january 2020 new music playlist

February 4, 2020
Huh. Either it was a really good month for music or I'm getting soft in my old age - only a few songs were less than 4-stars, and one was even 5...





Problem 99 (Jay-Z vs. Ariana Grande)
Rockit
Best of Bootie mashup - a lot heavier on the Jay-Z side... really started growing on me.
End of a pile of Best of Bootie I set aside.



F-cking Boyfriend
The Bird and the Bee
Frustrated pop...
Found while looking for Again + Again by the same folks.



Rosie the Riveter
The Four Vagabonds
Sweet little bit of patriotic a cappella... I was kind of happy such an early culturally important song was known for its performance by African-American artists... also love the "Rrrrrrrrrrr" sound effect.
Referenced at the WW2 Museum in NOLA.



The End
The Beatles
My Beatles lore has some odd holes, especially their later stuff.
Referenced in Every Sample from Beastie Boys' "Paul's Boutique"



Margaritaville
Jimmy Buffett
I'm not in much danger of becoming a Parrot-head but I appreciate the middle aged fantasy narrative of this one...
They had a singalong of this on a live podcast of "My Brother My Brother and Me"



September
Franny London
I'm always a sucker for female-vocalist covers, of a disco classic in this case...
Heard on the animated series "Big Mouth"



Underwater Temple, Underwater Monk
Ollie's Sonic Emporium
Goofy little joke hiphop piece, but catchy.
Via this tumblr entry
Hump Day
Miss Eaves
Super-direct and raunchy hiphop homage to women flickin' the bean...
Ending credits of "Big Mouth"



Compared to What
Roberta Flack
Beautiful lowkey jazz protest song. Great light percussion and bass.
My fellow activist bandmember posted Les McCann & Eddie Harris' version... more uptempo, and I love how you can see the musicians communicate in the video - but I love Roberta Flack's version, which is also a bit more concise.
No One Kisses Like a Tuba Player Can
Brett Harrington
"You ain't been 'til you kissed a tuba player, no one kisses like a tuba player can..." Corny hayseed music... makes me ponder on the cultural artifact of "kissing booths"...
Some youtube recommendation...



Talkin' out da Side of Ya Neck
University of Washington Husky Marching Band
Marching Band cover of hiphop. I dig the chanting.
The national champion LSU Tigers have a Marching Band that plays this, and there were articles about trying to get students to stop singing a dirty version of the lyrics... different Marching Band here tho.



What a Man
Linda Lyndell
The original that Salt N Pepa borrowed from...
I might have been looking for a version of Lena's cover? But like with "Shake Yo Thang"/"It's Yo Thang", I'm grateful for Salt N Pepa covers introducing me to such great songs...
In the Pines
Lead Belly
Old Blues. Known covered by Kurt Cobain, later.
Don't know where I heard about this, but it's interesting some versions are "My Girl" but the original might be "Black Girl", which has a different feel.



Darkness
Eminem
Low-key protest song about mass-shootings; the video is kind of an amazing pun that doesn't come out as much in the song.



Unchained Melody
Lykke Li
Lovely soft cover of the song we shmaltzily dance to in high school. (The one thing is the weird repetition of syllables (rivers flow, rivers flow, rivers, to the sea, to the sea, to the sea) - is that even in the original? ))
from the movie "Booksmart"



The Monkey
Dave Bartholomew
More blues. Interesting which verses the Dirty Dozen Brass Band version leaves out.
The "Fabulous Thunderbirds" cover was on the credits of Silicon Valley.



Bad Blood (feat. Clara C)
Kina Grannis
Really sad breakup song.
"Big Mouth" again.

Middle Age is the era of life where you've been doing everything for like at least 5 years, even the stuff that feels new...
Few situations are so bad that they couldn't be worse, which is cause for both thanks and alarm.