Been listening to a lot of early ’70s music lately, most of it previously unknown (or at least not terribly familiar) to me. And this song, Carly Simon‘s first single (from her debut album) — goddamn, how lacerating. The musical version of an Albee or Pinter play, this paints an entirely unappetizing portrait of marriage in the early ’70s. And it made it to #10 pop! Produced by Eddie Kramer (!!!), this is arranged perfectly, and Carly sounds gorgeous. But these lyrics, which she wrote, are just phenomenal.
Slim Jxmmi is just okay for my money, and Juicy J is coasting hard these days, but goddamn, I can listen to Swae Lee sing anything — I mean, c’mon, he’s the reason that French Montana’s “Unforgettable” became such a big hit in 2017 (650M views and counting!) (well, Swae + that killer beat). The groove on “Powerglide” just bumps and bumps and bumps, too. And don’t forget: Juicy J is an Oscar winner, which will never not make me happy.
The first time I heard Matthews’ Southern Comfort‘s version of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” (thanks, iHeart’s Classic American Top 40 channel!), I didn’t recognize the song until about the second pass through the chorus — that’s how unique their arrangement is. #1 in the UK, top 30 in the US, and the best take on the song.
One of the best uses of Morris Day’s, uh, unique gifts, in the service of a great Prince, er the Time single.
Toni Braxton‘s Sex & Cigarettes might be my favorite album of the year so far, and this single is a perfect exemplification why: those creamy, deep vocals by Braxton, with complimentary production and lyrics that play to her strengths (she’s often best singing from a place of pain, akin to MJB).