So here’s one great song you may not have heard before: “If Silence Means That Much to You,” by the Scottish singer/songwriter Emma Pollock, who has never gotten her due. Its sudden beginning made for a difficult segue but I didn’t let that stop me. It’s a good song and no one knows it and that always seems a shame to me. Another good song that you probably sort of know and sort of don’t: “Am I the Same Girl,” by Barbara Acklin. The instrumental track might sound very familiar, as it was taken out from under her and marketed as a single called “Soulful Strut,” without her vocals, before her (original) version was released. Acklin also never got her due. The music industry is like that.
Hat tips this month go first to the great and under-recognized Radio Paradise, the internet’s truest and most steadfast multi-genre, multi-decade radio station, run (somehow; unaccountably) by two people in California. When I’m not specifically checking out new releases, I find myself spending quite a lot of time listening to Radio Paradise, and I rarely hear the same song twice, even after hours of listening at a time. I “stole” two songs from them this time around: “Rain,” by the Icelandic singer/songwriter Elvör, and “Among the Bells,” from Jane Tyrrell, an artist and musician based in Calgary. And I must also salute the always endearing retro blog dustystevens, responsible for alerting me to the Duke Pearson track. I’m not much of a jazz guy but sometimes the right tune smacks me on the head at the right time and I surrender.
Full playlist below the widget.
“Maybe Tomorrow” – The Chords (So Far Away, 1980)
“Trouble Every Day” – The Mothers of Invention (Freak Out, 1966)
“Rain” – Elvør (Room, 2012)
“Faster Than Light” – Neil Finn (Try Whistling This, 1998)
“Day OK” – Spiral Beach (Spiral Beach, 2005)
“Pointy Shoes” – Cowboys International (The Original Sin, 1979)
“Hey Now” – London Grammar (If You Wait, 2013)
“I’ve Got Something On My Mind” – The Left Banke (Walk Away Renée/Pretty Ballerina, 1967)
“Stepping Razor” – Peter Tosh (Equal Rights, 1977)
“As Cool As I Am” – Dar Williams (Mortal City, 1996)
“Minimal Affection” – The Vaccines (English Graffiti, 2015)
“Love Comes Quickly” – Pet Shop Boys (Please, 1986)
“If Silence Means That Much To You” – Emma Pollock (Watch the Fireworks, 2007)
“Say You’re Mine” – Duke Pearson (The Phantom, 1968)
“The Gospel According to Darkness” – Jane Siberry (When I Was a Boy, 1993)
“Adventurers” – Interview (Snakes and Lovers, 1980)
“Wild Country” – Thunderclap Newman (Hollywood Dream, 1970)
“Misery is a Butterfly” – Blonde Redhead (Misery is a Butterfly, 2005)
“Am I the Same Girl” – Barbara Acklin (Seven Days of Night, 1969)
“Among the Bells” – Jane Tyrrell (Echoes in the Aviary, 2014)