Mighty Souls Brass Band – A Mighty Big Sound

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The Mighty Souls Brass Band’s debut album Lift Up is exactly what you need to listen to when you’re having withdrawals from all the Mardi Gras fun. If you missed out on finding that little baby in your king cake this year, mix up a drink, put Lift Up on, sit back and crown yourself the king of your own krewe.

The Mighty Souls Brass Band was Sean Murphy’s big dream that came to be with the joint efforts of up to 14 rotating and evolving musicians from Memphis. The MSBB’s music ranges in styles from Marching, Swing, Soul and Funk with each track of the album taking on its own sound that it’s impossible to listen to without feeling the desire to move your feet. The music speaks for itself and requires little in the way of lyrics though a few of the tracks offer some vocals that only enhance the notes that are pushed through the loud horns and jazzy percussion beats.

It’s no secret that my favorite thing about New Orleans is the off the beaten path swing and jazz bars where I can dream about being one of the girls being swung up on a dashing man’s shoulders and spun around the floor… and this album is exactly what I would want to be the soundtrack of my fantasy swing dancing self. Check out this video and tell me you don’t feel like putting on your suit going out and grabbing a cutie in a swing dress and tossing her around the dance floor!

 

MELODY GARDOT – MY ONE AND ONLY THRILL

My first exposure to Melody Gardot came via her 2008 album, Worrisome Heart. The first time I heard her I emailed the following to my wife:

Melody Gardot.
I don’t know much.
But I know I like her.
She makes me wanna smoke cigarettes and drink vodka outta funky glasses.

Much has been made about her unique path into the music scene, and in the interest of back story I’ll recap it here. At nineteen, Melody was riding her bicycle when she was struck by a car, ending up with a head injury that caused cognitive impairment. As fate would have it, during her rehab her doctor suggested that she try making music to help repair that damage. Katherine Wright of the Music Therapy Association explains, “Music enables a person to reminisce and reconnect with her sense of identity. Songwriting is an excellent tool to use when working on concentration and other cognitive issues.” Following her doctor’s suggestions, Melody started writing and recording the songs that would eventually make up her debut cd, Some Lessons- the Bedroom Sessions, as well as Worrisome Heart.

April saw Melody release her second full length, My One And Only Thrill, and I could go into a whole “Here’s a 23 year old old-soul with a jazzy haunting voice that knows real pain” type of spiel, but I’ won’t. Instead I am gonna review the album with a haiku:

jazzyphat nasty
rat pack and dry martinis
Melody Gardot

Melody Gardot – Who Will Comfort Me
Melody Gardot – Your Heart Is As Black As Night
Melody Gardot – Baby I’m A Fool

Melody Gardot’s Official Site, Melody Gardot on myspace, Buy My One And Only Thrill

MELODY GARDOT – WORRISOME HEART


Worrisome Heart had a tough road to travel before making it to our ears, and had it not been for a horrible accident when Melody Gardot was nineteen we may not have ever heard her voice at all. At nineteen, Melody was riding her bicycle when she was struck by a car, ending up with a head injury that caused cognitive impairment. As fate would have it, during her rehab her doctor suggested that she try making music to help repair that damage. Katherine Wright of the Music Therapy Association explains, “Music enables a person to reminisce and reconnect with her sense of identity. Songwriting is an excellent tool to use when working on concentration and other cognitive issues.

Following her doctor’s suggestions, Melody started writing and recording the first pieces of her songbook, which would become her debut EP, Some Lessons the Bedroom Sessions. Some Lessons garnered the attention of a DJ at WXPN (a station known for launching the careers of Amos Lee, as well as Norah Jones). She also won a People’s Choice award from City Paper Philadelphia in 2005.

I only tell you the back story because I find it really interesting. It’s obvious this girl was meant to make music, but it took a 2000 pound automobile moving at a high rate of speed to put her on that path. It’s kinda freaky in that ‘you ain’t avoiding your fate’ kinda way.

She recently released her first full-length album, Worrisome Heart, and I could go into a whole ‘here’s a 22 year old old-soul with a jazzy haunting voice that knows real pain’ type of spiel. Instead, however, I am gonna repost here the first things that came to mind when I listened to this album and emailed my wife about it:

I don’t know much.
But I know I like her.
she makes me wanna smoke cigarettes and drink vodka outta funky glasses http://www.myspace.com/melody

I was politely asked by Melody’s people to remove the songs so here are 3 videos from YouTube:



Melody Gardot’s Official Site, Melody Gardot on myspace, Buy Worrisome Heart