Several things in life are obvious. Dick Butkis will never grace the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition cover. The Ropers will never use Facebook, and Dido will never invite me over for breakfast. These are just facts - plain and simple, and with this post, I add another to my growing list of truths: you're going to love these two singer/songwriters on the "show" today. First up is Courtney Jaye,a Nashville-based singer/songwriter who is touring this spring with comedian/singer/songwriter Stephen Lynch in support of her new album Love and Forgiveness. Ironically, the emerging pop star's songs are the antithesis of the humorous and oft-dirty ditties that Lynch slays crowds with. They're deeply felt tunes about love and life, and the journeys in-between. At an A-Sides session filmed at the Primary Wave Music's Listening Room in NYC (by Alexander Stein), she performed a trio of songs. Watch two of them below, and then jump to asidesmusic.com for the trifecta. Watch. Listen. Love.
"One Way Conversation"
CJ on the song: "[It] has inadvertently become my homage to the greatness that is and was Levon Helm. Since his passing, I can't help but think of him when I sing this song. The meaning of the song is pretty self explanatory: we've all had one-way conversations...especially with the people that we love."
"Say Oh Say"
CJ on the song: "'Say Oh Say' is one of my favorite songs on the record. It was also one of the hardest to write. We (Thad Cockrell and I) wrote the melody in 2008, but didn't finish the song until late 2010, adding the brilliant songwriting mind of Kristen Hall to offer a fresh perspective. I'm glad that we stuck with it, and saw this song through."
We go from Nashville to Chicago with our next artist. Bonzie is the moniker of 17-year-old singer/songwriter Nina Ferraro. The Chi-Town musician has been getting some buzz of late with her psych-indie rock tune "Data Blockers," which premiered on Spin.com earlier this year. At an A-Sides session filmed at the Music Conservatory of Westchester last week, the artist performed two other tracks off her independently-released debut album Rift Into The Secret Of Things , which will drop Aug. 13 - just about two months after she graduates high school. (Man, all I had to my name after graduating high school was five o'clock shadow.)
Watch a pair of tunes from the wise-beyond-her-years Bonzie (every journalist is going to say that, but it's true), and marvel at the intricacies of her songwriting and individual style. It's not surprising she's been making music since she was nine years old. (Man, all I had to my name at nine was a length collection of WWF LJN action figures... but again, I digress.) After watching the songs below, jump onto asidesmusic.com for an exclusive interview with Bonzie. Go.
"Daniel and the Great Solstice"
Jon Chattman's "A-Sides Music" series usually features artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometimes humorous) way. No bells, no whistles -- just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, I'm hoping this is refreshing.