We’re definitely in a golden era for female songwriters, whether because there are more of them releasing material or just more of them given the chance. By pure coincidence, the last several artists I’ve written about (all of whom have dominated my playlists) have been women: Maren Morris, Billie Eilish, Lana Del Rey, The Beths and now Jenny Lewis.
Lewis has released On the Line, her first album since 2014’s The Voyager, a record that featured my #1 song of that year and that I named my #2 album of the year and my #8 album of the 2010’s up to that point. That’s quite an act to follow!
Jenny Lewis’ 2014 album The Voyager was my second-favorite album of that year and in my top ten for the decade so far. Just mentioning it here has me wanting to cue it up in my car — I think I’ll do that.
Despite my love for that album, I haven’t spent a lot of time revisiting Lewis’ other solo efforts, including 2008’s Acid Tongue, on which today’s Random SOTD appears. My guess is I’d appreciate this album even more in light of The Voyager.
As I approach my year-end lists of the best songs, albums, movies and TV shows of 2015, it’s appropriate that today’s Random iTunes Selection comes from one of my favorite albums of 2014.
Jenny Lewis’ The Voyager was second only to Miranda Lambert’s Platinum on last year’s album list, and her song ‘Late Bloomer’ topped my list of the best songs of 2015.
Best Songs of 2014 – #1
‘Late Bloomer’ – Jenny Lewis
I knew Jenny Lewis’ ‘Late Bloomer’ was the best song of 2014 before I’d even finished listening to it the first time.
It’s rare that I “get” a song after just one listen (let alone half of one) but this elegant snapshot of a young woman’s coming of age struck a nerve instantly.
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.
When I ordered those four new albums a week ago, I didn’t expect my runaway favorite to be Jenny Lewis’ The Voyager.
Don’t get me wrong, I like Jenny Lewis. Her first two solo albums, Rabbit-Fur Coat and Acid Tongue, are sharp, melodic and ambitious. But neither really grabbed me and shook me the way this latest record has.
The Random iTunes Fairy chose an interesting pair of songs this weekend. While yesterday’s track showcased the importance of the single, today’s selection is all about the deep cut.
The final track on Jenny Lewis’ 2005 album Rabbit-Fur Coat, ‘It Wasn’t Me’ is in no danger of winding up on the radio. But it’s a lovely little closing track, one that deserves to be heard. It’s the antithesis of a song like The Corrs’ ‘Breathless’ that was born to wind up on one of those NOW compilations.