The Rocker or the Chanteuse

For months now, I’ve been swinging musically between loud, blusey rock and sweet-voiced singers.

For example:

Black Keys, “Gold on the Ceiling”


Cat Power, “Ruin” (Okay, this is a bit of rocker for Cat, but the rest of the album is more mellow, and stunningly beautiful.)


Kings of Leon, “Use Somebody”


Lovers, “Boxer” (I know, the mustache. If it distracts you, just close your eyes and listen. After hearing this song on a Slate podcast, I went and downloaded their two most recent albums.)

Other rockers I can’t get enough of: Bob Mould (NEW ALBUM! WOO! Get off my lawn!), Green Day, Foo Fighters.

Other female singers I can’t get enough of: Regina Spektor, Kate Bush, Feist.

And it’s not just a listen here or there. I play most of these artists, albums, or songs multiple times in one day. One day, I went back and forth between The Black Keys “Howlin’ for You” and “Gold on the Ceiling”, and another day it was Lovers “Boxer” and “Don’t You Want It”. I’m simply obsessed with them all, all the time. (If I listen to an album four times on Spotify, I pretty much go and buy it.)

On a somewhat related note, I really need to get to another live show. (Last one was Rush, with Dan, last Tuesday. Which, Rush is not one of ‘my’ bands, but I have dragged my husband to more live shows that he has been skeptical about than I can keep track of, including Elliot Smith (RIP), Wilco, Green Day, and X. At the least, I owed him one Rush show. That said, I was very impressed, and simply put: Neil Peart is a stone-faced beast on the drums.)

Who are you listening to these days?


If you could create your fantasy summer festival concert, what five bands would be in the line up?

Mine are:

Pearl Jam
Lady Gaga
The Black Keys
Jack White
Regina Spektor

Who would you have?

9 thoughts on “The Rocker or the Chanteuse

  1. I need to hear more Cat Power; loved what I heard here. And, “Gold on the Ceiling”? Come ON…it is a great single on an amazing album. I took my older daughter to see her first concert in a ‘club’ last week. We went to the 9:30 Club in D.C. (one of my favorite music venues) for her to hear Owl City. If I am going to go through an hour of techno-pop, I would much rather it be in a club than restricted to a seat in an arena. She had a blast and it was fun to see her so happy and into the music. And here’s an interesting fact that I never knew about 9:30 – they have a coffee bar upstairs. All my years of going there and I’ve never looked past the beer. My fantasy summer concert line up is: Avett Brothers, the Black Keys, Dr. Dog, Fiona Apple, Counting Crows.

    • CANNOT HEAR “GOLD ON THE CEILING” ENOUGH. Like I want it to be a longer song, I love it so much. I have a problem. I, too, need more Cat Power. Sun is a great album.

      Must check out Avett Brothers. I hear good things.

      My girls still want to see The Fresh Beat band or Imagination Movers live. I should make that happen before they want tickets to Lady Gaga, probably. 🙂

  2. Sometimes I realize I really AM older than you, because I don’t even know most of the bands you mentioned … until you mentioned Rush. I had a boyfriend from Chicago that introduced me to Rush back in the 1970s, and I got to see them at a concert in Texas. “The original power trio,” he called them. So cool that they’re still out there.

    • HA! That’s how dan describes Rush, too, as the original power trio. They have been touring forever. Dan’s seen almost all of their appearances in Pittsburgh since 1986. As to age: I don’t know how relevant it is. I mean, I am always looking for new music, new authors, even though I’m over 40 now. I just can’t fall back on “the usual”. And Pittsburgh radio is *terrible*.

  3. My Ultimate Summer Festival Concert:

    George Thorogood
    Meat Loaf
    Joan Jett
    Bruce Springsteen
    and AC/DC headlining.

    At the end of the show, George, Meat, Joan and Bruce come out to play with AC/DC.

    Of course, the show would probably last about 17 hours…

  4. Can i go to the concerts in a time machine?

    U2 in 2001
    The Clash in 1982
    The Cars in 1981
    Simon and Garfunkle in Central Park 1981
    Queen at Live Aid in 1985

    Honorable Mention: Earth, Wind & Fire in 1988

    Where’s the DeLorean, Marty!?

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