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 Brooklyn, Manhattan, Seattle, Nashville and Los Angeles.
Senri Oe, Togetherness,” Brooklyn
A bit of classical composition (with a little “My Favorite Things” sample ‘ta boot) to start your day. Musician, Senri Oe, offers a small delight in song that, if you listen to it at the right volume with the right amount of coffee in your system, will feel like a personal theme song. So, open the blinds, let the summer air in and allow yourself to believe Big Bird or Mr. Rogers is about to knock on your door and ask you your plans for the early afternoon.
Phil Augusta Jackson, “Alone,” Manhattan
The perfect song for a 10pm stroll through your favorite city neighborhood. It’s the music of a balmy night. Maybe you’re set to meet some friends for a pint or three in the opened window of a pub. Or maybe you’re just out to find what you can find on your own. Maybe, like Jackson, you want to walk down the center of a street. Maybe you want to see your shadow stretch and shrink underneath the streetlights. Or maybe you want to listen to music on repeat and believe in yourself a little better than the day before.
A Strange Bird, “Series of Nouns,” Seattle
Imagine walking into one of your favorite bars. Maybe it’s open mic night. You sit down and the bartender, your friend, brings you the beer and shot of whisky you like best. You have a few free hours. The work is done; you’ve called your mother. It’s warm out; the rent is paid for a few more weeks. You see someone on the little stage with a guitar. Should be fine. But then a voice like the display case at Baskin-Robbins fills the room. As varied as bubble gum and coffee. As bright as birthday cake and strawberry lemonade.
Ella Mine, “Water’s Rise,” Nashville
Ella Mine sings like emotions electrified. Suddenly sullen neon and ecstatic pastels shoot and fire in the mind’s eye. “Water’s Rise” begins and liquid begins to rumble and floor your room. It comes from underneath the door, through the cracks in the window. The room fills, you choke for air as your lips kiss the ceiling and when you open your eyes again, no longer submerged, you do it all over again for the thrill as the light and waves begin again.
Renee Holiday, “Temptation,” Los Angeles
Renee Holiday knows what you’re thinking and it brings a smirk to her lips. Suddenly, as you wave to her, she sprouts eight long legs. Like eight lights, you walk closer. Now she has you squirming in her strands and threads. Is the audience snapping pictures? Holiday has you, dangling from the rafters now with the others before you. When she hits the floor again in a black dress she sees another patron eagerly grinning. She pulls him in by his loosened tie and he would hear your warnings if your mouth wasn’t already stuck shut.