Emerald City Blues.

Monday I downloaded several songs from Amazon’s most recent “Artists to Watch” newsletter. As I was finally listening to some them yesterday, I came upon a song called “Truck Stop Gospel” by Parker Millsap.

 

 

I really liked the song, and loved the gravelly aspect of his voice. Naturally, I Googled him. I need to know more about him. Come to find out, he’s a fellow Okie, hailing from Purcell. I always get a little extra excited when I discover new Oklahoma music. Regardless of where they are actually from in our little state, it always feels like I’m supporting a “local.” And there is sense of pride that goes along with it. Oklahoma has a rich musical history, but I’m getting off the subject. Back to the matter at hand!

 

 

 

I was surprised to read that Parker is only 20 years old (which kind of makes me feel old). I never would have guessed him to be so young. His voice belies his age. I went over to Spotify & pulled up his debut, self-titled album for a listen. Parker grew up Pentecostal, which obviously influences his music. As he said in an interview, “In the Pentecostal church, the music is from the gut; even the ballads. “Turn your large hymnal to number 305 and let your heart bleed while we sing ‘The Old Rugged Cross.'” The guttural influence is especially obvious to me, and it lends such honestly & feeling to his songs, giving many of them a blues vibe that I love.

 

 

 

This last song, “Homeless,” doesn’t appear on his album. But it may be favorite one.

 

 

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Let the light in.

It’s days like today that I REALLY love Twitter.

Because I incessantly tweet about music and follow artists, indie labels, management accounts, etc., I get followed by new artists (and labels, etc.) nearly every day, and I get suggestions of new artists to follow constantly. And I love it. It’s exciting, and I have found countless new artists whose music I’ve fallen for because of it. And today was no exception. As I was going thru my emails this morning, randomly choosing a few to go listen to, I happened upon two artists that I immediately got pretty excited about.

First up, I made my way to listen to Amber Run, an Indie folk/pop/rock band from Nottingham, UK. The first song I heard, their latest single “Spark,” was all it took to get me interested. 

I immediately mixed them into my current playlist on Spotify this morning. And as everything shuffled around, and I got to hear all of the tracks available, these two tracks in particular, from their Noah EP, stuck out.

You would never think by listening to these guys that they have been a band for less than two years.

After getting so fortunate with Amber Run, I wasn’t expecting the same instant hook from the next artist I listened to. I was wrong. I made my way over to Joel Baker‘s SoundCloud & hit play on his latest song “Every Vessel Every Vein.”

It took maybe 20 seconds for me to fall in love. MAYBE. I actually don’t even think it took that long. Joel, also from Nottingham oddly enough, is more folk-sounding, and very soulful. I started listening to his EP, Long Sleeves. The entire EP is beautiful, a sad & melancholy kind of beautiful that I am exceedingly partial too. I was only going to include a song or two off the EP, but I just can’t choose. Please, please listen to them all. 

As I got to the bottom of the page, there were three covers, two of which I must admit I questioned, seeing as they were covers of Kendrick Lamar’s “Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe” and Kanye’s “Can’t Tell Me Nothing.” Shame on me for jumping to conclusions. You can hear the Kanye cover below, as well as the aforementioned third track, a cover of Kings of Leon’s “Mulled Wine in Manhattan.”

I think I’ve given you guys enough music for today. Enjoy the ear-candy!

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