She & Him - This Is Not A Test

She & Him is duo of country-folk artist, M. Ward and actress, Zooey Deschanel (remember her from Elf?) They met on the set of The Go-Getter when the director asked Deschanel to do a duet with Ward.

The result of is the album Volume One which shows off Deschanel's songwriting and singing skills. This is Not A Test is a nice acoustic track with a 60's folk sound.

Ronny Jordan - The Jackal

Ronny Jordan is pure acid jazz funk. Record companies originally did not want anything to do with him. He showed them with all of his great work and a Grammy nomination in 2000.

The Jackal off his 1993 release, The Quiet Revolution, is an awesome song with Jordan's great guitar work and Dana Bryant's fun, funky lyrics - "I knew I had died and gone to chocolate heaven" Classic.
If you have a chance check out C.J. Cregg lip-synching it on the West Wing on YouTube.

Keller Williams - Freeker by the Speaker

Keller Williams can make the funkiest grooviest tunes come out of his 10 string guitar. He has been described as a one man jam band using a Gibson Echoplex Digital Pro looping unit to create his backing loops in the moment, building and improvising as he goes.

Freeker By the Spreaker off the Laugh CD is awesome Williams funkiness.

Jerry Jeff Walker - Maybe Mexico

Jerry Jeff Walker has been playing and writing music since the 60's. He actually wrote and recorded the song Mr. Bojangles, but it did not become a hit until the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band recorded it.

He is so revered among the serious county music songwriters and fans that his birthday is a major celebration in Austin every March, when he plays several shows in different local clubs and theaters.

Maybe Mexico
is a off the 1968 album Mr. Bojangles that includes the original recording of Mr Bojangles.

Marc Antoine - Cruisin'

Marc Antoine is modern jazz fusion guitarist who takes his classical training and blends a pop-latin sound to make some great music. Born in Paris, he studied at the Conservatoire de Paris where he developed his skills learning classical guitar.

Cruisin' is off his 2001 release of the same name. Although, not his best album, the title track is a great song that makes me think of sitting on the beach, sun on my face and sipping on a drink with an little umbrella stuck in it.

Cibo Matto - Spoon

Cibo Matto (italian for 'food madness') is two Japanese-born women who both came to New York separately, met and formed the band. They blend several styles together to create music with a great groove. Both come from strong music backgrounds with Yuka Honda as a one-time member of Brooklyn Funk Essentials and Miho Hatori as a member of the Japanese rap group, Kimidori. They eventually went their own ways with Hatori teaming up with Gorillaz and Honda doing some producing.

Spoon off their 1999 release, Stereo Type A has an awesome groove. Cibo Matto has musical help from the likes of Sean Lennon and John Medeski and Billy Martin of Medeski, Martin & Wood.

Tinted Windows - Kind of a Girl

Tinted Windows' members are all veterans of the music scene: Taylor Hanson from Hanson (yes, that Hanson), Adam Schlesinger from Ivy and Fountains of Wayne, James Iha from Smashing Pumpkins and Bun E. Carlos from Cheap Trick. Not in my wildest imagination would I have come up with this supergroup. But Kind of a Girl is a great song off their self titled debut album that was just released. Awesome stuff. Check it out.

The The - Soul Catcher

The The is really Matt Johnson. He has occasionally brought in other musicians, such as ex-Smiths and ex-Electonic guitarist Johnny Marr, and turned The The into a full band. His musical portfolio extends across the spectrum from country (he did an album of Hank Williams covers) to dance-pop. Soul Catcher is off The The's last released album, Naked Self, in 2000.

In May 2007, The The released a new download-only single on their website. Entitled "Mrs. Mac", the song was about Johnson's first day of school as a child. All instruments and vocals on the track were performed by Johnson. A press release was issued along with the track, announcing a forthcoming album called The End of the Day, but to date, the album remains unreleased.

Harvey Danger - Sad Sweetheart of the Rodeo

Hailing from Seattle, Harvey Danger, began as a cover band and built a dedicated following. They released their first album in 1997 and have released two albums since, each full of their witty, intelligent lyrics. Sad Sweetheart of the Rodeo off their excellent album, King James Version, is a great tune. Although well reviewed, the album was not commercially successful and they have since released a 3rd album on their own independent label and from their web site.

Donna the Buffalo - Family Picture

I love it when others submit new music I've never heard before. I was introduced to Donna the Buffalo recently and love these guys. Family Picture off their 2-disc live CD Live from the American Ballroom is a great track and really showcases their rootsy folk sound. They were described to me as 10,000 Maniacs meets the Grateful Dead. How can I not like that.

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy - Mr. Pinstripe Suit

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy was part of the 90's big band swing revival. Mr. Pinstripe Suit off Americana Deluxe is a classic example of their 40's/50's rat pack style. They're still playing and recording and have just released a Cab Calloway tribute album.

Say Hi To Your Mom - Let's Talk About Spaceships

Say Hi To Your Mom (now just known as just Say Hi - guess mom's just out of the picture now) is quite an unusual band from New York. They have a progressive acoustic sound with very odd, quirky lyrics. It's one of those bands that grows on you more each time you listen to them. The band has morphed into a one man show (e.g. The The and World Party) with singer/songwriter Eric Elbogen writing and recording their latest album completely on his own.

Let's Talk About Spaceships off their 2003 release Numbers and Mumbles is a perfect example of their style.

Schuyler Fisk - Hello

I was introduced to Schuyler Fisk by my brother. A few hours afterward I heard her on XM Radio. That sounds like a great reason to post her on Hoi Polloi Music. Hello off her debut album The Good Stuff shows off how good songwriting ability and simple acoustic melody really works. Schuyler learned to play guitar from her mother, Sissy Spacek. Like her mother, she is also an actress, starring in several movies and TV shows.

The Presidents of the United States of America - Back Porch

Back Porch is one crazy hopping tune off their debut album. The Presidents of the United States of America just write silly pop punk songs. They are a bit of a novelty act, but this is a fun song and their first album has some appeal. But can grow tiresome if played too often. Pull this out once in blue moon for mood lifter that requires no real thought. Just pull out your 2-string, 1-string, no-string guitars and have a good time.

BeauSoleil - Newz Reel

BeauSoleil is one of the top cajun bands around today. Newz Reel is a great upbeat zydeco tune that off their L'Amour Ou la Folie album. They've been jamming together since 1975 and don't seem to be slowing down. After hearing this, now I'm hungry for some crawfish étouffée and a cold beer.

The Beatles - Tax Man

Tax Man off the Revolver album was written by George Harrison who was inspired to write it when he discovered how much he was earning after accounting for taxes. As Harrison said, "'Taxman' was when I first realised that even though we had started earning money, we were actually giving most of it away in taxes." So in honor of Tax Day in the US, Thank you George for singing what we all feel today.
[No audio stream version available.]

Blind Pilot - One Red Thread

Blind Pilot is an great duo from Portland, Oregon. They did their first tour by bicycle, traveling from Vancouver to San Francisco. One Red Thread from their debut album 3 Rounds and a Sound uses only guitar and drums (with a little vibraphone for effect) and the result is a great song with excellent songwriting. I think we'll hear more them these guys.

Esthero - Everyday is a Holiday (With You)

Canadian born Esthero came onto the scene in 1998. After her first album she sort of disappeared doing some backing vocals and small projects. But in 2004 she began releasing singles which she eventually compiled into Wikked Lil' Girls. On that album she collaborated with Sean Lennon on the wonderful song, Everyday is a Holiday (With You). Sean Lennon shows his musical chops on piano.

The Derek Trucks Band - Crow Jane

The Derek Trucks Band has been making great blues, rock, jazz jam-band flavored music for some time. Derek playing with The Allman Brothers and then formed the Derek Truck Band. Their music continues to expand with each album (do we still call them albums?). Crow Jane off their 2006 release, Songlines, is an fine rendition of the classic blues piece. I have to crank this on up every time I play it.

Andrew Bird - Fitz and the Dizzyspells

Andrew Bird is quite the eclectic fellow. One description stated that Bird 'updates the traditions of small-group swing, German leider, and New Orleans jazz, mixing gypsy, folk, and rock elements into his distinctive style.' How much more eclectic can you get than that?
Bird's lastest release, Noble Beast continues on his own unique path, but making it a bit more pop like and accessible. Fitz and the Dizzyspells is great tune that will get you up and singing along.

Rodrigo y Gabriela - Diablo Rojo

Rodrigo y Gabriela (Rodrigo Sanchez and Gabriela Quintero) are an incredible guitar duo from Mexico. Somehow they ended up busking on the streets of Dublin, Ireland and were found by Damien Rice, who asked them to accompany him on tour.
They have a unique style which is parts bossa nova, flamenco and Mexican folk using the guitar for lead, rhythm and percussion. Diablo Rojo of their self-titled album is perfect example where you can hear Gabriela playing rhythm and percussion at the same time. To get a true feeling of how they play, check out their live performances on their web site.

Nouvelle Vague - Dance With Me

Nouvelle Vague means "new wave" in English and "bossa nova" in Portuguese and it's name neatly sums up the group's concept: remaking classic new wave singles with a Brazilian pop twist. Dance With Me off their Bande à Part album is a remake of the Lords of the New Church new wave classic. If you have the chance, check out their self titled debut album. You won't be disappointed.

The Wreckers - Leave The Pieces

Michelle Branch took a break from her solo career to team up with Jessica Harp to form The Wreckers. Leave The Pieces off their debut album Stand Still, Look Pretty is a great county tune with an wonderful vocal harmonies and rootsy sound.

Zero 7 - In The Waiting Line

In the Waiting Line from Zero 7's debut album Simple Things is the perfect chill out tune. I have had this album in my rotation since it came out and I never tire of it. It is a brilliant work. Kick back, close your eyes and just let this song flow over you.

JJ Grey & MoFro - Orange Blossoms

JJ Grey and Mofro
rock with some raw Southern fried blues. Orange Blossom is the title track of the album of the same name. The thing I like most about the track is the unpolished sound. When I hear it, I have visions of cruising on a dirt back road to a bonfire party by the lake. Ok, maybe it's just me.

Bitter:Sweet - The Bomb

Bitter:Sweet (yes, they spell it with a colon) has a very interesting sound. It has been described as baroque trip-hop. OK, not sure what means but I love the sound. The Bomb off their sophomore release Drama is a fantastic jazzy tune that can almost be the title track to a James Bond movie. Listen close the lyrics, too. Very clever.

G.Love and Special Sauce - Hot Cookin'

Hot Cookin' is a great track from G.Love and Special Sauce off the Lemonade album on Jack Johnson's Brushfire label. Their unique brand of music has been described as 'laid-back, sloppy blues'. It may be laid back, but it always get me doing the dork head bob and sway thing. Yeah, not pretty, I know.

Four80East - Drive Time

Drive Time is awesome modern jazz funk tune off the album Nocturnal by Four80East. Four80East was originally conceived in the studio in 1997 as a side project from the more commercial pop music and released their first album with the excellent title 'The Album'.

Jason Spooner - Simple Life

This is a great song from an awesome indie folk guy. Simple Life from Jason Spooner's sophmore album The Flame You Follow is a acoustic centric tune with great lyrics. And I'm always a sucker for tight horn licks.

The Kooks - She Moves In Her Own Ways

Today's track, She Moves In Her Own Way is from the debut album Inside In/Inside Out from The Kooks. It's a great pop song with an excellent hook, a 'oh whoa ho' and a great Brighton accent.

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