The Bees (known as “A Band of Bees” in America) – British indie rock band’s feet firmly planted in 2000s with sprinkles of ’60s garage and psychedelia.
Ragged but right Austin, Texas combo that patches together a soulfully scatterbrained rock & roll assault.
Austin-based jazzy, folky alternative rock band fronted by singer/songwriter Martin Crane.
An overlooked gem from their early days.
Dreamy folk rock out of my sweet home Chicago. This is music that grows on you like a vine as songs evolve into multi-instrumental soundscapes of reverie. Listen to their debut album, Light Upon the Lake. You’ll feeler cooler in no time.
While by no means a definitive list, here are some international gems for your listening pleasure:
Made In Medina, Rachid Taha (2000)
Artaud, Pescado Rabioso (1973)
Lonerism, Tame Impala (2012)
Black Sea, Fennesz (2008)
Exuma, Exuma (1970)
Djangology, Django Reinhardt (1949)
Oyster, Heather Nova (1994)
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bitanga I Princeza, Bijelo Dugme (1979)
Acabou Chorare, Novos Baianos (1972)
Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares: Volume 1, Le Mystère Des Voix Bulgares (1975)
Funeral, Arcade Fire (2004)
Alcachofa, Ricardo Villalobos (2003)
Fu Zao, Faye Wong (1996)
Un Día Normal, Juanes (2002)
Time, Time (1972)
Buena Vista Social Club, Buena Vista Social Club (1997)
French duo’s slinky debut Green Juice is a subdued dance album that’ll make you want to boogie on a terrace in Paris with a cig on your lip. Give them a listen if you want to be hip.
Just finished this fascinating book by George Case. Highly recommend it as a breezy summer read.
“Take a trip through rock ‘n’ roll’s haziest, craziest period, beginning with the Beatles and Bob Dylan “turning on” in a New York hotel, and continuing on through two-decades of wonderful, colorful, history-changing music. From psychedelic Woodstock warriors like Hendrix and the Jefferson Airplane to psycho-stereo adventurers Pink Floyd; from the post-hippie bliss of Neil Young and cosmic cowboy Willie Nelson to the druggy blues of Black Sabbath and the hemp-happy rhythms of Peter Tosh and Bob Marley, Out of Our Heads gleefully celebrates music’s most creative minds – and their chemically induced expansion.
“This is the rare book that is unafraid to bask in the groovy good times of rock ‘n’ roll without the politically correct preaching that has helped stifle the party. To all those who have ever listened to Dark Side of the Moon on a pair of headphones and said “Wow”: this book is for you.”
“Yes, to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free
Silhouetted by the sea, circled by the circus sands
With all memory and fate driven deep beneath the waves
Let me forget about today until tomorrow.”
–Mr. Tambourine Man
Of all the artists who have walked this earth, none have spoken to my core as profoundly as the Midwestern troubadour known as Bob Dylan. He is easily my favorite poet, able to paint masterpieces with words both down-home and surrealistic.
Dylan has always epitomized Caucasian cool, his nonchalant approach to fame seeming more and more quaint as the American pop cultural landscape has become overrun with “look at me” types. While he continues to churn out albums as a senior citizen, it is the young Dylan, wise beyond his years, hair growing in a million different directions, that will be venerated for decades to come.
May the bulb that illuminated his mind continue to shine a little light on us all.