January 2009 Featured Artist: My Morning Jacket

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2 Ene 2009, 0:19

I almost feel just as silly featuring My Morning Jacket as I did for Nine Inch Nails (back in May 08), but honestly most people that I've talked to--once I told them I was seeing MMJ (for short) for New Year's Eve--they responded with, "Who are they?"

But the reason I feel silly is because they're obviously beyond the realm of being independent or underrated. In fact, their most recent effort, Evil Urges, has been placed on many blogs' top 10 albums of the year for 2008.

So, who is MMJ? They are a band based out of Louisville, KY, and if your assumption is that they are considered southern/alt rock, then you'd be right. But with songs like Highly Suspicious and Touch Me I'm Going To Scream Pt. 2 and, of course, their covers of Kool and the Gang's Celebration and Get Down on It, they let out a healthy helping of soul- and R&B-infused rock, as well.

Jim James, the singer/songwriter and guitarist of the band, is up there for my contender of one of the best modern lyricists and singers. His vocals range anywhere from a smooth tenor/baritone to even a soprano in some songs, especially in "Wordless Chorus." It really is a sight to see, as was proven to me last night at their special New Year's Eve show at Madison Square Garden.

I've always kind of known that they were talented bunch, based from their studio albums and the random live clips that my boyfriend would show me online.

But seeing them live... wow... wow... they play their frickin' hearts out and and are just so passionate and talented live. If they wanted to play two more hours, I guarantee that the audience would've stayed that entire set as well. Three hours felt like just the beginning.

I wish I could articulate quite how impressionable this experience was on me, but let's just say that I haven't done anything of importance except listening to their music, browse their clips on YouTube, and then found that you, too, can download some of their live shows here. How awesome is that?!

I really shouldn't have to convince you more than this:

MMJ - Celebration/Get Down on It

What a way to ring in 2009!

Friend MMJ on MySpace!

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