Song of the Day

If Not For You by Shakey Graves (2014)

“Well if all the lights said stop / And the oceans they did drop / Then I’d always feel so on top if not for you”

I loves me a good friend music recommendation.  So much of what I listen to is based on my extensive (obsessive) research to find the next great song that it’s nice when someone does the work for me.  This may come as a surprise, but I can be a bit of a music snob from time to time.  I’ll pause to allow you to recover from the shock.

I used to be a horrible music elitist, especially in the 90’s and 00’s.  I was right, everyone else was wrong.  Your favorite Zeppelin song is “Stairway to Heaven”?  Lame.  Everyone knows it’s “Out on the Tiles”.  You mean to tell me you hadn’t heard of Nirvana before Nevermind?  You poor soul.  Oh my God, you actually think Stone Temple Pilots is alternative?  You’re cute.  They’re as pop as pop could be.  Built to Spill is alternative.  You thought DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince wrote the music to “Summertime” when everyone knows it’s sampled from “Summer Madness” by Kool & the Gang way back in 1974?  I wish I could go through life that oblivious to actual music.  If you tell me you like Warner Bros. Records R.E.M. over I.R.S. Records R.E.M., I’m going to lose it.

I’ve calmed down over the years and have become more accepting of other people’s tastes.  Age, wisdom, and life experience have taught me to calm the fuck down.  They’ve also taught me not to dismiss what others suggest to me.  I can now accept recommendations without immediately rolling my eyes and dismissing the gesture.  I give everything a listen, and I mean everything.  I will listen to anything once, because…you never know.  I have a rule — I give a song about 15 seconds to either make me tune out or want to listen to the next 15 seconds.  It’s how I can find so much stuff.

I accepted the suggestion for “If Not For You” and gave it a listen.  I got through the first 15 seconds and let it keep playing.  I liked the ragged, raw feeling.  I was digging it.  I let it keep playing.  The vocals kicked in around the 1:25 mark.  Hey, now we’re talking.  I was beginning to really like this.  I started to visualize scenes in my head, which was a good indicator that it connected.  In fact, I came up with a very detailed scene based on this song.  Yes, this song is…Yes.  And I played it again, which is the ultimate compliment.

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