Tag Archives: Songwriter

“These Days” – Jackson Browne

ackson Browne has written some amazing songs over his long and storied career. His fame may have peaked in the 1970s but his musical and songwriting talents just seems to get better with age. I highly encourage you to check out his newer albums. I’m always pleased to hear one of his songs get played on the radio, but even better still are the tunes from past albums that don’t get much play anymore. It’s sometimes sad what gets forgotten and lost in the rock and roll archives. Continue reading

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“I Take My Chances” – Mary Chapin Carpenter

From the first time I heard Mary Chapin Carpenter I was hooked. What a great songwriter and singer! She deals with the whole range of human emotions and trials and tribulations of relationships. It also feels like we have a front row seat to her life watching her pass through the various milestones of adulthood. Even when the topic is sad, I somehow leave her songs feeling consoled and somewhat uplifted. She also has the uncanny ability to transport you to place and time that ends up making her experiences feel like your own. I imagine she must be a very empathetic person. Continue reading

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“American Tune” – Paul Simon

From what I’ve read and heard Paul Simon is the favorite songwriter of many of his contemporaries. It’s not that hard to understand why. I’ve seen several of his peers cover his songs in concert. Don Henley rightfully referred to him as an American Treasure and he definitely deserved his Kennedy Center Honors acknowledgement for his “exemplary lifetime achievement in the performing arts.” When you step back and listen to his catalogue of music it is quite remarkable. The breadth and depth of songs is impressive. As a bonus you get to hear his continued growth and evolution as an artist. Continue reading

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“Harvest Moon” – Neil Young

Neil Young is a song writing machine. The sheer volume of his work is amazing. It’s almost as if he is never bereft of ideas. He also shifts his style and approach like a chameleon: electric, acoustic, rockabilly, country, hard rock, etc. You’re never quite sure what you are going to get when he releases a new CD. Sometimes the material is topical and relevant to world events other times it is intensely personal. He is certainly never boring to listen to as an artist. Continue reading

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“With A Little Luck” – Paul McCartney

There’s not much you can say about Paul McCartney that hasn’t already been written and/or said. He is one of the most important songwriters of the past century and I’ve always found peace and enjoyment through his music. He’s been criticized for not having the same edge as his songwriting partner from The Beatles – John Lennon, but my personal opinion is that this has never been who he is. His style is more subtle and melodic but also equally full of meaning. He doesn’t have to hit you over the head with a hammer to get his point across. Continue reading

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“Show Me” – The Pretenders

The Pretenders are a great band. They have a wonderful catalogue of music spanning many decades. I’ve always felt that Chrissie Hynde is underrated as a songwriter. She is a very talented artist who explores all aspects of life and relationships. Her songs are very good at making you “feel” something. In addition, very few bands can match their versatility. Whether it’s a ballad that touches your soul, the title track of a film score, a remake of a classic hit that improves with her interpretation, a straight ahead fun rock & roll song or a harder edged piece that reflects the more primal side of human nature, she puts her heart and soul into the art form and it shows. Continue reading

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“Happiness” – The Blue Nile

Paul Buchanan of The Blue Nile has one of the most distinctive voices in music. His heartfelt approach to songwriting and singing is something special to behold. He is also a notorious perfectionist sometimes taking as long as 7 years to complete an album. His bandmates, Robert Bell and Paul Joseph Moore share his convictions about their craftsmanship. It feels like every single note is carefully thought out and played to perfection. They also never feel the need to show off or dazzle you with their abilities, but rather keep it simple, beautiful and melodic. It’s clear that as they age and grow musically they’ve come to appreciate the concept that less is more. When I first heard the band in the early 1980s it was like nothing I had heard before. Their debut album, A Walk Across The Rooftops, challenged conventional music at the time and still do this day makes me wonder how they put some of the songs together. Continue reading

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