Music for a Rainy Day

It’s going to be a rainy weekend in Atlanta.  I’m planning on spending it reading, writing, and working on costumes for a Gatsby party and a Steampunk picnic that I am going to attend this coming week.  I want to listen to music while performing these activities, and given the weather and my general state of mind on rainy days, Kings of Convenience is a perfect fit.

Although I imagine that I had heard their music before, I recently rediscovered this band through Pandora after giving a number of their songs the thumbs up.  I listen to Pandora at work because for the most part music helps me to stay focused on the tasks that I need to accomplish.  There are some artists, though, who I allow myself to take a mental break for, closing my eyes, putting my head and my hands, and taking some time to escape the confines of the office by submersing myself in the music.

A few songs to take your mind off of what worries you and to wrap yourself up in on a rainy day:

Misread

I Don’t Know What I Can Save You From

I’d Rather Dance with You

 

Aguas de Marcos

Sometimes I listen to music because I want to feel all the feels.  This song makes me feel it all: excitement, happiness, sadness, and an overwhelming sense of urgency.  It makes me want to live life in the moment.

The definitive version of this song (according to Wikipedia) is the duet between Antônio Carlos Jobim, the composer, and Elis Regina:

My dad’s favorite cover of this song is by Susannah McCorkle, and I like this version because it includes English lyrics as well as the original Portuguese lyrics:

Dave Van Ronk

My dad introduced me to Dave Van Ronk on our recent trip to New Orleans.  After spending our evenings in the local bar listening to bands, eating Boudin balls, and drinking Abita beers, we would sit out on the patio behind the apartment we were staying at in the Marigny district, and my dad would tell us what songs to look up on YouTube.  The two songs of Dave Van Ronk that we listened to bewitched me. 

First up is Dave Van Ronk’s hilarious version of “Cocaine,” which had me rolling over laughing. Highlights include:

“Went to bed last night singing a song, woke up this morning….my nose was gone.” 

“All my mucous membrane is just a memory.  Sometimes I think that coke is bad for me.” 

“Cocaine is four horses and not four men.  Tell me it will kill me, but they won’t say when.”

 

Then, we listened to his haunting version of “Both Sides Now.”  According to Wikipedia, Joni Mitchell, who wrote the song, says that his rendition “was the finest ever” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dave_Van_Ronk).   Listening to this song transports me to an especially beautiful sad place.