#558 – December 31, 2014 Playlist

Wednesday MidDay Medley
TEN to NOON Wednesdays – Streaming at KKFI.org
90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio
Produced and Hosted by Mark Manning

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The 114 Best Recordings of 2014
(Part 4 of 4)

Wednesday MidDay Medley presents part four, of our four-week special: The 114 Best Recordings of 2014. Based on our own playlists, we’ve compiled representative tracks from our favorite recordings of the year. This is our celebration of the year in music. In 2014 we’ve played over 1000 songs, and hundreds of New & Local Releases. Over 40 of the bands and artists in our “Best of” list have joined us live on the show or performed in-studio. We’ve interviewed over 200 local and national guests. 2/3rds of the recordings on our “Best of” list were locally produced. It’s all good!

1. (29.) Real Estate – “Talking Backwards”
from: Atlas / Domino Records / March 3, 2014
[Single from the 3rd studio album form Ridgewood, New Jersey based 5-piece band]

2. (28.) Angel Olsen – “Forgiven/Forgotten”
from: Burn Your Fire For No Witness / Jagjaguwar / February 18, 2014
[American folk and indie rock singer and guitarist, who was raised in St. Louis, Missouri. She first toured as a backing singer and guitarist with Bonnie “Prince” Billy, and The Cairo Gang.]

3. (27.) Sylvan Esso -“Coffee”
from: Sylvan Esso / Partisan / May 13, 2014
[Indie folk band formed in Durham, North Carolina with singer Amelia Meath (of Mountain Man) and producer Nick Sanborn (of Megafaun). On July 9, they made their network television debut on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, performing the single “Coffee.”]


4. (26.) Meshell Ndegeocello – “Conviction”
from: Comet, Come to Me / Naive / June 3, 2014
[American singer-songwriter, rapper, bassist, and vocalist. Her music incorporates a wide variety of influences, including funk, soul, jazz, hip hop, reggae and rock. She has received significant critical acclaim throughout her career, and has had ten career Grammy Award nominations. She has been credited for having “sparked the neo-soul movement.”Comet, Come to Me is her 11th studio album.]

5. (25.) Sun Kil Moon – “I Can’t Live Without My Mother’s Love”
from: Benji / Caldo Records / February 11, 2014
[6th studio album by indie folk act Sun Kil Moon. Self-produced by primary recording artist Mark Kozelek, the album shares its name with the 1974 film Benji, and was recorded between March and August 2013 at Hyde Street Studios in San Francisco. The album features contributions from Owen Ashworth, Jen Wood, Will Oldham, and Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley. The album was recognized as one of The 100 Best Albums of the Decade So Far, a list published by Pitchfork Media in August 2014.]

6. (24.) Foxygen – “How Can You Really”
from: …And Star Power / Jagjaguar / October 14, 2014
[Third full-length album by Californian experimental rock duo of San Francisco. The band was formed by Sam France, a 24 year old vocalist and songwriter, originally from Olympia, Washington; and Jonathan Rado, also 23, who is a songwriter, guitarist, and keyboard player, originally form NYC. They formed the band in 2005, when they were 14 years old and in high school. The band self-released several EPs between 2007 and 2011. In 2012 the group was signed to Jagjaguwar Records. The band has recently gained a reputation for its unhinged live shows and maniacal behavior of lead singer France, whose antics include hitting himself in the face with a microphone, climbing stage equipment, accosting hecklers and speaking in non sequiturs. On July 29, 2013, during a performance at First Avenue in Minneapolis, vocalist Sam France fell off the stage during the first song of the show, only to appear some time later being carted off by EMS, where he was taken to the hospital with a broken leg.]

10:26 – Underwriting


7. (23.) Caribou-“Can’t Do Without You”
from: Our Love / Merge / October 7, 2014
[Our Love is the sixth studio album by Daniel Victor “Dan” Snaith (born 1978) is a Canadian composer, musician and recording artist who has performed under the stage names Caribou, Manitoba and Daphni. The album’s title was a reflection of the success Snaith received after the release of Swim. Describing the inspiration for Our Love, Snaith said “The primary impulse on this record was to make something that was generous in the sense that it was for everybody, not just for me locked in a studio by myself.” The album features contributions from Jessy Lanza and Owen Pallett.]

8. (22.) The Big Iron – “Anything I Can Do”
from: We Will Fall / Independent / May 30, 2014
[The band’s 3rd full-length was produced & mixed by Joel Nanos of Element Recording. It’s the band’s follow-up to 2008’s “Thanks for the Therapy,” and their 2001 debut recording, “Bury My Mistakes.” Ricky Reyes on guitar; Jon Paul on drums; Jeff Pendergraft on vocals, PK on guitar; and Mike Farren on bass. More info at: thebigiron.bandcamp.com/]

[The Big Iron play Vandals, Jan. 23, w/ Nato Coles & The Blue Diamond Band, The Right Here, Red Kate.]

9. (21) The Lucky – “Gay Night (for the Straight Kids)”
from: Swimming Invisible / Independent / May 24, 2014
[Camilla Camille on vocals, guitar, octave pedal; Iason Mac Ai on vocals, lead guitar; Calandra Rene on bass; Dustin Mott on drums. Recorded at Massive Sound Studio by Paul Malinowski. Produced by Andrew Rolston. The Lucky’s new music video: http://facebook.com/theluckyband. The Lucky joined us live on the show on May 21.]

10. (20.) The Architects – “Killer Crush”
from: Border Wars Episode Two / Independent / September 8, 2014
[7th release from KC based band: Adam Phillips on drums, Zachary Phillips on bass, Brandon Phillips on guitar & voice, Keenan Nichols on guitar. (Since this recording Keenan Nichols has left the band and Chris Meck is now in the line up.) The three Phillips brothers had previously been in the ska & rock band, The Gadjits. In June 2004 The Gadjits ended and The Architects, was formed. Architects’ sound is a combination of traditional punk, maximum R&B, Midwestern alternative rock, blues-based metal & pop melodies, influenced by The Clash, The Who, Social Distortion, Green Day, Soul Asylum, The Replacements, AC/DC, The Jam and The Kinks. The Architects have toured on the Vans Warped Tour, with My Chemical Romance, and Floggin Molly. Border Wars is a a five-part concept album and graphic novel series funded by the band’s loyal fans through Indiegogo crowd sourcing, and by the band members themselves. More info at: http://thearchitectsrock.com/ ]


11. (19.) Curtis Harding – “Keep On Shining”
from: Soul Power / Burger Records / April 24, 2012
[Michigan-bred, Atlanta-based singer-songwriter, backup singer & writer for Cee-Lo Green. A member of Night Sun, the lo-fi soul project he formed with Cole Alexander of The Black Lips. His first solo album, Soul Power, was recorded at the Living Room Studios in Atlanta w/ Justin McNeight & Edward Rawls, who worked w/ The Black Lips & The Coathangers. BURGER RECORDS in Fullerton, California, is a record store & record company, that call themselves a rock n roll philanthropic quasi-religious borderline-cultish propaganda spreading group of suburban perma-teen mutants.]

12. (18.) The Quivers – “Love It or Leave It”
from: Hot Young Mess / The Quivers / March 21, 2014
[Debut full length release from KC based rock & roll band. Terra Skaggs – Bass, Vocals; Todd Grantham – Piano, Organ, Vocals; Abraham Haddad – Guitar; Bernie Dugan – Drums; Desmond Poirier – Guitar. The Quivers joined us live on the show on April 9th.]

13. (17.) St. Vincent – “Digital Witness”
from: St. Vincent / Republic Records – / Feb. 25, 2014
[4th studio album from multi-instrumentalists Annie Erin Clark (b. Sept. 28, 1982), known as St. Vincent. She began her music career as a member of The Polyphonic Spree and was part of Sufjan Stevens’ touring band before forming her own band in 2006. Clark currently resides in Manhattan. St. Vincent played Lawrence, Kansas at Liberty Hall, on March 31.]

14. (16.) Old Sound – “Weight On Our Minds”
from: Rain Follows The Plow / Independent / February 2014
[Greg Herrenbruck – Bass & Vocals; Grady Keller -Mandolin, Acoustic Guitar & Vocals; Chad Brothers -Acoustic Guitar & Vocals. Recorded and produced by Phil Wade at his studio: Alluvial Fan. Old Sound joined us live on the show on February 12.]

[Old Sound play CODA, 1744 Broadway, Saturday, January 3, at 3:00 pm with Kangaroo Knife Fight.]

10:57 – #15 – A tie!!! Kristie Stremel releases two full-lengths, and a single, and two books!!!

15. (15.) Fred Wickham – “I Don’t Want To Go To Bed”
from: Wildflowers / Stremeltone / November 4, 2014
[Kristie told Tim Finn in the KC Star, “The weight of bringing a new, little creature home was a little overwhelming at first,” she said. “But it has been everything I wanted it to be. I’ve always wanted to have a child. Sometimes, desire is all it takes. If you desire it, it will come to you.” “I have a different perspective now that I have a kid, and maybe it will change. But I can’t see giving up music for anything.” This past summer Kristie went to work producing a new full length CD and book called “Wildflowers,” a compilation of 14 original songs and 5 poems for and about children, illustrated by Blue Haas. “Wildflowers,” is a hardcover, 9 x 6 landscape, full color 46 page book illustrated by Blue Haas. The book comes with a companion audio CD of 14 songs and 5 poems represented in book. Krisite invited Kasey Rausch, David George, Victor & Penny, Nini Camps, Fred Wickham, James Johann, Bill McShane, Kelley Hunt, Tina Schlieske, Summer Osborne, Dallas Jones, Ben Bunker, and Greg Wickham to join her with an original song. Kristie also invited Timothy Finn, CJ Janovy, Ron Megee, David Wayne Reed, and Mark Manning to contribute original poems.]

16. (15.) Kristie Stremel – “Hard Left Turns”
from: Songwriter / Stremeltone / April 1, 2014
[Described as “Joan Jett & Tom Petty’s love child,” and armed with her guitar, fueled by coffee, and over 75 published songs, singer, songwriter, producer, rock & roll mom, Kristie Stremel has had a very busy year. In October, 2013 Kristie and her partner, Lori Isabell, welcomed their adopted baby son, Charlie, into their family. In April 2014 Kristie released her 6th solo record, and the 9th full-length release of her musical career of over 20 years. Released on her own label, Stremeltone, it was Kristie’s first self-produced album. Stremeltone Records, was created in her home in Lawrence. The last track, “It’s Enough” was released early, as a video, featuring photos of couples in partnerships, relationships, marriages, unions, families. The video was Kristie’s response the the Kansas House of Representatives passing HD 2453 allowing business the right to refuse service to LGBT customers. The bill eventually died in the Kansas Senate. Songwriter, is Kristie’s self produced record that was mixed by famed musician and producer Lou Whitney, who in 2001 produced Kristie’s first solo full-length, “All I Really Want,” for Slewfoot Records. In 2014 we lost Lou who was 72 and was battling cancer, but still playing in his band Outland through 2013. Kristie has said that Lou Whitney was… “my mentor, a father figure,” Lou told Tim Finn in the KC Star: “I thought she had all the ingredients,” he said. “The songs were poppy efforts to write songs that might actually do something. She was writing personal stuff but couching it in this rock-pop way.” Chris Meck, played on the 2001, release, “All I Really Want.” He joined in on Songwriter and helped with Wildflowers. Chris and Kristie hadn’t played together in over 10 years. Kristie also recently released a new single “Love Makes A Family” with a read-along book for the song she wrote for her son Charlie, in an effort to explain the importance of family and to help celebrate the diversity in families today. Kristie Stremel joined us live on the show on November 5.]

11:03 – Station ID

17. (14.) Sara Swenson – “Wars and Battles”
from: Runway Lights / Independent / July 18, 2014
[Critically acclaimed singer songwriter Sara Swenson has released some of our most played and favorite recordings of the last 7 years. Her self titled debut ended up at the top of our list of The 100 Best Recordings of 2009. In 2010 Sara Swenson released her second full length recording, “All Things Big and Small” again working with Don Chaffer in Nashville who added new layers to Sara’s great songs and voice. In November of 2011, Sara released her 5 song EP called “Never Left My Mind,” featuring her band at the time, The Pearl Snaps. In that time frame, she also had picked up two Kansas City Singer-Songwriter of the Year awards, performed with Sarah McLachlan’s Lilith Fair, and placed a song on the season finale of ABC’s “Private Practice.” Then after the school year ended in 2012, Sara Swenson left her job as a High School English and Journalism Teacher in Platte County High School, and left the Kansas City music scene, and she flew off to the United Kingdom, where she got married. This spring, Sara returned to Kansas City and performed for the Folk Alliance International Conference. This summer she released her fourth studio album that captures snapshots of her 18-month experience of living abroad, moving from dating to marriage and sorting through the accompanying transitions and emotions. Produced by Don Chaffer in Nashville. Sara Swenson joined us live on the show on July 9.]

18. (13.) Sturgill Simpson – “Turtles All The Way Down”
from: Metamodern Sounds In Country Music / High Top Mountain Records / May 13, 2014
[Sturgill Simpson – vocals/acoustic guitar/backing vocals , Laur Joamets – electric & slide guitar , Kevin Black – bass guitar , Miles Miller – drums/percussion/ backing vocals, Mike Webb – keyboards/mellotron , Dave Cobb – classical guitar/percussion. Produced & Engineered by Dave Cobb , Assistant Engineers – Justin Herlocker & John Netti . Mixed by Dave Cobb & Sturgill Simpson. Mastered by Pete Lyman, Infrasonic Mastering. All tracks recorded at LCS in Nashville, TN.]

19. (12.) The War on Drugs – “Lost in a Dream”
from: Lost In The Dream / Secretly Canadian / March 18, 2014
[3rd album from band from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, formed in 2005. The band consists of Adam Granduciel (vocals, guitar), David Hartley (bass, guitar), Robbie Bennett (keys, guitar) & Patrick Berkery (drums). Founded by close collaborators Granduciel & Kurt Vile, The War on Drugs released their debut studio album, Wagonwheel Blues, in 2008. Vile departed shortly after its release to focus on his solo career. The band’s 2nd studio album Slave Ambient was released in 2011 to critical acclaim and extensive touring. First played on the show on March 19.]

20. (11.) Kasey Rausch – “Just An Old Man”
from: Guitar in Hand / Mudstomp Records / November 21, 2014
[Guitar in Hand is the third solo release from KC based singer-songwriter Kasey Rausch. Produced by Kasey Rausch and Mikal Shpiro. With Mikal Shapiro she hosts/produces RIVER TRADE RADIO Sunday mornings at 9am, on 90.1 FM. Kasey Rausch plays with The Naughty Pines every Tuesday at CODA. Kasey Rausch joined us live on the show on November 26.]

[Kasey Rausch plays Coda, Sat., Jan. 3, at 7pm w/ Candy Lee & Gravy’s Honky Tonk Habit!]

11:18 – Underwriting

11:20 – Top Ten

21. (10.) Schwervon! – “Fuzzy Math”
from: Broken Teeth / Haymaker Records / Sept. 30, 2014
[2 piece rock band. Nan plays drums and Matt plays guitar and they both sing. They lived in NYC for 15 years and have just relocated to KC. Schwervon! joined us live on the show on Oct 1.]

[Schwervon! play Mills Record Company January 9, at 6:30 pm with Introducing Charlie.]

22. (9.) Calvin Arsenia – “Bleu”
from: Moments [EP] / Independent / April 9, 2014
[24 year old Calvin Arsenia recently returned home to Kansas City after living and performing in Edinburgh, Scotland. Standing at 6 foot 5 inches, Arsenia strikes a commanding presence complimented by his equally powerful vocal capacity and his abilities playing piano, guitar and harp. He also works as a songwriter, composer, lyricist, producer, and engineer. Calvin Arsenia made his debut as a performer in early 2010 and since then he has written, arranged and produced 5 EPs. Earlier this year in April, he release a 7-song EP called “Moments” and now is set to release a new EP “Prose,”a collection of new songs inspired by his own personal revival. Calvin Arsenia performs his acoustic show in pubs and local venues around the city, sharing his soaring and soulful vocal range. Calvin Arsenia played live on the show on October 22.]

[Calvin Arsenia plays the Tank Room, Saturday, January 3, 9:00 pm with Jonathan Theobald, Chase Faning, Jessica Paige, and guest Damon Bailey.]


23. (8.) Monta At Odds – “Hustle for Pennies”
from: Robots of Munich / Haymaker Records / October 26, 2014
[5th full length release from KCK based band formed by brothers Dedric and Delaney Moore. Released on vinyl by new KC based record label created by Brenton Cook called Haymaker Records. Robots of Munich was also released on Cassette on RSD, April 19, 2014. Dedric Moore joined us live on the show on Oct. 1.]

24. (7.) Jorge Arana Trio – “Crime of Passion Fruit”
from: Oso / Haymaker Records / July 19, 2014
[Jorge Arana on Guitar & Keyboard, Josh Enyart on drums & Percussion, and Jason Nash on bass. Oso is the name of Jorge’s childhood family dog. Winner of the 2013 Pitch Music Award for Best Avant-Garde group. Nominated this year for Best Live Act. Jorge Arana Trio joined us live on the show on July 16.]


25. (6.) Voices of Unbound – “Tinora Midera”
from: Madagascar / Unbound / November 7, 2014
[Singer/songwriter Barclay Martin spent a month in Madagascar with musician, drummer, engineer and producer, Giuliano Mingucci. The two friends and band mates recorded music written by the local people of Madagascar. The music was recorded in make-shift studios, field recordings, in people’s homes and villages. This project was produced by Unbound, formerly known as CFCA. The CD was released at a special exhibit HEMISPHERES: Sound Photographs from Madagascar. “Blending photography, music, interactive media, on November 7 & 8, at The Living Room Theatre. “Unbound is a humanitarian organization bringing people together to challenge poverty in new and innovative ways in 21 developing countries. Unbound brings people together to challenge poverty in new and innovative ways. More info at http://www.Unbound.org. Barclay Martin joined us live on the show on Oct 1.]

26. (5.) Katy Guillen & The Girls – “Don’t Get Bitter”
from: Katy Guillen & The Girls / Independent / September 6, 2014
[Katy Guillen (guitar, vocals), Claire Adams (bass, vocals) & Stephanie Williams (drums). Finalist for the Int. Blues Competition in Memphis. Katy Guillen & The Girls joined us live on September 3.]

[Katy Guillen & The Girls play Trouser Mouse on Saturday, January 10, 2015.]

27. (4.) John Velghe & The Prodigal Sons – “Big Tent Revival (feat. Alejandro Escovedo)”
from: Organ Donor Blues / Lakeshore Records / June 24, 2014
[John Velghe – vocals, guitar, piano, and rhodes with The Prodigal Sons: Mike Alexander on guitars and vocals, Chris Wagner on bass guitar and vocals, Matt Anderson on Drum Kit, Michael Walker on Trombone, Sam Hughes on Saxophones, and Hermon Mehari on Trumpet. With Kirsten Paludan on vocals, and Josh Quint on pedal steel. Alejandro Escovedo shares in vocals on three album tracks and plays guitars on a few others. Produced by John Velghe. Recording and Mastering was Engineered by Duane Trower. Recorded and Mastered at Weights and Measures Soundlab, Kansas City, MO. Mixing and additional Recording at Guttersnipe Recording Co. KCMO.


28. (3.) MY BROTHERS & SISTERS – “Watch Out”
from: Violet Music Vol. 1 / Independent / April 12, 2014
[Jamie Searle won critical acclaim as lead vocalist and songwriter for the band It’s Over, winner of a Pitch Music Award for Best Live Act. He left It’s Over to concentrate on his music education as a student of UMKC’s Conservatory of Music where he has immersed himself in musical theory, composition, harmonic structure, melody. Out of school, Jamie spent a year and a half recording the full length release of material he composed for a large ensemble of musicians. The result is: “Violet Music Vol. 1” the debut full length release from Jamie’s band, My Brothers & Sisters, a collective of musicians, including a strings, horns, percussionists, bass, keyboards, vocalists, and back-up vocalists, and Jamie on vocals, guitar, conducting. Jamie Searle joined us live on the show on October 29.]

29. (2.) Loose Park – “Dangerous Work”
from: Monstrous / Independent / June 5, 2014
[KC based band formed in June 2013 w/ Matthew Dunehoo on guitar, vocals; Beckie Trost on Bass guitar; and Mike Myers on Drums. Members of this trio come from the bands: Doris Henson / Baby Teardrops / Ecstatics, The String & Return / In The Pines / Spacesuit, and Soft Reeds. Bassist Beckie Trost gave us the news that the band broke up in the first part of November.]

30. (1.) Shy Boys – “Keeps Me On My Toes”
from: Shy Boys / High Dive Records / January 17, 2014
[Debut release. Brothers Collin Rausch, Kyle Rausch, and friend and roommate Konnor Ervin, are members of this Kansas City based trio. Collin and Kyle’s father was a High School band director and music teacher. Konnor Ervin is the lead singer and songwriter of The ACBs, where Kyle also plays drums. The 10 song release had two singles premiered by Stereogum. “Keeps Me On My Toes” was a song Collin wrote in 15 minutes while his girlfriend was in the shower. Wednesday MidDay Medley has been a big fan of all of the ACBs recordings. In 2011 we started playing songs from The I’ms, a duo made of up Collin and Kyle, who posted 6 of their self recorded songs on their facebook page. We included this informal release in our Top Ten of The 111 Best Recordings of 2011. 3 of the songs from The I’ms ended up being rerecorded for Shy Boys. The album was recorded at West End Studio, over two-weekends. Shy Boys joined us live on the show on January 15.]


31. Noel Coward – “The Party’s Over Now”
from: Noel Coward in New York / drg / 2003 [orig. 1957]

Sources for notes on tracks:
artist’s websites, wikipedia.org, and where noted.

Next week on January 7, 2015, Wednesday MidDay Medley celebrates the Birthday of Iris DeMent, born January 5, 1961, in rural Paragould, Arkansas. She was the youngest of 14 children. We’ll feature music from all five of Iris DeMent’s full length recordings, plus her additional work with artists such as her husband – Greg Brown, and also: John Prine, John McCutcheon, Emmylou Harris, Tom Russell, Nancy Griffith, Steve Earle, Gary Kirkland and songs from various compilations. We’ll also feature music from Iris DeMent’s inspirations: Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Merle Haggard, and others.

Wednesday MidDay Medley in on the web:

Show #558


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