You know a film is one of the "great ones" when even a cameo from Young MC can't derail it. Up in the Air may have went scoreless on its six Oscar nods, but the film still ranks as one of my favorites from the 2000s decade. Aside from a star turn from Anna Kendrick, a spot-on screenplay, and what I consider George Clooney's finest hour, the film was matched with an awesome soundtrack. One standout track was and is Sad Brad Smith's "Help Yourself," a deeply-felt song that fit in so well with the overall joy, sadness and acceptance the film's characters struggle with. Why am I bringing up a 2009 movie in a post today? Because Sad Brad Smith is back in a big way. The Chicago-based folk singer/songwriter is dropping his Magic LP this month (it's his follow-up to Love is Not What You Need, and has granted A-Sides permission to premiere the music video for first single "On the Beach." The video stars quirky character acting legend Austin Pendleton, which in itself is pretty damn cool. Get him in a buddy movie with Christopher Walken and Jeff Goldblum stat. Anyway, watch the video below, and keep your eyes and ears our for an A-Sides session with SBS soon.
Susan Cattaneo has been a songwriting professor at Boston's Berklee College of Music for over a decade. It's clear the future of American music is in good hands. The New Jersey native has been writing deeply-felt tunes for decades - some for herself, some for other artists - and has had her tunes played all over the world. She just dropped her fourth album entitled Haunted Heart - her follow-up to the successful Little Blue Sky. Like her previous three albums, the vibe on this record is a seamless blend of country, rock, and soul. Last month in Manhattan, Cattaneo performed a track and sat down for a chat with A-Sides.
A-Sides "Delve Into Twelve" Countdown
Each week A-Sides unleashes its Top 12 tracks of the week AKA the "Delve Into Twelve"based on the following contributing factors: songs I'm playing out that particular week NO MATTER WHEN THEY WERE RELEASED (think overlooked songs, unreleased tracks, and old favorites), songs various publicists are trying to get me to listen to that I did and dug a bunch, posts and trends I've noticed on my friends' Facebook walls, and - most importantly - the songs my two-year-old son gravitates toward by stomping his feet in approval. Yeah, you read that right. This weeks follows below (LW= last week's rank).
12. "Vow" - Garbage
11. "Reverse" (LW-11) - SomeKindaWonderful
10. "Blue Moon" (LW-6) - Beck
9. "Levitator" - LP
8. "Rat Race"(debut) - Brody Dalle
7. "Keys" (LW-8)- Hooray for Earth
6. "Alienation" (LW-4) - Morning Parade
5. "Fever" (LW-5) - The Black Keys
4. "Seasons (Waiting on You)"(LW-3) - Future Islands
3. "Now Hear In" (LW-1) - Cloud Nothings
2. "Chandelier" (debut) - Sia
1 ."Peaches" (LW-2) - In the Valley Below
About A-Sides Music
Jon Chattman's "A-Sides Music" series was established in August 2011 and usually features artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometimes humorous) way. No bells, no whistles -- just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, I'm hoping this is refreshing. Artists have included: fun, Rob Zombie, Pharrell Williams, Courtney Love, American Authors, Imagine Dragons, Gary Clark Jr., and more! A-Sides theme written and performed by Blondfire.
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more informationTrack ballot status
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place