X “Because I Do” from Under The Big Black Sun (Ekektra 1982) —This song is all about Billy Zoom's great riff and the propulsive drums of DJ Bonebreak.Buy it!
Los Lobos “I Wanna Be Like You (The Monkey Song)” from Just Another Band from East L.A. (Warner Bros. 1993) —One of my all-time fave Los Lobos cuts, originally from the Hal Willner produced Stay Awake Disney tribute.Buy it!
Punch Brothers “Movement and Location” from Who's Feeling Young Now? (Nonesuch 2012) N —I'm reasonably sure he's not singing about a baseball pitcher, but the musical part of the song is so entrancing I still don't know much about the words.Buy it!
George Harrison “Isn't It a Pity” from All Things Must Pass (Apple 1970) —It's astounding to contemplate the number of incredible songs George had saved up for his first solo record, my all-time fave solo Beatle album.Buy it!
City Squirrel “Seeking Out Approval” from Defeat (Red Pill 2012) N —Nice crunchy number out of Portland, Oregon. "I'm like a muscle man trying to lift the weight of the world."Buy it!
Aimee Mann “Charmer” SINGLE (Superego 2012) N —Killer synthesizer riff takes this song from terrific to brilliant.Buy it!
Jellyfish “All I Want Is Everything” from Live at Bogart's (Omnivore 2012) N —I quite enjoy this live album from a band that should have been much bigger in their time.Buy it!
The Kinks “Life Goes On” from Sleepwalker (Arista 1977) —Get that frown off your head 'cause you're a long time dead.Buy it!
Son Volt “Dust of Daylight” from American Central Dust (Rounder 2009) —One of those purty songs Jay Farrar does so well.Buy it!
Craig Finn “Honolulu Blues” from Clear Heart Full Eyes (Vagrant 2012) N —I think this may have been the album I heard this year that I should have listened to more closely - whenever I hear a song like this one, I like it more than I thought I did.Buy it!
Iggy Pop “Pleasure” from Party (Arista 1981) —I don't know why this album isn't rated more highly among Iggy fans - what's not to love about a song like this one?Buy it!
John Cale “Macbeth” from Paris 1919 (Rhino 1973) —How can you not have a smile on your face when this song plays?Buy it!
Alejandro Escovedo “Sally Was a Cop” from Big Station (Fantasy 2012) —While this song is great, I guess it takes the smile off the face, doesn't it?Buy it!
Robyn Hitchcock “August Hair” from I Wanna Go Backwards (Yep Roc 2007) —One of the more obscure Hitchcock cuts collected in this box set of classics & rarities.Buy it!
Tracey Thorn “Hard Candy Christmas” from Tinsel and Lights (Merge www.mergerecords.com 2012) N —A beautiful song from a beautiful singer.Buy it!
Middle Class Fashion “Give Xmas My Best” from Sentimental Singles (self-released 2012) N L —What a nice holiday surprise to find a new EP of seasonal stuff from this very talented local outfoot.Buy it!
Redd Kross “Super Sunny Christmas” from Christmas on KYULE 2012 (KYULE 2012) N —My fave cut on the annual KYULE compilation put together by Mr. Christmas himself, John Wendland.Buy it!
Rough Shop “Syd” from Beneath the South Side Bridge (Perdition Records 2012) N L —The best song on a great album, maybe?Buy it!
Tres Chicas “Stone Love Song” from Bloom, Red and the Ordinary Girl (Yep Roc 2006) —Caitlin Cary. 'Nuff said.Buy it!
Norah Jones “Take It Back” from Little Broken Hearts (Blue Note www.bluenote.com 2012) N —Words are failing me - Jones sings so perfectly.Buy it!
Peter Gabriel “No Self Control” from Peter Gabriel (3) (Real World 1980) —I don't know how to stop.Buy it!
Chicha Libre “The Ride of the Valkyries” from Canibalismo (Barbes Records 2012) N —I don't know anything about these guys, but this is one heck of a nice song.Buy it!
Lee "Scratch" Perry “Sunshine Showdown” from Chapter 2 of "Words" (Trojan trojanrecords.com 1999) —Classic Upsetters stuff from the golden era of the 70s.Buy it!
Invisible System “Dark Entries” from The Rough Guide to the Music of Ethiopia (World Music Network 2012) N —This fascinating combination of Ethiopian traditions and outside influences is ridiculously cool - that country remains one of the most fascinating sources for music these days.Buy it!
Caetano Veloso “Beleza Pura” from Personalidade (Polygram 1986) —I don't know what he's saying, but I love the sound of his voice.Buy it!
Vinicius Cantuaria & Bill Frisell “Forinfas” from Lagrimas Mexicanas (Naive 2011) —A mysterious little number.Buy it!
Cassandra Wilson “No More Blues” from Another Country (EOne 2012) N —A very sweet collaboration between Wilson and guitarist Fabrizio Sotti.Buy it!
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings “I Learned the Hard Way” (Daptone 2010) —This song is only 2 years old and it already sounds like something I've loved my whole life.Buy it!
Ryan Shaw “Real Love” (Dynotone 2012) N —This man can belt it out with the best of them - terrific young singer.Buy it!
Johnny "Guitar" Watson “Ain't Gonna Hush” from Hot Just Like TNT (Ace 1996) —Sung by Cordella de Milo, with stinging guitar from Mr. Watson.Buy it!
Etta James “What'd I Say” from Etta James Rocks The House (Chess 1964) —I saw Etta James a few times, and she was always magnificent, but I never got to see her sound like this.Buy it!
Willie Dixon “Move Me” from Windy City Blues (Fantasy 1992) —Willie Dixon wasn't as great a singer as he was a songwriter, but man, this is one effective smoky blues.Buy it!
Miles Davis “Chance It” from Miles Davis Vol. 1 (Blue Note www.bluenote.com 1955) —There is a nice precision to those jazz cuts originally recorded for 78s.Buy it!
Sleepy Kitty “All I Do Is Dream of You” from Projection Room (Euclid Records 2014) N L —So the question is, where do I know this song from?Buy it!
The Monkees “I Can't Get Her Off My Mind” from The Monkees (Colgems 1966) —Actually, this is a previously unreleased early version, which is just so darn charming.Buy it!
Neil Young & Crazy Horse “Psychedelic Pill” (Reprise 2012) N —Neil Young has a phaser and he knows how to use it.Buy it!
The Blind Eyes “Forever and a Day” from Modernity CD ALBUM (Blind Eyes 2009) L —New Year's Eve - free show at Off Broadway.Buy it!
Earwacks “As Far As We Know” from 33 1/3: Live at the Gaslight Theatre (self 2012) N L —This great St. Louis band reunited for one last performance after almost 30 years; it's documented on a DVD, and the release party is Sunday, Dec. 16 at the Famous Bar.Buy it!
Be Bop Deluxe “Crying To the Sky” from Sunburst Finish (EMI 1976) —Oh, man, when Bill Nelson's guitar lets loose halfway through this cut, I'm ready to fly.Buy it!
Shawn Colvin “Up On That Hill” from All Fall Down (Nonesuch 2012) N —I never thought I'd get entranced by a Shawn Colvin album, but this one, produced by Buddy Miller, is downright lovely.Buy it!
Charlie Robison “Something In the Water” from Good Times (Dualtone 2004) —An enjoyable entry in the list of songs about discovering alcohol as a youngster.Buy it!
J.D. McPherson “Fire Bug” from Signs & Signifiers (Rounder 2012) N —I think this could start a party.Buy it!
James McMurtry “The Governor” from Just Us Kids (Lightning Rod 2008) —This song has nothing to do with it, but it makes me think of The Walking Dead now.Buy it!
Like everything else, times are approximate.
Spinitron and this station are not liable for errors or omissions.