Coronavirus, coronavirus, coronavirus, is your whole life coronavirus!! (I believe I have used this before, and Minnesota listeners of the most popular sports station in town will recognize the reference to well-publicized rant by one of the hosts.) As it happens, despite the best efforts of governments and public health experts, mine isn’t and I hope yours isn’t either. I really enjoy music, and I am constantly looking for new groups or singer/songwriters. As you might imagine given my age, I tend toward classic rock, folk rock, soul, R & B, and a little country. Last year I found a group called Mt Joy that released a tremendous first album. Several really well-done songs–Astrovan, Silver Lining, Sheep, Younger Days, and especially Julia. Singer has a voice perfect for the emotional tone of the music. Reminds me some of the Jayhawks, Counting Crows. I recently picked up the second album from the group, sort of knowing what to expect. It is pretty rare for any artist or group to have consistent performance. The decade of outstanding songs from a Bob Dylan, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, is pretty rare. And sure enough the second album was a dud, not one memorable song that approached those on the first one. Why is that? Do some people only have a set number of good songs in them? Do they find success and try to replicate what they did before and just end up sounding derivative? Or try to avoid what worked before and be “innovative” and leave behind a working formula? Counting Crows really had the same problem. A few good songs on later albums but nothing ever came close to the thematic unity and beauty of the first album. It is always disappointing, but I do begin to expect it when I find a new group I like. And of course, the group decided they had to be “activists” for change, and I believe that plays a role in diminishing the musical creative that is really purely emotional and intuitive. But then my taste in classical music also runs to the romantic, Debussy, Tchaikovsky. Seriously, Mt Joy dudes and dudesses, stick to the music and life. Here is a link to a YouTube video of Julia. (Link)
Anyway, if you like sort of indie rock, a little folky, good melodies, interesting topics, pick up that Mt Joy first album and skip the second. And skip the politics altogether.