neilIt’s time for music, and as usual, I had no idea what song/s I was going to start with until just now. I’m in the middle of preparing setlists for, um, ten days from  now when I start playing live in anticipation of releasing my own first record in the spring, and I’m not unveiling my own work until that time gets closer, so I’ve been focusing on well-chosen covers — songs that I love, but more than that, songs that I feel like I can get inside and actually do something with, outside that whole piano-bar mentality of “if I know the chords, I can sing it!” So, to get my head into the mental space of interpretation — I’ve been in composing mode for a long time — I’ve been listening to a lot of cover songs and their originals. One that I love lately is Neil Young’s “Only Love Can Break Your Heart,” and Saint Etienne’s very, very different cover of that same song, which I just adore. So let’s start with those, hit shuffle on the iTunes machine, see where we are ten songs later, listen to some music, yadda yadda, etc. More videos after the jump!

1. Kristin Hersh – “Juno” [orig. by Throwing Muses]
2. Tori Amos – “Sister Janet”
3. Trick Pony – “A Boy Like You”
4. John Doe – “Don’t Forget How Much I Love You”
5. Casiotone for the Painfully Alone – “Optimist vs. The Silent Alarm (When The Saints Go Marching In)”
6. Lightspeed Champion – “Dry Lips”
7. Ricky Martin ft. Meja – “Private Emotion”
8. Princeton – “Stunner Shades In Heaven”
9. Jonny Lang – “Angel of Mercy”
10. Martha Wainwright – “Dis, Quand Reviendras-tu?” [Barbara cover]

Shut up about the Ricky Martin song, I like it. This is really a good mix, actually. Click on the ones I don’t post, too, especially the Princeton song.

Kristin Hersh – “Juno”