IF you find that you…
…Don’t know any of the songs or artists featured on all the “Best of 2019” lists you’ve seen.
… Wait until your Millennial children visit home to show you how to access (Something about “streaming”…?) some tunes you might actually like but don’t know the first thing about how to find.
… Would like to hear some sounds and songs that are new but also carry traces of the best of the vinyl/cassette (definitely pre-CD) era. (Hey, our generation wrote the book on having our cake and eating it too!)
Then… I humbly present the OK Boomer 2019 Playlist.
Listed in no particular order, the majority of these 40+ songs are new releases recorded by musicians I had never heard of before 2019. While there are some old pros here (Van Morrison, Dave Mason, Chrissie Hynde, Taj Mahal, John Prine), most are new to the game. There are also a few re-issues (Professor Longhair, Marshall Crenshaw, The Band) in the mix. All share 2019 release dates in common.
Can’t promise that the following will be as revelatory as the Beatles on Ed Sullivan… Sly Stone’s set at Woodstock… Carole King’s Tapestry… but you’ll find some songs you like. Although I’ve steered clear of ranking these 40+ songs, when push comes to shove, my fave:
Fast Song: “State of My Union” by Long Ryders
Slow Song: “Our Town” by Trampled by Turtles
Re-Issue: “Piano Players” by Ben Sidran
Album: The Highwomen
Enjoy. And Happy 2020!
“Our Town” by Trampled by Turtles. Off Sigourney Fever (2019). Weird band name. Play-on-words album title. Catchy song.
“Red Bows (For a Blue Girl)” by J. D. McPherson. Brings to mind The Drifters and Platters. Could that sound be coming back? Hope so.
“Waiting for Love” by State Cows. Off Challenges (2019). These guys have been accused of channeling Steely Dan. And that’s a bad thing?
“Piano Players” by Ben Sidran. Off Ben There, Done That (Live Around the World). A one-song history lesson on great piano players.
“Raw-Hide” by Link Wray. Off The Link Wray Collection 1956-62. Many know this guy from Quentin Tarantino movies. He did his stuff before Quentin showed up. Way ahead of his time.
“Jezebel” by Dave Mason & Midnight Blues Revue. Wonder what happened to Dave Mason of Traffic? Check this out.
“Twenty-Five Forty-One” by Marshall Crenshaw. My kids loved this rockin’ number when they were kids. So cool to see it re-issued.
“The Preacher, The Politician or The Pimp” by Toronzo Cannon Title Track. A grabber.
“She Might Look My Way – Take 2” by Alex Chilton. Off My Rival (2019 EP). Conjures up the greatness that was Big Star.
“Soulbque (featuring Roosevelt Collier) by G.Love. “Is anybody hungry?… Yeah!… Ya better get a plate!”
“Blacktop Run” by Sandy Landreth. Kinda country/catchy.
“The Way It Should Be” by Bastards of Soul. More Stax than Motown. All good.
“Life Isn’t Fair (OurVinyl Sessions)” by Smooth Hound Smith. “…I might not get this lucky again.”
“Hardly Workin’” by Los Colognes. Off From The Vault. Kind of a J.J. Cale vibe.
“Captain’s Song (Sorley Boy)” by The Orphan Brigade (w/John Prine). Off To the Edge of the World. “Just take me home.”
“Arizona” by Bywater Call. Upbeat. A bit like Susan Tedeschi with a jazz backing.
“Nobody in Charge” by Van Morrison Off Three Chords & The Truth. I’d listen to Van sing the phone book. (Remember phone books?)
“Baby Blind Spot” by ALO. Upbeat dance tune.
“It’s Gonna Break Your Heart” by Nick Dittmeier. Off Companion. Straight-ahead countryish love song.
“Armageddon’s Back in Town” by Drive-By Truckers. Off The Unraveling. Son Volt meets the Bottle Rockets?
“Holding Me Down” by Danielle Ponder. Keep an eye on this girl and her jazz/blues delivery.
“Statesboro Blues” by Big Band of Brothers. Off A Jazz Celebration of the Allman Brothers Band. ABB meets Preservation Hall.
“Stop This World” by Chrissie Hynde. Off If You’re Going to the City – A Tribute to Mose Allison. I wrote about this album in an earlier blog post.
“I’m Gonna Make You Love Me” by Buddy & Julie Miller. Off Breakdown on 20th Ave. South. When in doubt, go with pros.
“Loving You Is Sweeter Than Ever” by The Band (8/17/69) Re-Release. When I was a kid, I confess that I used to imagine these guys working in the studio and saying, “Boy, Mal is really going to like this one!”
“Pet Girl” by Johnnie Johnson. She may have the same name, but this girl ain’t Chuck Berry’s pianist. Though I’m not your usual techno/dance guy, this is infectious.
“Brand New Me” by Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters. Off Beyond the Blue Door. Feel good song.
“Lights Are On But Nobody’s Home” by Coco Montoya. Off Coming In Hot. Excellent cover of an Albert Collins (RIP) classic.
“Bone Collection” by Davina and The Vagabonds. Off Sugar Drops. Love the clarinet paired with Davina’s awesome voice. Harkens back to the 40s.
“The Hard Way” by Pieta Brown. Not sure how to categorize – a softer Courtney Barnett? – but this girl has really got something.
“Don’t You Wish It Was True” by Janiva Magness w/Taj Mahal. Love me some Taj, but Janiva is right there with him on this number.
“Redesigning Women” by The Highwomen. Off The Highwomen. Brandi Carlile, Natalie Hemby, Maren Morris, and Amanda Shires deliver album of the year?
“In Between” by Matt Newberg and the Hearts of Gold. Off Hollow Days. Yes, Hyde folks, the same Matt Newberg who taught, coached, and led our music program for many years. Great song.
“Tipitina” by Professor Longhair. Off Live on the Queen Mary, 1975. Great choice for a reissue!
“I Still Love You (Now and Then)” by Josh Ritter. Steady and soothing.
“State of My Union” by The Long Ryders. Off State of Our Union. Straight-ahead, take-no-prisoners country. “Did I tell you my ol’ man is a little like Bear Bryant?”
“Ride Out in the Country” by Yola. Off Walk Through Fire. Hard to choose just one song from this great album. Just download the whole thing.
“Gotta Love Rhythm” by Motel Mirrors. Love this song! Country with a sophisticated edge.
“Nadine” by George Benson. Off Walking to New Orleans. Who better to cover Chuck Berry? “I saw her from the corner when she turned and doubled back; and started walking toward a coffee-colored Cadillac.”
“Colorado” by Quaker City Nighthawks. Smooth and straight ahead.
“Turpentine” by Gurf Morlix. Off Impossible Blue. Uncategorizable but catchy.
“They Don’t Shine” by Tedeschi Trucks Band. You can always count on this husband/wife team to bring it.
“Times Like These” by Hayes Carll. Off What It Is. One of today’s great songwriters. “But it’s sure gettin’ hard, brother, in times like these.”
“Please Love Me” by Walter Trout. Off Survivor Blues. Blues. Mean guitar.
“It’s So Tough” by John Mayall (featuring Steven Van Zandt. “Think more about your neighbor, cuz now it’s up to me and you.”
“Plains” by Deerhunter. Off Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared? If The Kinks came from Atlanta, maybe?
Onward, Malcolm Gauld