I have been doing a weekly music feature on this blog for the last four months called “Sometimes The Best Short Story Is A Song.” And now I’ve created a YouTube playlist to go along with it. I’ll be updating the playlist every week as I add a new song.
The series is an exploration of the lyrical narrative in some of my favorite music. Last week I posted my 21st installment about the classic Whiskeytown track “16 Days.” For those of you new to the concept, here’s a complete list of all the songs featured to date starting with the most recent:
S.W. Lauden’s short fiction has been published by Out of the Gutter, Criminal Element, Dark Corners, Dead Guns Magazine, Akashic Books, WeirdBook, Spelk Fiction, Shotgun Honey and Crimespree Magazine. His debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, will be published by Rare Bird Books in October 2015. His novella, CROSSWISE, will be published by Down & Out Books in 2016.
Ryan Adams has put out a lot of music since he left Whiskeytown to become a solo artist in 2000. Just this week he released a song-by-song cover of Taylor Swift’s album, “1989”. Whiskeytown only released three albums of their own in the five years they were together. The song “16 Days” is one of my all time favorites. It’s from the band’s second album, Stranger’s Almanac.
This weekend I watched the engrossing Netflix documentary, “Keith Richards: Under The Influence”. The film explores the rock god’s biggest guitar heroes, focusing on how they shaped his own unique style and the Rolling Stones shape-shifting rock & roll. It’s no mystery that Richards got his start kneeling at the altar of the blues, but it was fascinating to see how country music began to take hold in the late 60s. Just as Muddy Waters had been a compass in the early years, psychedelic troubadour Gram Parsons is credited with helping open Richards’ eyes to twang just as The Stones were being exposed to American culture at large. The result can be heard on songs like “Wild Horses,” “Dear Doctor” and “Far Away Eyes”—among others. The new Keith Richards solo album, “Crosseyed Heart,” is pretty great by the way. It’s more blues than country, but all Keef through and through (including some reggae, for good measure).