For our feature Nice Playlist, Brah, we ask some of our favorite musicians to make a themed Spotify playlist for us. You know, Songs to Make-out To, The Worst Bands I Have Ever Heard, Songs Your Mom Would Like, we just ask them to be creative, and then we post them to The Ardent Music Blog and share them with you. When you’re looking for a good Spotify playlist, now you know where to look. This week we invited singer/songwriter King of Prussia to put one together for us. We invite you to take listen to the playlist while you read why the musician included each song. Enjoy!
King of Prussia sent us this playlist full of great tunes from both obscure bands and some heavy hitters! It’s a collaborative effort from the band and it’s a great music stream to ease yourself back into the work week! Click to stream:
Brian Smith’s Picks
1. “And Your Bird Can Sing” - The Beatles as covered by The Jam
Go ahead, plug in your Rickenbacker, pour some tea, and try to play this lead part. I’ll wait. Damn near supernatural, innit? What are they laughing at? How does a kid in his 20s write a bass line like that? I include this perennial favorite partly because the first time I hung out with Sean Lennon he told me our first record sounded like the Zombies. Don’t get all smug on me. You’d name drop it, too, if it happened to you.
2. “Acid Bird” – Robyn Hitchcock, Black Snake Diamond Role
This guy complimented my suit before he played a show at the 40 Watt, using my dead friend’s amp. I felt like calling my mom but she just wouldn’t have gotten it. I’ve loved Robyn since the 80s- c’mon, who else is gonna use the word ‘corpuscles’ in a pop song? My first ever girlfriend, Allison Brice, moved to London and got to tour opening for him – check out her beautiful David Lynch-y torch music with the band The Silver Abduction.
Honorable mention: Ride – “Seagull, ” Love and Rockets – “Rainbird, ” REM -”Disturbance at the Heron House”
Vasco Batista’s Picks
3. “Chicken with its Head Cut Off” - The Magnetic Fields
I have to admit I’ve only recently got into The Magnetic Fields but it was love at first sight, because of songs like this one. The way he describes how the chicken runs around falling down and getting up again takes me back to my childhood, when I helped my great gramma do the same to her chickens.
4. “When Doves Cry” - Prince
I never realised how sad this song sounded until I played an acoustic version of it. At the same time it’s a killer on the dance floor. I like versatile songs.
Chris Tucker’s Picks
5. “Ducks on the Wall” – The Kinks
From my favorite Kinks album, A Soap Opera, lies this gem about his gal having ducks on her wall and it’s driving him mad. Everything from the quacks to the driving piano makes this cut a party favorite.
6. “The Bird that You Can’t See” - The Apples in Stereo
This song takes me back to May in the late 90′s after my old band the Drag had played some outdoor festival in Myrtle Beach. As we finished our set one of my friends started passing out ecstasy to everyone. We made our way back to the pub and had quite a dance party. This is the one song that stands out from that psychedelic evening. Can you say, “Shake a tail feather?”
Brandon Hanick’s Picks
7. “Bluebird” – Buffalo Springfield
Buffalo Springfield was one of those bands destined to implode from its beginning—too much brilliance for one group. But they managed to put out three fantastic records in just over two years and directly or indirectly spawned countless other bands. “Bluebird” is a good representation of the band’s sound—vacillating between pop psychedelia and folk, the song is full of magnetizing harmonies, fuzzy leads and fast-pickin’ acoustic guitars that take over the whole mix in the best way possible.
My favorite part is the banjo outro that fades out at just the right time, hinting at a bright tomorrow. Hope for the future may have died or diminished with the end of the ‘60s, but the music has only become more impressive and loved through the years. Almost thirty years after its release, Buffalo Springfield was a big part of the soundtrack to my early teen years.
8. “Freebird” – Lynyrd Skynyrd covered by Molly Hatchet
Which brings me to “Freebird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd. The summer after my freshman year of high school, I went to a camp at Duke University at which we took a college course and stayed in the dorms on campus for three weeks. This was before shouting out “Freebird” as a “request” at shows had become a clichéd joke of a joke about a cliché (back when it was just funny because it had become a legitimate cliché). My friends and I incorporated the request into the skit that we did for one of the inter-dorm competitions…the skit also included an awesomely goofy song about our dorm, Pegram Hall, set to the tune of Adam Sandler’s “Turkey Song.”
Growing up in Florida in pre-internet times, there was really no way for a 14-year-old kid to discover any bands that weren’t being played on classic rock radio or passed down to them via their parents’ vinyl collection. WMNF was hit-or-miss (though it’s great now) and touring bands would (and still do) routinely skip Florida altogether. One could only hope that a friend would take a trip to NYC and bring back some punk rock and ska mix tapes to share with the group.
But then I went to summer camp at Duke and all these smart kids were listening to and covering songs by bands like Pavement, Dinosaur Jr., Meat Puppets and Sebadoh. My whole world was about to change. No more being forced to listen to “Freebird” 6 times a day on Thunder 105.5 FM.
Nathan Troutman’s Picks
9. “Bluebird of Happiness” - Mojave 3
Love Neil Halstead…love him. I remember this record Spoon and Rafter being a change from their other stuff…one that I liked. This song has really grown on me over the years. It’s a long one…but totally worth it.
10. ”Simon, The Bird with the Candy Bar Head” - Elf Power
Ohhh…the ol’ Elephant 6 Collective..all of them really had an impact on me in my teen years. A budding musician at age 19, I was floored by this entire album. It’s a pretty silly/quirky song but it really takes me back. Andrew is a great guy and I think “A Dream in Sound” is def some of his best. Check it.
King of Prussia, the Chicago-based psychedelic folk rock band, will release its second full- length album Transmissions from the Grand Strand on Tuesday, April 17, 2012. Nearly three years in the making, the album is full of highly textured songs about love, death, Transatlantic power structures and various forms of ascendance. The band is currently working on recording its third and fourth albums and making tour plans for 2012.
Check out all of our Spotify playlists on The Ardent Music Blog! Thanks to King of Prussia for their contribution!