21. Musketeer Gripweed – “Catfish Bait” – I really just love this song. I saw this band live last December at the SpokesBUZZ CD release party, and haven’t really seen the whole band play live since, but their lead singer has been at a few other shows this year, including the SpokesBUZZ Bandswap show in Old Town.
22. Post Paradise – “When the Rain Comes” – My ears perk up a little more every time this song comes on at a Post Paradise show. The whole band is so nice, and their shows are so pretty, and they play a lot of venues near me, so I probably see them more often than I need to, but being obsessed with Post Paradise may not be such a bad thing.
23. Townes Van Zandt – “Nine Pound Hammer” – I hang out at a weekly bluegrass jam on Wednesdays, and this song in its faster, more traditional form, often comes up. Thankfully the jammers play it faster, and an arrangement with which I can sing harmonies, but I love this version just to listen to.
24. Heather Maloney – “Dirt and Stardust” – I think it was a Lucy Kaplansky album I was hearing a while ago that reminded me of this artist and this song. This is not a very heavy, deep song, but it is quite catchy.
25. Tyler T. – “Place Called Home” – It really doesn’t seem possible that I didn’t know this guy a year ago. Tyler will be playing as the opening act for a show at Avogadro’s Number next Friday, December 27th, for anyone else similarly afflicted with a serious Tyler T. addiction.
26. Austin and Elliott – “Rocking the Cradle” – It sounds creepy and is related to earlier Celtic folk songs with the same title. Of course I’d love this song.
27. Peter Mulvey – “Vlad the Astrophysicist” – It is not exactly music,but I love the ideas in this one. I just saw another post on pinterest that assumed that since we haven’t heard from aliens yet, either there are none, or they are unwilling or unable to reply. This little story offers a very sensible, sobering alternative.
28. David Francey – “Saints and Sinners” – I wanted to add the entire album to this list, but this one song will have to make do for now. Fiach, Dar Williams and Thea Gilmore were my exciting non-US music discoveries last year, and this year David Francey is one of my new favorite discoveries. This guy is Canadian, btw.
29. Dala – “Horses” – It’s a bit depressing, but in a very pretty way. I wish these ladies toured through Fort Collins.
30. Fierce Bad Rabbit – “You!” – This song featured on the Whensday movie soundtrack, so it may sound familiar to quite a few people in the general community. Too bad more of our local grocery stores, Walmarts and McDonalds don’t play local music overhead, because with a bit more repetition, this song, this band, and the movie Whensday might build a much bigger following.
31. Pocket Satellite – “Toy Train” – I love this song. And, I really hope that this band might consider booking a show at Avogadro’s Number. Actually this and a few other songs have been run by the owner there, and were well-liked, so when’s the show? If this song were being promoted on mainstream radio right now it would be a huge hit, I’m sure.
32. I’m With Her – “Hang Among the Stars” – I still don’t know much about these ladies, though I have photos of them from their show at New West Fest this fall. This song is still lovely, though, and I hope to hear more from them in 2014.
33. Patti Fiasco – “Oil” – I was thrilled to see this song on the tracklist for this new album. It is still even better live- Alysia Kraft is such a dynamic performer, and not all her energy is so well captured in studio. But this is still one of my new favorites from Patti Fiasco’s albums. Patti Fiasco and Post Paradise are also the only two local bands for which I have tshirts (shirts are expensive when you’re a broke music blogger working for free), and I may wear out both long before I can afford any new band shirts, from anyone. Both are bands for whom I love the idea of being a walking advertisement when I go out dressed in those shirts.
34. Humming House – “When the Dawn Becomes the Day” – I missed this band when they played a show with SHEL this year, but maybe I’ll get lucky in 2014 and be able to catch them live finally. The SHEL set that night was lovely, with a lot more stage decoration that one usually sees at Hodi’s, and those 4 lovely ladies of SHEL, in their cool hats & all. It was a fun night, but I still wish I could have caught Humming House too.
35. Carrie Nation & the Speakeasy – “A Panegyric on Power and Darkness” – This is another band that really ought to book a show at Avogadro’s Number. I fell in love with them in June, and I’ve seen them 3 times this year here in Fort Collins. Their last show here, at Moe’s Barbecue, was packed and lots of fun and energy all the way to the very end of the night. Their bass-player is crazy, in a good way, and plays a beautiful instrument, and their lead singer looks like a character out of some novel, again in a good way, and all of the band is extremely talented.
36. Cary Morin – “To Love Somebody” – Cary had a busy year in 2013. He released an album, got married, went on a multi-state tour, and won his division of the International Blues Challenge. I am sure 2014 will expand on his growing success, but he seems like the sort of down-to-earth fellow who will probably be just as nice and well-balanced even when he is touring the world in his own private jet.
37. Ollabelle – “See Line Woman” – Von Stomper, one of my favorite local bands, plays this song a lot. It is a song Luke Callen plays solo, as well, but with the harmonies and accompaniment the band offers, this song turns into something particularly cool. Really, I have yet to find a version of this old traditional song on spotify that I like as well as Von Stomper’s.
38. Elton John – “Rocket Man” – One of the most peculiar events I saw this year was a burlesque show, in which this song was performed as a spoken-word piece, one of the few acts in the show in which the performers were all fully clothed. I wish that sketch was available as a youtube video, because it was really well done, but I at least am reminded of that performance when I hear this song.
39. The Haunted Windchimes – “A Ballad of Human Progress” – This was one of my absolute favorites from New West Fest, band and song. This band seemed like it may easily have been sucked out of some other time to play for us, but since I saw no blue police boxes sitting around the festival grounds I am guessing they are not just visiting thanks to some timelord’s mettling.
40. Attic Wolves – “The Balladeer” – I met this band rather recently, but this song has fast become one of my favorites for the year. These guys dressed up in plaid flannels and denim, looking very much like the country hick farmboys one might expect from Kansas City, but they sound like the sort of band teenage girls swoon over on tumblr. I’m not sure the farmboy stage clothes are doing much for their fame and fortunes, really. If they look the part, this may be a new breakthrough boy-band that all of next year’s teens will be planning to elope with.