Carve up your tofurkeys and get the big spoon for the stuffing – it’s Thanksgiving! Aside from the obvious top votes for what I’m thankful for – a sagging, cracked roof over my head, family, friends, etc. – I’m thankful for many small moments in music this year. Here, I’ll recap some shows, past and future, covers, collaborations, and more.
1. Mac DeMarco ‘Salad Days’
Everyone has a crush on Mac DeMarco. Is it the way he always looks like he needs a shower and everyone wants to clean him up? His onstage banter between songs from Salad Days and Mac DeMarco 2? Whatever the case may be, I’m thankful his performances at Bumbershoot and Chop Suey had great turnouts and his album, released April 1st, one of my favorites from this year, no jokes.
2. Lorde covers Jeremih’s “Don’t Tell ‘Em”
Because there’s not enough ballsy covers out there that actually work. Nobody remembers that time Celine Dion covered
something believable AC/DC “Shook Me All Night Long” because nobody wants to wail and gnash their teeth. Everyone expects a country singer to cover another country singer. Lorde and her band brought the Top 40 Hit from the club to the basement of that unmarked building that has no address and no indication that it is a venue. Tell us more.
3. T-Pain Sings Without Auto Tune at NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert
“This is weird as hell for me. I’ve never done anything like this before.” The rest of the internet thought so, too, when T-Pain took off the top hat, put down the Patron and threw on some respectable spectacles for the highbrow audiophiles at NPR. For those unfamiliar, NPR Music invites artists in to do a short list of songs, usually the preview single of an upcoming album or the Milk, Eggs, Bread of an artists’ repertoire. This time, T-Pain brought us some soulful, beautiful, n0 Auto Tune, panty-dropping renditions of his early 2000 hits. If this is your first time, warning: you will not know what to do with yourself after hearing the first note from T-Pain’s mouth. If you’re back for more, yeah. Be thankful for the real thing.
4. Nicki Minaj – “Anaconda”
I shouldn’t have to tell you this is NSFW, but if you’ve been living under a rock hiding from Ebola, I guess you need to know your Turkey will be stuffed after seeing this. Minaj can sample Sir Mix-A-Lot all day long; she’s one of the few artists who can do it and pay homage to one of the best curve anthems of all time. He’s got a lot to be thankful for. She rhymes “romaine” with “Balmain.” I can’t. Even.
5. Darkside at Neumos 1/22
Throwing it waaaayy back to January, 2014 was rightfully kicked off with Darkside performing to a sold out crowd at Neumos. At the time I was still an intern working a couple of merch shifts here and there for petty cash. The merch table at the venue is at a great vantage point for the perfect profile of whomever is performing onstage. Glad I slung shirts and LPs for this one. Read KEXP’s review of the show here.
6. Thee Oh Sees at The Crocodile 12/1
I finally saw Thee Oh Sees last year, confirming that I’ve been wasting my time not trying to see them any chance I can get. With the release of Drop back in April, they’re due back at The Crocodile on Dec. 1st, and I’m gifting myself the gift of more awesome live music. Tickets are still available should you want to make yourself happy.