Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Katie's music mix #2

On Sunday I had some one-on-one time with Katie B for the first time in about four months. She got really sick for about three weeks over the summer which kept her from coming to my birthday celebrations, so it was wonderful to see her and catch up on things.

I made her a new mix CD, mostly of songs that I've played for her at my apartment over the past eight months, plus some other things that I've been listening to lately. It's the second mix I've made for her ("Katie's music mix" - Nov. 12, 2013).

Here's the track listing and a few thoughts about each one below.

1. Black is the Colour – Cara Dillon
2. Peel Me A Grape – Diana Krall
3. When Can I See You Again? – Owl City
4. Sleeps With Butterflies – Tori Amos
5. Pass In Time – Beth Orton
6. Dark In My Imagination – of Verona
7. Lightning Song – Anathema
8. This Girl’s in Love With You (live) – Ella Fitzgerald
9. Lovesong for a Vampire – Annie Lennox
10. Kryptonite – 3 Doors Down
11. Song 44 – The Gloaming
12. The Raven That Refused to Sing – Steven Wilson
13. Settling – Tara MacLean
14. The Rose – Amanda McBroom & Lincoln Mayorga
15. A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square – Harry Connick, Jr.
16. The Nearness of You – Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong

1. I showed Katie this song from a DVD performance called "The Redcastle Sessions" where Dillon performs in a beautiful space with her band in Ireland. The song was originally made famous by Nina Simone, but where Simone changed the pronouns to male, Dillon performs it with female pronouns.

2. This song is from Krall's splendid "Love Scenes" album, which I have on SACD, a high-resolution audiophile digital format. Katie and I listened to the entire album together the night we saw our first Shotz together and after watching "Treasure of the Sierra Madre," and this is my favorite track. In fact, if you read my Amazon review of the album, it references that night.

3. Other than being from the soundtrack of my favorite Disney movie since Beauty and the Beast, the lyrics pretty much speak for themselves. I did quote this song once upon saying goodnight to her.

4. I played this song in our hotel room at Wicked Faire - it's from one of my all-time favorite albums, "The Beekeeper," and I'm going to see Tori in concert next week with Lori, so I'm excited about that!

5. The ambling waltz "Pass In Time" shares the advice the singer's mom gave on her deathbed. This duet with jazz singer Terry Callier spotlights Orton's cracked and pleading voice, calling Billie Holiday to mind.

6. I actually found this song for free on iTunes, and it's dark and pounding rhythm just made me think of Florence + the Machine's "Heavy In Your Arms" that Katie liked on my last mix.

7. Here's another song from Anathema's "Weather Systems" that showcases Lee Douglas' pure and sincere vocals. I have to say, I don't like their newest album, "Distant Satellites," quite as much.

8. I first found this four-song EP album "Sunshine of Your Love" untold years ago at Half-Price Books in Houston, and I've loved this song ever since. Lady Ella gives a powerful live performance, filled with dynamic emotion and precise jazz notes, backed by a full orchestra.

9. I wrote a bit about this song in a previous post - "Songs of Annie Lennox" - April 15, 2014

10. When we were at Wicked Faire waiting for Voltaire to perform, this song came on the PA and everyone in the room started singing along. It was one of those cool moments, like what happens at a rock concert, when everybody is in sync.

11. Sung in Gaelic, this is the first track from The Gloaming's self-titled CD that I saw performed in concert earlier this year. The song is so named because the lyrics come from a 500-year-old poem that was titled Number 44. Here's a Livestream of the concert (I'm in the front row on the right, wearing a polka-dot top) and it's the second song on the concert, at 23:19 timecode.

12. The story of this song is based on a fairy tale about a man asking a raven to bring his dead sister back to life. This is also one of the best-sounding DVD-Audio surround recordings I've ever heard, and Wilson is one of the industry's leading engineers in multi-channel sound.

13. This is an old song that Tara introduced me to on one of her old mixes, and I just thought it felt appropriate here.

14. Sung by the original songwriter McBroom and made famous by Bette Midler on the soundtrack of the movie of the same name, "The Rose" is from McBroom's album "Growing Up in Hollywood Town," one of my Sheffield Lab audiophile CDs that I played for Katie once.

15. This album, "We Are in Love," has been one of my sonic references since I used to sell stereos at Circuit City. The recording is so clean and lifelike; through a good system it sounds incredibly realistic. The song itself is an old one, and one that I fell in love with when it was used in an obscure 1986 movie called "Every Time We Say Goodbye," starring a very young Tom Hanks.

16. I wrote about this song in another recent post - "Songs and stories" - March 26, 2014