So I've been encouraged to link to work I've done that doesn't directly relate to 1000 Recordings. In the future I will attempt to be timely about such things but our first item today has been out for awhile. (And, according to some websites is officially leaving newstands today, so act quickly!)
In late March Newsweek published a special book-like issue on The Beatles at 50. I wrote short pieces summing up the post-Beatles solo careers of each musician, which was great fun even if I never need an excuse to revisit All Things Must Pass (George Harrison) or Plastic Ono Band (John Lennon). The biggest surprise from my research: That Ringo album, from 1973, has held up astonishingly well! Great great songs (the latest reissue includes a hall-of-fame Harrison-penned single from the period, "It Don't Come Easy") and a surprisingly vibrant mix.
I've been meaning to recommend this Newsweek special not for my contribution but the photos. Somehow this team managed to snag photographs that even Beatle obsessives haven't seen. Lots of casual, intimate shots of the group at work and play, and more than a few "alternate" takes of iconic images. Here's a video with the backstory on the original Sgt. Pepper cover.
On Thursday, NPR's All Things Considered ran my review of The Absence, the latest work from Melody Gardot. It's a magical, deeply subtle record, defined by open space and delicate shadings. Review, which is here, contains short excerpts of several key tracks. Njoy!