Sunday, September 26, 2010

cd sunday: jack johnson's brushfire fairytales

shenandoah valley.  the blue ridge mountains.  skyline drive.  harrisonburg, virginia.

this is where i went to college.  this is where i fell in love.  this is where i grew into the person i am today. 

it is also where i was introduced to jack johnson.  this may sound odd...  that i was introduced to a hawaiian surfer guitarist in the land of bluegrass, country, and folk music is odd in itself.  but for some reason jack johnson's music was perfect for a college student who was loving life.

Brushfire Fairytalesi remember exactly where i was when i first heard brushfire fairytales.  my friend josh had invited me to go out somewhere - maybe the local wafflehouse? - wherever we were going, it was late at night, and we were hungry.  josh popped in this cd, and i was instantly hooked.  it was laid-back, upbeat, poetic, and deeply musical inspite of its simplicity.  i knew almost immediately that i needed to track down this album for my own collection.

i still consider it to be brilliant music.  songs like "fortunate fool", "the news", and "f-stop blues", are beautiful, timeless, and deeply meaningful.  others like "flake" or "mudfootball" are playful pieces of music in a lazy saturday afternoon kind of way.

jack johnson's other albums are also worth checking out (we even chose to use his song "better together" in our wedding ceremony) but i think this one (his first) is his most raw and maybe his best.  simply put, his music has been a part of my life.

you can check out the rest of the albums in my favorite 20 album countdown by clicking on any of the links below.  

1. u2 - the joshua tree
2. dave matthews band - crash
3. cake - comfort eagle
4. blue rodeo - five days in july
5. the beach boys - pet sounds
6. coldplay - viva la vida
7. weezer - pinkerton
8. mates of state - re-arrange us
9. radiohead - ok computer 
10. nickel creek - this side
11. u2 - how to dismantle an atomic bomb 
12. the beatles - the white album 
13. sloan - one chord to another 
14. o.a.r. - risen
15. paul simon - graceland


Bellis said...

Fabulous photo! All those miles and miles of forest, and the fall colors are at their best. I miss it - we used to have forest here until last year.

ben wideman said...

It is beautiful, and I do miss it. Even when we had forest in SoCal, it was never like the multi-colored forests on the east coast.

Timmy said...

gorgeous ben!!

ben wideman said...

Thanks! I am gorgeous! But seriously, I can't take credit for this photo as I (obviously) didn't take it. I think our friend Kendra did.

Tash said...

Cannot be more beautiful! Lovely photo of the two of you too. I like your intro -- could be a song too.
I'll be back to listen to Ben's top 15.
It'll be interesting for you to come back to this list when you are 52 (as I am today :).

Pasadena Adjacent said...

It's a sound site that will allow you to link tracs (others have downloaded) to your blog post and/or download your own and link.

then we can have a sample track to go with your posts...hint hint

Go to my site and scroll down to the Eastside Tomato King. You can see and test what it looks like
War (Lowrider) I think

ben wideman said...

Hmm - that is a good idea. Wait, do you have to upload the track to that site before you can attach it to your blog? Seems a little cumbersome. I only have a few left... we'll see.