Turn it Up: A Familiar Returning Favorite

Song: “Wherever is Your Heart”

Artist: Brandi Carlile

Why I picked it: I was shopping this weekend in an adorable boutique and had one of those moments where you stop and ask the owner what playlist they have playing. Brandi Carlile’s new album was playing a number of times and this song in particular was the one that punched me over the edge to ask. I was swaying, smiling and wondering why I had never really listened to her before–even though I’ve heard about a million times. (Hello, one of the biggest Avett fans ever right here.)

Best part of this song: When a chorus has really great lyrics I don’t mind repetitiveness. This one rings genuine to me. And maybe it’s because I feel it in my day to day. Ignore the sappiness, listen and see if you feel the same way about someone.

Favorite lyric: Wherever is your heart I call home / Though your feet may take you far from me, I know

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Turn It Up: Oregon Cabin 8-Track Smooth

Song: “Buddy”

Artist: Willie Nelson

Why I picked it: When we stayed in a tiny provincial…rustic…cabin this weekend at the Oregon Coast one of our sources of entertainment was an eight-track player. I kid you not. Lucky us, there was an excellent eight-track selection from Waylon Jennings to Johnny Cash, and even Willie Nelson. This song has been on repeat in my mind ever since it played in the background of Andy and I playing a game of “Stratego” Thursday night. It was a really wonderful simplistic night and everything that I love about this song was what I loved about that evening. It’s a wonderful reminder of the soothing, smoothing, familiarities in life that we should embrace more often. A maybe simplistic melody and lyric combination; but it’s what is so straightforward about it that breaks your heart right around the song and makes you hold on tight.

Best part of this song: Willie Nelson isn’t all the tough guy he always seems. In fact, he can write quite the love song for his man friend. Buddy.

Favorite lyric: Laugh with me, buddy / Jest with me, buddy

Turn it up: Loretta Lynn + Portland

Song: “Portland, Oregon”

Artist: Loretta Lynn & Jack White

Why I picked it: The strange pairing of Lynn and White is pretty much the exact funkiness of my morning today. I wandered around the grocery store for no less than 20 minutes this morning at 6 a.m. until I picked out some freezer waffles and chicken sausage. It is a fuzzy funky morning.

Best part of this song: Portland really is love. And gin. And I’m not just saying that because my love lives here. And I like gin. It’s a slow-moving, fuzzy kind of city that is pretty well represented in the slow-moving fuzziness of Loretta’s crooning.

Favorite lyric:  Well Portland Oregon and sloe gin fizz / If that ain’t love then tell me what is

Turn it up: Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.

Yup. I did it.

Hey, it’s the last “Christmas in July” opportunity.

Please, without further ado or introduction — please enjoy. How can you be stressed on a Tuesday when you’re listening to this?

Song: “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”

Artist: Frank Sinatra

Why I picked them: Nat King Cole’s version is actually my favorite; but I love anything Nat or Frank. I chose this version because I wanted to go with a version slightly different than the one that I typically have on repeat. But I realize, it’s another flavor of the same fruit. It’s classic and need nothing more than that.

Best part of this song: Christmas, people. You don’t need another reason.

Favorite lyric:  Let your heart be light / From now on, our troubles will be out of sight

Turn it up: Band of Horses

Song: “Laredo”

Artist: Band of Horses

Why I picked them: I’ve always liked the acoustic, rock style of any artist like Band of Horses. Soft lyrics. Surprising harmonies. Strong vocals and touches of instrument variety. Similar to Dawes in some ways. Surprisingly I don’t think I’ve included them yet AND Andy always likes to play them for me when we’re together. (They’re from Seattle, spoiler alert.) I’m still in my Andy hangover so of course he influenced my Tuesday music.

Best part of this song: I love how upbeat the melody is–you can’t help getting your shoulders moving while you listen.

Favorite lyric:  Impossibilities at the door  //  I won’t be needing them anymore

Turn it up, Monday morning: Mandolin Orange

Week 45: Mandolin Orange

This week I return to my homeland with a North-Carolina based duo, Mandolin Orange, who have been playing together since 2009 out of Chapel Hill. Such a beautiful blend of vocals and string. I feel pretty comfortable classifying them in the bluegrass spectrum, but I don’t think you have to like bluegrass to like Andrew and Emily’s music. “The House of Stone” is their most well known; but you can hear a pretty great cover with Roseanne Cash of “Bury Me Beneath the Weeping Willow” or, my favorite, “Life On a String.”

Turn it up, Monday morning: Zoe Muth & The Lost High Rollers

Week 43: Zoe Muth & The Lost High Rollers

I’ve missed the last two weeks, eek! I need to stop drawing attention to when I’m underserving this blog–but part of me feels like that’s some accountability to step it back up. Zoe Muth was pointed out to me this weekend (credit to Andy)–and they’re pretty great. Reminds me a little bit of Americana like Gillian Welch, but also with some ties to old country like Johnny Cash and Patty Griffin. Definitely par for the type of music that makes me feel at home and the same music you know I love so dearly to share with you. I like the one above, “I’ve Been Gone,” but also like “Heart Like A Wheel” also. Now I’m in a very country mood, hope you are too–Happy Monday.

Turn it up, Monday night: Bryan John Appleby

Week 42: Bryan John Appleby

Should I rename this series “Turn Indie up, Monday morning”? I don’t know. Maybe. But I did post Selena Gomez last time . . . Regardless, back on track this week with Seattle-based songwriter Bryan John Appleby. Very mellow and laid back, this primarily acoustic artist is a new favorite. I somehow found him based on liking The Lone Bellow and have really been enjoying this main hit, “Honey Jar” shown above. Happy Monday night, my friends.