Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Easy Anthems: Hark!

Do you guys know Easy Anthems? Phil Jimenez has been my musical partner in crime for the better part of the last 7 years. When he's not playing guitar and keyboards and producing records for Beat Radio, he makes his living as a record producer, and leads a wonderful group called Easy Anthems with his amazing wife Vanesa. In lieu of sleeping over the last couple weeks, Phil decided to make a new Easy Anthems record of Spirituals and traditional holiday hymns. It's called Hark! It features lots of cool guest performers, and finds Phil at the top of his game as a producer and arranger. It's available as a free download at, where you can also download songs from their more secular debut LP.

I got to sing on this tune, which reminds me of a cross between the Squirrel Nut Zippers' holiday record and The Pogues' "If I should fall from Grace with God":

My favorite is Phil belting away on the title track:

Here's Vanesa, making me swoon, as usual, on O Holy Night:

Head over to and download the entire LP as a zip file.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


its raining here in new york, and i'm dreaming about a seaside bar.

cool post today over at brooklyn vegan about how john samson of the weakerthans is awesome at writing lyrics. that guy know how to drop some science. every so often a band like the weakerthans comes along that hits a nerve with me and i feel like i know the songs already. i feel a certain kinship, like creatively, we're coming from the same sort of place. i'm amazed that i haven't been listening to them for years. i got the same feeling a few years ago when i heard the first sun kil moon record and starting getting into red house painters. there's something really comforting in finding music like that. it feels like its built into your dna.

we got to play a show with the weakerthans this past june at the school of rock festival down in asbury park, nj. their set was really beautiful, one of my favorite shows i've seen in a long time.

here are a couple mp3's from the new weakerthans record via can you see the sunset from the southside, an awesome blog that is actually the place that i first discovered the band:

MP3 The Weakerthans - Night Windows Reunion Tour
MP3 The Weakerthans - Sun In An Empty Room Reunion Tour

liz and i are going to mexico on thursday. my best friend is getting married. we can't wait. i'm gonna miss the kids though. still it's just what we need i think.

i just finished reading joan didion's play it as it lays. crazy book, so arresting. it's like the mythic american west, but it's not a dream it's a nightmare. kind of felt a bit like PT Anderson's film magnolia, to me. just people in lots of pain, west coast landscapes, portrayed in this really sharp and visual way. super concise, which i suppose is not something you could say about magnolia.

when i get back from mexico, we're going to rock the mercury lounge.