Song of the Day #1,377 (2 1/2 years late): ‘Some Mistakes’ – Brad Paisley

5th_gearI’ve been living a lie.

On April 19, 2012, I posted a song from Fiona Apple’s When the Pawn…. It was during a countdown of my favorite albums of the 90s, and Apple’s sophomore effort was #2 on my list.

That was Song of the Day #1,376.

The following day, I posted my #1 album of the 90s. It was Ben Folds Five’s self-titled debut.

That was Song of the Day #1,378.

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Song of the Day #2,313: ‘Engine To Turn’ – Tift Merritt


Best Albums of the 10s So Far
#6 – Tift Merritt – See You On the Moon

The second Tift Merritt album on this list is her finest record yet, 2010′s See You On the Moon.

I love this album so much I almost ran out of songs to feature on the blog. Of Merritt’s five studio albums, this is the one that best captures her Joni Mitchell-meets-Emmylou Harris sound and spirit.

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Song of the Day #2,312: ‘The Day She Got Divorced’ – Brandy Clark


Best Albums of the 10s So Far
#7 – Brandy Clark – 12 Stories

Last week I wrote about Kacey Musgrave’s excellent debut album. Well, Brandy Clark is the woman I hope Musgraves grows up to become.

The 35-year-old Washington native has carved out a career writing songs for other people (most notably Miranda Lambert and The Band Perry) but her solo debut, 12 Stories, is a true work of art.

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Song of the Day #2,311: ‘Head Underwater’ – Jenny Lewis


Best Albums of the 10s So Far
#8 – Jenny Lewis – The Voyager

Jenny Lewis has taken a couple of stabs at greatness over the eight years of her solo career.

2008′s Rabbit Fur Coat is a folk rock pleasure, charming if ultimately forgettable. Acid Tongue, released in 2008, was a more ambitious effort, dabbling in blues rock and featuring a duet with frequent collaborator Elvis Costello. But it, too, had trouble sticking.

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Song of the Day #2,310: ‘Levi Johnston’s Blues’ – Ben Folds


Best Albums of the 10s So Far
#9 – Ben Folds – Lonely Avenue

When I first learned of 2010′s Lonely Avenue, it sounded too good to be true. Ben Folds, one of my very favorite musical artists, had teamed up with Nick Hornby, one of my very favorite authors.

This is the sort of collaboration you dream up in a fanboy fever dream. I knew Hornby was a fan of Folds (I recall one essay of his about the song ‘Smoke’ that was particularly full of praise) but I had no idea he had aspirations as a lyricist.

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Song of the Day #2,309: ‘Jealous’ – Beyoncé


Best Albums of the 10s So Far
#10 – Beyoncé – Beyoncé

I can name a few reasons why Beyoncé’s self-titled December 2013 release belongs on this list.

First is the industry-rattling manner in which it was released — as a complete surprise, with no advance publicity and no online leaks (of its very existence, let alone the music). Nobody imagined such a thing was possible in this era of transparency, let alone by the most visible star in the musical universe.

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Song of the Day #2,308: ‘In Repair’ – John Mayer

continuumI don’t know where John Mayer will end up when the history of pop music in the 21st century is written.

Will he be remembered more for his frat-boy antics and failed relationships or for his guitar chops that regularly put him onstage alongside idols such as B.B. King and Eric Clapton — legends who nod to his musical skills as very much in league with their own.

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