ND Festival Spotlight: Sera Cahoone’s six favorite songs of all time
In preparation for the festival next week, I’ve been chatting with many of this year’s performers, and I’ll be sharing those interviews with you over the next week.
The first person I got a hold of was Sera Cahoone – an artist I came to know a few years back after she released her most recent record (and her second solo effort in all) Only as the Day Is Long. That disc is an excellent, earnest album full of just flat-out great songs. No fancy embellishments, no tricks up its sleeve. Cahoone’s music tends to focus on the song itself, being as honest and thorough as possible, following each melody and emotion to its end. Since that record and my writing about it, I’ve gotten to know her a bit better, have had one or two drinks with her a time or two, and have asked her so many questions about her work that the main question I have left is, “When’s the next record coming out?” (She doesn’t have an answer, but has been writing new material.)
So, rather than put her through another Q&A, this time I asked her to give me her five favorite songs of all time. She gave me six. I’ve pasted her list, a video of each, her comments, and a few of my own below. If you’ll be in the Seattle area next weekend, you can catch Cahoone’s set at the No Depression Festival – she goes on at 2:30 p.m. I wouldn’t be surprised if there weren’t a few new songs, not to mention other surprises.
And now, without further ado, Sera Cahoone’s six favorite songs of all time (in no particular order):
Bob Welch- “Sentimental Lady”
Sera says: My mom would play this song all the time growing up. I always loved it. I forgot about it until recently. A friend was playing a mix, and it came on. It made me curl up in the fetal position.
Merle Haggard- “Drink Up And Be Somebody”
Sera says: The title says it all…
Willie Nelson- “Sad Songs And Waltzes”
Sera says: It was really hard to pick just one Willie Nelson song. I love the lyrics and the simplicity of it.
Lucinda Williams- “Lafayette”
Sera says: Reminds me of my fun summers in Wisconsin.
Surprisingly, I couldn’t find a single video of Lucinda doing “Lafayette,” which is also one of my favorite Lucinda Williams songs. Perhaps she’ll pull it out of her archive for a spin at the festival next weekend. After all, she was soliciting Facebook yesterday for requests of songs to play on her West Coast tour. If she’s reading this piece, let it be known – that’s two requests for “Lafayette.”
Sera says: I know, can’t believe I’m admitting this. But this song makes me instantly happy. And is the best air drum song! If you’ve never tried air drummng, this is the one! (I can’t believe i’m admitting this.)
I beg to differ. I think “In the Air Tonight” by Phil Collins is the best air-drumming song of all time. But this is not a spotlight on me, so I’ll give Cahoone her Toto video.
Jackson Browne – “Fountains of Sorrow”
This addition came with no commentary, so I’ll add my own. I’ve never been much of a fan of Jackson Browne, but was made to listen to this song on repeat last week, and have since developed an affection for it. Much like Cahoone’s work, it follows its sentimental story to the end. There’s something to be said for committing to the space around a song, giving it the room it needs to be sung.
Folks who can’t make it to No Depression Festival can catch Cahoone on tour back east in September, when she’ll be touring through the south, east, and midwest with Patrick Park. Full dates are available on her MySpace page.
Check out more information about the 2010 No Depression Festival, including the schedule, lineup, and ticket information. Stay tuned for more spotlights on this year’s performers over the next week.