As opposed to our favorite songs, or songs we'd like to think define our listening habits, taking a look at what a person actually listens to can be far more revealing. With that in mind, every Wednesday we ask an artist to take a look at the most-played songs in their iTunes libraries and share with us the results. We do this on the honor system, and we ask our subjects to share a few words about each song.
Mornin' Old Sport is a Berklee College of Music trained, F. Scott Fitzgerald-obsessed three piece (their name is derived from an expression used in The Great Gatsby) who merge the sounds of western swing and '30s era jazz like a stripped down version of Asleep at the Wheel or Squirrel Nut Zippers. The group will release their first album Misery Loves Co. in July, a 13-track debut with tunes so sweet and harmonies so rich you might never have guessed J Dilla would top their iTunes playlist more than once. Seems in MOS's vision of Americana, rappers, Elvis, and Johnathan Richman factor in as much as Bob Wills and Patti Page, who they pay homage to with a perky cover of "I Don't Care If the Sun Don't Shine" after the jump.
Thanks to Scott Nanos (guitar, bass, keys, strings) for compiling the list for us. He and Mornin' Old Sport play the Mars Bar this Thursday (6/28) with guests Julian.
"So Far To Go (feat. Common and D'Angelo)," J Dilla: This is arguably the penultimate track from hip-hop's most artistic, prolific producer, ever. When Dilla died, Mornin' Old Sport wept.
"Sweet Virginia," The Rolling Stones: The Rolling Stones are absolutely amazing. However, "Sweet Virginia" is not one of my all-time favorite Rolling Stones tunes. I'm not even sure how this song managed to get played so many times-I suspect our drummer, Jeff, has been opening iTunes and listening to this song while sleepwalking.
"Fall in Love," J Dilla: My favorite J Dilla song, period.
"Pablo Picasso," Johnathan Richman and The Modern Lovers: The Modern Lovers are very dear to us since we started in Boston five years ago. The Modern Lovers are arguably the most awesome Boston band of all time, and I can fondly recall numerous occasions in which I found myself, wasted, slurring Jonathan Richman lyrics in the basement of some decrepit DIY house.
"I'm Left, You're Right, She's Gone," Elvis Presley: Mornin' Old Sport hearts Elvis. Forever. And we're particularly enamored with his early recordings from Sun Records. We actually play an Elvis cover on tour, at almost every show.
"Young Blood," The Coasters: Honestly, this song should be listed as 'most played' along with every other song by The Coasters. If only there was a way to keep track of how many times we put their Best Of album on our turntable...
"Hounds of Love," Kate Bush: This is definitely our favorite song by Kate Bush. I'm very glad Kate Bush made it onto our most played list, because it gives space for us to express our love for not only Kate Bush, but Peter Gabriel, too, since they're kind of a matched pair, a la Byrne + Eno. I'm not sure how this happened, but somehow Jeff has 3 copies of Peter Gabriel's SO on vinyl. One can never be too prepared, it seems. It's also worth noting that The Futureheads did a great cover of this tune.
"Space Monkey," Patti Smith: Mornin' Old Sport loves Patti Smith. but most of all, Kate LOVES PATTI SMITH. As I'm writing this (on our tour bus), Kate is reading her autographed copy (hardcover) of Patti Smith's new book, Just Kids, using a camping headlamp as a reading light. KATE LOVES PATTI SMITH and everyone else should too.