I’m filling in on the early morning shift this week at mvyradio. One of the features I get to do is called “Live, Acoustic, and Cover Tunes” and it’s exactly what it sounds like. This morning I featured some Bob Dylan covers… including this beauty from Mason Jennings…
I need suggestions for more great cover tunes (or live/acoustic versions of tunes)… feel free to comment with any ideas!
I took a nice foggy ferry ride today. It’s pretty incredible how much nicer a rainy, dreary day can be if you’ve got the right soundtrack. I made a playlist for the occasion on my iPod and Mason Jennings fit right in. He tends to have such a haunting feeling to his tunes, but it’s something that keeps me coming back. Here’s a great live version of “If You Ain’t Got Love” that I found in the mvyradio archives:
For those curious…last night’s show at the Narrows was great. I’ll talk more about it once it’s archived on mvyradio.com and you can go check it out. Unfortunately, I got lost and missed Jason Spooner’s set, but I did have a nice chat with him after the show. We talked about music, and he told me he’s been digging the new Mason Jennings album. I promptly decided to check it out!
Although I’ve heard good things, I’ve never really sat and listened to Mason’s music until now, and it’s definitely got a mood to it. His new album Blood Of Man just came out on September 15th and I’d describe it as straightforward and somber. I think my favorite track is “Tourist”. Here he’s got a sort of lull between his phrases that’s really beautiful…it gives the song a sad feeling, but a good sad feeling. Some of the lyrics are quite fitting for the Vineyard around this time of year…
“There’s a tourist in every heart
That just wants to stay
But winter is coming and it’s time to go
It’s already over we just didn’t know
They’re stacking up wood where the flowers grow
There’s a tourist in every heart
That can’t wait to go”
I also really like “Black Wind Blowing” which is more upbeat but equally as sad. The harmonica is a perfect touch (oddly enough, it’s one of my favorite instruments). “Sing Out” and “The Field” are also highlights. He gets a bit raucous on some tracks like “Ain’t No Friend Of Mine” and “City Of Ghosts”, but I definitely like the softer tunes a lot more.
All in all, this is a solid album which addresses some heavy, upsetting issues. It’s something I’d listen to when I’m sad or the weather is bleak. Rolling Stone gave Blood Of Man 4 stars. You can check out some of the new tracks on Mason’s website and MySpace. Thanks to Jason Spooner for the tip…hopefully I can catch his live show one of these days!