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May. 1st, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge #30 - Your Favorite Song at This Time Last Year

Boy & Bear - "Rabbit Song"

And so we come to the end. This time last year I bit the bullet and decided to launch my folk blog Timber and Steel (on the 4th May). One of the first songs I featured was "Rabbit Song" from Boy & Bear, an obsession at the time. You can read the post here.

Now I wonder if I do this again in a years time how much this list will have changed...

Apr. 29th, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge #29: A Song From Your Childhood

Ernie - "I Don't Want To Live On The Moon"

There are lots of Sesame Street classics when it comes to songs but the one that has stuck with me since childhood is "I Don't Want To Live On The Moon" as sung by Ernie. I don't know what it is about the song - the theme, the chord progression, the awesome clip - but I just love it.

I even taught myself to play it on guitar. Not that I've ever performed it - that would just be embarrassing.

Apr. 28th, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge #28: A Song That Makes You Feel Guilty

Prince - "Cream"

When "Cream" by Prince was released in 1991 I was about 10 years old. I was at that age where I had an inkling about sex but not really any understanding. I used to get up early on Saturday and Sunday mornings to watch Rage but a lot of the time the meanings of songs were lost on me.

But "Cream" is so overt that I new I was watching something dirty when it came on even if I didn't understand why it was dirty. Watching it I always felt guilty, like I was peering into the adult world without permission.

Years later and I still associate "Cream" with a feeling of guilt even though it's tame in comparison with a lot of modern music (although the innuendo in the lyrics probably makes it sexier than more explicit music).

Apr. 27th, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge #27: A Song That You Wish You Could Play

Bon Iver - "Skinny Love"

This may seem like a pretty simple song to play but in truth the way Justin Vernon tunes the guitar and then proceeds to play it is pretty intricate. I love "Skinny Love" by Bon Iver so much - I just wish I knew how to play it.

30 Day Song Challenge #26: A Song That You Can Play on an Instrument

Nanci Griffith - "Boots of Spanish Leather"

Being in a band means that there are any number of songs that I can play on an instrument - guitar, violin or mandolin. But given that I have a gig tomorrow night I thought I'd go with a song I plan on playing then.

While "Boots of Spanish Leather" is a Bob Dylan song I originally heard it performed by Australian folk duo Kate and Ruth. Their version was based on this one by Nanci Griffith, so essentially it's her that I will be covering.

I love this song because of the way it subverts the folk song. I also love it because it's one of the few songs I pick instead of strum. Simply gorgeous.

30 Day Song Challenge #25: A Song That Makes You Laugh

Flight of the Conchords - "Carol Brown"

It'll always make me sad that the Flight of the Conchords TV show only had two seasons. It was just so damn funny. And I reckon one of my favourite songs from the show was "Carol Brown", the ode to ex-girlfriends with a video directed by the decidedly trippy Michel Gondry. Watch it if you want to smile.

30 day Song Challenge #24: A Song That You Want to Play at Your Funeral

Ben Folds Five - "Evaporated"

I have no idea what Ben Folds Five's song "Evaporated" is about but for some reason it's always been my go to song when I've just broken up with a girl. But i think it could work just as well as a funeral song.

I'm not sure the lyrics fit perfectly but it's my funeral right? I can play whatever I like.

30 Day Song Challenge #23: A Song That You Want to Play at Your Wedding

Kate Miller-Heidke - "Space They Cannot Touch"

There are lots of different moments at a wedding that require music (walking down the aisle, after the first kiss, the first dance, etc) but rather than pick one I'm just going to name one of the most romantic songs I know - Kate Miller-Heidke's "Space They Cannot Touch".

I have no idea what point in the wedding this is best to be played at but I know it will be there.

30 Day Song Challenge #22: A Song That You Listen To When You’re Sad

Noah and the Whale - "My Broken Heart"

Lately (as in in the last year or so) my go to album for when I'm feeling down is Noah and the Whale's breakup masterpiece The First Days of Spring. And probably the most gut-wrenching, miserable song on the entire album is "My Broken Heart" with the hopeless lyrics "you can't break my broken heart".

The Screaming Jets once sang "how about a sad song to help me get further down". When I'm down I want the world to be down with me.

Apr. 21st, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge #21: A Song That You Listen To When You’re Happy

The Strokes - "Last Night"

It's probably more to do with the memories attached to "Last Night" than the song itself (The Strokes were a big part of my soundtrack while I was living in Ireland) but I can't help but smile when it comes on.

Rock and Roll got lost for a few years there and it took bands like The Strokes, The White Stripes and all the other "The" bands to realise that it was OK to make lo-fi guitar-drums-bass rock again. Gotta love it.

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