- Mon, 2010-10-04 11:02
Sporting recent comparisons to Ray LaMontagne and Tom Waits, rising acoustic pop troubadour Pete Lawrie has arrived to Guest Edit I Like Music.
With a penchant for classic American songwriting and a love for Paul Simon, he takes us through a track, album and video that means something to him, beginning proceedings with a 20 track playlist of tracks he likes. A lot.
Pete Lawrie Playlist
1: Paul Simon - Born in Puerto Rico
2: Madlib - Slim's Return
3: Laura Marling - Rambling Man
4: Sage Francis featuring Yann Tiersen - The Best of Times
5: Fionn Regan - Lines Written In Winter
6: Asher Roth - G.R.I.N.D. (Get Ready It's A New Day)
7: The Black Keys - Next Girl
8: Shad - Lucky 1's
9: Bombay Bicycle Club - Leaving Blues
10: Drake - Karaoke
11: The Tallest Man on Earth - King of Spain
12: Band Of Horses - Factory
13: J.Cole - Lights Please
14: Richard Hawley - Just Like The Rain
15: Kyla La Grange - Vampire Smile
16: Gold Panda - Back Home
17: Brandon Flowers - Crossfire
18: Cherry Ghost - Diamond In The Grind
19: Freeway and Jake One featuring Raekwon - One Thing
20: Loudon Wainwright III - Motel Blues
Artist: Rumer Track: Aretha Released: 25th October 2010 Label: Atlantic Records
I worked with someone once who had engineered a session for Sir Elton. He said that he was one of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet. He also wrote Tiny Dancer, Rocket Man and Daniel. Based on all of this, his is an opinion I respect, especially when talking about our shared love. Not David Furnish. Music.
His adoration of Rumer's voice and songs is also shared with Burt Bacharach. One of the greatest song writers of ALL TIME. So I don't care if you make industrial grimecore with a Christmas twist in your sister's basement. Rumer's is a voice that is flawless. Not perfect. Thankfully it is cracked and haunting and melancholy and spine shatteringly beautiful. This song of hers Aretha is my favourite, but I could have picked any. Also, for the pages of this very article I spent a lovely morning with Rumer on a battered Battersea bench talking music amongst other random ramble. Then she bought me a sandwich. She was a riot. Like meeting an old friend. As wise and thoughtful as she was a giggle. Interview here.
Artist: Shad Album: Tsol Released: 25th May 2010 Label: Black Box Recordings
When I wake up, I listen to Hip Hop. Before I go on stage, Hip Hop. Cleaning the kitchen, Hip Hop. I have always loved it like the older, cooler, Brooklyn based brother I never had. I consider Mos Def's Black On Both Sides one of the best records of the nineties. Released in the golden age of Hip Hop, it stood alongside records like Things Fall Apart by The Roots and Wu Tang Forever as groundbreaking, stone cold classics.
In recent years, my love has not diminished, but there is something I miss. I miss the sound of the record crackle that wraps around a soul sample lifted straight from the vinyl. I miss the Motown snares. I miss the Boom Bap in modern Boom Bap, that has been replaced by tight drum programming and synths. Imagine my delight when introduced to a Canadian gentleman by the name Shad K. I cannot begin to describe how much I love this album and this artist. He still samples vinyl, his drums crack like a morbidly obese whip and his lyrics... I will, for the first time here, use 'text talk': OMG. His lyrics. Some examples:
" Call me S.H.A.D.D. because I spaz on tracks"
"She's like pool, it's her cue to break my balls"
"I call my car Rocafella, because it's got a broke Dash"
These however are not really what makes Shad so amazing. It is in his 'conscious', more serious tracks that he shines. Conscious rap can come across preachy and patronising. Not Shad. Not for a second. By utilising an at times hilarious ability to poke fun at himself and by being aware of his own cliches, Shad passes them all by and instead delivers incredible, beautiful sentiments over incredible incredible crackling soul beats.
"The I in pride: They say pride puts the 'i' in sin.
Put self at the center, I and 'i' come in.
'Cause I am imperfect; none of us is iron men.
Please, be my third eye when the light gets dim."
A side note. Somehow I persuaded Shad to rap on a remix of a song of mine called All That We Keep from my last E.P. With a simple 16 bars he managed to make me happy forever AND cool with my mates.
Artist: Erik Hassle Track: Nothing Can Change This Love (Sam Cooke)
Many months ago now, I did a show with Erik Hassle in Cardiff. I had not heard his music and had no idea what to expect other than he was a 'synth pop' artist (apparently). The reality was that this unbelievably tall, Swedish white dude with an enormous ginger afro, had one of those most moving soulful voices I had ever heard. The video is just Erik playing this Sam Cooke song in his flat. His electric guitar is not even plugged in. That is all the video needs to be. The song and that incredible, incredible voice does the rest. Enjoy.
Pete Lawrie Mixtape
Any fan of music will at some point have made the object of their desire or bezzy mate a mixtape. A playlist. Be it on cassette 'back in the day' or now Spotify. We all experience the need to share the music that we hold so dear. It says after all something about ourselves.
Music in school determined who I became friends with. It determined how my mates and I dressed, what we said and did and where we went on Saturdays. It is now my career and still as much my hobby as it ever was. To celebrate this, I have made a little mixtape for you.
These are not my favourite songs, but like any good mixtape, it has a concept. Most popular mixtape concepts worldwide include the 'get back with me I love and miss you Radiohead' mixtape, The 'get with me because I'm cool, in touch with my sensitive side, purposefully needy, but ultimately far more mature and intellectual than all of my school year Smiths' mixtape, or the 'I hate my parents, I don't care about homework and/or my future Rage Against The Machine/Cypress Hill/Weed' mixtape.
Anyhoo, the concept of mine was to mix together some classic American songwriting in no particular genre, interspersed with excerpts and samples from American literature. It's basically Johnny Cash mixed with The Great Gatsby and the like. I have even chucked in a cover that I did of a true American classic, Motel Blues by Loudon Wainwright III. So here it is, my All American Mixtape. Enjoy!
Interview #587: Pete Lawrie Read the full interview here