Music Musings from Mike Ochs

Hello, Love Ya Bean It Readers!

This is Mike Ochs, a friend of Bean’s. You might know me from my irreverent comments to each of Beano’s blog posts, comments usually pertaining to decorating the Wagner home with Braves gear and clothing. When Beano asked me to write a post for her blog, I was like, “YES! Anything!” I’ve been dying to write a 20-Something Lady post, but alack, being a 32-year-old dude is two strikes against me.

 

But Beano, who is gettin’ into Rocky Mountain hijinks right now, asked me to write a Summer Music 2013 post to follow up with David’s. His post was pretty sweet, and I won’t double-dip into anything he posted on Friday, except to say that the Kurt Vile and Futurebirds picks are awesome, among others.

 

First, my apologia. I am not a music cricket, nor do I purport to be a “taste maker”. All of these picks have been recommended to me by other good friends (you know who you are). But like you, I like good tunes, and here are a few albums that might be an excellent soundtrack to your summer, and, hopefully, every time you listen to them after this summer you’ll feel those sweet pangs of nostalgia.

 

Summer Albums of 2013

Phosphorescent “Muchacho”

Alabama native Matthew Houck, his softly wailing vocals, and his general low-key sound are tailor-made for those long, sunny afternoons at the lake, or those late nights as the party winds down.

 

Foxygen “We Are The 21st Century Ambassadors Of Peace & Magic”

If you like retro-sounding psychedelic rock a la Dr. Dog and Olivia Tremor Control, or if you straight up like the sounds of The Kinks, The Rolling Stones, and The Beatles, then you’ll like Foxygen. The music is just feel-good music, perfect for those long drives with the windows down, or pumping yourself up for a night on the town.

 

J.J. Grey & Mofro “This River”

You ready for some Florida panhandle bluesy swamp rock? I don’t know if I’ve heard a more soulful voice in recent years, and J.J. Grey keeps pumping out the albums. I would recommend seeing this band live, even if many of the groupies are middle-aged men smoking cigars (Seriously. Ask David. It’s funny. But they put on a good show.)

 

Pork, Rev, & Map “Norman’s Rangers”

How could I not also plug the ol’ band? Here’s another song we recorded last April. Jess Newfield and I wrote it in the winter of 2010, and Matt and David dusted it off and made it sound purty. Check out Matt’s vocals and rhythm while David shreds on acoustic guitar in this track.

Free downloads of our music at: http://www.reverbnation.com/porkchopmiketherevdwwagner

 

Albums Of 2012 That Should Be On Your Summer Playlist This Summer If They Weren’t Last Summer

Lee Bains III & The Gloryfires

These guys do everything. They rock. They slow it down. This entire album could serve as your summer album, even if it was your summer album of 2012. Former Dexateens member Lee Bains has a soulful voice, but can also channel his inner Neil Young. Shades also of the Allman Brothers. Just play the darn thing on repeat.

 

Kendrick Lamar “good kid, m.A.A.d city”

I’m not a huge hip hop fan, but when Bryan Schroeder recently introduced this album to me, I was instantly hooked. I think the music speaks for itself, so I won’t get too into it myself. Just listen. You probably hear some of these songs everywhere right now anyway.

Dr. John “Locked Down”

Combining his keyboard powers with some excellent session musicians and some famous ones, like Dan Auerback of The Black Keys, Dr. John has showed no signs of slowing down. This was my favorite album of 2012, and “You Lie” was my favorite song on that album.

 

Summer Albums That Will Never Die

The Upsetters “Return of Django”

Yes, this is a “best of” album of a 1960’s reggae house band, but it has so much music on it, and it is so good. Play this in the background of anything you do this summer, and you and everyone else will be happy.

 

Beck “Guero”

It’s been 8 years since this album came out, but to me, it will always be a great summertime album. Dust off your old CD, if you have one, and give it a listen.

 

Ghetto Brothers “Power Fuerza”

I heard about this album a few months ago. Apparently it had a reputation of being a very cool, very hard to find LP, until this year, when it was reissued. The band is a Puerto Rican gang in the Bronx that became, well, a band, and tried to use their popularity to curb gang violence. Their sound definitely has twinges of music from the 70s, Santana, etc. but they also wanted to be the Latin Beatles. Check it out.

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