Mix Tape

Winter 2011-2012 Snappy Mix

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Outside of DI HQ in Northern California

In the winter of 2001, shocked and bummed out beyond belief by the 9/11 attacks and subsequent actions by my country and recently laid off for the first time in my life, I found myself adrift, a man on unknown tides tangled up in blue. Nothing made much sense and kindness and compassion seemed in terrifically short supply. Broke and bewildered, I wondered what tiny good I might do for others, what little thing I could mold with my hands that might raise a smile or prod a little contemplation from an increasingly numb populace. Thus was born the Seasonal Mix Series, an inquiry in song about where we stand as the weather changes and the calendar pages leaf by.

The goal has never been to lard these mixes with specific references to sun, snow, etc. but rather to snag the vibe of a new season, and more broadly, remind myself and others that things change and where we find ourselves today isn’t where we’ll be tomorrow. There are usually some oblique references to current events – very sadly, war and death have been near-constant subtexts – along with a few chuckles, choice covers, and more than anything, an attempt to be emotionally honest about the state of things.

Up until this point, the Seasonal Mixes have been a personal gift to friends and random strangers who seemed to need a fresh melody, a CD passed with a warm smile and a hug. Starting with this 11th winter offering, I’ll be sharing this series on Dirty Impound. Perhaps it will be a chance for the community gathering around this labor of love to pause, reflect and maybe even rejoice a bit together with folks they’ll likely never meet but share this beautiful world with – an infinitesimally small nudge towards some greater good. Comments are heartily encouraged. Tell us about where you stand, what these songs stir up, whatever. The space is open to all.

This installment is partially inspired by my recent nighttime walks around my suburban neighborhood in Northern California, drinking in the Christmas lights and cool air while stumbling across stray bits of wonder and remembering what this season felt like as a child (and how that slipped away with the years). It has a bang-up Journey cover from Clem Snide, a pair of wistful heart-tuggers from a pair of singer-songwriters you really should know (Greg Humphreys, Kiyoshi Foster), one from a master musician that deserves FAR more credit than he often gets (Papa Mali), and a couple songs that have haunted me in the finest ways all year from The Barr Brothers and Greensky Bluegrass. Finally, I dedicate the Paul Simon tune here to my lovely wife Sara, who built this website for her writer husband and never ceases to support his dreaming out loud. It’s no lie, cliché that is is, I loved her the first time I saw her. Now, let’s go make some snow angels and look up at the drifting clouds.

If you experience playback problems, pop over to the 8tracks mix page and it should play fine.

Winter 2011-2012 Snappy Mix Track Listing

  1. End of the Season – The Kinks
  2. Wheel In The Sky – Clem Snide
  3. Snowman – Martina Topley Bird
  4. And Dream of Sheep – Kate Bush
  5. Beggar In The Morning – The Barr Brothers
  6. We Were All Uptown Rulers >
  7. Birmingham To Blackhorse Road We Wandered – The Court & Spark
  8. Hold On Hope – Glen Campbell
  9. She’s Thunderstorms – Arctic Monkeys
  10. Welcome To The Occupation – R.E.M.
  11. Blue Night – Buxter Hoot’n
  12. Don’t Lie – Greensky Bluegrass
  13. Broken Circle – Sam Phillips
  14. Stone – Ronnie Lane’s Slim Chance
  15. Good News (& Bad News) – John Wesley Harding
  16. Heart Is Where The Home Is – Kiyoshi Foster
  17. Running Away – Greg Humphreys
  18. Hallelujah I’m A Dreamer – Papa Mali
  19. Love & Hard Times – Paul Simon
  20. Safety – Beth Orton

One thought on “Mix Tape: Winter 2011-2012 Snappy Mix

  1. Dennis,
    This is a fantastic mix to say the least. As a Slip and SMMD fan for many years, the Barr Brothers new stuff is a welcome addition to their catalogue. As for Love and Hard Times, you nailed it, beautiful song that comes from one of the years best albums for sure. Keep up the great work and I am glad that you put the Snappy Mix up for all to enjoy because it is just not possible for you to hook up everyone on the street with a copy! Cheers to a great 2012!
    Mike

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