1. Put the Gun Down by ZZ Ward: I recently heard this song on my favorite radio station (Ann Arbor's 107.1) while driving to work and it completely made.my.day. Chock full of pure southern porch blues with bits of hip hop, this song is perfection. I'm also completely driven towards gritty female vocals with edgy tones and Ward's got it all. She has this amazing singing style that strangely enough, resembles a speech impediment. I know that sounds really weird (and totally stupid) but you just have to listen. It's all in her "r's" (or lack there of). As CrAzY as this sounds, it's absolutely brilliant. More ZZ pleaze!
2. Ain't Messin' Round by Gary Clark Jr.: Ahhhhh. Thank you Mr. Clark for taking us back to the soulful 60's. You sure ain't messin' round when it comes to solid tunes. When I hear this song I just want to tease my hair, put on a mini skirt, and stay out till 3 a.m. I truly appreciate artists who take us back to the roots of GOOD MUSIC and Clark does just that. It's such a pleasure to hear a current song use a horn section (my hubby would be proud that I wrote that) and use it well. In a music world that is suffocating in auto-tune and synth-everything, I crave to hear REAL instruments. This one will certainly remain in my playlist for a loooong time.
3. Anything Could Happen by Ellie Goulding: I love British accents. This may be due to my current obsession with Downton Abbey but there's something refreshing in hearing them. I find it endearing that we can actually hear Goulding's accent in her music as opposed to most British singers who seem to mysteriously "lose" their accents when singing (think Phil Collins). Aside from Goulding's sweet and youthful sound, I love the feeling behind this particular song. It lifts me up and reminds me that each day is a new page in my life. So yes, Ellie! You're right. Anything could happen today.
4. Lover of the Light by Mumford & Sons: Music is finally turning a much needed corner. Mumford & Sons and many other comparable bands are using traditional sounds in modern ways to drive the music industry in a new and refreshing direction. I personally thank them for that. My love for the Mumford & Sons sound has been growing steady since I first heard them. Not only do I enjoy the musicality of this band but there's something about this track that feels extra special to me. I find it to be extremely romantic. Slightly desperate, yes, but definitely romantic. "But I'd be yours if you'd be mine..." Yes, please.
5. That Wasn't Me by Brandi Carlile: Oh my. There is something about this song that tugs at my soul. And I mean tugs. Brandi's gorgeous vocal is very reminiscent of Bonnie Raitt and it's so beautifully honest and raw. The apologetic lyrics only further add to the feel-it-in-your-gut vocal. There is clearly a story behind this song. I have heard that Carlile has explained that the song is about forgiveness and addiction so I can only imagine what she must have experienced in her life that would drive her to write such a heart wrenching track. Regardless of the back story, it's worth every single goose bump.
So ... what are your current music obsessions? What moves you? Would love to hear what's on your playlist this month. Do share!