Antje Duvekot- "Dandelion"
German-born Antje Duvekot moved to the United States when she was 13 years old and currently lives in Somerville, Massachusetts. Known for writing songs that are often deeply personal, she frequently records and performs with only her acoustic guitar to accompany her voice. If I were making a list of my Top 100 Favorite Songs of All Time, "Dandelion" would be somewhere on that list.
Ani Difranco - "32 Flavors"
Sixteen years ago, I was browsing through a store in nearby Portland when I heard this song playing on the shop's stereo. My innocent question of, "Who are we listening to?" was met by a defiant, "You can't have her! She's mine!" At the time, Ani Difranco was a well-kept secret and, unbeknownst to me, being introduced to her music was similar to being told the location of the Holy Grail. Sacred information in hand, I went and picked up Ani's Not a Pretty Girl album and then proceeded to quickly obtain her entire catalog to that point. As her career moved forward, Ani lost my ear, but her first four or five albums are exceptional and the next two after that are very enjoyable. Often described as a mixture of folk and acoustic punk/funk, her music ranges from the folksy "Out of Habit" to the edgy "Shy."
The Decemberists - "16 Military Wives"
Portland-based The Decemberists are best known the track, "16 Military Wives," but I find myself singing their single, "Raincoat Song," more than any of their other songs. The two tracks are a fairly accurate glimpse of the band's range.
Tina Dico - "Losing"
A singer songwriter from Denmark, I love this track for its use of orchestration and dissonant chords to set the mood. It's a really amazing, very unique track. The lyrical structure is sensation and, on top of that, the artist has a beautiful voice.