summer's here, the waves are crashing

in Boston, the weather has been out of control nice and it's basically impossible to be in less than a completely stellar mood, so I've decided to highlight two of my not-new-to-me, maybe-not-even-new-to-you favorite songs that remind me of summer, a time to just... be awesome.

1. Tristan Prettyman, Love Love Love
Album: Twenty Three
sounds like: Jason Mraz, Ingrid Michaelson

This is an old album, not anything new to me. The message of this song is captured in the lines "gonna let it all flow right past me/cause when i'm here I'm always happy". Perfect for embracing the day and not getting bogged down in slight negativities. The lyrics are strong and the music is light, begging for a sunny day.

2. Jason Mraz, What Would Love Do Now

Don't be thrown off by the name. Mraz is much more than I'm Yours. I am a big fan of his life mantra(why? check it out)and this song really captures it. In light of the sunshine, this song is about letting go of toxic energy and living love. Embrace.


new music tuesdays

oh hey team-
I decided to revamp this blog and start over again. Lately I've been getting requests for music ideas all over the place and that was the whole brainchild beyond the blog to begin with. I've also started an idea called "New Music Tuesdays" and it's quite nice to get a song or two to brighten up Tuesday (because let's face it, Tuesday is terrible. major blerg.) Also, my music taste has evolved and diverged naturally towards a selection quite different than that previously listed here. Not to mention, my previous entries probably listed WAY TOO MUCH music for anyone to handle. Lastly, this blog will be much more picture heavy, because I realized in my hey-im-in-europe-and-therefore-have-to-have-a-blag blog, PEOPLE LOOK AT PICTURES AND SKIP OVER WORDS.

so here's how this works- every Tuesday (or let's face it, probably Wednesday sometimes cause I'll forget) I'll post about an album or a song or something.

I'm also more than willing to open this blog to other people and make it a forum! let's do it!

on that note, I have two thurprises.
1. Daphne Willis, I'll Be Waiting
Album: Because I Can
SOUNDS LIKE: Everybody- Ingrid Michaelson

I've been obsessed with her EP, especially "My Shoes", for like... ever. This song is ADORABLE and I totally am jealous of whoever she is waiting for in this song...

2. Matt Nathanson, Modern Love
Album: Modern Love
SOUNDS LIKE: Graham Colton Band

Two words about this album: holy. fuck. This is not even my favorite song on the album, not even close, but I am plugging this PRIOR to the album's release- June 21st, BOOM. I don't even know what to say here except that Matt Nathanson has pulled off something great in this album. The lyrics: phenomenal. The music: more pop than his earlier records, but if you follow his albums, from Ernst, to Some Mad Hope (that's the one with the come on get higher song- yes, you've heard it somewhere in a CVS) you can hear the progression.
I definitely plug this for anyone who likes words that makes you feel, and like slightly produced sounds.

the whole album is streaming here, check it out.


The new Owl City single Sunburn, released 12/27, is amazing. Good for a sunny happy day!


katie left the country, please leave a message.

okay, so I've been away an awful long time, what with exploring Europe and learning Spanish and trying not to hit children, yadda yadda. Since I can't send mix CDs here, here is a long list of my recent tunes: new artists or new CDs, it's all good.

1. John Mayer, Battle Studies
sounds like: John Mayer, please.
listen here

okay, so John Mayer gets a lot of crap. Some hate him, some like only his mad sweet guitar skillz, but I sadly admit I do really like most of his stuff. This CD sounds a lot like Heavier Things or Continuum, and nothing like the John Mayer Trio. If you like chill music with electric guitar, you've got it.
Recommend: Heartbreak Warfare

2. Howie Day, Sound the Alarm
sounds like: Graham Colton
listen here

Okay, so Howie Day as a person is kind of a DB. I liked his first two CDs, Austrailia and Stop All the World Now, way back in 2004, but i like to thing my music taste has matured since then. The new stuff is still a little dark, a little acoustic, with a few up-beat, studio numbers.
Recommend: Be There

3. Colin Hay
sounds like: Mike Doughty
listen here

Colin Hay doesn't have a listed labum because I don't one, and in general I've decided I just appreciate his quirky music. I was watching an old episode of Scrubs one day when Colin Hay appeared singing "Overkill", and I thought, who is that guy? anyway, he's a cute musician, take a listen.
Recommended: Beautiful World, Overkill

4. Milow, The Bigger Picture
sounds like: Stephen Speaks, any acoustic popster
listen here

Milow does an amazing cover of "Ayo Technology". I mean, it rivals the original (did i mention I recently started liking pop music? don't tell anyone.). Anyway, I torrented the rest of the album, and it's pretty good. There are a lot of cute acoustic songs, some studio versions, 'but Milow covers enough minor chordage in "You Don't Know" to make his stuff unique.
Recommend: Excuse to Try

5. Allie Moss, Passerby
sounds like: Ingrid Michaelson, Missy Higgins, Priscilla Ahn
listen here

If you like music that's played on Grey's Anatomy, and/or you like Ingrid Michaelson, you'll like Allie. Her voice is uniquely different than Ingrid but it's the same feel of music: acoustic, well thought and cute lyrics that make you think.
Recommend: Corner

6. Landon Pigg, The Boy Who Never
sounds like: Pete Yorn, Matt Hires
listen here

I had a hard time picking Pigg's sound-alikes. itunes genius had to help me. His stuff is pretty chill, studio cut, not acoustic, a little poppy, but generally likeable. On his earlier Album I was a pretty big fan of "Can't Let Go".
Recommend: This Far

7. The Hold Steady, Boys and Girls in America
sounds like: The New Pornographers, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Okkervil River
listen here

Duh, Katie, where have you been? The Hold Steady have been a mainstream-hipster favorite for awhile now. I really liked "Stuck Between Stations" when I heard it in 2006, but the rest of the album is a good mix of stuff as well. There's a couple acoustic songs, some roch-out songs, and the lyrics are provoking (I'll let you be the judge of that).
Recommend: Party Pit

8. Bess Rogers, Travel Back
sounds like: ~The Paper Raincoat, Erin McCarley
listen here

Bess Rogers, also featured on Grey's, is still in the acoustic-cute female singer genre, but she's on the rockier side. Everything is studio, and you can hear the acoustic guitar, but she's got something to say, and she's saying it.
Recommend: Everything to Lose

9. Brandi Carlile, Give Up the Ghost
sounds like: KT Tunstall, ~Indigo Girls
listen here

Brandi definitely has got the indie acoustic thing going. I liked "Story" and "Closer to You" a lot from her previous album. If you like the less studio, woodsy-ier sound, this is probably for you.
Recommend: Touching the Ground

10. Greg Laswell, Three Flights to Alto Nido, Off I Go EP
sounds like: Jon McLaughlin
listen here

Greg Laswell kind of borders on indie pop. He's got this really soothing and relaxing coupled with acoustic piano... it's dreamy. However, he manages to make some of his songs relatively upbeat regardless.
Reommend: Off I Go

11. Imogen Heap, Live Session iTunes Exclusive
sounds like: there is nothing like imogen heap.
listen here

Christ, if you haven't heard "Hide and Seek" by now, or at least the sample from "Whatchu Say", you've been stuck in your ipod too long. Imogen Heap is a style all her own. I really like Headlock when I saw it performed at TDC a few years ago, but the iTunes exclusive is so stripped down it's worth a download. (If you didnt know, iTunes has the artist make a stripped version of their best hits.) If you like techno backbeats mixed with an acoustic style lyricist and singer (think Postal Service) you'll like Imogen Heap.
Recommend: Goodnight and Go

12. Ingrid Michaelson, Everybody
sounds like: A Fine Frenzy, Erin McCarley, Regina Spektor
listen here

This is NOT to introduce Ingrid, she is a staple in my music diet. This is only to inform yáll of her newest CD, which came out in the summer. Her music has evolved a lot since Slow the Rain, it's become a little more poppy (think the evolution of Matt Nathanson). It's a little more studio but still provoking in almost every sense.
Recommend: All Love, Everybody, Turn to Stone

13. Kate Havnevik, Melankton
sounds like: A Fine Frenzy, Erin McCarley, Imogen Heap
listen here

I can't figure out the album title? Is it a weird derivative of plankton? I don't know. Anyway, Kate Havnevik is pretty well know, I guess, she's been on Grey's a bunch of times, etc. She's got a good mix going, upbeat and slow, poppy and sad. The sad stuff reminds me of Imogen Heap a little. Nothing is too original, nothing grabbed me, but I pretty much liked all of it.
Recommend: So:Lo

14. Katie Herzig, Live in Studio
sounds like: Yael Naim, Brett Dennen, Ingrid Michaelson
listen here

I just started listen to Katie Herzig, and I can't decide what to make of her voice. It reminds me about how I felt when I first heard Bright Eyes. Love it or hate it? Anyway, Katie is on the edge of the cute-acoustic-female-singer genre. She's not so poppy as those listed above, but she does have a few close-friend-of-pop songs, but also some kind of weirder ones. If you're into mainstream but also off the beaten track type stuff you'll probably like this.
Recommend: Charlie Chaplin

15. Unkle Bob, Sugar & Spite
sounds like: a less gloomy Howie Day
listen here

This dude keeps popping up on iTunes Genius, so, forced into submission by corporate media, I downloaded a couple tunes. This is pretty standard chill music, but I still liked it...

16. Mika, The Boy Who Knew Too Much
sounds like: Ferras, a less dirty Lady Gaga, a modern Queen

On a completely different note, Mika is the music you listen to when it's sunny and you're having a blast. I heard this song in H&M, if that's any indication. However, like Ferras (who's that? Remember the one-hit-wonder "Hollywood's Not America"?), he's got too sides, fun and acoustic piano. Luckily his fun stuff became famous ("Grace Kelly")
Recommend: We Are Golden

17. Owl City, Maybe I'm Dreaming
sounds like: Postal Service
listen here

best for last: I love owl city! I already "reviewed" his hit album, Ocean Eyes, last time, but the older one is great too. Owl City makes fun, treadmillworthy music. But it's more than that. The lyrics are art within themselves; descriptive and colorful and with a separate life. If you would like to have fun but not at the expense of dumbing yourself down to listen to ClearChannel Radio, Owl City is for you.
Recommend: Panda Bear

other new artists or EPs I've been into:
Ryan Cabrera, Radiohead, Nick Drake, Nickel Creek, Vampire Weekend, Across the Universe Soundtrack


you would think i would have found a lot of music in the woods, but not so much. here's some folky hipster-y favorites:

1. Meg Hutchinson, Come Up Full
sounds like: the Weepies, Deb Talan, Indigo Girls
listen here

Meg sounds a lot like the weepies. She doesn't have Deb Talan's characteristic voice, but she's sure got her lyrics down. Folksters will like this, but if you yearn for more than just a guitar (and who could want more?), then maybe not so much.

2. Five Times August, Brighter Side/Acoustic Sessions
sounds like: Matt Wertz (acoustic), John Mayer (acoustic), Tyler Hilton
listen here

I've been hesitant to ever mention Five Times August on here because I'm not quite sure how I feel about him. I love the guitar, and i love his voice. But sometimes the lyrics are really cliche and sappy. But not always. I'm a big fan of the acoustic pieces, but his other stuff is more polished and has got that pop-acoustic thing going on.

3. Owl City, Ocean Eyes
sounds like: BEN GIBBARD
listen here

You WILL think Owl City is fronted by Ben gibbard (death cab for cutie/ the postal service)/ I mean, how could it not be? It took an hour of googling for me to finally accept that this was a sound-alike. Anyway, normally I don't usually fall for anything electronic, but I think it's the cuteandslightlyquirky lyrics as well as the major chord changes that did me in. Personal Favee: "Fireflies"

4. We Are Scientists
sounds like: The Arcade Fire
listen here

I don't have an album listed on here because I don't have their album. I found them on the Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist Soundtrack. Rather embarassing, but really, it is a good soundtrack and quite hipster-y (something I like sometimes, but shy away from, because hipsters are scary when it comes to music.)

5. A Fine Frenzy
sounds like: Erin McCarley, Ingrid Michaelson, Regina Spektor
listen here

I feel very silly introducing A Fine Frenzy here because
1) I have been listening to her forever(thanks KC)
2) she is on plenty of commercials and is definitely well known.
But I haven't introduced her, so I will now. If you're looking for a female blend of pop and cute lyrics, this is the right place to turn. I haven't heard any acoustic sets from her, but maybe I'm not looking hard enough. Recommended Track: Blow Away, Life Size


a few new friends

Well, I've been in kind of a rut. Also, I only release the music I found, not music that was given to me via mix CDs. So I've only found a couple good artists recently... here you go.

1. Catie Curtis,
sounds like: Antje Duvekot, Indigo Girls, other women folksters
listen here

I don't know about you, but sometimes I just love pure folk. Not like twangy stuff, like real lyrics and a guitar- the bare minimum. That's pretty much what Catie is. She's got some nice lyrics and it's soft and lovely :)

2. Josh Auer, Dear You- EP
sounds like: Matt White
listen here

Josh Auer, while not having any soul moving lyrics or anything, is a fine mix between pop and acoustic. His songs don't all sound exactly the same, either. Sometimes he borders on alittle too pop for me, but he's pretty much a good find.

3. Matt Pryor, Confidence Man
sounds like: matt costa, Josh Ritter
listen here

Oh man, this is the only myspace I've found where you can listen to a bunch of songs! Matt is also pretty folky, and he's got this super raw voice that almost borders on the edge of maybe-you-should-write-the-songs-and-get-someone-else-to-sing-them syndrome. I also wouldn't recommend him if you don't like quirky folk stuff- like Josh Ritter for example.

on a side note, DMB and Matt Kearney have new CDs out which are pretty stellar.


wow, i really blew it. slash i have not found too much new music lately! but here is what i did find...

1. Lisa Hanigan, Sea Sew
sounds like: Erin McCarley
listen here

So I haven't given Hanigan a for serious listen, but I do enjoy the song "I Don't Know". She's got quite a mix going, some of the songs are techno/synth/pop, and others are straightup alternative folk (a genre I just made up and can be principally defined by, say, the Mountain Goats). I also like the light orchestral sound that floats in and out of her music.

2. Latchkey Kid, Miracle Mile
sounds like: Josh Rouse-ish
listen here

I heard this dude in the soundtrack to I Love You, Man (Which is a movie you should freals check out. seriously, stop everything). I wasn't necessarily moved by any of his stuff, but it's fun and light and acoustic guitar-y.

3. Matt Simons, Fall in Line -EP
sounds like: Gavin DeGraw, Eric Hutchinson
listen here

I found him as one of those ads on facebook that are oh-so personalized. It said he sounded like Matt Nathanson. He did not, at all, leaving me a little disappointed, but I like the rhythm he employs on the piano. Voice is not anything awesome, but it's good anyway.

4. Jukebox the Ghost, Let Live and Let Ghosts
sounds like: ZOX, Ben Folds (new stuff), the Format
listen here

This is weird. JTG sounds MORE punk rock-y on their album than they did when I saw them open for Ben Folds. Anyway, what I predominantly like about them is that they're fresh, their music takes turns and changes rhythms and it's fun.