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  • Rich Kassirer

Issue 24: Winter Thaw

Skating, skiing, sledding, snowflakes quietly descending on fields and trees, icicles sparkling in the sun … shoveling, falling on black ice, heavy boots, gloves, hats, below freezing temperatures for a dozen days straight…

OK, you get my (snow) drift: Winter, as beautiful as it can be, is a long drag of a season. What is fun and even inspiring in November and December basically sucks by February and March – and don’t get us started about this past January.

But we New Englanders are a hearty sort (so they say) and we know how to make the best of the coldest, most miserable months of the year.

Yeah, for us it’s finding ourselves a warm club, a Guinness, and a killer band. Give us Johnny D’s on a Saturday night with Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles ripping it up on stage. Throw in some sweet potato fries and don’t bother sending out a search party. We actually did that recently and we’re much better for it. The next day it was nearly 50 degrees and our whole attitude changed.

Hearing music thaws the brain. So this issue we set out to melt our winter blues with a slew of new tunes.

There are lots of new albums coming out, and some that have been out for a bit that we hadn’t caught up to yet.

Tops on our list is Eilen Jewell’s “Sea of Tears,” due in April. And Sarah’s new album, “The Stars Are Out,” is out this month.

Another group, who we have not seen live yet, is Sometymes Why, a trio of women who play in other bands we like. Their new album, “Your Heart Is a Glorious Machine,” is a treat. We also love to “find” albums by musicians who many have not heard of yet. So we are offering some info on the music of Seattle songwriter Ali Marcus; singer Marybeth D’Amico, who lives in Germany; and a Nashville group called the Bittersweets.

Take a listen, and come and find us when the snow melts.

To read the full issue, click HERE. To read the reviews online, click HERE.


1. “Drunken Angel,’’ “Car Wheels on a Gravel Road,” Lucinda Williams. We don’t know why, it just always pops into our heads. 2. “Rain Roll In,” “Sea of Tears,” Eilen Jewell. Bringing back that great 12-string Byrds sound. 3. “Melt Your Heart,” “Rabbit Fur Coat. Jenny Lewis. Just a sweet tune. 4. “Mission in the Rain,” “Reflections,” Jerry Garcia. Makes us want to see California through his eyes. 5. “Goodbye, San Francisco,” “Goodnight, San Francisco,” The Bittersweets. Continuing our Bay Area jag.

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