Monday, September 22, 2014

Quarterly Sextodecimo: 2014 AE Edition 

The Autumn Equinox sort of snuck up on me but I’ve had this idea to make a Sextodecimo primarily of live and/or found recordings. You can stream a sort simulacrum of the playlist on Rdio.

Or download it here (extract and after importing the files into your player application, you can also import the playlist as an XML file to ensure the correct order).

The recordings between the actual songs are just random things I’ve recorded with my phone. It’s been said the best camera is the one you have with you so I guess the same might be true for recording equipment.

See more for the play list description:
London is the Place for Me - Lord Kitchener
I haven’t traveled as much to the UK lately. In fact, my last trip was to Southampton, but still ended up in London. This song was stuck in my head from a couple of years ago.

(You) Got What I Need - Freddie Scott
I always confuse this song with another version, but this seems to slot in pretty well here – which is the only reason it’s here. That’s why any of us are here.

Speak Low - Charlie Hayden and Kurt Weill
I sort of forgot that Charlie Hayden passed away this year. In September there are always two albums I put on a loop; this collection of Kurt Weill September Songs and the soundtrack to Hannah and Her Sisters. Essentially autumnal albums that soften the blow a bit

Lost in the Stars - Elvis Costello and The Brodsky Quartet
From when Elvis Costello was everybody’s favourite troubadour when he was recording stuff with the Brodsky Quartet. I’ve heard better versions of this song but this particular recording stirs me a bit.

Like a Hurricane - Neil Young
I just found out Neil Young has been in a relationship with Daryl Hannah. Crazy Horse indeed. Who knew plaid flannel was such a panty dropper?

Everyone Says I Love You - Groucho Marx et al
I don’t know why I like this kooky scratchy, digitally fuzzing old recordings. There’s something bittersweet, sentimental and sad about it which feels kind of “September” to me.

Lonely House - Betty Carter
This recording, captured from the “live” staging of this collection of Kurt Weill songs for a television special (I know, weird right?) actually gives me an allergic reaction. My eyes get puffy and drippy for some reason. Oddly, no matter what other versions I hear of this song, this crappy quality one is the one that gets to me.

Alright - Supergrass
After Betty Carter’s haunting rendition of a Kurt Weill tune, we could all use some perking up, no?

I Can Change - LCD Soundsystem
This LCD Soundsystem track is here as a modern day stand-in for Dinah Washington’s version of There’ll Be Some Changes Made. And because it fits well with the song that follows.

Opera - Daniel Lanois
Apparently, Daniel Lanois is going to tour this album by having all the studio effects and wizardry performed live, not pre-recorded. Are the new kids that dedicated to their craft?

Crazy in Love - Antony and the Johnsons
I love the original version of this song (who doesn’t); it’s a modern classic pop song but this version makes it sound like a classic classic pop song. If you know what I mean?

I Don’t Want to Get Over You - Stephin Merritt
Briefly, I was getting a channel that carried Live…with Jools Holland every evening at the supper hour. I got very little done and often collapsed into its uniquely British Live Show format, the likes of which hasn’t been seen on North American television for decades. It is a program that often brings out the best in performers like this one from Stephen Merritt of Magnetic Fields.

Wild Heart - Stevie Nicks
This recording is from a television program, in which Stevie Nicks was filmed while getting ready for a Rolling Stone photo shoot. As she is having her hair and make-up done, she sings this version of the song that they are clearly still working out. It is so much better than the actual recorded version of this song which I can never listen to again.

That Teenage Feeling - Neko Case
Neko Case recorded this for CBC Music, “on the floor” as they say. I love this type of recording as it has the same spirit as a live recording but without the usual screw-ups.

Ooo - Karen O
Karen O, front woman for indie stalwarts Yeah Yeah Yeahs, got dumped and recorded an entire album of breakup songs at home which is essentially just her and her ukelele. She kept the entire thing secret, never planning to release it. Years pass and when the Yeah Yeah Yeahs went into hiatus she released Crush as her first full solo album. First question, who dumped Karen O? Second, wait, some dude broke up with Karen O?

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