i’ve always been a fan of matt pond PA but it wasn’t until this past weekend that i got around to listening to their latest album, the dark leaves. it actually feels appropriate that i’d discover it at this time of the year, because every time i listen to it the soothing melodies and gentle lyrics envelop me like a soft blanket of snow. the song “winter fawn” is like a december evening encapsulated in song, with dreamy lyrics that draw you into a picture he paints with his voice… listen to a few songs from the album below.
if you aren’t familiar with the soundtrack to the film easy rider, it is probably one of the best compilations of classic sixties tunes out there. i couldn’t help myself from including some of the songs from it in this december playlist, inspired by our catalog, easy rider, the open road and freedom.
located on the corner of broad and locust in the heart of center city, philadelphia, lies one of the city’s most historic buildings and interesting music venues. it sits calmly in the shadows of skyscrapers on a street lined with flashy buildings, but don’t let its unassuming exterior deceive you – on the inside it is one of the most breathtaking buildings in philadelphia. built in 1857, the academy of music is the oldest opera house in the united states that is still used for its original purpose.
i can vividly recall my parents dragging me here as a child to see the orchestra… the smell of perfume and lingering cigar smoke as we made our way through the crowds of people in their finest evening wear and were shown to our seats by the usher. curling up in the red velvet seats, my view obstructed by a column but not minding because my eyes were usually fixed on the massive chandelier hanging from the ceiling. falling asleep with the sound of violins and horns fading in and out of my dreams.
while i lacked appreciation at my young age i’ve come around now and have a whole new love for the building as a concert venue. most recently, i saw the monsters of folk there and they completely blew me away. it’s really cool to hear modern music played in such an old, historic space – and despite the small floor seating area and the multiple balconies that extend towards the ceiling the venue has an unexpected intimacy and leaves you feeling like you were a part of something quite special.
they don’t have concerts there very often so if you’re able to catch one, do. for more info check out their website.
do you have a favorite or unique venue that you love where you live? i’d love to hear about it!
good morning! today’s tunesday post comes from our marketing manager :)
photo from the november 7th show at the academy of music in philadelphia.
If you’ve managed to come this far without an introduction to Sufjan Stevens – like me until his tour came through Philadelphia – then you are about to experience a treat. Sufjan is a singer songwriter with a unique grasp on storytelling that pulled me into his labyrinth world that night, and I still haven’t crawled my way out. Instead, I’ve spent the last couple of weeks recounting the concert as I would an enigmatic dream. I was in a beautiful old theater laden with dramatic chandeliers and dim lights. The concert was calm and Sufjan’s Stevens’ voice was melodic and soothing; his lyrics thought provoking and real. Then, a shift in the last 25 minutes. He changed his stage presence, layered his voice with distortion and switched gears into lady gaga style dance music, but with lyrics that looped back themes of abandonment, love, and communication.
Long story, short: this show made an impact. My favorite songs from the new Age of Adz are “Too Much”, “I Walked”, “Vesuvius”, and “Impossible Soul”. Check them out below.
a couple of people have recommended the tallest man on earth to me, but i only just recently started listening to his music. the tallest man on earth is swedish folk musician kristian mattson, who has one of those voices that doesn’t initially strike you as beautiful, but with the guitar and his songwriting he soon wins you over. he definitely brings to mind bob dylan, and i also hear a little nick drake influence in there as well. what i love though is that it’s unlike anything i’ve heard in a long time. take a listen to some of his songs below and let me know what you think!
these pics fit right in with our equestrian dreams theme too, huh :)
there’s a very cool show opening at space 1026 in philly tonight – featuring the work of chrissy piper, an amazing photographer who shot our upcoming december catalog! the show consists of portraits from her 3 records series, in which she asks the people she photographs to name three records that changed and/or inspired their lives. i think its such an amazing concept, and makes the portraits so much more personal.
also, two of our very inspiring fp girls were photographed for the 3 records series, so i wanted to share their portraits and their responses with you :)
also check out more of chrissy piper’s work on her website – i can’t wait to show you some shots from our december book, she did such an awesome job!
this of course got me thinking about how i would respond to the 3 records question. my answers are probably pretty typical but i think i would have to say…
bob marley’s legend, not because i think its the best collection of his music, but because that album to me represents my happiest childhood memories, being at the beach with my family. the beatles rubber soul, which my best friend in grade school gave me (on cassette), and sparked my obsession with the band that is still going strong. and bob dylan’s blood on the tracks because it got me through a really difficult time, and still does when i’m having a bad day.
what are three records that changed and/or inspired your life? i’d love to hear :)
as a scorpio with a november birthday, i think this month really brings out my inner dark side. the air begins to have that extra bite of cold and i fight the urge to sleep all day. i’m hoping to decorate my place with twinkling christmas lights, lots of candles and warm scents to keep the winter blues away. for tunesday, here’s a playlist of some songs i’m listening to right now.
the kings of leon released a new album last week called come around sundown. i have to be honest, i didn’t love their last album – as someone who really appreciated their older music, i felt like they were changing their sound just to appeal to a wider audience. i have no problem with bands changing up their sound, i’m just not a fan of the new music. that being said, there are a couple of songs on the new album that give me hope that the old kings of leon are still in there somewhere. for example, the song “mary,” which they played at bonnaroo this year, is pretty good. unfortunately the playlist function i usually use isn’t working today so here is a video of them playing the song live.
we had a little surprise show over in building 543 today! the swedish indie-folk band first aid kit stopped by our headquarters for a free set at noon today, giving us a nice little treat for the ears during our lunch break. i wasn’t too familiar with this band before but they sounded great – both girls have really lovely voices. here are some photos from the show that just took place – they’re also playing at johnny brenda’s tonight if you’re in philly :)
i really like this song “hard believer” off the album the big black & the blue, out now.
today’s featured album is the new one from belle and sebastian, write about love – their first album since 2006. it’s an album of love songs “to fall in love to and fall in love with,” ranging from soft and whispered to hopeful and upbeat. this band makes beautiful music that envelops me in its warm, sunny atmosphere every time i listen to it. the title track on the album features actress carey mulligan singing the chorus and norah jones sings on the beautiful “little lou, ugly jack, prophet john.”
i also thought this was really cool – when doing the art for the album, frontman stuart murdoch asked fans to submit photos to a flickr page of them writing “write about love” in secret or public places, in the town they live in. some of the photos are so lovely: