Through the decades, I can count but a handful of albums that have been as consistently intoxicating as Courtney Marie Andrews’ Honest Life has been for me over these past few months. I’m trading a tad in hyperbole with that lede – there have been dozens, if not more, such albums – but it is in a select group. (My full review of it can be found here.) On my old site, I used to write that “it takes you there, wherever there is” about certain songs, albums and performances – such is the case here. No matter my mood, or the pressures of the day, listening to it lifts me up.
One such moment: when the backup vocals come in for the “rock ’n’ roll at the Blue Moon Tavern” line in “Put the Fire Out.” It’s a perfect accent on a perfectly crafted song.
In the first YouTube clip below, Courtney talks about how she produced the album herself and, because she was self-funding the endeavor, recorded it in three or four days – too fast to foul anything up, really, or get too fancy. The result placed the focus where it should always be: the songs.
Anyway, onward to today’s Top 5: Courtney Marie Andrews on YouTube – a roundup of clips and performances well worth watching from start to finish.
1) … on Radio 91 KRCB FM , April 7th, 2017. An enlightening interview (on the road vs. being home: “you’re in a constant state of not being content”) and in-studio performances of “Put the Fire Out” and “Table for One.”
2) … @ Rough Trade West April 12th, 2017. An in-store appearance that features a very nice set: “Sea Town,” “This Is Not the End,” “Put the Fire Out,” “Table for One” and “Irene.”
3) … @ The Social (Part 1), March 6th, 2017. A great set in London.
4) … @ The Social (Part 2), March 6th, 2017. And a great conclusion to the set!
5) Honest Life (complete album).