi Me Preguntó Pitchfork #9 Rolling Stone #1
Bad Bunny is Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio. he is a Puerto Rican rapper and singer. After doing a little research, this Old Fella has discovered that right now,Bad Bunny is one of the most popular performers on the planet. He became the first non-English language act to be Spotify’s most streamed artist of the year twice.A brief translation of the opening lyrics:
Ey, auntie, asked me if I have a lot of girlfriends, a lot of girlfriends
Today I have one; tomorrow I’ll have another,
hey, but there’s no wedding, there’s no wedding, auntie
Auntie asked me if I have a lot of girlfriends; he, a lot of girlfriends
Today I have one; tomorrow I’ll have another
The song title roughly translates as “Auntie asked me”
This song is Rolling Stones #1 song of the year while Pitchfork placed it at #9. Here’s Bad Bunny performing 2022’s VMA’s.
Though not my cup of tea, I can see how the energy and sass of Bad Bunny works for others. Here’s an interesting take from one of my fave blogs, Burning Wood , on why possibly new music isn’t as good as old music.
Steve Lacy -Bad Habit Rolling Stone #3 Pitchfork #27
Steve Lacy is an American singer, musician, songwriter, and record producer. He has worked with Frank Ocean, Solange Knowles and Kendrick Lamar. The song “Bad Habit” became Lacy’s first song to reach number one on the Billboard Hot 100 after going viral on TikTok. He received two Grammy Award nominations for Record of the Year and Song of the Year. Rolling Stone called in the #3 song of 2022.
The NME has good primer to Lacy. https://www.nme.com/features/music-features/steve-lacy-best-tracks-bad-habit-3344101
Benjamin Clementine – Difference
Difference, meanwhile, is a meditation about making a difference in the world, a song that’s as rueful as it is catchy.
From his newest album
His last release was as the Clementines, a duo with his partner, Flo Morrissey. Written, played and produced exclusively by Clementine, And I Have Been is a more straightforwardly elegant listen than I Tell a Fly. Melodies abound, orchestral elements trade off with electronics, and Clementine’s still-startling voice, an elastic tenor capable of shock and awe as well as succour, is front and centre.
Bria – Where have all the Cowboys Gone
Set for release on 24th February 2023, Bria (Salmena) has announced her new ‘Cuntry Covers Vol. 2’ EP, sharing her take on Paula Cole’s 1997 single ‘Where Have All The Cowboys Gone?’
Also plays with Orville Peck and the covers EPs were done with Duncan Hay Jennings
Original by Paula Cole 1996 (best new artist 1998) 25 year career with 10 albums out
“Physical space and environment have greatly informed each iteration of Cuntry Covers” shares Bria Salmena. “With Vol. 1 (2021) we had acres of beautiful farmland in summer to explore. With Vol. 2 we had a small apartment in Toronto during the dark winter months that created a kind of claustrophobic creative energy.”
Speaking about ‘Where Have All The Cowboys Gone?’, she adds, “the song stuck with me – I found Cole’s delivery to be both brooding and chilling. The lyrics all together are confused; discovery, disillusionment, despair. I wanted to make it even more dystopian by turning it into a dreamy dance track. This track became the first song to inspire the “Homage” approach to these covers, embracing the spirit of experimentation. We wanted to stretch this song as far as it would go while honoring the elements of it that make it memorable.”
I had to include this video too – sends shivers up the spine
Tierra Whack – Dora
A school poetry assignment sparked Whack’s interest in writing for herself. Being given the choice to write about whatever she wanted (“just to express, freely”) was a revelation. She resolved to write every day, filling notebooks so quickly her mum began to buy in bulk, to save herself multiple trips to the store. From her obsession with Dr. Seuss books, Whack already knew she loved the feeling of reading rhyming verse aloud; then, she had an epiphany. “I’m in the backseat of my mom’s car. She was playing rap music: DMX; Jay Z; Biggie, she loves Biggie so much; 50 Cent – and I’m like, ‘Oh, they’re rhyming. Rhyming is rap. Poetry is rap. Rap is poetry’.” Whack asked her uncle to burn her a CD of beats, and she began to write bars.
The Sarandons – Letting On
The Sarandons hail from Toronto. Influences like Wilco, The Band, Kurt Vile, Dr Dog, Dylan and The War on Drugs percolate through their brand of rock & roll, which spans neo-psychedelia, roots rock, Americana and indie rock. Formed in early 2018, The Sarandons is the fully collaborative endeavour of Toronto music stalwarts Damian Coleman (vocals, bass), Edmund Cummings (vocals, keys), Craig Keeney (lead guitar), Phil Skot (drums) and Dave Suchon (vocals, guitar). With strong ties to Toronto’s west end music scene, The Sarandons are vying for the title of official band to The Junction.
Busty and the Bass – all the Things I Couldn’t Say to You
Busty and the Bass
is a Canadian electro-soul and hip hop band from Montreal, Quebec. The band is known for its unique brand of music, which incorporates two vocalists, a horn section, and a diverse range of musical genres.
Having met while attending college at McGill University, seven of the nine founding members are still with the band: Evan Crofton a.k.a. Alistair Blu (vocals, keyboards, synths), Scott Bevins (trumpet), Chris Vincent (trombone), Louis Stein (guitar), Milo Johnson (bass), Eric Haynes (keyboards, piano) and Julian Trivers (drums).
Part of the reason for the diverse sounds on the album has to do with the sheer size of the band, who originally met at as students in the jazz program at McGill University. Video –