Mavis Staples and Jeff Tweedy wrote a new song to raise money for the fight against COVID-19

Mavis Staples (most famously of the Staples Singers) and Jeff Tweedy (most famously of Jeff Tweedy of Wilco) have a new song out — the latest in their decade-long collaboration together.

Staples explained the origins of the song in a press release:

The song speaks to what we’re going through now—everyone is in this together, whether you like it or not. It doesn’t matter how much money you have, what race or sex you are, where you live... it can still touch you. It’s hit so many people in our country and around the world in such a horrible way and I just hope this song can bring a little light to the darkness. We will get through this but we're going to have to do it together. If this song is able to bring any happiness or relief to anyone out there in even the smallest way, I wanted to make sure that I helped to do that.

I'll be honest: it's a little hokier than the usual output by Staples or Tweedy. But Tweedy's honky-tonk production under Staples' smooth-as-ever vocals makes the saccharine message go down with a smooth, steady, folksy groove. And that was enough to pick me up in these strange times.

Proceeds from the song My Block, My Hood, My City, a Chicago-based organization that helps senior citizens with supplies and care during the coronavirus quarantine.

All In It Together [Mavis Staples] Read the rest

"Metropolis Kid" will make you dance like Superboy

Metropolis Kid by Model Decoy

I've known Doron Monk Flake and Ari Sadowitz since high school, and it's been an honor to watch their musical prowess grow and grow and grow. Their current project, Model Decoy, pumps out Prince-like post-punk jams, full of sick rock riffs and soaring jazzy vocals that bring gravitas to clever lyrics that are mostly about their favorite nerdy comic books and movies.

Their newest single, "Metropolis Kid," is a perfect example of this. It makes you want to tap your feet as you croon along with Superboy (being young Kon-El, the misfit clone of Superman and Lex Luthor, not that cranky bastard Superboy-Prime

You can find the band's back catalog on Spotify, but they just released "Metropolis Kid" and two other new songs exclusively on Bandcamp, which is waiving their fee today (March 20) so that struggling bands can get 100% of the proceeds of their music during this quarantine.

(If you're feeling generous, you can buy some tunes from my own band, the Roland High Life, too — we're not as funky as Model Decoy, but we do have some good banger about Spider-Man and, uhh, conspiracy theorists.)

Model Decoy on Bandcamp

Image: Pat Loika / Flickr (CC 2.0) Read the rest

Some new music I've been enjoying

I've really been enjoying In Cold Blood by alt-J. When I heard it, I first assumed this was a mid-90s goth theme I'd missed, back in the days when I didn't like the gothy-ness.

Feel It Still by Portugal. The Man is a wonderful feel good song for driving around on a sunny day! It'll be a mash-up hit too.

Finally, while this is around a year old, I like just about anything by Juniore but Marabout is really wonderful. Read the rest