Song of the Day #4,075: ‘Take It Back’ – She & Him

I went five years between She & Him songs on Random Weekends, posting the first back in 2014 and the second earlier this month. Now, just three weeks later, the duo shows up again.

Little surprises like this that go hand-in-hand with mathematical randomness are the most satisfying part of Random iTunes Weekends. I love the anomalies and clusters that inevitably pop up when you repeatedly spin the wheel.

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Song of the Day #4,054: ‘I Thought I Saw Your Face Today’ – She & Him

Here’s a track from the 2008 She & Him debut album Volume One. She & Him is a collaboration between actress/musical artist Zooey Deschanel and singer-songwriter M. Ward.

This song is a fine example of the album’s overall sound, indie folk with an old-fashioned sheen courtesy of Deschanel’s distinctive vocals. I liked the album a lot though I certainly don’t revisit it very often.

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Song of the Day #1,391: ‘Handle With Care’ – Traveling Wilburys

Best Albums of the 80s – #13
Vol. 1 – Traveling Wilburys (1988)

As one YouTube poster commented just a week ago, the Traveling Wilburys were “The Avengers of classic rock.”

George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Roy Orbison and Jeff Lynne make sense as friends but not necessarily as band mates. Each brings his own distinctive vocal and writing style to the mix… how could they possibly gel?

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Song of the Day #73: ‘Change is Hard’ – She & Him

I’m kind of at a loss for words in trying to describe the appeal of She & Him, and singer/songwriter Zooey Deschanel in particular.

There’s a mysterious and charming quality to the group’s debut album — it somehow feels simultaneously familiar and brand-new. And almost all of the credit goes to Deschanel and her wonderful voice.

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She & Him – Volume One

The track record of actors turned musicians is not a strong one. Eddie Murphy, Bruce Willis, Lindsay Lohan, Juliette Lewis — crap, all of it. It doesn’t seem to work the other way around, though. Plenty of musicians (especially rappers) make fine actors. I guess singing is already a form of acting, while the reverse isn’t true.

I mention this to point out why the success of She & Him is a very special achievement. Zooey Deschanel (Almost Famous, Elf, All the Real Girls) is the “she” in She & Him, while the “him” is alternative singer-songwriter M. Ward. But the band’s name is deceiving, because this is truly Deschanel’s work. She wrote all the original songs and sings every track, while Ward handles production and plays the guitar.

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