In this – the age of the Coronavirus – many of us are stuck at home, isolated with only TV screens and the glow of laptops and phones to keep us connected. In other words, there isn’t much to do.
Videos by American Songwriter
However, one thing that is available to us all is the wide world of recorded music. And now is as good a time as ever to get to know some bands you may not have heard of but ones that you will assuredly enjoy, dear reader.
So, buckle up and get ready for a digital ride around Seattle (two times!), Boston, Spokane (Washington) and Lexington (Kentucky).
Prom Queen, “Blonde,” Seattle
The master of “doom-wop,” the Emerald City’s Prom Queen is as alluring visually as she is sonically. With big bouffant and catchy choruses, in this song, Prom Queen offers a window into a big life change. When you don’t want to be yourself, what can you do? That’s right! Go from brunette to blonde. It’s a lifestyle, after all. And while this video was shot in 2017 – and PQ has since gone back to her lovely chestnut hue – the jaunty song is as fun now as the first day it was penned. Prom Queen, in case you didn’t know, is an excellent rock ‘n’ roller.
Eastern Souvenirs, “Long Road,” Boston
A melodic dreamscape, even the cover image for this song makes me want to strip away everything about my day-to-day life and dive into the ocean of some other existence. I can learn to fish. I can learn to swim. I can learn to find where I am in the world based on the stars. I’ll do it! Just let me get away. Well, that’s at least how I feel listening to this new track from Boston’s Eastern Souvenirs. Blue skies and sunbaked skin.
Bad Motivator, “Where Eagles Dare,” Spokane
Is it punk? Is it some kind of Rainier Beer-infused metal? Is it some type of hybrid? Whatever the final designation, it doesn’t really matter in the long run. This is the kind of music that fills up a bar in milliseconds and gets everyone head banging and grinning. Shots of rail whiskey abound as Spokane’s Bad Motivator does just the opposite of that. This band motivates well! We want more of this tremendous energy!
Magnolia Boulevard, “Sister,” Lexington
More and more, I find myself a sucker for a song about family. And this one belted by Lexington, Kentucky’s Magnolia Boulevard is as sweet and heartfelt as they come. Did I mention, I’m a sucker for Hammonds too? It’s like this band crawled into my head and plucked all the elements that mean a great deal. But it wouldn’t matter as much if the band didn’t pull it out so elegantly and effortlessly. Magnolia Boulevard is a treasure.
Sundae + Mr. Goessl, “When You’re Smiling,” Seattle
This duo is as classic as the cherry on top of the banana split. The uber-talented vocalist paired with the nimble guitarist is as timeless a dynamic as it gets. But that doesn’t mean Sundae + Mr. Goessl are ordinary in any sense of the word. Together, they’re crystal glasses spinning on top of pool cues. They’re a pink poodle skirt draped over a Les Paul guitar. They’re essential listening for any weekend morning as the sun climbs in through your blinds.