My name's Dave. I'm working on it.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

They Don't Write 'Em Like That Anymore

I'm sipping some Papio and grinning as Jay Brannan sings through my speakers. I've been orbiting around a few records this past week, and the Shortbus soundtrack is the favorite of the moment. Scott Matthew's songs take my breath away. I can't wait until he releases a proper record.
The other disc is called The Ideal Home Music Library, Vol. 1: Show Songs, which, if the liner notes are to be believed, is made up of old show tunes unearthed from the Rare Book Room at the American Institute of Musicology, reinterpreted by Portland's own Michael Johnson and a few other locals. I don't know if I believe the bit about these songs really being written between the '30s and '50s (one dating all the way back to 1901) but either way the sound is unmistakably that of the classic show tunes, and the modern day Portland artists do a marvelous job of paying homage to these songs, wherever they come from.
Maybe I'm a bit old fashioned, but for my money there's nothing like the simple pleasure of a good tune (and old tunes - I'm talkin' Cole Porter here - are the best of the lot for this) to put a skip in your step and make you glad to be alive.
Here is one such song, with guest vocals by none other than Colin Meloy. And some Shortbus tracks thrown in for good measure. Enjoy!

Reclinerland - The Lady from Riems
Jay Brannan - Soda Shop
Scott Matthew - Language

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I missed Haggard... and Decemberists. I thought I came in here all the time...

    I haven't been an online maven.

    I'm one for scratchy 78s of some crazy country guy with a guitar played as rhythm instrument, or small jazz combo dominated by kazoo-like trumpet. I'm putting together a double-CD comp heavy on the former.